What to Do in Kobe — from Foreigners’ Perspective

Someone from the US is coming to Japan for sightseeing with her 7-year-old daughter. We have one afternoon-and-evening to spend with them in Kobe. How should we entertain them?

Figuring that out is no easy task, because what appeals to foreigners and what does to local folks are often completely different. So I looked through the web pages on the topic that I found through a simple Google search (listed a the end of this article).

First, elimination of the obvious is in order. I am excluding the following from consideration:

  • Oji Zoo and Suma Aquarium — They are going there by themselves.
  • Kobe beef — They are going to have a Kobe beef steak lunch by themselves.
  • Nankin-Machi (“Nankin” for 南京 or Nanjing), or Kobe’s Chinatown — They are from San Francisco and they have their own big Chinatown there.
  • Kobe Luminarie (Wikipedia), annual illumination event commemorating the Great Hanshin Earthquake that hit Kobe in 1995 — It takes place only in part of every December.
  • Arima Onsen (hotsprings) — Though not entirely undoable, I believe it should be reserved for the occasion when they have more time. Arima is outside Kobe City limits and it takes some driving to get there.
  • Kitano neighborhood, or Kitano Ijin-kan Gai (北野異人館街) — It is an area near Shin-Kobe Shinkansen Station, where early merchants and traders from overseas settled. It has interesting historic European-looking buildings there, but I do not think it will appeal to them much. It is expensive also; they charge several dollars each time you enter a building.
  • Nada Sake breweries — It’d be a fun experience if you love Japanese sake and would like to know how it was traditionally made; I have already brought two separate groups of foreign visitors there. However, I doubt the daughter will appreciate it as much as we sake-loving adults do.

Now, what surprised me most looking through those pages is the fact that they often list the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake Memorial Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution (人と防災未来センター (ウィキペディア)). Boy, was it a mouthful; let’s call it Kobe Earthquake Memorial Museum for short.

In fact, this page lists the museum at the very top. Sure, the ’95 quake was and still is a huge deal for us — after all, we lost more than 6,000 people to the calamity. Yet I did not expect it to draw that much attention from foreign visitors. But then again, our visitors too sit on the Ring of Fire, so they might want to check it out. We actually have been to this museum, and to us, it was a solemn reminder how cruel Mother Nature can be. Even though they are supposed to be all about the Kobe Quake, they also have a theater where you get to experience virtually what it would have been like to be in the midst of the 2011 Tohoku Quake, which caused some nuclear reactors in Fukushima to fail, leading to the infamous nuclear meltdown.

If they are going to this museum, Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art (Wikipedia) is next door.

There was also another minor surprise in the lists: the Takenaka Carpentry Tools Museum. This page lists it at the very top. In a way, its inclusion is even more surprising than that of the Kobe Earthquake Memorial Museum because the Takenaka Museum is hardly known even among the locals. Personally, I came to know of it only recently, and only by sheer chance; someone I know lives nearby. I have not been in there yet. If you are a wood working enthusiast, this museum might be immensely interesting, but probably not so otherwise. What is good about this museum is its geographical vicinity. They are going to stay at Ana Crowne Plaza Hotel Kobe, which is right next Shin-Kobe Shinkansen Station, and the museum is just a five-minute walk from the hotel. We can easily add it to the plan.

Speaking of geographical vicinity, Kobe Nunobiki Ropeway’s base station is, again, a few minute-walk from the hotel (Wikipedia lists it as “Shin-Kobe Ropeway,” but that’s an old name). It takes you right up to Kobe Nunoboki Herb Gardens (Wikipedia). The cityscape you can view from the gondola and on your way down the mountain is great, but how much you can appreciate the herb gardens depends on your personal tastes. I am no botany afficionado, so I only enjoyed it just like you would a beautiful park. On your way down the mountain, you can elect to visit Nunobiki Falls. When I visited them for the first time as a kid, I was awe struck, but I am not sure how they will appeal to our visitors. These falls may be one of the three “divine” falls in Japan, but, after all, they are just small falls and no Niagra Falls. But don’t just take my word for it; see for yourself.

