Has it come to this? Japanese company produces plastic cover to keep kitty off your keyboard

If you have a cat at home, there’s a good chance you’re well aware of the frustrations felines can introduce to owners, like walking all over keyboards or stealing your seat the second you get up. Sure, we forgive them, and we might even find it kind of cute, but eventually the “pranks” get old and we just want to be able to sit down and write the next great novel without having to delete our cats’ helpful additions of  “jmmmmmmmmmm;;;;;;;acccccieiei1” every few minutes.

But what’s to be done against the wiles of a determined cat?! Well, you could lock your cat out of the room, but that would just be depressing. Or you could turn to Bessed, a design and manufacturing company that provides consumers with some…unique products. The company recently announced the release of their Neko Pochi Keyboard Cover, which is a keyboard cover designed to hold the weight of a cat over your keyboard so you can type. Now you know what to get all the cat-owners on your holiday gift list!

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Running out of time on your assignment? Take some advice from the Internet

Juggling school life and regular life isn’t always easy. Sometimes you’ve got a million things to do and deadlines are coming down on you hard and fast, and you just need that little bit of extra time to finish up your paper. If you are this sneaky Japanese student, though, you’ve found a way to make technology seemingly going wrong make everything all right.

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Great deal on “thing that lets you make a USB into a plug,” ask for it by name!

The other day while out shopping for computer parts like that-thing-that-connects-an-old-type-iPod-to-a-PC, one Twitter user stumbled upon a truly great deal. For only 200 yen (US$1.70) you can get…um, you know…one of those “things-that-let-you-make-a-USB-into-a-plug.”

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Transform!!! Toshiba unveils new laptop that can fold itself into every conceivable position

What with desktops, laptops, all-in-ones and tablets, we now have an enormous amount of choice when it comes to buying a new computer. While many of us enjoy the raw power that giant desktops have to offer, others prefer the simplicity and convenience of tablets with their slim designs and fingerprint-absorbing touchscreens.

With the Kira L93, Japanese electronics giant Toshiba is clearly hoping to cover all of its bases and please even the most indecisive computer buyer. With a 13.3-inch touchscreen that can be rotated 360 degrees, stand, detachable keyboard and stylus, the latest entry in the Dynabook series can be used up to seven different ways, making it one of the most versatile machines on the market.

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Soon, you could have your very own ninja domain (name for your website)

There’s nothing particularly wrong with RocketNews24’s “.com” domain name. We haven’t declared ourselves an autonomious principality (yet), so .gov is out of the question. And while some (me) might argue that .handsomeandwittyreporterswhowritesuchgreatarticlesthatmenareinspiredandladiesswoon is the most accurate description of what we do around here, for some reason that’s not available for official use.

So we ended up with plain old .com, our only logical option out of the top-level domains recognized by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN. But if only RocketNews24 had come into existence a little later, we could have taken advantage of ICANN’s recent approval of .ninja as a domain name.

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Researchers in Osaka develop hands-free, breath-controlled PC mouse

Despite having a name that induces chuckles in many English speakers, Kinki University (Kinki being the name of the region around Osaka) is a well-respected school, with roots stretching back to 1925 when it came into existence as Osaka Technical College.

In keeping with the school’s long history of pursuing technological advancement, a team at Kinki University has recently developed a mouse that allows users to operate their PC with nothing more than their breath.

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How dirty is your mind? Guess what this is for!

Go on, take a wild guess. What is the kit above used for? More tellingly, do you know how to use these items yourself? Are you an experienced user, a semi-pro, or do you just like to watch others use them?

The object on the upper left features a beautifully rounded tip and a convenient finger grip for when you need to give it some extra oomph. The vial of clear fluid on the right may help you to achieve your, er, goal more smoothly. Then we have what appears to be a packet of wipes to mop up with. These days, these things are not common, but ten years ago they were used frequently. Most likely, your parents used them. But what did they use them for, exactly…?

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The surprisingly effective language of Dragon Ball — One Twitter user’s creative way of rating gaming hardware

I think we can all agree that Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball is one of the most popular and well-known animes in the world. Well, here in Japan, a good understanding of the story and characters of Dragon Ball is considered basic knowledge on the Internet, so much so that it has become routine practice for Japanese Internet users to ask someone to explain a complex story or situation by using the story and characters from the series as comparison. Yes, you’ll see people on message boards literally saying, “I don’t quite understand that. Can someone explain it to me in terms of Dragon Ball, please?”

Now, it seems this practice has spread beyond Japan, and a tweet from Spain comparing some pieces of electronic and gaming equipment to Dragon Ball characters has fans of the anime laughing out loud. Read More

Beware the Dangers of Free Wi-Fi

When away on travel for either business or pleasure, there is no greater treasure than a free Wi-Fi hot spot. However, be warned that in recent years there’s been an increasing number of cases wherein these blessed havens are used to steal people’s personal information! People traveling abroad are said to be at an even greater risk for damage caused by suspicious Wi-Fi providers. Read More

Japan Makes POS System That Scans Bread Terminator Style

Ah, Japanese bakeries. Rows and rows of delicious, fresh-baked treats ready for you to harvest—if you can decide among all the variety. And if you think choosing which bread to place on your tray is hard (I usually spend at least 5 minutes walking in circles with hungry tongs in hand), imagine how stressful it must be for part-time bakery staff who need to remember the names of every baked good in the store.

Luckily, Japanese web development company Brain Corporation has teamed up with the University of Hyogo to develop a POS system that uses a camera to instantly identify the kind of baked good customers have on their tray.

Check out the video below, it looks a lot more impressive than it sounds.

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