The smaller the block, the better the detail. This is the very true catchphrase of Japanese invention Nanoblock, a range of puzzles which are pretty much the most fun you can have at your office desk without getting fired. Yes, the small and challenging building blocks will satisfy anyone who is a child at heart [...]
When the kids from one of Ishinomaki’s elementary schools, Watanona, were handed disaster debris from the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami to create art from, they sculpted playful inventions such as a cat faced telephone, a cone-hat gnome and a pear-shaped salaryman with pine fruit hair. It shows how even the darkest material can elicit happiness in the right hands. And in this case, they are tiny hands that hold a huge amount of potential.
Finally, a Japanese invention that doesn’t boggle the mind. Well, not as much as usual, anyway. Tokyo-based engineers at Obayashi Corp have announced plans to build a space elevator by the middle of the century. Yes, that’s right. A genuine Stairway to Heaven, or as close as they can get it. Apparently the elevator will [...]
Is this the greatest invention ever? Mobile Art Lab, an offshoot of the giant Japanese Dentsu advertising agency which develops mobile specific content, recently launched the PhoneBook project, with the ‘aim of finding new ways to connect parents and children using the iPhone’. The project mashes up the digital benefits of the iPhone with the [...]
Our friends at Newsweek recently revealed (excuse the pun) the latest work of Japanese professor Susumu Tachi at the Kelo University who has spent the past few years developing ‘invisibility goggles and invisibility cloaks’. According to the article, the goggles ‘merge images from two separate cameras trained on a single scene, similar to the way a “green screen” works in film’. Fun! Indeed.
I was born in Japan, and I have eaten the iconic Japanese iconic food, Sushi, many times. But I have never worn sushi as an necklace, nor seen anyone doing so. So here is yet another crazy Japanese invention.
The first publication of the book 101 Unuseless Japenese Inventions, at the end of the 90s, was centered around Chindogu art. Created by author Kenji Kawakami, this art of unusual and useless inventions, displayed different ways of solving the everyday problems. One of the Chindogus is the Baby Mop, a pair of trousers and a sweatshirt for babies with strips that clean the floor while the baby crawls.
The Japanese, in the ongoing toy race, are never satisfied, even when the whole world concedes that they’ve developed the coolest (or at least the weirdest) playthings on Earth. Lokulokus are little blobby pigs that splatter and flatten when you throw them against the wall or floor, but after a few seconds, they go back [...]