locations
Nine Transportation-Related Jobs That Only Exist in Certain Cultures

Would you be willing to get paid to act as a third passenger in a vehicle so the car could drive into a congestion-restricted area? How about signing up to pack people into crowded train carriages? Dress up as a zebra and walk the streets, preventing cars from running red lights? Read More >>

architecture
China Has Commissioned the World's Fastest Elevators

This week, the Japanese tech giant Hitachi announced a contract to build two of the fastest elevator in the world for a forthcoming skyscraper in China. Seems innocuous enough, right? But buried within the press release are a few fascinating details that illustrate how China's skyscraper boom is affecting the global economy—including the fact that it bought a whopping 60 per cent of all elevators sold in 2013. Read More >>

transport
Incredibly Claustrophobic Photos of Tokyo's Trains at Rush Hour

The World's Best Ever picked up this great photo series by Michael Wolf. Titled Tokyo Compression, it shows snapshots of passengers captured at Tokyo's stations at rush hour. If you're claustrophobic, don't look at these. Read More >>

architecture
This Tiny Pharmacy Must Surely be Filled With Tiny Chemists Prescribing Tiny Drugs

The architects of this tiny pharmacy in downtown Osaka didn't have much to work with—just a skinny alleyway between two hulking apartment blocks. But the resulting building is so cool, it almost looks as though it was there first. Read More >>

power
Fukushima Could Make Japan a Leader in Nuclear Cleanup Tech

The idea that a nuclear disaster could actually drive innovation is definitely a new way to look at Japan's ongoing Fukushima debacle. But a new report from the AP does just that, suggesting that the long-term cleanup effort that Japan now faces will make it a world leader in decommissioning nuclear plants. Read More >>

collection
13 Gorgeous Travel Posters From 1930s Japan

These extremely rare, previously unseen travel posters make me want to travel back in time and visit a Japan of another era. These beautiful graphics were recently rediscovered, and they'll auctioned off at the Vintage Movie Posters Signature Auction this month. Read More >>

maps
These Amazing Illustrations are Like Google Maps for 1900s Japan

Many decades before satellites even existed, a Japanese cartographer named Hatsusaburo Yoshida was drawing cities as though he was floating hundreds of metres above them. His vivid, colourful drawings are almost 100 years old now—but they're just as exciting as they were in 1914. Read More >>

overkill
You Can Now Buy the Official Pillow-Fighting Pillow of Japan

Are you one of the All Japan Pillow Fighting Association's rapt and loyal followers? Are you tired of the more conventional sports fans sauntering around in their jerseys while you walk around swag-less? Looks like your day has finally come. As of yesterday, you can buy an Officially Recognised by the All Japan Pillow Fighting Association Pillow of your very own. Read More >>

history
The Time the US Invaded a Japanese Submarine Base... in Alaska?

An absolutely fascinating but little-known story—described as a "forgotten theatre" by the US Navy itself—is the tale of Kiska and Attu, Alaska: two remote Aleutian islands where the Japanese military established a submarine base during World War II. Read More >>

space
Japan's Launching a Giant Net Into Orbit to Scoop Up Space Junk

Something must be done to deal with the estimated 100 million bits of man made space junk circling the planet, and Japan is taking the lead. But can we do? Shoot it with a laser? Invent Wall-E-like robots to collect it? Nah… let's just blast a big net into space. Read More >>

bad ideas
Japan to Intentionally Send Nuclear Fuel Rod Into Meltdown

Japan's Atomic Energy Agency will, at some point after this coming April, deliberately send a nuclear fuel rod into a full-blown meltdown. What could possibly go wrong? Read More >>

japan
Brave People Are Building Futuristic Farms on Japan's Radioactive Soil

What does radioactive salad taste like? How about rice sprinkled with nuclear fallout? Well, if you're truly curious, consider taking your next vacation in Fukushima, where some intrepid farmers have begun the daunting task of farming the region's tainted soil. Read More >>

science
Fresh Fish! Sliced and Diced! Tested for Radioactivity

Hundreds of pounds of freshly caught fish are express-mailed to a building in the small town of Onjuku, Japan, everyday. There, a team quickly slices and dices the fish into fillets. But this is no kitchen, and the fresh fish are definitely not for consumption. Read More >>

japan
Japan's £600m Plan to Store its Contaminated Fukushima Dirt

As the immediate aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear disaster has passed, Japan is faced with another conundrum: Where to store thousands of tonnes of radioactive soil that have been harvested from around the region. This week, officials unveiled a £600 million plan to build a massive storage facility to house the stuff. Read More >>

sex
Super-Thin 0.01 Millimetre Condom Sells Out on Japanese Launch

A new form of condom is tearing it up in Japan, where a rubber specialist is now selling 0.01 millimetre condoms. And 0.01 millimetres is the thickness of the rubber, not the length of it, before you start disrespecting the Japanese male population. Read More >>

space
The Fukushima Earthquake Actually Changed Earth's Gravity

The 2011 Tohoku earthquake, which caused the tsunami behind the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear meltdown, disrupted more than man-made structures. The European Space Agency's GOCE satellite measured a significant change in Earth's gravity after the earthquake before falling out of the sky on November 11th. Read More >>

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