Welcome again to JJNN for Wednesday July 2nd, 2008. Today I want to talk about a couple of random and very unrelated news stories.
The first story comes from here. It seems that goo (a semi-popular search engine in Japan) and wikipedia are coming together to give people a semi-new web searching experience. Goo wanted it to make it easier for people that are not familiar with searching engines to find things online. The best way they could think to do this was to make a search engine protocol that can search for something with normal every day speech.
In other words, if a person is looking up information about they new kind of car they want, they would not type in "honda crash test data" they would type in something more like "What is the crash test data for honda cars." It would be something that could be considered closer to every day English. Well, actually in this case it would be every day Japanese, but close enough.
Personally I don't see the point in it. A person can well get carpletunnel from all that typing. Plus it takes forever to write out all those sentences. This is going to be geared towards those are not computer savvy, so that means a lot of people typing with 2 fingers if they are lucky. I just don't see that this is going to get off the ground and become anything big.
The second news story can be found here. This story is about Studio Ghibli. Personally I love Studio Ghibli. If you don't know what Studio Ghibli is you should go to a video rental store and rent Laputa: Castle in the sky or Princess Mononoke. There are so many other good movies that they have made, but I don't want to type them all out. If you think you will like it, go and check up on it yourself.
Any way, the animation of Ghibli films is always top notch because Studio Ghibli always hires artists that go though a long training program. But, for some reason, last year they canceled their training program. In the place of the training program the studio decided to hire artists straight out of collage, but they would not make them full time employees. The studio will give the new artists a two year contract.
I wonder what this will do with the quality of Studio Ghibli's art. I guess we shall see how every thing goes when they put out more movies. They next Ghibli movie will be out this summer, so I guess we will have to wait a year or so longer to see what will happen.
Any way, it is now time for the word of the day. Today's word is 契約(けいやく). It is pronounced keiyaku and means contract. There is a huge difference between contracted employee and a regular full time employee in Japan. The contractees just don't get as much respect even though the pay may be the same.
That's it for today. See you next time at JJNN.