Japanese Technology from the Future Friday!
This week it's electronic beacon trouble for the 787 Dreamliner (Boeing’s gotta be so tired of such headlines), a Japanese & American team at MIT have found a way to make brains remember stuff that didn’t happen, and Toyota’s leading global auto sales.
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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 – July 26, 2013 ::
• All Nippon Airways (ANA) Still, Still Having Dreamliner Problems
ANA, Boeing’s first 787 Dreamliner buyer, began having problems way back in January when Japan, the U.S. India, and European authorities grounded the planes. Then, it was most likely flawed batteries from 118 year-old Japanese maker GS Yuasa; now, it appears to be electronic beacons from 128 year-old American maker Honeywell. While plagued with problems, the Dreamliner is still pretty, you know, dreamy. Very little chance Boeing’s latest flagship is going to go all Concorde, but they’d assuredly sure like these little problems cease and desist.
[787 BEACON INSPECTIONS ORDERED - SEATTLE TIMES]
• Japanese & American Researchers at MIT Learn How to Rejigger Mouse Memories
...and are we next? Well, that’s a long ways off and, though probably really fun, fantastically unethical. This news includes a bunch of words like “hippocampus,” activities such as “genetic manipulation,” and the more mundane “shine a blue light on that to make it change.” But in sum, what it all means is that the international team at MIT has figured out how to scare mice with memories of stuff that did not occur. The first source gives the fast-food broad-strokes of the development, and the second goes much further into the actual sciencey stuff going on here - you may choose your own adventure.
[MAKING FALSE MEMORIES IN MICE - WASHINGTON TIMES]
[MAKING MICE REMEMBER THINGS THAT DIDN’T HAPPEN (GEEKIER SOURCE) - KURZWEIL AI]
• Toyota Remains World’s Top-Selling Auto Brand in 2013 (thus far)
Toyota sold 4,910,000 automobiles in the first 6 months of 2013. That’s a lotta cars. While down a little over a percentage point from last year, they still beat American General Motors by 60,000 cars; Volkswagen AG, with 150,000 less than GM, is bringing up 3rd place - but really, they’re all within close reach of each other. For Toyota, who lost ground to GM in the post-Tohoku Disaster recovery, it’s also an emotional win. So, well done - you get some props for now, Toyota - but don’t rest too hard on that. We’re totally going to make fun of your over the weekend for your “mobility robot” that’s completely and totally not a robot.
[TOYOTA LEADING 2013 GLOBAL AUTO SALES - THE RECORD]
That was the JTFF, and live from the future – that is all.
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Tokyo at Night image via PhotoEverywhere.