About the AMV Genome Project

Presumably you’re reading this because you want to know more about the AMV Genome Project. That’s great! I welcome you and hope you’ll find this intriguing at the very least.

The Genome Project is, to put it theatrically, my baby — something into which I have poured a whole lot of time and effort, and about which I am very passionate. It all started in 2013, on my drive back to Chicago from an anime convention in Atlanta. I began thinking about creating some way to start tracking AMV data in a way that had never been done before, in order to give shape to the history of the hobby in as objective a way as possible. The AMV community, sadly, has very little sense of its own history, and I wanted to change that, and give foundation to its evolutionary track. I was stuck for a long time on how to actually achieve this; I eventually settled on one of my first ideas, seeing no easier way, and about a year after I had first conceived of the idea I started putting it into motion.

What I decided to do was to create a spreadsheet and enter videos in, one by one as I watched them, cataloging all the important information, such as editor name, video title, release date, etc. This is all stuff that is available in one way or another on the .org, and although it is not necessarily easily accessible, this alone wouldn’t have added anything to the data that’s already out there. What sets the Genome Project apart is its tag system, inspired by websites such as aniDB and RateYourMusic. The tags are words or phrases that describe the elements of a video — when put together, a group of tags can give someone an at-a-glance idea of what the video might be like. More importantly, because these 60 “General Tags”and 41 “FX Tags” describe aspects of a video that are not recorded anywhere else, this system gives new insight into a number of things.

This is the whole point of the Project, really, as a robust tag system can help identify trends in editing over time, or based on genre, video length, star ratings, etc. When enough data is collected in the Genome Project, in-depth data analysis can be done to discover the ways that AMVs have evolved over time. Others can then use this to provide an accurate and more objective history of the hobby than we have currently.

Currently (as of 4/2017), the Genome Project has evolved past just being a spreadsheet into a full-featured GUI that anyone can download (link to the download site below). Although the Genome Project itself is technically just the database, the program born from it, called AMV Tracker, can be used by any AMV fan to track the AMVs they watch, and add to the Genome Project database themselves if they wish. More details can be found on the AMV Tracker website.

Finally, the ideas and methodology behind the Genome Project have changed very little since I first conceived of it and started entering data. If you want all the gritty details of the ideas that motivated why I decided to do this the way I did, I would point you to this .org post, where the Genome Project was first introduced. Please also see below for ALL Genome Project-related files — these are kept up-to-date, as much as possible anyway, and the date of the last update can always be found in the FTP directory (linked below). EDIT: Since the release of AMV Tracker, direct access to the spreadsheet is no longer provided (although anyone with the most basic knowledge of how FTP and the Internet work can probably find their way to the database without much hassle). Please download AMV Tracker if you wish to check up on the Genome Project — trust me, it’s a lot more user-friendly this way than it was before.

If you ever have any questions, suggestions, or want to help with the Genome Project, please feel free to contact me!

AMV Tracker
Genome Project journal