You could see Kobe Harborland (Wikipedia) as Kobe’s Waterfront, and all the following sites and services are within an easy reach (plus it has ample parking space, which cannot be said of San’nomiya, where parking can be a nightmare):

  • Umie, a gigantic mall
  • Mosaic, a restaurant/shop complex
  • Kobe Port Tower
  • museums
  • cruises of various kinds
  • Meriken Park
  • Manyo-no Yu, hotsprings in a building (Japanese website)

Harborland is an area I like to visit as a local. I like the fact that it faces the ocean and you can get on a cruise if you so choose. I find the atmosphere very relaxing. My concern for our visitors, though, is that since the whole area was developed relatively recently, it is all modern and, as a consequence, it does not give you a feel of traditional Japan.

There are a few places that I found in the list that we can add to the plan relatively easily:

  • traditional “shopping malls” in Motomachi and San’nomiya — unlike large-scale malls typically found in the US in the suburbs, they are just walking-only streets with arching roofs, flanked by many relatively small shops. Not something you get to see in the US (as far as my personal experience there goes), but I have no idea if this is something our visitors will be interested. Personally, I find those small, often esoteric shops under the JR train tracks more interesting, but I do not know about them.
  • Ikuta Shrine — I would definitely enlist this shrine as one of the must-go places if they were visiting Kobe only, but they are visiting Kyoto and Nara too, so… I don’t know.

Finally, given the fact that foreigners often find interesting what we locals tend to simply take for granted and think nothing of, I would like to take them to the following places as well:

  • a 100-yen shop such as Daiso and Seria
  • a fast-food restaurant such as Marugame-Seimen, Yoshinoya, etc.
  • okonomiyaki (often known as “Osaka-yaki” overseas) and takoyaki



Some friends recommended the following places, primarily to entertain the kid. They are not necessarily close-by, so we will pass this time, but I am saving the info here for our future reference.


Wyze Labs製の監視カメラはOEM提供を受けた製品だった

Wyze Cam v2

WyzeLabs製の監視カメラ“で特にWyze Cam v2について述べた。 “Wyze Cam firmware to Xiaofang? · Issue #243 · samtap/fang-hacks · GitHub” なんかによれば,Wyze社の他のカメラ製品Wyze Cam Panも含めて,どうやら中国の企業からOEM提供を受けたもののようだ。

もともとはHuaLai TechnologyがiSmartAlarmブランド下の製品として出していたiSmartAlarm SpotiCamera KeepがXiaomiブランドにリブランドされ(それぞれ”XiaoFang”と”DaFang”?),それがさらにWyze Cam,Wyze Cam Panになったものと思われる。上記記事によれば,Xiaomi製品とWyzeLabs製品はファームウェアが異なっているだけでなく,異なる部品が使われている可能性があるとのこと(ただし後者について決定的証拠はまだ見かけてないように思う)。また,アプリも同一ではない。

WyzeLabsのカメラ2製品とXiaomiの相当品は値段的にほぼ同等であるが,iSmartAlarmの製品は3倍ほどもするため人の関心は前者にしかない。Xiomiの公式サイトではこれら製品は見つけられなかった。しかも,Xiaomiのスマートホーム製品は”MIJIA”ブランドに含められるようで,それがより話をややこしくしている。さらにXioFang/Wyze Camは一度ハードウェアが刷新されたようで,Wyze Camでは新版を”v2″と明記しているのでわかりやすいが,中華製品を扱うオンラインショップでははっきり区別して表記していないことが多いので注意が必要。新版を”1s”と呼んでいるようにも思えるがはっきりしたことわからない(”Which version of Xiaomi Xiaofang or Xiaofang 1S i have? · Issue #718 · EliasKotlyar/Xiaomi-Dafang-Hacks · GitHub“)。

WyzeCam – A $1999 tiny smart home camera | Product Hunt“には「公式」といっていいであろうコメントがある:

In creating the WyzeCam, we licensed the same industrial design as xiaofang, but we worked directly with the manufacturer to design a new version, the WyzeCam. So while the physical appearance is the same, we created our own Wyze app, firmware and AWS cloud service. We also provide US-Based Tech support to help our customers if they ran into any issues.


