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Browsing Categories

Page: < Previous [1] [2] [3] Next >

Browsing Category: > Freaky Things

Popular Flash Anime Boosts Euro-pop Single Sales in Japan

Date: Friday 26th August 2005 [14:06] | Posted By: Voxie
Category: > Freaky Things

Anyone remember that catchy surprise hit "Dragostea Din Tei (Koi no Maiahi)" from O-Zone? It's currently the big hit in Japan, thanks to a fan using the song in a Flash anime. And of course, thanks to the song itself, with it's catchy lyrics and uplifting beat.

You can catch samples of the song, and the Flash held responsible at the official website.

Source: Animaxis

Is KyuuCON a Scam?

Date: Thursday 25th August 2005 [17:36] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

After posting the press release from KyuuCon yesterday, it's been brought to our attention by various members of UK anime fandom that there is something fishy about KyuuCON. Firstly it appears that the venue mentioned the Plymouth Pavillions has not heard of KyuuCON or the organisers in question. The second major alarm bell is where the payments are going, into a personal bank account and not a building society account/non-profit account in the conventions name.

What's also interesting is their sudden change of heart, and the way they've just moved everything back a year. Plus this thread brought to our attention at the AyaCon Forum. At this current moment in time, based on what we have heard, we believe that KyuuCON is either very poorly organised or a cash grabbing scam, either way, we suggest you avoid KyuuCON for now.

Read More... | Source: Anime Fandom

World Cosplay Summit 2005 Winners Announced

Date: Sunday 14th August 2005 [15:30] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Following on from our earlier story, according to the Mainichi Daily News, a fantastic costume of Sirene from Devilman has won the top individual prize, Italian Giorgia Vecchini's costume even had Sirene's wings on her head, making it a huge and elaborate competitor in the competition!

The Mainichi Daily News site also has some photos of the finalists for this years summit. The competition had regional play offs in Asia, Europe and the USA.

Source: Mainichi Daily News

The Tokyo Beach Scene

Date: Wednesday 10th August 2005 [18:49] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

With the summer heat kicking in everyone wants to hit the beach. So in Tokyo sunbathers can visits the sands of Shibuya, where an artificial beach has been made available to the public for 9 days. 1,000 tons of white sand was imported from China to make this beach which has even has a special volleyball area. Built at a cost of 500m yen, it will also feature a concert, films and a fashion show. This original concept was inspired by the artificial beach made in Paris last year, and is a publicity stunt for SKY PerfecTV! who are hoping to attract around 200,000 eager visitors.

Source: BBC News

Harajuku Styles Go International

Date: Tuesday 2nd August 2005 [16:51] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Otaku News has watched the Gothic Lolita crazy gain popularity in western otaku fandom and it seems that Japan Today have discovered a group of international girls all based in Japan who love the "Harajuku styles". The article profiles the group and their interest in the fashion crazes. For those wondering purikura is basically photo stickers taken in special photo booths.

Source: Japan Today

Otaku Could Revive Japanese Economy

Date: Tuesday 2nd August 2005 [16:25] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

According to Mainichi Daily News, Densha Otoko (Train Man as reported previously on Otaku News), has sparked an interest in otaku in Japan and also increased sales of items related to the story. The article mainly focuses on how much the otaku market is worth and mentions "moe sangyo" - products people don't need to have (hobby merchandise), which is worth an estimated 88 billion yen!

Apparently one private think tank believe that Japan's otaku population is about 2.8 mullion. If half of them feel in love the effect on the Japanese economy would be great, dating could make 330 billion yen!

Source: Mainichi Daily News

Realistic Robot Revealed

Date: Wednesday 27th July 2005 [7:26] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

According to BBC News Professor Hiroshi Ishiguru of Osaka University has unveiled the most human looking robot yet devised. The android Repliee Q1 is female in appearance and can currently only sit in a fixed position. She has 31 actuators in her upper body, powered by a nearby air compressor which are programmed to allow her to move like a human. Q1 has a soft silicon skin instead of a hard plastic shell, she can turn and react in a human like manner. The article also mentions R1, a predecessor to Q1 also designed by Professor Ishiguru that has the appearance of a five year old Japanese girl.

Source: BBC News

National Unified Otaku Proficiency Exam

Date: Monday 11th July 2005 [16:43] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Who is the biggest otaku? Is your friend Steve a bigger otaku than you? If so why? Well publisher Biblos are going to solve this question finally by holding the first Japanese national unified otaku proficient exam in their August 5th Edition of Elfix Magazine.

They claim they want to nurture an "otaku elite to carry the otaku culture through the 21st century".

