Newsletter

    • August 24, 2022
    • January 29, 2023

    Japanese Anime x Japanese Traditional Crafts

    Japanese anime is not only for kids When first learning what the words “TGI Fridays” stand for, I was so glad to know many people even outside Japan have hard time surviving weekdays. At the same time, a question came up in my mind: Do they also feel depression on Sunday evening the same as me? I looked into it right away and found good English words to express the feeling: Sunday Scaries. For your information, the Sunday evening depression is expressed “Sazae-san Syndrome” in Japanese. Sazae-san is the longest-running animated TV series, broadcast every Sunday evening since 1969. From this fact, you can also see how common it is to watch animated TV shows in Japan, not only for kids but also for adults. Even adults can enjoy “Attack on Titan” Conforming to the recent trend, I rarely watch any TV shows, though a TV itself stands in the […]

    • August 17, 2022
    • October 25, 2022

    Japanese Culture and Traditions: Japanese Fireworks Festival

    Japanese summer ends with fireworks festivals Fireworks festivals tell the end of summer in Japan. Of course, almost all of them had been canceled for these two years because of the COVID, but they are back this year! In my summer holidays, I went to the biggest one in Hokkaido, where more than 20000 fireworks are launched, and about 200000 people are gathered every year. In the festival, I clearly understood the limitations of online activities. There were many people dressed in a casual kimono, kids running and yelling with excitement (and some parents scolding their kids off), teenagers smiling at each other a little awkwardly (because they haven’t seen for a while due to the summer vacation), etc. This is the very Japanese summer scene that I’ve missed for long. A unique firework developed by the latest technology Speaking of the limitations of online activities, the sound wave of […]

    • August 8, 2022
    • October 14, 2022

    Marketing Tips: Is a Dyson Vacuum Worth It? How Is It Unique?

    Dyson, the only entertaining vacuum cleaner in the world The only vacuum cleaner in the world. This sales copy made me pay for the highest-grade Dyson vacuum cleaner, though I’m not interested at all in home electronics and so much in cleaning itself. Sales copies seem to control our behaviors like this. Anyway, how do I like it? I’m completely satisfied with the product and take off my hat to their innovations. Mind you; it’s not about technical innovations. To be honest, I don’t think it’s very useful or more sophisticated than other vacuum cleaners in terms of functions. What I evaluate most is it’s just fun to use. I believe this is the core achievement of their innovations. In other words, Dyson has re-defined vacuum cleaners. Dyson vacuum clearners are not so good in usability As most of you may know that, Dyson vacuum cleaners don’t have a dust […]

    • July 21, 2022
    • September 17, 2022

    The Economics of Superstar: Billionaire Architects Will Emerge

    The e-sports industry grows to make million-dollar players Do you like video games? Me? I have no interest at all. When I was a kid, almost all the classmates had Nintendo Entertainment System, but I didn’t. No matter how hard I wished for it, my parents didn’t give the nod. Alternatively, I sometimes went to my friends’ houses to play video games, but it was not so fun because the friends were much better. When I was a college student, Biohazard was released. I bought PlayStation myself to play it. The time came when my dream came true, but probably it was too late. I didn’t get into it. Due to the background like this, I had no idea why e-sports are so trendy and how they can make sense as a business, until I learned the popularity of gameplay videos. It was unbelievable for me that there are many […]

    • July 13, 2022
    • September 2, 2022

    Won “Best of the Best” of the Red Dot Design Award!

    What is the attraction of the sport? Japan has more than 6000 high schools, about 4000 of which have a baseball team. Every summer, there’s a championship to decide the best team in Japan. Many people get excited, and fortunes are moved. On the other hand, people called a man with good sense raise voices against the trend, like “Don’t prey on the innocent effort of high school kids.” To be honest, I doubt if high school kids are such innocent, though. Another common criticism is “Too much emphasis is attached to high school baseball.” I think it’s valid. All the championship games are broadcast on TV for more than two weeks, which never happens in other high school sports. Of course, it’s not because most of the media tycoons are baseball fans but because high school baseball is much more popular than other high school sports. It’s the simple […]

    • July 4, 2022
    • October 14, 2022

    Economic Psychology: What If You Were the Last Person on Earth?

