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Japan

NEC thermal scans at HQ entrance for flu carriers
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Read the full story Japan | WTF? 01:36 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: disease nec

We know it’s the season for colds and flu to stop the spread of goodwill to all men, but I was more than a little shocked by the lengths one tech company is going to in order to halt the march of the germs.

Gadget gift suggestions for the Lost Monkey of Tokyo
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | Transportation | WTF? 02:15 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: monkeys

The macaque monkey who’s been eluding police capture since August this year could use some holiday cheer. It’s cold in Tokyo now, much different from that hot summer morning when the cute wild ape jumped the wickets and…

Gadgets to cut carbon dioxide emissions hit Japanese cars
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Transportation 07:11 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: cars environment

Vehicle engine-idling systems are beginning to appear in the auto industry aftermarket equipment sector in Japan as environmental issues move to center-stage.

Stopping ATM scams with cellphone jammers
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Wireless 09:31 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: banking crime mobile phone

A Tokyo area bank has begun installing devices that jam cell phone signals in order to prevent elderly citizens from becoming victims of phone fraud. Swindlers have been targeting seniors, telling them to go to the bank and all the while stay…

2009 New Year’s postcards purchasing and printing season
Read the full story Japan 04:10 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: holidays nengajo new year

Households are putting in orders now for the traditional nengajo New Year’s postcards. The 2009 Year of the Ox cards are available in thousands of pre-printed designs, or card illustrations can be downloaded…

Pedestrians generate (even more) electricity at Shibuya station
Monday, December 08, 2008
Read the full story Environment | Japan | Power | R&D | Transportation 10:13 PM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: jr east

A thin mat that creates electricity from footsteps has been installed at Tokyo’s Shibuya train station to harness the kinetic energy they expend as they pass through ticket gates twice a day.

Xiao digicam ads – poop or prints?

You know that new camera from Takara Tomy that features a little Zink printer that pops 2x3in photos out one end?

JAL’s laptop seat makes life easier for frequent fliers
Read the full story Japan | Mobile computing | Transportation 08:40 PM Yoshi Suzuki • Permalink
Tagged with: airlines jal

Generally speaking, taking your laptop on a flight is a hassle, particularly if you’re in cattle class. Not only do you have to specially screen it through the x-ray machine, but all it does is take up space in the overhead compartment while you sit idly in your seat, wishing you could get some work done or at least watch the movies you picked.

Digital phone knows when earthquakes are coming
Friday, December 05, 2008
Read the full story Household | Internet | Japan | Wireless 07:56 PM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: earthquakes sanyo

A new fixed-line phone from Sanyo uses an internet connection to receive and announce earthquake warnings.

Pair Movies sync across two phones to form one big screen
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Video | Wireless 04:48 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: advertising pair movies sony music tv

From today Japanese TV drama fans get a new way to sample the pabulum churned out by big media here in the form of something called ‘Pair Movies.’

101 days of monkeying around in Tokyo
Monday, December 01, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 06:44 PM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: monkeys

Now that it’s winter, police continue to use their resources investigating reports of loose monkeys in the city, with sightings regularly reported on Japan TV news programs.

Japanese jelly candy might just choke you to death
Saturday, November 29, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 09:22 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: food konnyaku safety

Hey kids, see this sweet candy? You probably want some, right? Here you go…no, can’t have it! Put it back behind the counter. It’s dangerous. And don’t let grandma buy it either.

Businessman wrestler finds strength from few fans
Monday, November 24, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 09:42 PM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: salarymen wrestling

During the week, this man sits at a desk in a company in Tokyo. On weekends he wrestles. But he is not a-pro wrestler. Not a semi-pro wrestler. No, there is a new category – according to this man - that is ….

More quality Me time from Tenga’s toy box
Friday, November 21, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 06:06 PM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: tenga

Can you guess what these little plastic eggs are for?

Tokyo’s wild monkey still doing his thing after three months of freedom
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 06:59 PM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: monkeys

It’s exactly three months since a wild monkey decided to make his home in central Tokyo, so to mark the almost-anniversary our pals at Lets Japan have put together a scarily detailed dossier on the simian’s schedule over that period.

