Letter From The Encyclopedist

by Daniel DeLorme,

In linguistics there's this technical term "reduplication", which basically means a phoneme is repeated to produce a new word or meaning. The Japanese language puts this property to use extensively, as evidenced by the sheer amount of delightful expressions such as fuwa-fuwa, hono-bono, doki-doki, etc. Today allow me to draw your attention to bochi-bochi, which means little by little, steadily, at a gradual and unhurried pace.

That adeptly sums up the way the Encyclopedia has evolved over the years. Since the launch in 2002, there haven't been any really earth-shattering big announcements in terms of features; just a somewhat irregular flow of small-to-medium updates and improvements (as opposed to the continuous torrent of new data), often slipping in without so much as a notice. Bochi-bochi. As such I would like to formally announce and draw attention to a few updates that might have gone unnoticed in the past several months.

  • When a person has different aliases you can submit information specific to each alias. In particular, for seiyuu this allows to enter the kanji version of each alias like this.
  • On episode list pages you can find thumbnail links to streaming episodes... if we have them for your region.
  • Link from a given release to the Shelf Life column where it was reviewed.
  • We aim to have only one picture per anime, but it has always been possible to submit a second one for the purpose of replacing the current picture. As written on the submission form, you should submit an additional picture only if you think it's better than the current one. Yet a lot of people ignore those instructions, so now any additional picture will be invisible if the current one was already approved by Encyclopedia editors. The same thing goes for plot summaries.
  • Cast can be ranked as primary, secondary, minor or unnamed. Previously, to mark a role as a primary character you had to append two asterisks to the role. One asterisk for a secondary role. Honestly I'm not sure why I tolerated such a barbarous and error-prone input method for so long. Now it's a straightforward dropdown list.
  • It's now possible to add a cast or staff credit which already exists, but with a different precision. The "precision" field was originally intended for simple miscellaneous information, but increasingly it has come to be used to list all the episodes in which a staff or cast member was credited. Previously, if someone else had added a certain role, it was impossible for you to specify in which episode(s) the role appeared. If you tried to submit the same role again you would just get an error message like "this role already exists". You still cannot edit someone else's submission, but you can "append" to it by submitting cast with the same person+role or staff with the same person+task. In the Encyclopedia, the entries will appear merged together. For examples, roles "Bob (ep 1-10; abc)" and "Bob (ep 6-15; xyz)" would show up as "Bob (abc; xyz; eps 1-15)". In effect, this is a little like being able to edit the precision of any info, and should allow for finer-grained collaborative editing in the Encyclopedia.
  • I've just added one of the more frequently requested features: an overview of your own contributions to the Encyclopedia. This can really help if you want to go through your previous submissions and, for example, shore up your sources or add more episodes numbers to the precision.

That's all, folks. Stay tuned for more... eventually. But don't be in a hurry. Slow but sure. Y'know... bochi-bochi.

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