The Mainichi Daily News explain that the magazine will even grade their otaku awareness level if readers write their answers down on a postcard and send it to the Elfix staff. The best results will be printed in the October 5th edition of the magazine.

Read More... | Source: Mainichi Daily News

Looking For a Japanese Girlfriend? Then Get The T-shirt!

Date: Friday 1st July 2005 [19:51] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

At any anime convention apart from cosplayers, you'll notice another popular fashion with otaku, t-shirts. The most common seem to be standard series specific t-shirts with large prints of characters on them, over the last couple of years at anime conventions the more fashionable anime fans has been wearing t-shirts a bit different.

One had kanji and hiragana characters and took me a second to figure out what it said "Looking for a Japanese Girlfriend", I wondered if the guy wearing it actually knew what it meant, since I've seen many Japanese people wearing Engrish t-shirts, it makes sense that gaijin would also make similar mistakes! But apparently he did know what it said, and I've even heard cases were the t-shirts in question work. ^_^

I first noticed these t-shirts a few years ago, when I saw them at a UK anime convention, since them I've seen them at US and even Japanese anime conventions too. Where ever there is fandom, these t-shirts appear. We've been able to track down the makers of these t-shirts - Japan and US based J-List. Not wanting to miss out on a chance to get more information about this current trend the Otaku News Crew too the opportunity to interview J-List's founder Peter Payne to discover what other t-shirts they sold and why!

Read More... | Source: J-List

Geeky Girl Otaku

Date: Sunday 19th June 2005 [16:07] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Here at Otaku News, not only do we cover anime news, manga news and news for fans of Japan, but we also like to run stories on otaku! We have to, otherwise we would have to search for another name! ^_-

The Mainichi Daily News are currently running a story about Female Otaku in Japan and fandom from their perspective. It certainly makes an interesting read. You'll also learn that Ikebukuro is the otaku girls paradise, while Akihabara is the guys (but everyone probably already knows about Akihabara, the electronic district in Tokyo).

Source: Mainichi Daily News

Su Doku Newspaper Wars

Date: Tuesday 10th May 2005 [18:09] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Current Affairs

BBC's Newsnight show, have just run a TV version of this BBC News article about Su Doku. The article basically explains that a news paper war has broken out in the UK over the Japanese number puzzle Su Doku, an addicting game that can be solved using logic, so those with a phobia of mathematics can play! The game is becoming so popular it's actually now a selling point on newspapers front pages. Su Doku can be computer generated, so if you want to play take a look at Sudoku.com.

Source: BBC News

Scissors, Paper, Stone Wins $20 Million Contract

Date: Saturday 7th May 2005 [7:49] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

Picture this, you're the director of Japanese electronics corporation Maspro Denkoh, you've got a $20 million collection of Picassos and Van Goghs that you want to sell, but can't decide if the contract should go to Sotheby's or Christie's to auction them. So what do you do? Get a represtentive from each prestigious auction house to visit and explain the benefits of using their auction service? Why no! You get them to play scissors, paper, stone! BBC News has the details of this hilarious incident and also the result.

The winner actually planned ahead by asking staff's two 11 year old daughters for tips! ^_-

Source: BBC News

The Recent Phenomenon Of 'Sexy' Japanese Otaku

Date: Friday 29th April 2005 [14:40] | Posted By: Ash
Category: > Culture

The UK Times newspaper this week carried a two page article of at Bridget-Jones style blogger Artesia, who has written a document of her relationship with an Otaku man which has fascinated the Japanese and has asked serious questions about the conflict between old-world Japanese beliefs and the massive Otaku culture.

Read More... | Source: The Timesonline.co.uk

Garnier Release Manga Hair Styling Product In UK

Date: Tuesday 26th April 2005 [18:03] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

Anime and manga fans in the UK have always dreamed of their favourite hobby becoming more mainstream, without doubt over the last year or so this has happened. What key indicators are we using for this? Sales figures in highstreet retailers? Availability of manga in bookshops? No, we're using hair products. Anime and manga characters have always been noted for having very distinct hairstyles and beauty products company Garnier have just released Fructis Style Manga Head styling putty in the UK. It seems that either their marketing department are cool and hip or Garnier have found a niche market of otaku who want to emulate their favourite characters.

Read More... | Source: Garnier Beauty Bar

Game Gear Goju

Date: Sunday 3rd April 2005 [15:13] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Gaming > Consoles

Following Azure and Wing's posting about April Fool pranks, TechJapan have discovered Sega had their own, a handheld games console with 50 screens - The Game Gear Goju!