Japanese news uses CGI to refute groping allegations
Read the full story Film, TV, manga & anime | Japan | Software | WTF? 05:22 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: cgi crime

After ten years of litigation, the Japan supreme court ruled in favor of a man who challenged an allegation that he fondled a woman on a Tokyo train. The man fought the police charges in 1999…

Japan arms female train staff with pepper spray
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | Transportation | WTF? 05:30 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: security trains

Female attendants on JR Tokai line trains are being issued personal protection cayenne pepper spray devices.

Monkeying around in Tokyo ... again
Friday, November 14, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 01:40 AM Mark Weitzman • Permalink
Tagged with: monkeys

How many monkeys are there in Tokyo? According to a TV station on monkey-watch, there may be more than the original one mad-monkey of last summer. The tale of the monkey in the city began Aug. 20, 2008 ….

Japanese house plant writes own blog – no, really
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Read the full story Household | Internet | Japan | WTF? 06:31 PM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: blogs kamakura midori plants

They say any fool can be a blogger and, judging by the standard of my usual garbage, who’s to argue? Still, I bet no one ever guessed Japan’s latest online star would be a humble pot plant.

Massive online agony forum published in book form
Friday, October 17, 2008
Read the full story Internet | Japan 12:43 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: books publishing

There are more than a few books out there whose origins lie in the new-fangled cellphone novel, but a new Japanese tome is the first we’ve come across to grow out of an online forum.

Japanese language 2.0 with iKnow
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Read the full story Internet | Japan 12:44 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: cerego iknow japanese

Anyone learning Japanese who also happens to spent a lot of time wasting away in front of a computer will definitely get a kick out of a bunch of new Nihongo courses on iKnow from Cerego Japan.

Japanese scientists study cow burps as Earth heats up
Saturday, September 06, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 02:05 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: cows environment tsukuba

Vegans should probably look away now – researchers at a Japanese agricultural institute are so concerned about global warming putting livestock off their food they’re testing ways to make them eat better.

Geeky Google (Maps) goodness in Tokyo Bay
Thursday, September 04, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic 12:24 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: google maps tokyo bay tunnels

Ventilation_shaft_tn.jpg

So, there we were on a jetfoil in Tokyo Bay the other day, cruising back from a DWT jaunt to Kozu-shima when we spotted this rather attractive monolith in the ocean just to the southeast of Haneda airport.

New lamps cut UV to shoo away suicidal insects
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | WTF? 11:09 PM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: environment insects matsushita ultraviolet

Summer is the time of year when evenings are often filled with the fizz and crackle of winged insects obliterating themselves on outdoor lights, but did you know that it’s the ultraviolet part of the spectrum they really dig?

Japan aims to exploit sea-bed methane, end life as we know it
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | Off Topic | WTF? 03:34 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: energy environment methane hydrate

Worrying news from the Nikkei this morning as the august organ reports that Japan has made concrete plans to exploit methane hydrate deposits on the ocean floor 1km down in a wide area off its coast.

Japanese salty dogs watch fish prices online to get best prices
Read the full story Internet | Japan | Wireless | WTF? 12:57 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: fishing kanazawa

As fish supplies dwindle and competition among commercial fishing boats intensifies, a group of Japanese trawlermen have turned to the internet to give themselves an edge.

Iron Man, Hancock, Dark Knight ... Retarder Elf?
Friday, August 01, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Off Topic | Transportation | WTF? 11:57 PM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: trucks

Picture. Thousand words. Etc…

Panasonic replaces Sony as Japan’s coolest electronics brand
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Read the full story Desktop PCs | Displays | Household | Japan | Mobile computing 02:15 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: panasonic sony surveys

Although much has been made of Sony’s recent resurgence under Sir Howard Stringer, the Tokyo monster may be surprised to learn that it has been toppled as the public’s favourite producer of quality electronics.

Japan sales figures show Blu-ray picking up speed, CRT and VCR on life-support
Thursday, July 03, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan 12:57 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: blu-ray crt lcd marketing sat-nav

When it comes to consumer electronics, Japan is generally an excellent weathervane for forecasting the picture in the West a few months ahead. With that in mind, the latest electronics sales figures suggest a balmy Fall lies ahead.

