Posted by danielnishina

Mindreading App (Shut Up and Take More Of My Free Will Away)?

At first glance, this tech news report seems to be telling us of an intriguing augmented reality app that’s scary good. When you point your camera at an object, it can automatically read your mind about what you’ll want to do next on the internet with respect to that object, like get a coupon for it or research about it on Wikipedia. Which would bring to mind various questions, such as, is it like auto-fill/auto-complete, remembering what you or others have done before, taken a few steps further? Is it selectively taking you to a website that’s ultimately aiming to get your money? Is it inviting you to give up your free will and just be satisfied with the website it saw fit to jump you to? How does it know what you want to do? Read More

Capture Highway Wackiness, Prove Your Driving Skills with this Rearview Mirror with Camera and LED Display

Now you can capture random moments of craziness or novelty happening while you’re driving with this new in-car camera / rearview mirror from Hamwha. It looks more or less like a normal rearview mirror but has an internal camera pointing forward to record what’s happening in front of your vehicle. Read More

Epic, Heart-Melting Lip-Dub Proposal (video)

Still making the re-post rounds on the internet is this sweet, heartwarming and funny musical marriage proposal, “Isaac’s Live Lip-Dub Proposal“. Isaac Lamb got together over 60 friends and family, most certainly planned and rehearsed, and on the day of reckoning, invited his unsuspecting fiancee, Amy, over to be met by his brother …

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Use Your Sushi … On Your Smartphone

So you want to keep your smartphone on your desktop, but you don’t want to lay it flat to get inadvertently smothered by paperwork or worry about some careless mungo putting their coffee mug on it. Or you want to watch some videos on it so you prop it up against your coffee mug but the phone slides down and you actually want to drink your coffee at some point. Read More

No Ice Cream For You! Keep Others’ Hands Off with Ben & Jerry’s Euphori-Lock

If you haven’t had it happen to you yet, statistically speaking, at some point in your life you will fall victim to someone eating your ice cream. Your. Ice. Cream! Avoid such a tragedy with Ben & Jerry’s Euphori-Lock, a combination lock that fits on to pint cartons of ice cream, available for under $7 (US). Basically, it’s a two-part plastic security ring that slips around the upper lid.

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The Latest Singles Pick-up Spot: Buddhist Temples

Most people go to Shinto shrines several times a year, like for New Years or to make a special wish or prayer, like before a job interview. But with Buddhist temples, it’s usually just for tourism and funerals – not that frequently, basically. But wait! Temples are transforming these days, more and more using their halls for activities such as yoga classes, group date venues (‘gou-kon‘ in Japanese – group dinners with single men and women, seeking potential mates), and even as concert venues!

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Honda Unveils Uni-Cub: Segway For La Derriere (Unoriginal Title, but Oh So Accurate and Concise)

At a Tokyo press event, Honda showed off its single-rider, hands-free personal mobility device, the Uni-cub. The Uni-Cub can move in every direction  just by shifting your weight, including rotating in place, and is about the height of a chair, so you can put your feet on the ground at any time. One of the biggest advantages is that your hands are free, so you can hold a sign that says, “I believe I’m more awesome than you”. Read More

Well, the combination of the first two was working out well, apparently. (For those of you who don’t know, there are many regional dialects / accents in Japan. The most easily found is likely the Kansai dialect, due to the huge number of comedians and entertainers you can see on TV.) In any case, following the logic of [cute girls] + [dialects] = [cute], they created a late-night TV program featuring these girls doing various  things in their respective dialects (PG-rated, presumably). Due to the skyrocketing popularity of the TV show, the next natural step was to … promote men’s electric shavers. Read More

Challenge Yourself, Make Friends or Make Enemies with these Space-Age Chopsticks

Actually, there are many possible motives to get these chopsticks, which will defy your sense of what is right in the world, presented by ES Corp. of Hiroshima. On the lighter end: they come in black and white boxes, which lined up side-by-side, form a picture of a torii (the gateway to Shinto shrines), and thereby make for a nice his-and-hers wedding gift. On (off?) the deeper end: they bring into question the reason for existence of chopsticks. Read More

Rejoice! Deal with Two Flies Max under Beijing’s New Public Toilet Standards

If you’ve been to China, you probably have firsthand experience of the dirty toilets. So dirty you can’t wait go back home and use your local public restrooms. So dirty you can’t breathe. So dirty you wonder what chaos you’ve entered into. Beijing has recently announced some new standards regarding maintenance of its public restrooms. The standards themselves are attracting attention, and there’s also skepticism that probably has to do with their overall track record in this area.  Read More

Your Face on a 10000 yen bill! Bolster Your Delusions of Grandeur, Anyway

Whether you’re needing to boost your self-esteem, or you’re just awesome thank you and want some more proof of the fact, you can now get your lovely mug on some snazzy-looking cash. At Otona Ginko (“grown-ups’ bank”), you can order 10,000 yen bills with your portrait printed on them. You send in your picture and it gets converted to the kind of line-based monochrome graphic you see on real currency. (For those living outside of Japan, 10,000 yen is about 85 US dollars, though realistically speaking you use them like $20 bills here.)

