Music to Your Ears
An App for That
Western music is popular all over the world, but language barriers can make it difficult for foreign fans to lose themselves in the songs and shows.
To unite fans from the East and artists from the West, DJ and Producer Steve Aoki is endorsing AsQme, an AMA-style site where Japanese fans can ask Western artists questions to help them better understand their music. The Japanese-American electro house musician will host the site’s first AMA, which will start on October seventh and run for a staggering three weeks.
Law and Order
Learning a new language can be a daunting task, but luckily there’s a number of apps that can help.
While most stick to teaching vocabulary and the basic phrases you’re most likely to use, one app designed to teach English to Japanese students includes a number of interesting idioms.
The app, OKPanda English Every Read More
faith in humanity restored
Megumi Igarashi is being held by Japanese authorities on suspicion of breaking obscenity laws, the Guardian reports. Ms. Igarashi isn’t suspected of flashing someone, or even sexting. Instead, she was arrested because she scanned her vagina and distributed the code for it to be 3D-printed.
Ms. Igarashi was hoping to turn the code into a Read More
the robots are coming
Here’s a story that’ll make you hate humanity a little less: an Oklahoma farmer lost his phone last fall, only to have it returned to him nine months later — from Japan.
Kevin Whitney, of Chickasha, Okla., lost his iPhone last October when it fell out of his pocket into his grain pit — which contained 280,000 pounds of grain — and then was whisked up the grain elevator, KFOR reports. We guess that’s like the farming equivalent of leaving your phone in a cab.
In 2020, Tokyo will host the 32nd Summer Olympics — and perhaps the world’s first robot Olympics, if Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe gets his way.
“In 2020 I would like to gather all of the world’s robots and aim to hold an Olympics where they compete in technical skills,” the Prime Minister is quoted as saying to local media.
When it comes to bizarre smartphone accessories that make you question the future of humankind, Japan is on top of its game. Now, a Japanese company called Ratoken has released what might be the strangest product we’ve seen yet — and yes, we did report on those edible iPhone cases.
Ratoken is now selling the “Phablet finger,” the Daily Mail reports. Worn like a finger puppet, the fake finger extends the user’s thumb by 15mm, allegedly making it easier to operate smartphones with larger screens — like the soon-to-be-released iPhone 6 or the enormous Samsung Galaxy Mega.
We’ve seen some pretty weird things up for sale on the Japan Trend Shop, but this handgun-shaped iPhone case might be their craziest product yet.
For $40, online shoppers can purchase “The Gun Grip Case iPhone 5 Cover” (cool name!), an iPhone 5 case that’s shaped exactly like a handgun.
After an hour and a half spent wandering through the dauntingly huge SXSW Trade Show in the Austin Convention Center, we were very nearly ready to call it quits and go collapse into a heaping pile of pulled pork somewhere — but then we rounded a corner and came face-to-face with a Japanese Read More
What is reality, anyway? Nothing more than a bunch of sights, smells, feelings, maybe an interpersonal relationship or two. And what is a girlfriend but a person who sleeps next to you in bed who you can spoon and nudge occasionally, whether she is made of flesh and blood or synthetic material?
Now, lonely people can have their own “real” “girlfriends” thanks to a new app from–where else?–Japan. It allows users to see, touch and even smell a three-dimensional, virtual version of animated Japanese pop star Hatsune Miku, RocketNews24 reports.
A Japenese tech company’s answer to Google Glass has a lot of rad abilities, like translating written text and recognizing faces.
But it’s hard to focus on anything but the clunky, Star Trek-y look of NTT Docomo’s Intelligent Glass. Frankly, it makes Google Glass wearers look positively chic.