Mac Funamizu's Gadget Designs of the Future

Welcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. Mac Funamizu is a tech geek, designer, and futurist who has created quite a lot of buzz among design circles for his innovative gadgets from the future. The 38-year old Tokyo native has always loved Apple, Google, and… » 8/01/08 9:00am 8/01/08 9:00am

Futurist Japanese Artists Show Us Life in the Next Century

Welcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. There's a lot of buzz about Japanese contemporary artists these days. Takashi Murakami's super-cute, superflat alien-like characters are on everything from Louis Vuitton bags to the pages of io9. But he isn't the… » 7/18/08 9:00am 7/18/08 9:00am

How Alternate Reality Helped Me Survive the Dentist

Welcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. While Dr. Wong was putting dental dam in my mouth, I was watching three hot women singing the penis song in a Chinese restaurant downtown. It happened last Thursday, when I discovered a gadget that can warp my brain… » 6/20/08 9:00am 6/20/08 9:00am

Five Reasons Why Aliens Will Make Contact with the Japanese First

Click to viewWelcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. I've been thinking about extraterrestrials a lot this week. Do they exist? How will we know? Who will they call if they decide to make contact with us, and through what medium? First off, nobody knows if… » 6/06/08 9:12am 6/06/08 9:12am

Ass-Kicking Asian Women with Machine Guns Meet the Apocalypse

Welcome to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. Fight scenes featuring beautiful Asian women with machine guns are sexy, scary, and fetishistic. If you're in San Francisco in June, you're in luck—you can get a double dose of ass-busting Asian women at the Another Hole… » 5/23/08 9:00am 5/23/08 9:00am

Meet the Man Who Predicted Japan's Humanoid Robot Craze

Welcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. In the spring of 1988, Japanese publisher Kodansha released a revealing English-language book titled Inside the Robot Kingdom: Japan, Mechatronics, and the Coming Robotopia. The book predicted a new era when humanoid… » 4/25/08 9:00am 4/25/08 9:00am

Japan Gears Up to Become a Full-On Robot Nation

Welcome back to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism. If you've noticed an unusually large number of utilitarian humanoids hailing from Japan in the last few years, then you probably won't be surprised to hear about the country's official robot initiative. Right now, Japan is in the midst of executing a… » 4/04/08 9:00am 4/04/08 9:00am

Will A Videogame Help Me Reverse My Aging Process?

I've been trying to figure out ways that I can defy age. I'm turning 30 this year, which means I will have a harder time remembering things, filtering information, and staying in shape. Since I'm not Ray Kurzweil and I can't afford plastic surgery, I'm banking on Brain Age 2, Nintendo's cognitive training software, to… » 3/21/08 9:00am 3/21/08 9:00am

Korean Movie Explores Human Emotions From a Cyborg Perspective

Welcome to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. If you've ever questioned whether you're really an alien or a cyborg, well, you're not alone. Young-goon, the protagonist featured in acclaimed director Park Chan-wook's latest film, I'm a Cyborg But That's OK, is sent to… » 3/07/08 9:00am 3/07/08 9:00am

Human Music Machine Cornelius Deciphers His Alternate Reality Videos

Welcome to MangoBot, a biweekly column about Asian futurism by TokyoMango blogger Lisa Katayama. Keigo Oyamada, aka Cornelius, is a sound artist best known for his perfectly timed synchronization of beats, robot noises, and trippy music videos showing everything from spinning cows to lips that grow exponentially to… » 2/22/08 9:00am 2/22/08 9:00am

I Was Programmed by Tetris to be a Better Person

At a young age, my brain was hijacked by the game of Tetris. Now it helps me navigate through life. When I was in the sixth grade, my friend Chiyo and I used to play this addictive puzzle game—developed in 1985 by a Russian engineer—for hours on end with a single 100 yen coin at an arcade in Tokyo. We probably should… » 2/08/08 9:00am 2/08/08 9:00am