Who knew that such a beautifully relaxing tune could come from, of all things, a Smurfs game?

Alberto González is one of the best composers to have written music for the Game Boy. He’s up there with Tim Follin in that even his worst tunes are still impressive. Check out his SoundCloud for more!

Yes, this is a tune from a video game based around the mascot for Happy Hippo cookies. A game which was only released in German-speaking countries, at that, and toward the end of the Game Boy Color’s lifespan.

It’s a pretty mediocre game, really, and you’d expect the music to be equally mediocre. You would be wrong. Let’s just say that it is very obvious that the sound programmer, Stello Doussis, was involved in the Commodore 64 demoscene.

This tune is from one of the game’s later levels, but the title theme is also worth checking out. (As is the whole rest of the soundtrack, really…)

Edited to add: Oh, yeah, I forgot the best part. Although this game is from 2001 and will not run on a monochrome Game Boy, if the sound engine is separated from the rest of the game code, it will run perfectly fine on an original GB! In fact, that is exactly how the recording above was made.

In honor of the Nintendo Game Boy’s 25th birthday, I’m going to be periodically posting bits and pieces of obscure but catchy Game Boy soundtracks tonight. If you’re not into chiptunes, just go ahead and filter “game boy music” preemptively…

Make that 4 for 4 on Regal’s captioning system working for me on the first try.

Edited to add: Also, much easier to tell if it’s working before the movie even starts. The “silence your phones, here are the exits, etc.” video before the trailers start is captioned.

So, my experience with captioned movies in theaters so far:

I’ve gone to 3 movies at Regal using the Sony captioning glasses, and they worked almost flawlessly all 3 times. (“Almost” because a few lines failed to display, but I’ve heard the same of competing systems as well.) However, the glasses *are* a bit bulky, and thus an impediment to snuggling.

So I decided, hey, why don’t I try AMC and their CaptiView device today instead?

Suffice it to say, in 1 screening, it failed to show captions on two separate devices that I got from the front desk (i.e., something was wrong with the transmitter). And there was no indication at all that anything was wrong until the movie had actually started. (Which is another thing— even parts of the trailer reel were captioned at Regal, so I knew it was working beforehand.)

So yeah, I got a refund and am going to see Captain America at Regal instead. Sorry, AMC…

andreashettle:

codeman38:

Can I just say that disability advocacy that is done primarily (or worse, entirely) via phone conference calls, with no provision for real-time captioning or other similar accommodations, is *really inaccessible* for some people with disabilities? Specifically, people with hearing or auditory processing disabilities?

Because seriously, it is.

At least in my own case, I miss quite a bit of what’s being said on conference calls between the degraded audio quality over the phone and the lack of visual feedback. I also have a hard time figuring out who’s speaking at any given point, for the same reasons. And with the effort I have to put in for all of that, I generally don’t have a lot of brain space left for speaking coherently.

(And that’s not even getting into the other conference call annoyances like background noise, dodgy connections causing people’s voices to break up, those annoying beeps when people enter/exit, etc.)

This is one of those things that one would think would be incredibly obvious, but for some reason, it never seems to occur to people that they might be leaving their fellow advocates out by doing this.

(Oh, and if your answer is “call via relay”: I get the distinct impression that you have never actually been on a conference call with a relay user.)

As a deaf person, I have participated in teleconference calls via video relay service many times without major problems.  In many of these calls I was the only deaf participant, in some calls there have been other deaf people calling in via video relay also.  It’s not perfect because of course some nuances may be lost in translation and of course I’m always a few seconds behind everyone else in knowing what was said.  But CART can have its own problems because sometimes the CART person may miss some of what was said, or may make typos and might not always catch and fix them, and is still a few seconds behind.  I like group text chat if the group is small enough and if the other participants are open to it and don’t have other kinds of disabilities that would make it difficult for whatever reason.  When I was interviewing candidates for the internship program that I coordinate, I used CART (at my organization’s expense) because despite its imperfections I still like it better when it’s important to catch the nuances of what the other person said.

I’m wondering if by “relay” you mean via TTY? Because in the days before I got my first video phone (before the technology existed), I would certainly never have tried doing a multi-party teleconference call via text-based relay.  I don’t see how someone trying to type with a standard keyboard (as opposed to the specialized CART equipment) could possibly keep up, unless they can type 120-130 words per minute.

