I’ve been through a lot of internet forums and message boards. They are all out there for people to connect. There is no exception, no limit as to what topic can be discussed, as long as you find the appropriate forum for your subject of interest. Most of the time, complete strangers and familiars can log on, chat and share their thoughts and experiences. Despite this though, I never would think that this is a window to change one’s life.
Maybe I’m still too green at this, but really, serious talk has been revolving around message boards ever since it began. For example, I’m not interested to search for them, but most probably there are chat messages about someone who wants to attempt suicide, and the other people in the forum try to convince the person not to do so. I read somewhere that someone in a message board was able to predict the events of the 9/11 bombings, leading to controversy and many people trying to extract more information about the matter. Quite heavy stuff isn’t it? Well let’s put that aside and focus on a similarly serious but not deadly matter… love problems.
I’m very, very sure that many people turn to the internet message boards and tell complete strangers about their love problems, hoping that someone could give them advice. Of course, results may vary. Now, Densha Otoko is a jdorama delving quite closely about this subject, on how a guy successfully gained the courage to date a girl with the help of complete strangers in a message board. Quite a generic story if you ask me, but why did this Densha Otoko make such an uproar in Japan? Having not only a TV series, but also a movie, manga, and novel of the same name, Densha Otoko is the talk of the town. Why is it so popular? Well, I watched the series to find out myself.
I think the magic of the series lies on its improbability. As some of you describe, some Japanese otakus are so focused on their fandom, that they even ignore society. As a result, most of them don’t have a lovelife. What are the odds of someone like that getting the girl of his dreams? Not likely. But Densha Otoko is a story about an otaku guy who successfully gained the courage to date and confess to a girl with the help of complete strangers in a message board. Each
Somehow the title doesn’t make sense eh? Well, for me it means that because of further advances in technology, we are not only able to make things smaller, we are seeing smaller things become more awesome. Let me start first with the current status of video.
Well, believe it or not, VCD quality video is still being used, but for the digital age. With YouTube leading the wave of streaming video, we still have a horrible bottleneck of internet services for consumers. While there is already an HQ and HD mode for YouTube, I don’t think it’s being used that often. Most broadband subscribers are still stuck on low internet speeds, even below 384kbps, in our country at least. Well, for the developed countries, their problem is not so much the speed, it’s the ongoing war on yarrr and also download cap limits. Because of these little annoyances, we can’t get rid of low resolutions in video.
Of course, for ones who have the bandwidth, they can enjoy TV-quality video right now. Also, the DVD industry is still flourishing as ever, despite the HD standard already being defined as I will mention later. In the anime side, I’m quite surprised that this format still stays. I thought anime fans are techie enough to want higher definition video. The new standard in fansubs seem to be multiple-format releases. Let’s say one group releases the same episode both in HD form (usually 720p) or SD form (usually 480p). Sometimes there’s even an xvid version for the real slowpoke computers.
The energy is here. People are starting to notice the visual difference. Blu-ray won, creating the video disc standard. Unfortunately, high prices will make this format lag, especially with the current economic climate. Well, call me an early adopter, but I “do” have a Blu-ray drive on my PC. I only have a few movies, but I can tell you… it’s awesome! This is the quality I wanted ever since, and a high threshold for years to come. Another unfortunate thing is the slow adoption of this format in anime as well. Only few anime are being released in the high def format. At least my all-time favorite is available in Blu-ray, albeit in an extremely impossible price. Someday my Sakura-chan, someday.