仮にハードウェアが完全に同一だとしても,ファームウェアが異なり,クラウド録画の保存先を含めたインターネット関係の作りが違い,アプリに互換性がないということは,複数製品を同時に使いたいなら,Xiaomi製品ならXiaomi製品,Wyze Labs製品ならWyze Labs製品,だけを使うようにするのが賢明ということ。

AliExpressでXiaofang 1sが2,000円強で購入できるので,米AmazonよりWyze Cam v2を輸入するより安くつく。だが,差額分を支払っても,Wyzeのアプリ,ファームウェア,クラウドサービスを利用するほうが,安全な選択なように思える。



訳あってキルギスタンの携帯電話事情をちと調査。まずは“キルギスタン SIM”をキーワードにGoogle 検索すると以下の記事が見つかった。

最初の記事に書いてあることが真実なら,料金の面からはAirSIMなど海外ローミングSIMなどは安心して無視して現地SIMを使え,ということだろうか。”海外の様々な国で使える、ローミング周遊SIMを比較しました – Kumi-Log 海外ノマド放浪6年め“によるとその記事で比較しているローミングSIMでキルギスタンをカバーするのはAirSIMのみ。Kyrgyzstan – High Speed 3G Dataを見ると,料金は例えば「 Kyrgyzstan 5 Days 1GB 3G Data HK$138」なんだが,それは2,000円ほど。高い。AirSIMはSMSをサポートしないそうなのもあまり嬉しくない(…がどうやらローミングSIMではそれはむしろ普通のよう)。

上記記事には触れられていなかった,既存SIMカードに上に貼るタイプのeSIMを提供しているFlexiroamはキルギスタンをカバーしているが,グローバルプランなるプランが適用され,高い。ただ,余談としてはローカルプランで90日以上前に予約していると日本国内での使用でMVNO並かそれ以下の料金になる。グローバルプランには同様の割引はない。eSIM自身に有効期限はないようなので一枚持っておいても悪くないかも。アマゾンで500円だし。通常通話,SMSともサポートしていない普通のSIMカードで提供されるMogo Sもキルギスタンをカバーしているが,例えば300MB/日x7日で$20ほど。以前友人に勧められたSIM2FLYは残念ながらキルギスタンをサポートしてない。


そこら辺を調べようとしてもあまりちゃんとした情報はわからない。MegaComの Wikipediaページはキリル文字によるものしかない。以下ぐらいしか見つからなかった。

Megacom, Beelineとも3Gで2.1GHzをサポートしているようなので大丈夫かな。


Wyze Labs製の監視カメラ

Wyze Cam v2

わけあって(後述),Wyze Labsとその製品群について調べた。最近の記事 “Recent Free, Open-Source NVR Solutions” はこの調査の副産物。

日本ではまだ知られていない。 “20ドルの防犯カメラWyze Cam、新バージョンはAmazon Echoに対応 | TechCrunch Japan” といった日本語記事はあるが。 “Amazon vets develop $20 WyzeCam home camera, end up competing against their former employer – GeekWire” や “Our Story | Wyze” を読むと,元アマゾンの社員が立ち上げたスタートアップで,ワシントン州Bothelを本拠地としていることが分かる。

製品はIPカメラとそのアクセサリが中心。その中でもWyzeCam v2に着目。わけあって(後述プラネックス社スマカメ180と機能比較をすると以下のメリットがある;

Wyze Cam v2の背面

自分としてはWyze Senseとの連携が可能だというが非常にポイントが高い。ただのIP監視カメラのつもりだったのがIoTのハブにもなりうる,ということなのだから。専用モバイルアプリ(Android版)ももちろん用意されてる。