    What would I do if I were Will Smith? I like sci-fi stories (and movies). I think they are excellent thought experiments to create a completely different world, which always stimulate my interest. For example, “1984” by George Orwell is the story of what if the world is completely ruled by totalitarianism. “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” (the movie was titled “Blade Runner,” and I really like it) elaborates an imaginary world where androids evolve their intelligence to become more human than humans. The starter of this article is “I Am Legend” starring Will Smith. As most of you know, it’s the movie portraying the last man on earth. If you watched the movie, I believe you’ve imagined “What would I do if I were Will Smith?” In fact, I did many times and was shocked every time to find the simple fact that I can’t live long by […]

    • June 28, 2022
    • October 13, 2022

    Japan Travel in the Know: When Did We Forget How to Make Friends?

    Kids are the master of communicating with new people Last week, I went to Tokyo for business and found all the people in the subway train (in my view) just looked at their smartphones silently. I saw such a scene every day when I lived there, but I realized it was a weird and creepy view where people perfectly make the same posture with no expression on their faces. I don’t mean to loudly criticize it. On the contrary, it can be said to be the symbolic situation to show Japanese politeness. We just sit tight so as not to bother each other, but sometimes I can’t help thinking that this may be a big opportunity loss. The stranger sitting next to us by chance could be a good friend. Do you remember kids are the master of communicating with new people, and we all once were kids? I clearly […]

    • June 20, 2022
    • January 12, 2023

    Japan Travel in the Know: Hokkaido Rock House Designed by Sou Fujimoto

    The science behind PIXAR According to my source (namely my biased personal opinion), many movie freaks are likely to look down on animated movies. I was one of them until I went to a special exhibition in Sapporo. The title of the exhibition is “The Science behind PIXAR” that is about the movie production of PIXAR. The exhibition started from the US, went to some cities in Canada, and finally came to Japan. You may still believe that it is only dramas played by real actors that can move you, but CG animation is also very dramatic. If you know human struggling behind the scene, you will be moved by animated movies as well. Moving human dramas behind CG animation In the exhibition, we can see many short videos where PIXAR engineers talk about what they’re doing. All of them are saying the same thing: CG animation is the fusion […]

    • June 14, 2022
    • October 14, 2022

    Aircraft Design Trivia: Beautiful and Diverse Despite Limitations

    Top Gun: Maverick Maverick is back! Who can wait for the movie to start? I have yet to watch it, though. “Top Gun” was released in 1986. It was when I was only eight years old, and so, I think I watched it on video. Even so, it was impressive enough to affect my life. I know the movie has no substance at all but just made F14 Tomcat appear appealing. That is one of the reasons why I started my career from Japan Air Self-defense Force, not as a pilot, though. Aircraft can fly only when their designs are correct I like aircraft, especially fighter aircraft above all because they are the embodiment of rationality. If designs are wrong, they can’t fly. Interestingly, from this point of view, the design variety of airplanes is likely to become less, but it is not actually. Indeed, they may look similar to […]

    • June 7, 2022
    • October 14, 2022

    Japanese Flower Etiquette: How to Choose Flowers

    I rarely buy flowers. It’s only on Mother’s Day, though I forget even that sometimes. Probably that’s because I don’t really know what flowers I should buy. On Mother’s Day, it’s easy because flower shops offer a wide variety of Mother’s Day bouquet options. In addition, there’s a mental wall in us, I guess. In fact, I’ve never seen anyone who is waiting for his/her date with a flower bouquet, and so I believe it only happens in the movies. In other words, that may be because of Richard Gere in “Pretty Woman” or “Shall We Dance?” Flower gifting becomes a mission impossible for us ordinary people, based on my fully biased opinion.[...]