I do agree that absolutely CART should be provided for major disability advocacy calls.  Even for some of us who do sign and do have a video phone for using video relay, CART is a bit more reliable.  And then, of course, there are some deaf and hard of hearing people who do not sign, and I get the sense that most people with auditory processing disorders don’t sign either.  Some of the problem might be that some people don’t realize that not all deaf people sign.  And a lot of people, even in the disability field, don’t understand that people with auditory processing disorder may have as much trouble understanding as deaf or hard of hearing people do.

The ones I’ve seen announced or that I’ve participated in usually have had CART.  It’s a shame that there are some that don’t find a way to scrounge up the budget needed to do this.

Yeah, sorry, I should have clarified— I was referring to old-school text relay. I’ve heard great things about video relay in terms of speed, but as I am not even remotely fluent in ASL, I would be seriously lacking comprehension for calls about anything of significance if I were to try using it. Captioning is much, much easier for me to follow.

I’ve tried using both traditional text relay and CapTel for conference calls. The former was absolutely horrible - nobody would ever give the “go ahead” so that I could speak! The latter worked better, but still had a bit of a delay— and because it’s handled via a respeaker instead of a steno typist, any jargon on the call came out incomprehensibly garbled. (Also, I couldn’t keep track of who was talking with either, because neither differentiated when someone new started speaking.)

You’re totally right about this: “Some of the problem might be that some people don’t realize that not all deaf people sign.  And a lot of people, even in the disability field, don’t understand that people with auditory processing disorder may have as much trouble understanding as deaf or hard of hearing people do.” That’s the big thing for me— I will do perfectly fine in in-person meetings due to the better sound quality and visual feedback, and so it totally confuses people when I’m asking for clarification/repetition so much over the phone. I wonder if it would be possible to get some sort of awareness campaign going to bring this to more people’s attention?

Can I just say that disability advocacy that is done primarily (or worse, entirely) via phone conference calls, with no provision for real-time captioning or other similar accommodations, is *really inaccessible* for some people with disabilities? Specifically, people with hearing or auditory processing disabilities?

Because seriously, it is.

At least in my own case, I miss quite a bit of what’s being said on conference calls between the degraded audio quality over the phone and the lack of visual feedback. I also have a hard time figuring out who’s speaking at any given point, for the same reasons. And with the effort I have to put in for all of that, I generally don’t have a lot of brain space left for speaking coherently.

(And that’s not even getting into the other conference call annoyances like background noise, dodgy connections causing people’s voices to break up, those annoying beeps when people enter/exit, etc.)

This is one of those things that one would think would be incredibly obvious, but for some reason, it never seems to occur to people that they might be leaving their fellow advocates out by doing this.

(Oh, and if your answer is “call via relay”: I get the distinct impression that you have never actually been on a conference call with a relay user.)

Photo Post

obscurevideogames:

Tag Team Pro Wrestling (Namco - Famicom - 1986)

The luchador team shown on the cover, incidentally, is known in-game as the Strong Bads.

That’s right: this is the game that (very loosely) inspired a certain character from Homestar Runner.

andreashettle:

houndsofbalthazar:

I want to direct a film where the subtitles are a considered and intrinsic part of shot composition, where the text isn’t intrusive but it actually adds something to the aesthetics of the shot as well as making it more accessible. I want to direct a film where the needs of people who aren’t the majority are more than an afterthought.

As a deaf person who relies on captions (whether closed captioning or subtitles or whatever) to understand video or film content, I would welcome this.  Even just placing them so they are less intrusive would be great.  I’m tired of captions that end up overlaid over people’s faces: Yes, I need access to what people are saying, but that doesn’t mean I want to have to give up access to people’s facial expressions in exchange for it.  

Just having directors/producers actually PAY ATTENTION to what the captions are doing and COMMUNICATING with the people doing the captions about things they think could be improved would be great.  I think too many producers just dump the captioning work on whatever agency they have subcontracted to do that work and never bother to look at the captions to ensure that they are accurate and good quality.  There is too little quality control in the captioning industry.

There’s a Russian fantasy-horror movie called “Night Watch” where this exact thing was done for the English release. The subtitles move around the screen, interact with things in the scene, etc. I just checked, and it’s available on Netflix streaming with the original English subs.

One warning— the prologue *is* dubbed in English without captions, but the rest of the movie is in subtitled Russian. The opening narration is not really necessary to understand the plot; it’s just setting the background that there’s this good-vs.-evil battle that’s been brewing for centuries and coming to a head again.

I’m loving that there are a surprisingly good number of pro-neurodiversity posts in the World Autism Day tag that’s currently trending in the mobile app.

EDITED TO ADD: Not just pro-neurodiversity posts, but ones specifically by Actual Autistic People, even!