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NEW IDEAS AND TRENDS (old)

Give This Wind-up Eco Flashlight a Spin to Let it Shine

The BunBun Eco Light from Japan works like clockwork: spinning it around like a dayglo plastic nunchuck juices up the rechargeable batteries with clean kinetic energy.

'Sleeping DVD' Gently Guides You Into Dreamland

Need a little help sleeping lately? Just pop the “Sleeping DVD” into your player and drift off to slumberland, gently guided by the soft voices and easy-on-the-eyes looks of some of Japan's most alluring dreamgirls.

China's 'Hotel Test Sleeper' Enjoys History’s Most Comfortable Job

Beijing's Zhang Yumo sometimes finds her work tiring. It's not a problem, however, because as one of China's six professional 'Hotel Test Sleepers', Zhang gets paid for sleeping on the job.

Japan's Power Plan: Solar Panels for All New Buildings

What's your roof done for you lately? If you're in Japan, it just might be collecting the Sun's most useful renewable resource, solar power. Even better, if a plan due to be announced by Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan at the upcoming G8 summit in Deauville, France, is carried out, by 2030 every new house and building in the country will be fitted with solar panels.

"Watson" Goes From 'Jeopardy!' To Medical School

'Watson,' the IBM super computer system that defeated the best Jeopardy! players on TV, now wants to go to medical school and beat the algorithms off the other medical computers already in the field.  When asked if being late to the market was a concern, the big guy said 'Are you kidding? Once I digest 6 million medical text books and 70 million journal articles, I'll kick every lit cell in their systems out to algorithm heaven!"

How Long Will You Live? A New Blood Test Will Tell You... If You Really Want To Know

Judgment Day believers need not read this, unless May 21, 2011 has come and gone and you're still here.  For those that are interested in a more scientific analysis of their life spans, a British company, Life Length, has the technology to predict how long you will live through a small blood sample. 

 

First Ever AIDS Cure Opens Doors Of Hope For Others

Timothy Ray Brown has become the first person to be cured of AIDS, an event so unlikely to happen that the word "cure" is not even in the vocabularies of scientists in the fields of HIV/AIDS.  But this is not a hoax.

Chinese Jewelry Store Robot Runs Rings Around the Competition

Glittering jewels, precious metals and fine craftsmanship... and that's just the salesperson! A Beijing jewelry store's humanoid robot employee should know of such things, since she's partially made of them.

Pet Obesity And Diabetes On Rise, Just Like Humans

The State of Pet Health 2011 Report has just been released by Banfield Pet Hospitals, compiled from medical data on 2.1 million dogs and 450,000 cats. The report lists the trends in dog and cat health, or more appropriate, disease, observed within the last five years. Should we be surprised that among other trends, obesity and diabetes is rising in our precious pets?

 


Justin Bieber's Japan Tour Sends a Positive Message to the World

Will success spoil Justin Bieber? Not yet, it seems. Defying concerns about visiting Japan expressed by his road crew, the teenaged music superstar and YouTube phenomenon closed out his nearly two-year long My World Tour with concerts in Osaka and Tokyo. What's more, Bieber made a point of guesting on Japanese TV programs and meeting children affected by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. He didn't have to, but he did, and that's very, very cool.

The Powerful Tomato Lowers Cholesterol As Well As Most Common Medications!

There have been several recent studies about the health benefits of tomatoes and tomato products.  That bright red pigment called lycopene has been found to lower blood pressure and cholesterol.  But a comprehensive report by researchers at the University of Adelaide in Australia delves deep into 14 of those studies to find clinical evidence of the exact amounts required in our daily diets.  (That includes Bloody Mary's, no?)

 


Herman Miller Aeron Chair Gets Extreme Green Makeover

The iconic and ergonomic Aeron chair from American office furniture maker Herman Miller Inc is going green... at least, one of them is. The plush, verdant, one-off design by Japanese botanic artist Makoto Azuma brings a bit of the great outdoors to your indoor workplace.

KFC China's 'Taste of Ireland' Chicken Will Turn You Green

KFC China must have mixed up Kentucky with County Kerry, otherwise how can we explain KFC's new “Taste of Ireland”: chicken roasted with Irish cream liqueur.

Wasabi Kit Kat: Who Knew Chocolate & Horseradish Could Taste So Good?

Japan's Kit Kat bars are famous for their amazing variety of far-out flavors but this one takes the horseradish-flavored cake: Wasabi Kit Kat.

Can't Find The Right Chair? BYOC! (Build Your Own Chair)

Now that you've tried at least two dozen 'ergonomic' chairs and purchased about half of them, are you tired of finding out that none of them feel like they did when you tried them in the store?  Well, by now, you should know which part of each chair actually felt good.  And now is when the folks at BioFit have come up with the BYOC option - Build Your Own Chair.

China's Commuters Charging to Cheap 'Knockoff' Electric Cars

China's car-crazy commuters are increasingly opting for an economical alternative to big-name, high-priced auto brands. Shanzhai (“knockoff”) electric cars charge up overnight, can be driven over 100 km per day, and cost well under $3,000.

Planking Pair from Taiwan are Actively Lying Down Off the Job

Like your women flat as a board? Then get your abs to Taiwan, where two twenty-something Planking pals from Taipei and Taichung are prone to putting themselves in some very uncompromising positions... and that's no lie.

Wal-Mart Buying Into China's Booming E-Commerce Market

Wal-Mart Stores Inc has announced it is buying a minority stake in Yihaodian, one of China's fastest growing online retailers. The U.S.-based retail giant's long-term plan to boost sales in the lucrative international and online market sectors is about to take a great leap forward.

Need to Blow Your Nose? Look for EcoLife Box's Soft Green Glow

You might think having something in your house that glows in the dark is about the last thing people in Japan need right now but you're not Kaikosha, designer of the EcoLife Box glow-in-the-dark facial tissue holder.

Chinese Army's New Video Game Aims to Turn Geeks into GI's

Just call 'em GI Zhou. New recruits to China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) will soon be able to toss out their dubbed and subtitled versions of Call of Duty, thanks to the PLA's first homegrown military training video game, “Mission of Honor.”