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Truly Embody Your Love with this Ring

You want to have a symbol of your love for a significant other, but there are so many designs to choose from. You can now impress upon others as well as yourself, literally, your feelings with the Inner Message line of rings from Yoon Jungyun Shop. While the outside of the ring looks plain and unassuming, the inside surface of the ring imprints a message on your finger, which you can see after removing the ring. So even after you’ve taken off the ring, you’re still reminded of your significant other. Another part of the gratification of this ring is having the very exclusive knowledge of the message, possibly a secret to everyone but you and the person who you gave the ring to. Read More

Extreme Sashimi: Frog Edition

When we hear “sashimi”, usually what comes to mind is fish. But there are actually a wide variety of sashimi, such as horse sashimi and chicken sashimi. And, since ancient times in Japan, there is frog sashimi. (Here is where we try it out so you don’t have to.) We went to a Tokyo restaurant that we heard serves frog sashimi, “Asadachi” (which means morning wood, you know), about 3 minutes walk from Shinjuku station in ‘Piss Alley‘.

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Meanwhile in China, Butt-Kicking Patient Makes Surgery Tough (Video)

This isn’t about some botched job either. In early May, a man appearing to have knife wounds was brought to this one hospital, where the staff immediately assessed the situation and prepared for emergency surgery. In the operating room, the doctors asked him what his name was when all of a sudden, this guy completely loses it. He gets up off the operating table, beats up the doctors, and destroys a bunch of equipment in the operating room and other parts of the hospital.

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‘Call of Duty’ Secret Bargain. “Long Live the Emperor! Banzai!”

‘Call of Duty’ is a popular video game series, with new releases selling out, even in Japan. But did you know there’s a ‘Call of Duty’ that they won’t ever sell a localized Japanese version of, despite high acclaim everywhere else? We’re talking about ‘Call of Duty: World at War’. Read More

Have a Thing for Shaved Heads? This Cute Monk Guide May Be Up Your Alley

Available at a bookstore near you! (In Japan, anyway… of course …) “Bibouzu Zukan” (“Beautiful Monk Encyclopedia”) features 41 monks who may change the way you think about robes, shaved heads, and monotonous chanting. Read More

How to Convert Minutes to Cheeseburgers? New McD’s Ad Campaign

You will stop thinking in minutes and hours, and start seeing time in terms of cheeseburgers and milkshakes, if the McDonald’s new ad campaign’s persuasive power works its charms.

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Talk on the Phone but Still Feeling Lonely? Check Out These Vibrating Snuggle Dolls

Remember the boyfriend arm pillow? And the lap pillow in the shape of a woman’s lower body? (Or perhaps you actually have them?) Read More

Are You Adult Enough for this Pepsi?

Summer is a competitive time for beverage companies, who duke it out to get those thirsty, hot customers. Actually, manufacturers (as well as regular people) are still contending this year with a lean, electricity-short summer, a season when the demand for power understandably goes up. Amid all these circumstances, those of you who yearn for an unsweet soft drink should have a crack at ‘Pepsi Black’, coming mid-June.

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The recruitment poster for the Fukushima police force is moving, to say the least. It definitely singles out only the most dedicated, most driven potential recruits. The poster features a person wearing an anti-radiation suit, walking through some desolate, post-tsunami wasteland, with text saying hauntingly, “There is work here that only I can do…”. Japanese posters often omit words and thus have implied messages, but this recruitment poster is relatively explicit. And it has gained some attention for its darkness and severity. It’s pretty plain that you should be looking forward to working in hazardous conditions.

A police spokesperson confirmed that they were seeking people with strong mettle precisely because of the still-dire situation in Fukushima. The photo is from May 2011 (the disaster was in March), shows the main damaged nuclear reactor in the background, and was unanimously selected for the poster in February this year. The desire for driven new officers who won’t give up on the work or come for the job thinking about it too casually is understandable, but there could also be a subtext, which is that they don’t just want anybody either.

source: Asahi via Jin (Japanese)

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