さて値段だが,本家から購入するなら1台$19.99で米国内なら配送料$5.99で合計$26ほど。米アマゾンで購入すると日本への送料を含めて1台なら$32,2台なら$60程度。ここで特筆すべきなのは,1万円以上はする日本の同等品に比べて圧倒的に安いだけでなく,「中国からAliexpressで直輸入する怪しい製品」クラスの値段か,さらにそれ以下であることだ。それは,Amazon.comで少し検索してみるとすぐ分かる。安いものは聞いたこともないブランドのものばかりだ。Wyze Cam以外に唯一検討してもいいと思ったのは,YI 1080p Home Cameraで,価格は若干高い程度で機能も似通ってる。ただ,オフにしているはずでも常時カメラの画像・音声データをクラウドにアップロードしているらしく,とてもじゃないが人に勧められない。

日アマゾンでは送料無料で5,000円弱eBayでも送料を入れれると同程度セカイモン(「eBay公認海外通販」)で “wyze cam v2” で検索すると本体は4,000円強で手に入ることがわかる(同時に,設置のためのブラケットの類が複数種類売られていることが分かる)。が,送料が3,000円以上かかることを考えるとバカ高い。


こういう有線接続ができずwifi接続に頼ってる機種は,こういう問題があったときに,ファームウェアを書き込んだmicro SDカードを差し込んで何かボタンを押しながら起動したりするとそれがフラッシュされたりする仕組みを持っているようだが,プラネックス社は直接ファームウェアを公開しておらず,専用アプリからしかアップデートができないため,それを試すことすらできない。



以前玄関に設置したTenvis Mini319W IPカメラ。元々戸にあったのぞき穴を利用して,戸の外側にあるカメラへの電源供給とカメラの固定を実現していたのが我ながらの自慢。


Recent Free, Open-Source NVR Solutions

Network Video Recorders, or NVRs, are used in conjunction with IP cameras. Among the free, open-source systems of such kinds, ZoneMinder (its entry on Wikipedia), which runs on various flavors of Linux, but not on Windows, has been well known. I also knew about iSpy, which runs on Windows only.

There’s a new kid in the block: Shinobi is a node.js based system, and thus runs on Windows, Linux and Mac OS. They claim it stacks well against ZoneMinder.


This article is a byproduct of my research into IP cameras from WyzeLabs.

Japanese Web Fonts Available for Use on AMP-Compliant Websites

Migu 1C font

M Plus 1p font

Google Fonts does provide Japanese fonts, most notably the Noto font family (“Noto” for “NO TOfu”). This is the go-to font family for Japanese fonts because of its universal availability. “Tips of using Noto fonts in the CSS font-family property” is a must-read for anyone who wishes to use this font family.

Google’s offerings include some usable Mincho (think serif) fonts, but not a single Gothic (think sans-serif) font looks good enough to my tastes, even when you include those available for early access (which might change over time, naturally).

If I were forced to pick one from this limited selection, then it would be M PLUS 1p. I do not like the spacing of this font — there seems to be too much space between characters, but for body text, this might do, particularly if you choose medium weight, not regular weight.

The creator provides other variants and makes them readily available as web fonts. This page (written in Japanese) gives you convenient comparisons of all the variations of the M Plus font family. My pick would be 1c and then 1p; I prefer the narrower spacing of 1c.

It turns out that there are other “free” Japanese fonts other than those that I have mentioned already. The info there seems to be a little outdated. Adobe Typekit is now part of Adobe Fonts, and I find none of their Japanese Gothic fonts appealing. You would get more choice if you subscribed to their Creative Cloud service, but I do not.

Typesquare, run by Morisawa, a famous Japanese font foundry, offers many beautiful Japanese fonts (My Chrome browser on Windows 10 somehow only shows a blank page when I access the site; I used Firefox instead to access the site). Even with a free account, they allow use of exactly one web font on exactly one domain, for up to 10,000 page views (the English page does not mention the upper limit of page views but the corresponding Japanese page does). This might be enough for a website where you do not anticipate a lot of traffic. You are supposed to use a custom-made Javascript file to load their webfont(s), but this is not one of the two acceptable methods for an AMP-compliant website. You could self-host their fonts, but you cannot do it for free.

