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Guests' Web Picks

Special Guest: Akio Nagatomi

"Webmaster of The Animé Café and A Parent's Guide to Anime"


"Happy Year of the Rabbit!"


First of all, some notes about myself...

I'm a thirty-five year old displaced Japanese immigrant (an , for you Japanaholics), now residing in the lovely -- which, incidentally, is located about 45 minutes east of the fabulous CanadianRocky Mountains. Every morning, I can see the snow-capped mountains from my bedroom window -- that is, if the weather's clear, and if I've slept in...

I have lots of hobbies -- far too many to finance, in fact. There's my fascination with cars... specifically, my current daily driver, a 1990 classic red Mazda MX-5 Miata (or Eunos Roadster if you live in Japan). Solo competition is another -- for those of you interested in learning to truly handle your car, I strongly suggest joining a local SCCA (Sports Car Club of America) chapter, and entering their Solo car events. It's fun, it's safe, and best of all, it teaches the fundamentals of handling your vehicle. Speaking of car clubs, I've been the newsletter editor of two: the Calgary Sports Car Club, and the Canadian Rockies Chapter of the .

I love going to restaurants of every sort, a hobby that started back in University with the 'Dinner of the Month Club'. Martial arts are yet another hobby, with an emphasis on Tai Chi, Kempo Karate and Kendo. (A necessity these days, to offset the effects of restaurant-hopping). And of course, there's the expansive (and expensive) world of anime and my own websites, and , which has now eaten up my car budget through to the year 2000.

Oh, and one last thing I'd like to point out: Jane (co-webmaster of the Café) is my sister, not my wife. She's been living in the Kansai region Japan for the past year and a half, teaching English...

But on to my picks...

I'm a bit of a student in web-page design (has to do the years I spent as a systems analyst), so I tend to stick with sites that are easy to navigate, and load quickly. Plus, whatever site I frequent must have content beyond the usual image galleries.

Net Peeve #1: Sites that take too long to load, or are so complex that they don't format properly on my browser.

My own site is largely modelled after suggestions listed the Sun Microsystems' . If you're just starting to create your own website, I strongly recommend visiting this site.

Net Peeve #2: Sites that havn't been updated since the last Ice Age.

I try to keep up with news from the homefront on a regular basis. Part of my daily ritual involves reading the , one of the Japanese dailies available in English. Like our North American counterparts, Japanese newspapers have their own take on the world, so you'll have to wade through their political leanings to get to the real news. For general info about the country itself, I can't think of a better site than .

Net Peeve #3: Sites that are all flash and no substance.

Since I run a review site, I like to 'check out' the competition every once in a while. Of those, '' run by the honours students of the Arizona State University is highly underrated -- probably because the site looks so 'plain-Jane.' It's a classic case of judging a book by its cover...

Net Peeve #4: Sites that have so many ads and banners, that they're nothing more than an electronic billboard.

To maintain my sites' credibility, I've gone out of my way to keep both the Café and the 'Guide unaffiliated with any commerical company. After all, if you're sponsored by a company in a related field, you've lost your objectivity. Having said that, I think that there are pages on one site that should be mentioned -- not because they're an anime distributor, but because they have two excellent general anime pages. For a general overview of anime, check out . Take a look at for a brief history of this wonderful medium. (Notice how I didn't specifically mention the company... or did I?)

Net Peeve #5: People that don't realise that Akio is a male name...

'nuff said.

Akio Nagatomi, 99.01.04

Anipike not being responsible for Acts of God or the vaguaries of humans  ;)
this column will appear 'as and when' articles come in. New articles will
be announced on the "New List" page. (So original, da yo..^^)

Would you like to suggest a guest? Write Nikkou.

Guests' Web Picks @ Anime Web Turnpike™
Anime Web Turnpike™ © 1995-1998 Jay Fubler Harvey. All Rights Reserved.
Last Update: 2/15/99