Video: Sony shows off PlayStation Home and Life With PlayStation services
Friday, June 27, 2008
Read the full story Events | Japan | Video 07:11 PM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: playstation ps3 sony

We’ve all heard about Sony’s strategy meeting in Tokyo yesterday (read my report here, if you’re bored), but even more interesting than the news that everything’s going to be connected in Sony’s Brave New World and movies will be streaming left and right were a couple of demo videos unleashed on the underwhelmed journos assembled at the event.

Amazing survey says some Japanese might buy an iPhone
Friday, June 20, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Wireless 02:35 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: iphone surveys

In yet another one of those tech surveys that says close to nothing while appearing to contain something of substance, a Japanese probe has found that – shock! – some people here are interested in buying an iPhone.

KDDI building real-world bank to encourage e-payments
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | Wireless 02:27 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: banking e-cash kddi mufg

Earlier this month, when we looked at the future of mobile technologies from an academic’s perspective, one of the predictions that stood out was that phone companies looking to encourage mobile micropayments using their handsets would be well advised to team up with a solid financial institution first.

Exclusive: DoCoMo gives us its side of the Japanese 3G iPhone story
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Read the full story Interviews | Japan | Wireless 08:36 PM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: 3g apple iphone

Everybody knows the 3G iPhone will hit Japan later this year on the crap-tastic Softbank network, but I don’t believe anyone else was able to get NTT DoCoMo to admit it had been in the race too.

Bending the sun’s rays to light high-tech buildings
Friday, May 30, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan 02:52 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: inosyo ishikawa lighting luxfer prisms

In this age of environmental awareness, a couple of high-tech Japanese companies have turned the clock back over a hundred years to reduce energy consumption using 19th-century lighting techniques.

Gorgeous Japanese kids’ dinner set hewn from bamboo
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan | Off Topic 07:54 PM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: bamboo food funfam

Japan has long enjoyed the reputation of being home to some remarkable craftsmen in fields as diverse as ceramics and woodblock prints, but today’s mail brought the first piece of art I’ve ever seen that’s designed to be bashed around by kids at meal times.

Face recognition machines to stop under-age smoking - not!
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Read the full story Household | Japan 02:21 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: cigarettes fujitaka smoking taspo vending machines

Everyone knows that smoking causes the skin to age unnaturally and lines to appear around the eyes prematurely, but who could have guessed that smokers would one day be thankful for their tobacco-induced wrinkles?

Cool Japanese blog widgets add a dash of color
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Read the full story Internet | Japan | Software 01:33 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: blogs flash widgets

We’ve had a bunch of emails over the last few days asking about that little Flash widget down there at the bottom of the right sidebar (take a look waay down there), usually from readers asking what the heck all that Japanese stuff is.

RFID in Japan: Japan’s experience with RFID phones and contactless cash
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Wireless 07:57 PM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: felica keitai osaifu pasmo rfid suica

Over the last few years, residents of busy metropolises like London and Hong Kong have grown used to the convenience – not to mention lower prices in London’s case – of transport networks that accept electronic payments. Handy pieces of plastic, like the Oyster Card, with chips onboard are clearly a part of life for many people, but the same RFID technology has a far greater reach in Japan, where it has taken the next step and migrated to mobile phones as well.

Apple secures Japanese iPhone naming rights - 3G release all but certain now
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Read the full story Japan | Wireless 08:50 AM JMLH • Permalink
Tagged with: 3g aiphone apple iphone

A seemingly insignificant press release from a Japanese company we’ve never even heard of has suddenly set tongues wagging about everyone’s favorite rumor – the fabled 3G iPhone.

Net censorship spreading to Japan as suits fail to comprehend new media
Thursday, February 28, 2008
Read the full story Internet | Japan 10:13 AM JMLH • PermalinkComments
Tagged with: censorship

It’s easy to believe the tales of internet censorship we hear regularly from China, but not so its ostensibly democratic neighbor in Japan. That perception may change of Japanese regulations shake up the online world as proposed.



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