Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!

Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!

This week it's a Japanese supercomputer creating the awesomest practical neuronal simulation to date, and a detailed breakdown of the upcoming trans-Pacific game console showdown: PS4 vs. Xbox One!

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Welcome to Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!

It’s already Friday west of the international dateline – here in Japan, it’s totally the future. The weekly JTFF is our somewhat technosnarky coverage of 2-5 particularly important, specifically Japan-related tech stories. Get yourself hip to the micro & macro that went down while North America was sleeping – check in with Akihabara News every Friday morning and BOOM! Ahead of the game, you win.

:: JTFF – August 2, 2013 ::

• Super Awesome Japanese Supercomputer Creates Super Awesome Neuronal Simulation
Using the Japanese hardcore "K Computer" supercomputer, researchers at the Okinawa Institute of Technology Graduate University (OIST), in cooperation with those from 
Forschungszentrum Jülich in Germany, have achieved the most advanced partial human brain simulation to date - all with the open-source NEST software platform (partial is a very relative term in this case, because, as we know, the brain is like, very complicated and stuff). The project was able to simulate "1.73 billion nerve cells connected by 10.4 trillion synapses." As reported here a few weeks back, Japan has opted to cooperate with the European Union's Human Brain Project, the much more structured, directed, and earlier-to-task counterpart to the American Brain Activity Map, which seems, at best, disjointed and unfunded. Both projects aim for greater understanding of the organ which allows us to pursue greater understanding, but with results like this, it appears Japan chose their collaboration wisely.
[LARGEST NEURONAL NETWORK SIM TO DATE - MEDICAL XPRESS]

• PS4 vs. Xbox One: Can Sony Get Their Groove Back?
There's no shortage of JTFF jabs directed at Sony (it's really just tough love, though - promise!), and as much as Sony is a favorite whipping boy, we'd also like to see a return to former glory - because beating the long-dead PSP horse, cranking out another 38 VAIO models, abandoning world-class robotics projects, and losing billions of dollars every year is, what's the phrase... ferociously undesireable! To say that the pending showdown between the world's two favorited game consoles is a bit of a litmus test for Sony is a gross understatement - perhaps even an super-gross under-understatement. So, what are the differences, how do the two devices stack up? Well, have a read:
[FAQ: PS4 VS. XBOX ONE - PUSH]

That was the JTFF, and live from the future – that is all.

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Tokyo at Night image via PhotoEverywhere.

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This week it’s a slimmed down version of the Sony’s Xperia Z1 perhaps being processed through the FCC, and Japan’s going to push formal English education into the last two years of elementary school, which is far sillier than it sounds. Oh, and technical difficulties week #2 make JTFF once again JTFS (sorry!).

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This week China's testing a stealth combat drone and the whole world is convinced that it's an original with no reverse-engineering or copyright infringement, Sharp wants to break up with Foxconn, and our favorite photos (thus far) from the Tokyo Motor Show!

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