There is a list of freely available Japanese fonts. Among them, Migu 1C is my favorite Gothic font. I would argue it is head and shoulders above the rest in that even full-width hirgana and katana letters are proportionately spaced. Unfortunately, it is not readily available as a web font, so at the very minimum, I will have to host the font file somewhere on the Web so it can be fetched by either HTTP or HTTPS.

Fonts.com offers many beautiful fonts for a price, including the famous Meiryo font from Microsoft. Its licensing fees are not instantly clear. The page on licensing of this font family mentions “Pay as you go” or “Pay once” payment models for web fonts, but when I try to purchase a font from this family as a web font, then the cart said $129.00 for 250,000 page views. I do not know if it is a one-time fee, or a monthly recurring fee.

It is important to note that some server rental services for the Japanese market include use of certain Japanese web fonts provided by Morisawa. If you need to rent a server anyway, that might be a good option. As far as I know, most of Sakura Internet’s server rental services come with such a feature with its Standard Plan (515 yen/mo) and up. They allow you to use the fonts with up to three domains and for up to a total of 75K page views a month. Note they do not include this feature in its cheapest offering, Light Plan (129 yen/mo). Similarly, all of XServer’s server rental services offer an equivalent feature, with a notable differing being the fact XServer allows use of those fonts only on just one domain and for up to 25K page views a month. Their cheapest plan is X10, which costs about 1,000 yen/mo, which varies depending on the duration of your contract with them. It comes with a free domain name registration.

Since those added features rely on Typesquare, the procedure to use the Morisawa fonts are similar, i.e., by loading a Javascript file (the procedure by Sakura Internet, and also that by XServer). This means that you cannot use the fonts on your AMP-compliant websites. Both of Sakura Internet and XServer let you use those fonts in WordPress (Sakura Internet explains how). I know WordPress sites can be made AMP-compliant, but I have no idea if your WP-powered website can be made AMP-compliant and use Morisawa fonts at the same time.








  • 発散 (divergence)
  • 収束 (convergence)











  1. 短時間ながら私が実際に発音指導してみせたところ
  2. 自分とレベル的に大差ない生徒さんがどういうふうに成長したかを具体的に説明したところ(聴き取り用教材が時間経過に伴いいかに高度化していったかを実際に教材を聞かせながら説明)
  3. 先輩が来て眼の前で自分の経験を話したところ

まとめるなら,自分自身が受動的に聴くだけでなく能動的に参加する場合(1.)や,一般論ではなく,自分の立場・状況にかなり近い人たちにとってどうなのかという話の場合(2., 3.)など,ということだろうか。






  1. アナログ・オーディオ・デバイス(スピーカー,マイク)を接続し直す。要は接続されているという認識がなくなるのが根本的理由。単にジャックを抜き挿しすると再認識される。RealTek HDサウンドマネージャが,挿すたびにそれがどういうサウンドデバイスか(スピーカかマイクかなど)聞いてくるのでそれに答える。
  2. Voicemeeter Bananaで”Restart Audio Engine”する。上の操作をする前に, “Pt.1 Overview—Injecting Audio into Skype Calls And Recording Them Using VB-Audio Voicemeeter Banana” にある設定通りにBananaは動作しようとするが,設定にあるアナログ・デバイスにアクセスできないので,エラーを起こして正常に動作していない。なのでオーディオエンジンの再起動が必要。
  3. もしうろたえて各種アプリのサウンド設定を変更してしまった場合は,上記記事を参照して正しい状態に戻す。

My Favorite Steak Restaurant in Kobe That Serves Kobe Beef… Well, Almost

I have a favorite steak restaurant in Kobe. It serves Kobe Beef… well, almost. I’ve just finished talking about this place to a foreign visitor. I am saving the content here for future reuse. I am not disclosing the name of this restaurant here, though. If you’re a personal friend of mine and would like to know, contact me.

