iPhone in Japan Is Turning Japanese

At least that’s what it looks like. Softbank has announced a few coming updates for iPhone users in Japan.

  • From November 4, iPhone users get free wi-fi public access through Yahoo!BB.
  • A 1-Seg tuner is set to come out in December, and it will also act as a battery charger (something I’ve wanted). It should cost around 10,000 yen.
  • They will be adding emoticon functionality by the end of the year through an update.

They’re still not addressing my only major problem with the iPhone, that you can’t get a sound or vibe alert when getting email (unless you use MobileMe, and even then it’s one short beep).


Yokai Attack the Washington Post

Yokai Attack gets some nice coverage in this piece from the Washington Post. You also get to see Matt and Hiroko talk about the book in a video report.


Wrist Cutting

Parody commercial from the film Tokyo Gore Police. Via Japan Probe.




Over at Boing Boing, Cory Doctorow covers the new Bat-Manga collection, an anthology of Batman manga produced in the sixties, edited by Chip Kidd.

Anime Manga

Marxy and Macias Talk Cool Japan


Well, the title says it all: Marxy and Macias, together again, this time for a new N√ɬ©ojaponisme podcast covering the topic of “Cool Japan.”

I’m just waiting for the them to take their shtick on the road.

Events Music

Cornelius at United Bambo Party


From Roppongi to everywhere. Cornelius (Keigo Oyamada) gave a performance at last night’s United Bamboo party (at Zel Cafe in Roppongi), and I was quite thrilled to have my picture taken with him (thanks, Ian).

It does look like one of us is happier than the other.


Facebook Ejection

Well, this is certainly annoying. I just tried logging into my Facebook account, and I’m getting a message that my account has been disabled. Can’t for the life of me understand why. I hope it’s just a mistake on their part, because I don’t really want to have to go through the process of rebuilding my contact list.

Update: Looks like I’m not alone in my Facebook problems, with at least two other people I know who have encountered the same thing this morning. Anyone else?

Update 2: I still have access to my account through the Facebook iPhone app, so doesn’t look like the account has been deleted. Must be a glitch in their system, as it seems to be affecting a lot of people.

Update 3: Two days later, and still no change. It does appear that all people affected are on the Japan network. I still haven’t heard anything elsewhere about this, and haven’t heard anything from Facebook — I emailed them as soon as I noticed the problem.

Update 4: My account is back, and I think the same goes for most people who had it disabled.

Art Events

Le musee des histoires


I had to miss the opening reception last week, but I went down to La Galerie des Nakamura this past Sunday to have a look at Audrey‘s “Le musee des histoires” exhibition. I went while they were doing the “Le petit musee” workshop, which is what you’re seeing in the photos with children. The show runs until November 3.





Design Events

TDW: PROTOTYPE02 , Generate’s Limited Editions, and Fragment


Yes, Tokyo Design Week is just around the corner — I give a quick overview in today’s “On Design” column for The Japan Times — and although I don’t have time to give a detailed guide to what you should see, I do want to point out a few events.

First up, “PROTOTYPE02,” the bigger and better follow-up exhibition to last year’s outing, this time featuring 29 participating Japanese and Japan-based designers. The show is being held at Gotanda Sonic from October 30 to November 3. Even better, go to the opening party tomorrow night (October 29, 19:00-22:00).


You’ll also want to check out Generate‘s “Limited Editions by Design’s Rising Stars” at WUT in Aoyama (across the street from HP Deco), from October 30 to November 3. The opening party will be held Thursday night (October 30, from 19:00).

And on Monday, November 3, the Tokyomade-produced “Fragment” happens at SuperDeluxe, from 15:00 until 21:00 (1,000 yen at the door). The event is a gathering of creators from all mediums, showing off their works, mixed with performances and more. Details here, including a look at the flyer.

And what better way to finish the week than with Monday night’s (November 3, 20:00) edition of PauseTalk!

Photography Tokyo Walking

Colette’s Sarah on Cat Street

Colette's Sarah on Cat Street

I have spies everywhere. Above, Colette‘s Sarah on Cat Street earlier today, photographed by Ian Luna.