cool (Page 195)

In the Future Your Own Hand Will be Your Smartphone (With the Help of 5,000 Pounds of Terrifying Machinery)

Minority Report it is not, but Masatoshi Ishikawa – namesake of Tokyo University’s renowned Ishikawa Lab – brought us one step closer to the future when he recently invited Japanese press to witness the lab’s newest creation: a projection system that can track and display an image on a moving object.

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This Blue Beer Looks Like it Came from Alcoholic Willy Wonka’s Factory

The Abashiri Brewery in Hokkaido which, judging by its website, really is some kind of beer-themed Willy Wonka side project, boasts what may be the world’s first naturally blue beer.

Always ready to get drunk for the sake of our readers, RocketNews24 took it upon ourselves to investigate this mystifying beer anomaly, appropriately named the Ryuhyou Draft (“Ice Floe Draft”), at a beachside pub. Read More

Korean Remote Controlled Turtle Project Making Slow But Steady Progress

One year when I was in junior high school my parents gave me a radio controlled car for Christmas. It was the perfect gift for a young boy right in the middle of dealing with the most awkward, confusing psychological change that comes with puberty (no longer thinking riding a bike is cool, but still being too young to drive a car). I loved that R/C car, so much that I kept playing with it outside as it started to rain one day, eventually frying the circuits so that it never ran again.

But things would have been different if my parents had been researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, or KAIST. First, everyone would have been surprised by how two Korean scientists ended up with a Caucasian son with blond hair. And next, they could have hooked me up with a controllable water-resistant reptile, like the remote controlled turtle KAIST is currently developing. Read More

Japanese Performance Artist’s Balancing Act More Nerve-Wracking Than a Game of Jenga

Watching Japanese performance artist Miyoko Shida’s physics-defying balancing act is a more intense experience than your closest game of Jenga, guaranteed. At Rocketnews24, a lot of our writers have trouble just walking straight, so trying to imagine the coordination and concentration required to put on a show like this makes our heads hurt.

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The Ten Most Beautiful Tunnels in the World and Where You Can Find Them

If a wardrobe filled with musty coats brought people to Narnia, we wonder where these beautiful tunnels might bring you. Let’s take a look at ten beautiful passageways from around the world.

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Calling All Evil Billionaires: The Dream of Space Flight Can be Yours for a Fraction of Your Fortune

It used to be that to go to space you needed to join NASA and become an astronaut. But you’re an evil billionaire, and you’re far too busy being evil for all that training in the gravitron.

Lucky for you and whatever evil space plans you’re hatching, SXC (Space Expedition Corporation) offers the dream of space travel to any commoner with US$100,000 lying around, a pittance that will barely put a dent in your underground chamber of dubiously acquired gold bricks.

There are also a number of other aerospace companies offering a variety of space travel flavors, from a few minutes in orbit to a full 9 days at the International Space Station (ISS), complete with space walk. Let’s take a look at the different space travel packages offered, including one that costs US$150 million. 

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Let It Rip with Japanese Company’s Stress-Relieving Notepad

The company Edit, based in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward, produces a variety of notebooks. Most of them come with specialized forms on each page, such as a cooking notebook with separate boxes for ingredient names, amounts, and cooking directions. The company’s more unique offerings include a pitcher’s notebook with a three-by-three grid to mark each throw as high or low, inside or outside, and a horse racing journal to record bets, wins (hopefully), and losses (inevitably).

The pages of Edit’s newest big seller are completely blank, though. What’s more, if customers follow the instructions for using it, they’ll never be able to refer back to what they wrote, because the pages are designed to feel good as you rip them into shreds. Read More

Saudi Arabian Reporter Floored by Things Japanese Take for Granted

The Saudi Arabian television program Hawatel Kaizen (a combination of the Arabic word for “thoughts” and the Japanese for “improvement”) is a series of reports by Arabic reporters in which they share things they have been impressed by in Japan. A Japanese TV show in turn did a feature on Hawatel Kaizen, in which the panel of Japanese TV personalities were amused by the enthusiastic responses of Saudi reporter, Ahmad, to things Japanese citizens take for granted.

So in an effort to be as international as possible, RocketNews24 brings you an English recap of a Japanese TV program reacting to another program in which a Saudi Arabian reporter reacts to Japan. Read More

How to Make Gundam Using Microsoft Excel 【Video】

How many of you actually know how to use Microsoft Excel? Unless you need to make spreadsheets on a regular basis, Excel acts as the forgotten stepsister of Word and PowerPoint. Even those who claim to be able use Excel, don’t actually know how to use it. So you can imagine our surprise when we found out that with a lot of creativity and even more time, you can make amazing works of art using the most boring of all the Microsoft Office programs.

The following video shows each painstakingly detailed step to creating Gundam using Microsoft Excel (in super high speed).

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Heavy Industry without the Heavy Equipment

Here at RocketNews24, we like to bring you the latest and greatest, whether it’s (potentially) killer mechs or adorable new fonts! But sometimes it’s nice to take a moment to appreciate the beauty of raw human ingenuity. Read More

Who Needs a Cherry on Top? Osaka Café Crowns its Parfaits with Cake

Tokyo’s restaurants may have more Michelin stars, but for many Japanese foodies, the real culinary action is in Osaka. Particularly if your tastes run more towards good honest grub than haute cuisine, Japan’s second largest city is the place to be.

The people of Osaka enjoy a good meal so much that they coined the phrase kuidaore, to eat until you collapse. But even with this image firmly entrenched in our minds, the city has found a new way to surprise us with its gastronomic decadence.