Source: TechJapan

Idols Everywhere!

Date: Thursday 31st March 2005 [16:58] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Current Affairs

Japan Today have just published an article that explains the inner workings of the Japanese Idol industry. This fascinating read highlights the fact that the Japanese industry is the reverse of the "western" industry, where Japanese Idols are hired and trained by agencies who give them a percentage of their earnings. It mentions a selection of agencies each with their own speciality in the market place. Interestingly enough agencies also teach their employees something that many western celebrities should have lessons in "things like how to hold their alcohol, how to spend money wisely".

Source: Japan Today

The State of Japanese Comedy On TV

Date: Wednesday 30th March 2005 [17:36] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Current Affairs

Michael Naishtut has written a good article for Japan Today that focuses on the lack of decent comedy on Japanese TV. It also covers the different types of genres commonly associated with Japanese comedy and forms good introduction to anyone wanting to learn about such things.

Source: Japan Today

NASA Educate Using Pokemon Cards

Date: Friday 4th March 2005 [17:58] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

The keen eyes over at BritAnime have found out that NASA have teamed up with the Pokemon Trading Card Game to develop an in-school education tool! The new Deoxys cards are designed to explore viruses, metorites, DNA and the ozone layer.

Read More... | Source: NASA

Dateless Otaku?

Date: Sunday 20th February 2005 [10:48] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Following on from our previous story about Densha Otoko (Trainman) MSNBC News Newsweek have posted a story chasing up the idea of otaku being unable to get dates with girls. It makes an interesting read and takes the whole idea of being an otaku from a few different perspectives.

Source: MSNBC News Newsweek

NTT Creates Human Area Networking

Date: Saturday 19th February 2005 [9:51] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology

The alert folk at TechJapan have discovered a bizarre new communication standard from NTT. Named "RedTacton", NTT has dubbed it a "Human Area Network". The idea behind it sounds like a gimmick from a Sci-Fi show, simply touch a RedTacton device with one part of your body and touch another RedTacton supporting device with another part of your body for an instant 10Mbps connection between the devices. TechJapan point their readers to the Official English Press Release.

The Otaku News Crew wonder if people using this technology will be able to transfer data with each other by simply shaking hands!

Source: TechJapan

Sapporo Snow Festival 2005

Date: Tuesday 15th February 2005 [17:28] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Art

The Mainichi Daily News have some truly fantastic pictures from the 56th Sapporo Snow Festival. Which ran from February 7th to 13th.

The winner this year is the Canadian team who made a carving called Holding Back the Wilderness, featuring a Mountie holding back a bear.

The Otaku News Crew are already looking at how to make these in order to make a carvings of Elfie, Tima and Miyuki at next years event.

Source: Mainichi Daily News

New Offering From Toriyama

Date: Friday 11th February 2005 [13:45] | Posted By: Azure
Category: > Technology

No itís not another manga series, but a car. Manga artist Akira Toriyama famous for Dragon Ball has designed an electric car, the QVOLT! The car's top speed is 18 miles per hour, and is available in 5 colours. Only nine will be made and they will retail for 1,990,000 yen. Itís currently unknown if the car will be able to drive for 30 episodes or go super car level three.

Pictures are available on the Qvolt website.

Source: Anime News Network

Man Constructs 18 Foot Battle Mecha In Back Garden

Date: Monday 24th January 2005 [12:27] | Posted By: Spike
Category: > Technology > Robotics

A man in Wasilla, Alaska, USA has managed to construct his own giant robot in his parents back garden. The 18 foot mecha boasts shoulder-mounted 9-inch nail launchers and flame-throwers capable of a hefty 20 foot reach on the forearms, and just for that extra coolness factor, glowing red eyes. Interested readers can view the full article here, while The Otaku News crew check the price of asbestos body armour.

Source: Juneau Empire

Dancing Robots Save Japanese Culture

Date: Tuesday 18th January 2005 [17:03] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

In a story that sounds more like an episode from a comedy anime series, several news websites are covering the details about a robot that has been programmed to record and then replay traditional Japanese dance. The clever researchers at the University of Tokyo are using this to preserve Japanese heritage, since fewer people are learning traditional Japanese dance and now only see it at local festivals.

The robot used for this project was the Humanoid Robot HRP-2 "Promet", from Kawada Industries, our mecha-head readers will already know that this was designed by Yutaka Izubuchi, who has design credits for many mecha in anime series.

The Otaku News Crew wonder if these robots can also play Dance Dance Revolution?!

