Saturday, March 8, 2008

Anime and linux

I was going through my Google Analytics data and found I was mentioned in an Ani-nouto blog post. He (she? it?) does, correctly, point out that there is no real relation to linux and anime in my previous post, but it's pretty hard to watch anime when you get distracting video tearing.

But anyway, a few tips for people watching anime in linux:
What video player to use? - MPlayer has the best support for softsubbed anime; it supports embedded fonts and formats the subs correctly, unlike VLC (though this depends on what options it was compiled with, but I just compiled my own). However, VLC is somewhat easier to use, since it has a decent GUI. But it's worth learning how to use mplayer; I like it so much I use it on my mac, thanks to some on the AnimeSuki forums that have made a nice package for OS X.
Screen captures with MPlayer - Just use the x11 video output module (-vo x11 on the command line), and take screenshots with your favorite program, or add -vf screenshot to your command line and hit the s key.
Downloading anime - Use Azureus. You can also download the ScaneRSS plugin and configure it to download anime from the Tokyotosho RSS feed. For example, I use the RSS feed for only anime, and setup a filter with a pattern like:
I'll probably have a more detailed post once I get the time to take screenshots.

As an aside, let me on why I'm using Windows now. I used Linux for about 7 years; for 4 of those years, I used Linux pretty much exclusively. I liked it because, back then, it was stable and ran faster than XP on my admittedly low-end computer at the time. I also liked the window managers better than Windows and the fact that I could pretty much configure everything how I wanted. So what happened? Simply put, I found that I was actually wasting too much time with in linux, due to its configurability, and the fact that programs were getting updated all the time. I also had some hardware that didn't work in linux (printer, scanner, iPod, at the time, Windows Mobile PDA, etc). So I switched to Windows for 2 years. About 6 months ago, I did a massive computer upgrade, and figured it was a good time to switch back to using linux, which is when I encountered all those problems. I still boot into linux whenever ATI releases a new driver to see if the video tearing is still there, but, as much as I hate to admit it, Vista is running pretty well so I'm not too inclined to switch.

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