On a recent day out in Osaka, our reporter stopped by a café and ordered a truly hard-core parfait. It wasn’t that the parfait was so big, and no, it didn’t contain any shocking ingredients. What blew our minds about this parfait was its topping.

It was a slice of cake, and it was so big it wasn’t even trying to fit into the glass.

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99-Year-Old Tea Shop Offers Something New: Green Tea Beer

Being in Japan gives you plenty of opportunities to knock back a beer. The country is filled with pubs, and alcohol consumptions is so accepted that should you tell people, flat-out, “My hobby is drinking,” they’re more likely to ask you to recommend a good bar than to stage an intervention. At the same time, Japan has countless places to sip a relaxing cup of tea, whether it’s the strong, frothy variety used in tea ceremonies called matcha, or hojicha, for which the green tea leaves are roasted before steeping. But with two tempting beverage choices to relax with and only so many hours in the day, how can anyone be expected to choose between tea and beer? As it turns out, you don’t have to. Read More

Today’s Reason to Come to Japan: Free Curry Refills

Big eaters in Japan have a saying: “Curry and rice isn’t something you eat. It’s something you drink.” And as with any beverage, nothing’s better than free refills.

We’ve talked about it before, but it’s worth repeating. The Japanese curry chain CoCo Ichibanya (also known as just CoCo Ichi), provides a free refill of curry sauce to any customer one who asks for it. Read More

Star Wars Takes Over Tokyo Disneyland to Celebrate Reopening of Star Tours

Three days after every other person on the internet was posting “May the fourth be with you,” Tokyo Disneyland was flooded with Star Wars fans celebrating the grand reopening of Star Tours: the Adventures Continues. The ride offers a 3-D Star Wars experience with over 50 possible randomly selected story combinations. There’s no greater thrill than feeling as if you are rocketing through space, interacting with familiar Star Wars characters in the third dimension.

But what impressed our reporter, Tashiro-kun, the most was the fanfare that day. With around 200 Disney cast members dressed in Star Wars costume and more Disney-Star Wars merchandise than you can shake a light saber at, Tokyo Disneyland on May 7 was the place to be for Star Wars fans.

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Kyaaah! The Anime Power Moves Everyone Tried (And Failed) To Master

Desperate to master the power moves we’d seen so many times in our favourite anime (Japanese animated cartoon), we practiced them day and night. Nothing impresses friends and destroys enemies like a well-timed “Turtle Destruction Wave”. Sure of our eventual success and rise to glory, we eagerly followed in the footsteps of heroes, mimicking their warrior cries and poses. Our best efforts were doomed to fail, but we kept on trying. You did too, right? Probably. Hadouken!

MyNavi News asked 286 men and women in Japan which moves they practiced as children. Here are the most common (and surprising) responses.

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Students in Japan Create a Robot That Can Balance on a Ball

Oh Japan, you never disappoint in the robot department. This one in particular may look a little plain compared to the femme bots in Shinjuku or a $1.25 million giant robot, but it’s still really cool. Created by two students at Tohoku Gakuin University in Japan, this little guy is able to perfectly balance on a ball while carrying a load and moving.

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Love Money? Cuddle Your Cash with this Chinese Money Pillow!

Oh, money, you make me smile like it’s Christmas Day and the cat’s just coughed up a shard of rainbow. As a man who spent most of his university years trying to work out ways to make potato chips and sliced bread viable alternatives to meat and vegetables, during the brief moments that I have a bit of cash in my bank account these days I become a noticeably nicer person to be around. I won’t even try to gouge your eyes if you greet me in the street.

This pillow is for people like me. People who want that warm money glow 24/7, so that even when our bank accounts are empty, our hearts are filled by the shallow but immediately believable promise of happiness that only cold, hard cash can bring.

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Thai Fans Remake Entire Iron Man 3 Pre-Release Trailer by Hand, Blow Our Minds 【Video】

If you’re a superhero fan living in North America, today very likely means only one thing: the launch of Iron Man 3. Perhaps waiting for a more suitable date to release the title, Marvel and Walt Disney Studios hung on until May 3 to unleash Tony Stark’s newest — and, according to some, best — supersuit-powered adventure, and millions of fans are champing at the bit to see it.

Despite having opened in Japan surprisingly early (Japanese releases are notoriously late, with movie fans forced to wait until this March for both Django Unchained and Wreck it Ralph alone), tongues are wagging all across the country today about Iron Man 3, but for an entirely different reason.

Put together by a clearly passionate and creative team of fans in Thailand, the following video recreates the official Iron Man 3 pre-release trailer shot by shot using little more than hand-crafted props, questionable make-up and models dangling from strings. Even so, it is nothing short of wonderful.

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Beef Up Your iPhone With This Iron Man Mark VII Armor Case

Crank up the Black Sabbath to 11 and bust out your iPhone, this one’s for all you Iron Man fans out there.

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Canned Ice Blasts Let You Literally Stop Cockroaches Cold

Japan is a great place to be in the summer. For the culturally minded, there are festivals at centuries-old shrines, dazzling fireworks displays, and neighborhood folk dances with everyone wearing summer kimonos or yukata. If your thought process is a little baser, the all-you-can-drink beer gardens on the rooftops of department stores, along with much higher socially-accepted hem lines than in many other parts of the world, aren’t half-bad either.

But there’s one thing no one likes about summer here: the hordes of cockroaches.

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