Source: Robots.net

Gamer Buys $26,500 Virtual Land

Date: Monday 20th December 2004 [16:29] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Gaming

We've just discovered an interesting story on BBC News, about a Gamer who has purchased an island on the RPG Project Entropia.

Apparently the new owner is able to "make money from his investment as he is able to tax other gamers who come to his virtual land to hunt or mine for gold". The Otaku News crew find this story interesting because this is not a tangible item in the real world, so can easily be copied if the original game creators so desired, we also wonder what would happen if the server went down and could not be restored from back up! ^_-

Source: BBC News

Goodbye Godzilla

Date: Sunday 12th December 2004 [18:05] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Culture

Scotland on Sunday have a write up entitled Godzilla takes final bow, which reports on everyone's favourite rubbersuited monster's final feature film.

Source: Scotland on Sunday

Toyota Make Mecha

Date: Friday 10th December 2004 [19:39] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

BBC News have published a very interesting story about Toyota's latest concept vehicles which have been classed as personal mobility devices. The i-unit, a four wheeled leaf like transport looks like it will fit in many futuristic Sci-Fi show, it's built using organic materials, it even has an autopilot on equipped lanes.

What's probably got all of our mecha fan readers excited is Toyota's i-foot, it's a bipedal "robot-like device" (that's the BBC's way of saying mecha to their readers ^_-), it can apparently walk at about 1.35km/h (0.83mph) and even tackle staircases. The BBC article then goes on to talk about exoskeletons in the military and other possible uses for the concept vehicles.

Both these vehicles are on display at the Toyota Group Pavillion at Expo 2005 - Aichi, Japan, where Toyota's opening show even has music playing robots!

Source: BBC News

Snuggling Ifbot A Toy For The Elderly

Date: Thursday 2nd December 2004 [7:59] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

Yahoo! News are currently running a story about the Japanese Snuggling Ifbot, a 45cm (18 inch) robot that is programmed to provide just enough small talk to stop the elderly going senile through lack of communication. The robot is able to match several million patterns of word phrases when spoken to. The robot also adjusts it's speech based on the date and time.

'To a statement, "Isn't it nice today?", the robot could say, "It is a fine autumn day," by detecting the season from its internal clock.'

The robot currently is only able to speak Japanese and retails for 576,000 yen ($5,600 USD). The makers are planning to develop an English speaking version of the robot as a language aid to Japanese children learning English.

Source: Yahoo! News

Hello Kitty Statuette Sold For $100,000

Date: Thursday 25th November 2004 [17:16] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

The BBC are reporting that a Hello Kitty statuette made of platinum and studded with diamonds has been sold for 10.5 million Yen (that's about $102,450 USD)! The 4cm (2 inch) figure was made to celebrate Hello Kitty's 30th Birthday and has been on sale since August.

The Osaka branch of department store Mitsukoshi says that a local customer has purchased it. Otaku News have no idea who the buyer is, but we believe that they must be a pretty serious Hello Kitty fan! ^_-

Source: BBC News

Sukebe Success is Bad News for Japanese Commuters

Date: Wednesday 24th November 2004 [15:54] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

The Times On-line are currently running a story about how a year-long national campaign against bottom-pinching in Japan has failed. Apparently Japanese perverts (or sukebe) are getting more devious despite harsh penalties which can be as extreme as a maximum of seven years' imprisonment. However most Japanese women are too embarrassed to report the report the crime and most courts are a generally lenient to the gropers.

A survey reported that up to 64 percent of women in their twenties and thirties had been molested on public transport. Solutions include separate Women only carriages.

Source: The Times On-Line

Girlfriend's Lap Pillow

Date: Sunday 14th November 2004 [17:09] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

TechJapan first mentioned an article about the Boyfriend Arm pillow, some readers may, erm, be pleased to hear that they're taking international orders for them now.

Well now they're mentioning the creators Kameo Corporation's latest crazy invention the Girlfriend's lap pillow. TechJapan features a translated interview with the developer of this, rather "interesting" product. The article also has pictures.

Source: TechJapan

Strong Yaoi Sales on Amazon.com

Date: Sunday 14th November 2004 [8:34] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Manga

ICv2 are reporting an interesting trend with Amazon.com's manga best seller list. Apparently Yaoi is three of the top five, four of the top ten and six of the top fifteen manga titles. ICv2 point out that these sales are only on Amazon.com as the American Bookscan list doesn't not match with these sales figures, with only Del Rey's Tsubasa Volume 3 appearing at the top of both lists.