Here are pros and cons of the restaurant.


  • Easy access — It is within a five-minute walk from all the San’nomiya Stations of four railway/subway lines.
  • Relatively affordable and very reasonably-priced — Suppose you’d like a “standard” steak dinner, then you will be paying about 12,000 yen (~$110 USD) per person or more. That may sound much and it can be even more depending on what you will have there, but this is still very reasonable compared to other restaurants given their quality of meat. In other restaurants, you could easily be paying the double or more for the same kind of meal.
  • Seafood too — It is not just beef they serve. You can have seafood too (advance arrangement strongly advised). I highly recommend abalones. They are expensive, but you can share one between two people, for example.
  • BYO policy — They allow you to bring your beverages. This is extraordinary for a restaurant like this and it could save you a lot of money.
  • Intimate hole-in-the-wall atmosphere — The restaurant is fairly small and feels casual and intimate. They only have two iron-plate stations, one big and one small. Probably they can seat 20 people in total at most. It is managed by a chef/owner and a server (his wife) only, although they may have additional help when it is full. The chef cooks right in front of you. He is not big on theatrics, which is just the way I like it. He does not speak much English, but if you can handle Japanese, you get to hear all the interesting stories from him.
  • Very flexible — The owner is very flexible and willing to work with you. When we had a gathering there, one of the participants was a vegetarian. There was not much they serve she could eat, so he allowed us to bring in a vegetarian meal for her that was prepared elsewhere.


  • No Kobe Beef — They technically do not serve Kobe Beef. Just like champagne, cattle need to be raised in a certain region for their meat to be called Kobe Beef. It is the same breed of cattle (Tajima strain of Japanese black cattle, to be exact), but they are raised only a mountain away or so.  The flip side of it is that you can have “almost Kobe Beef” relatively cheaply. Who cares if what you are drinking is called “champagne” or “sparking wine” as long as it is good? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, a Capulet once said.
  • No lunch — They don’t serve lunch. Many restaurants offer affordable lunch menu items, but no luck there.
  • Advance booking needed — Since they do not have many seats, it can get full very easily. You will probably have to book way in advance.

As a side note, if you’re a devote Muslim and would like your Kobe Beef to be halal, there is a steak restaurant chain that serves just that.

If you are traveling to Kobe, this is a must read: “Yakuza Are Very Much Alive and Kicking, and It Is No Good News.”



日本語での「トーナメント」は「勝ち抜き戦」を指すが,英語の “tournament” はそれに限らないもっと一般的言葉であり,ウィキペディアによれば「日本語の『大会』に近い意味の言葉である。それ自体、大会の形式とは無関係である」。英語の “tournament” は「総当たり戦」(round-robin tournament)も含んでいる。英語で特に「勝ち抜き戦」といいたい場合は, “knockout tournament” あるいは “elimination tournament” という。

例えばウェイト区分ごとに完全に分離した勝ち抜き戦を複数行う場合(つまりAディビジョンの競技者とBディビジョンの競技者が互いに競い合うことが一切起こらない),それら全体を英語としてどう呼ぶかだが,もちろん複数形の “tournaments” と呼ぶのはあり。ただし,これら複数の勝ち抜き戦が,同じ競技会場で比較的短期間の間に起こる際は,それら全体を指して単数で “tournament” と呼ぶのもありのようだ。 “tournament” の2つある定義の1つめ(以下)に相当するため:

  1. One or more competitions held at a single venue and concentrated into a relatively short time interval.

ただ,そうすると「tournamentが(複数の)tournamentsからなる」という状態になり,個人的にはあまり気持ちよくない。前者を “championships” (複数形)などと呼び呼称を分けた方がスッキリする。

通常日本語で「勝ち抜き戦」といったとき想定するのはknockout tournamentのうちの一種single-elimination tournament (あるいはsudden death tournament)。(引き分け等を考えない限り)1回負けてしまえばそれでおしまい,という方式。だが限定的に敗者にさらなる試合 (“consolation/classification matches”)をさせるケースもある。例えば,「3位決定戦」(third place playoff)。

