This Does Not Compute

Technology, gaming, music and things that just don't compute

Tag Archives: japanese

Does iTunes Know Japanese Names?



I just noticed something interesting when adding some new music to iTunes. It’s a jazz album by Yusuke Uotani, who also goes by “USK” (a play on his first name). He sells his music himself and offers it as a FLAC download, which I converted to Apple Lossless with Max. I dropped the files into iTunes, then edited their tags to my liking — specifically, changing the artist name to Uotani-san’s full name, with Western name order (as shown above — I’m still deciding how I want to sort Japanese names in iTunes). Normally, iTunes would sort the name by the first character, in this case Y, unless it can determine that the first word is an article (“the”, “an”, etc.) which it will then ignore. Interestingly enough, iTunes sorted it by last name, slotting it in with other U artists. I checked in all of the advanced sort fields of the files, thinking there might be another tag it’s sorting by, but nope. All of the artist fields specifically say Yusuke Uotani. Perhaps iTunes understands Japanese name order and is automatically assuming that’s how I should sort such artists?

(Incidentally, Uotani is an interesting guy — he has a YouTube channel where he travels the Japanese countryside in search of vintage vending machines. Specifically, vintage ramen and udon vending machines. It’s just as interesting watching him plunk 300 yen into a machine and seeing what comes out as it is looking at the beautiful scenery as he drives around, with his soundtrack playing.)

Los Angeles 2012

Spent a little time in Los Angeles last week. Aside from hanging out at Newport Beach, there was an interesting theme to the trip…

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Art Project 2012: The Great Wave Home Office

After checking out Edo Pop at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and seeing an actual print of The Great Wave off Kanagawa, I finally realized what I needed to do with the boring long wall in my home office.

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Yes, I’m still here – November 2011 edition

It’s been another month or so, so that means I need to blog again. It’s a good thing I don’t get paid to do this, because if I got paid by the post, I’d be very, very poor right now.

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How to get a Japanese Apple keyboard in the US

Click to see biggie size.

So, I decided that I’m gonna go full steam ahead with learning Japanese. I figured that since last winter’s project of studying for (and getting) a CCNA went successfully, there’s no reason not to do it again. IP is kind of a language anyway, and to some people is equally confusing as Japanese is.

Obviously Japanese isn’t a Roman-based language. It has multiple character sets, some of them phonetic, some symbolic of entire words, and all of them completely new to me. It’s not like learning French where you can become familiar with the pronunciation and then be able to repeat verbally everything you read (even though you may not know what any of it means). You’re learning the alphabet all over again.

Since written language is just as important as spoken words, I figured I might as well familiarize myself as best I can with what I’m getting myself into. A Japanese keyboard, which has both English letters and Japanese hiragana characters on the keycaps, made sense to me as a good start.

If only I could find one.

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