ICv2 speculate that people purchasing Yaoi prefer the privacy and relative anonymity that on-line reatilers offer and that the two main Yaoi publishers Digital Manga and CPM Manga don't have the marketing clout or number of titles compared to other publishers with titles at the top of the graphic novel lists.

Source: ICv2

Japanese Find Best Chat-up Line in the World

Date: Thursday 4th November 2004 [5:22] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

According to Ananova Japanese sociologists and psychiatrists have come up with the best chat-up line in the world! So remember "Rainen no kono hi mo issho ni waratteiy-oh" which translates as "This time next year, let's be laughing together."

The winning chat-up line is supposed to work anywhere, but particularly well with an office acquaintance. So lonely otaku should give it a try, you never know it might work! The Ananova article gives a complete breakdown of why the line works so well.

Apparently Japanese officials hope it will help solve a population crisis in Japan, where birth rates have plunged.

Source: Ananova

Robots Learn Etiquette

Date: Wednesday 3rd November 2004 [18:19] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

BBC News are running an interesting article about a study at the University of Hertfordshire. They intend to learn about robots and robotiquette by playing games like pass-the-parcel. The idea of this experiment is develop the way future robots should behave in social situations. Anime and manga of course have many different solutions to this and in some cases I don't think the robot will pass the pacel along once it has it! ^_^

The BBC are also reporting that the demand for robots will increase increase drastically by 2007.

Source: BBC News

Hello Kitty Celebrates Her 30th Birthday

Date: Monday 1st November 2004 [15:15] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Retail

Sanrio fans don't need reminding, but some other more causal otaku would need know that today, November 1st is Hello Kitty's 30th Birthday! Kitty and her twin sister Mimmy White were born on 1974 November 1st to her happy parents George and Mary White. The jolly Kitty lives with her parents and sister just outside of London.

Hello Kitty is hugely popular all over the world and ADV have published a very good article about it, interviewing some of the ADV crew behind the latest DVD release. They also interview the voice of Hello Kitty - Monica Rial, who we interviewed in August.

Read More... | Source: ADV Films

Yo! Sushi Tycoon to Launch Capsule Hotels in UK

Date: Sunday 12th September 2004 [12:30] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

The Scotsman.com is running a story about Simon Woodroffe (the entrepreneur behind Yo! Sushi) latest plans to bring Japanese style Capsule Hotels to the UK.

Read More... | Source: Scotsman.com

Otaku Boost Japanese Economy!

Date: Friday 3rd September 2004 [19:15] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Current Affairs

Canadian website Globe Technology.com are running an interesting article about Otaku boosting the Japanese economy, apart from cosplaying they "... have also done something else: created a big-money market that analysts are calling the 'mania' economy".

Apparently according to the Nomura Research Institute, Japanese otaku fork out $2.35-billion (USD) a year on manga, anime, computer games and merchandise.

Source: GlobeTechnology.com

Anime Digital Interview Jonathan Brands from ADV USA

Date: Tuesday 31st August 2004 [10:11] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

While at AmeCon I was lucky enough to score an exclusive interview with Jonathan Brands from ADV USA. It started by Jon going -

"Hey Joe! You've got a website right?"
The rest went up on Anime Digital.

Source: Anime Digital Interview With Jonathan Brands

Japanese research shows 7% of Otaku are anime fans, while 35% into manga.

Date: Thursday 26th August 2004 [10:55] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

According to the results of a study released by Nomura Research Institute in Japan on the 24th, there are 2,850,000 people considered "otaku" in Japan, with a combined market power of around $2.6 billion. 35% are into Manga, 28% for Games and Idols, 7% for Anime, and 2% into PC construction.

Source: Anime.org.uk

Kickboxing robots draw crowds in Japan at Robo-One

Date: Friday 13th August 2004 [13:31] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Technology > Robotics

CNN are running an interesting story about Kickboxing robots at the Robo-One tournament.

MLive.com also have good coverage of Robo-One.

Source: CNN.com

DNA Tests for Pork in Japan!

Date: Saturday 29th May 2004 [17:14] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

In Japan "kurobuta" - the English rare breed of Berkshire pigs are prized for their meat. The BBC are running a story about Sygen a company that breeds and sells these pigs for a Japanese market. Due to fraud, they've had to use DNA testing to prove the authenticity of the meat on the shelves.

Source: BBC News

Jet-powered Nausicaa Glider Project

Date: Saturday 21st February 2004 [18:53] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

The people on Slashdot have posted an interesting article about - Open Sky a Jet Powered Nausicaa Glider Project!

It really does look good, if not Insanely dangerous!

Source: Slashdot

Browsing Category: > Freaky Things

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