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Cool thing on PvP

So Scott Kurtz is experimenting with quasi-animation for PvP. The first little thing he put up was so totally boring I couldn’t even finish watching it, but this second one is pretty cute. Hopefully he’ll get better and better at it and come up with some real gems.

But that’s not the most interesting part! You see, there is a mystery to be solved!

At the end of the animation, this screen appears briefly:

a bunch of Japanese names

Recognize any of them? I spotted Hayao Miyazaki and Anno Hideaki. ;P (What I’d like to know is: why put some of the names in English and some of them in Japanese?)

Regardless, I was fascinated by this huge list of Japanese names, and I wanted to figure out who all those people were.

I need to learn to read kanji…the only name I could make out on my own was “Yamashita”. Oh, and of course I can read “Utsunomiya Satoru”, which is in hiragana. (I should have been able to read “Tanaka”, but alas, I couldn’t remember it.)

Here are all the romaji names, along with links to who they might be:

Anno Hideaki
Fukushima Atsuko
Hashimoto Shinji
Imaishi Hiroyuki
Inoue Toshiyuki
Iso Mitsuo
Kanada Yoshinori
Koike Takeshi
Kondo Yoshifumi
Kotabe Yoichi
Matsumoto Norio
Miyazaki Hayao
Mori Yasuji
Morimoto Koji (worked on Unico!)
Nakamura Takashi
Nishio Tetsuya
Ohashi Manabu
Ohira Shinya
Okiura Hiroyuki

And here are the names in Japanese, with possible translations. I made liberal use of Jim Breen’s WWWJDIC in compiling this list, notably the Kanji Lookup and Dictionary Search [enamdict] pages. Thanks to google.co.jp for helping me discover the links.

大塚伸治 (Otsuka/Ootsuka/Oodzuka Shinji/Nobuji/Nobuhara => Ootsuka Shinji)
大塚康年 (Otsuka/Ootsuka/Oodzuka Yasutoshi)
末吉裕一郎 (Suikichi/Suekichi/Sueyoshi/Matsukichi/Matsuyoshi Yuuichirou => Sueyoshi Yuuichirou)
田辺 修 (Tanabe/Tanahe/Tanape/Tabe/Nakagome Osami/Osamu/Osame/Osameru/Kazaru/Shuu/Shuusaku/Shuuji/Su/Tadashi/Nakashi/Nagashi/Yoshimi/ => Tanabe Osamu)
田中逹之 (Tanaka/Tanata/Tanka/Danaka Tatsuyuki?)
友永和秀 (Tomoe/Tomonaga/Tomohisa Kazuhide/Washuu => Tomonaga Kazuhide)
うつのみやさとる (Utsunomiya Satoru)
山下将仁 (Yamashita Masahito)

Some of those names are nucking futz! How do Japanese people know which pronunciation to use? (Actually, I think I’ve heard that you never really know how to say someone’s name until they introduce themselves…)

My Trick for Looking Up Kanji You Find in a Picture Somewhere and Therefore Can’t Just Copy and Paste:

First, try to figure out the radical! And if that doesn’t work, try looking up the kanji right next to it by radical, and then do a word search for that kanji and hope that the compound will appear. This has a better shot of working if you’re looking up names, but it’s still not 100%. I went through a zillion pages of names before I finally found Masahito. 将 was a slippery little bugger.

In any case…the mystery is solved! All of these people seem to be animators, which would explain the “In Memory Of”. Kurtz and Straub are joking that their Flash animation will destroy these people’s careers.

Me so smart!

(And it only took me three hours…)