Single-elimination tournamentに関する用語についてはWikipediaのNomenclatureの項にまとめられている。「決勝戦」,「準決勝戦」,「準々決勝戦」はそれぞれ, “final/championship (round),” “semifinals/semifinal rounds,” “quarterfinals/quarterfinal rounds” (「決勝戦」が1回しかないのに対し,他は複数回あるので複数形なんだろう)と呼ぶ。

“Round” の明確な定義は見つけられなかったが,日本語で「○回戦」といったときのそれぞれの回を指すものと考えて良さそう。ただし,「シード選手/チーム」(後述)がある場合,それらが戦う最初のroundを “first round” とし,そこを基準に,それ以前に「シード選手/チーム」以外が戦う試合を “preliminary round,” “qualifying round,” “the play-in games” などと呼ぶとのこと。

勝ち抜き戦の場合,対戦表をわかりやすく図示するとトリー図になるが,これを(tournament) bracketと呼ぶ。理由は “[“, “]” 記号に似通っているから。この言葉はアメリカ英語で使われ,イギリス英語では “draw” がもっとも近い(Wikipediaの関連事項の説明にこの語が使われていることがあるので)。



正しい「シード」の意味は,「強豪選手(チーム)同士が序盤で対戦しないように、選手(チーム)を実力順にばら撒くように配置すること」。実際Wikipediaの “Seed” の項に挙げられているbracketの例は完全2分木である。つまり私が考えていたような意味での「シード」は存在していない。Seedの語源は予想通り「種まき」だが,選手/チーム名が書かれた紙切れをbracketに配置していくときの手順が,庭に苗を植える際,低いものを手前に,高いものを奥に配置していく様と似通っているから,とのこと。

少なくとも「シード」に関して私と同じ誤解をしている人は多いと思うが,その誤った理解で「シード」と呼ぶものを英語では “bye” と呼ぶ。正確にいえば, “bye” はそうやって下位回戦を飛ばさせる行為のことを指すようだ。Byeは総当たり戦においても起こりうるが,勝ち抜き戦において採用した極端な形式がパラマストーナメント(ステップラダー)(”stepladder format“)。

ただ,英語においても “seed” は私が理解していたような意味で使われるように思われる。Merriam-Websterにおいて動詞の “seed”の語義の4番目は以下のようになっている。

a to schedule (tournament players or teams) so that superior ones will not meet in early rounds

b to rank (a contestant) relative to others in a tournament on the basis of previous record 

  • the top-seeded tennis star

4aは確かにWikipedia/ウィキペディアの説く正しい “seed”の意味だろうが,4bの方は一般人が思っている “seed” の意味と合致するんじゃないか。

さて,knockout tournamentのもう一形態がdouble-elimination tournamentウィキペディアにも説明がある。Single-elimination tournamentが1回でも負けるとおしまいだったのが,double-~では2回負けないとおしまいにならない。Double-~ではbracketが2つ存在する:winners bracket (以下 “W” )とlosers bracket(同 “L” )。Wikipediaでの説明に従うのなら,1回戦に勝利した選手/チームはWブラケットに進み,破れた方はLブラケットに進む。Wブラケットに進んだ選手/チームでもその後負けるとLブラケットに「落ちる」。Double-~では同じ対戦カードが複数回起こりやすく,これを工夫で減らすことはできても完全に起きえないようにはできない。



ところで, “playoff” とは,それまで何らかの方法で選抜された特定数の競技者/チームが最後に行う「頂上決戦」のこと。ただし,一戦とは限らず勝ち抜き戦始めいろいろなやり方がある。例えばアメリカでは国土が広いため,地域ごとにリーグを分けて通常はリーグ内で戦い,最終的にリーグ中の勝者を集めて戦わせる。この最後のフェーズをplayoffと呼ぶ。