Vocaloid2 Names on My Works

You may be wondering why my songs with Vocaloid2 (Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin/Len, Megurine Luka) are not tagged so, with few exceptions.

Here is why. Because I have not obtained license from Crypton Future Media (publisher of Character Vocal series of Vocaloid2) to use character likeness.

According to Crypton Future Media’s license they require additional license for the following form of use.

(1) Use in Commercial Karaoke
Use of generated audio in commercial karaoke software, karaoke hardware, karaoke system using the Internet, other commercial karaoke product, and karaoke service (including online, offline, and other form)
(2) Use in Commercial Telephone / Mobile Phone Ringtones
When generated audio is used commercially for telephone (including mobile) and equipments for telephone (here after “telephones”) ringtones. However, this agreements covers ringtones, and warning tones including generated audio, but mixed with other musical instruments and in case of use within musical work, in which case do not require additional license.
(3) Use in Videos
Use as if characters in video work (including animation) is singing and performing with generated audio.
(4) Product Display
Title of the product (“Hatsune Miku,” “VOCALOID,” “Virtual Artist,” or related display (hereafter “contractual display”) is credited and prominently displayed to end user on the product, package, promotional material, and/or staff credit on video works as singer, artist, musical instruments, which utilizies generated audio, and used for commercial trade and performance.
Although most of my work are available free of charge, but at same time most of my works are published by a profit corporation, I cannot use their mark, unless I obtain license from them. That’s why you don’t see Vocaloid2 names on my work.

In same count, there are people who are actually selling digital album on the net with Vocaloid2 mark and names. I’m not sure if they are properly licensed. Although I’m not really sure Crypton Future Media’s enforcing those very strongly.

Getting Rid of Google Chrome’s RLZ Tracking

If you are Google Chrome user and search on Google from the bar (called “OmniBar”) you might have noticed there’s some odd parameter on the URL.

Apparently, this is called RLZ. Masked part would show something like 5FA3ADH_enUSA3AGE332.

According to Chromium Blog article from Google, it’s:

RLZ: When you do a Google search from the Google Chrome address bar, an “RLZ parameter” is included in the URL. It is also sent separately on days when Google Chrome has been used or when certain significant events occur such as a successful installation of Google Chrome. RLZ contains some encoded information, such as where you downloaded Google Chrome and where you got it from. This parameter does not uniquely identify you, nor is it used to target advertising. This information is used to understand the effectiveness of different distribution mechanisms, such as downloads directly from Google vs. other distribution channels. More information is available in the Google Chrome help center. This cannot be disabled so long as your search provider is Google. If your default search provider is not Google, then searches performed using the address bar will go to your default search provider, and will not include this RLZ parameter.

Looks very innocent. But while this may not identify you, if you are using system like Tor, there is privacy implication as it can potentially link your real IP address with Tor routed ones. Think of the scenario where you Google something, then after you enable routing through Tor, search on Google. Even if you don’t use Tor, if you are on your notebook accessing through different access points, it can be tracked too. (I’m not necessary saying Google will do that, I’m saying they can.)

Investigating further, I have located rlz.h header file as part of Google Chromium project. This does not give out implementation of RLZ feature, but the comment on this file reads the following:

RLZ is a library which is used to measure distribution scenarios. Its job is to record certain lifetime events in the registry and to send them encoded as a compact string at most twice. The sent data does not contain information that can be used to identify a user or to infer browsing habits. The API in this file is a wrapper to rlz.dll which can be removed of the system with no adverse effects on chrome. For partner or bundled installs, the RLZ might send more information according to the terms disclosed in the EULA. In the Chromium build the rlz.dll is not present so all the functionality becomes no-ops.

Interestingly, it seems to indicate that removing rlz.dll causes this feature to be disabled. So I tried that.

I exited Google Chrome and went into C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application\5.0.375.38 (yes, I use beta) and located rlz.dll. I’ve renamed rlz.dll to rlz.dll.bak, so Google Chrome will not find it, and restarted Google Chrome.

Looks like this really did get rid of it.

One note is that I can’t seem to locate equivalent file for Linux installation. Not sure if they are embedded within binary (in which case it is hard to remove) or located elsewhere at the moment. Same goes for Mac version. Mac version might have this file within application bundle.

[Update: Looks like current Linux beta do not have this feature built-in. Not sure about Mac version.]

Another thing to note is, when auto updater on Google Chrome kicks in, you’ll see come this file come back, as it’ll be installed on separate directory under aforementioned Google Chrome directory (5.0.375.xx in case of beta channel). In that case, you can remove newly created rlz.dll, unless Google changes this structure.

[Update: Also, you could just install from google.com/chrome and it will be deactivated. But it is only given if you do not have active Google Chrome installed.]

Fixing Up Bike's Brake

One thing I have been noticing on my bike is that right side of front brake is not moving. In fact, it was actually touching the wheel, probably scraping off the pad in the process, too. First, I suspected there’s something wrong with the hinge that housing the brake. So I disengaged the brake to inspect each side of it.

After looking through, it turns out to be left side was pulling way too strong, causing the right side to “stuck” touching the wheel. So instead of tightening spring on the right side, I’ve loosened left side, and yeah, I think that was a problem.

Right Brake

Left Brake

It also removed screeching as well. Test run seems to indicate brake is working just fine. Perhaps I will have REI guys check it out at tune-up, but I think for the mean time, it’ll work out…

Cycling in Seattle

On Sunday, May 2nd, I went to cycling with Hitomi and Elias.
It was 11.6 miles run next to Lake Washington Blvd in Seattle.

View Seattle Cycling May 2, 2010 in a larger map

It was first weekend of Bicycle Sunday event, basically Seattle has closed off vehicle traffic along part of Lake Washington Blvd.
We started off from Sam Smith Park, and went through I-90 trail tunnel (didn’t know there is the one for pedestrian / bicycle) then, headed toward Seward Park. Going around Seward Park, then we headed back to where we originated.

Though, it was shorter than more than 20 miles we did at Skagit Valley. It had more up and down, which challenged me in different way.
After the ride, we’ve went to Schuwanian Cuisine for some hot pot.

One thing I noticed during this cycling is that one pad of the frontal V-brake was “locked,” and also front wheel is slightly misaligned. It seems to be they are somewhat common for new bikes — I found hex wrench in my drawer and hopefully, I’d be able to fix up brake myself… (reading some thing about alignment, it seems to be not impossible, but something I’d rather not mess with myself and should seek some professional help…)