Watching a master chef make noodles by hand is absolutely mesmerizing

I'm not sure if this is considered just cooking or if it can be classified as high art or even a musical performance but whatever it is, it's an absolute joy to watch. What you're seeing is soba master Tatsuru Rai, owner and chef of Sobatei Rakuichi in Niseko, Hokkaido, making his soba noodles in complete silence. » 9/09/14 1:27am 9/09/14 1:27am

Japan's Spending $5 Billion to Fast Track Maglev Trains in the US

Come on guys. It's just 40 miles. We'll even go halfsies with you. Except, in this case, "halfsies" still amounts to $5 billion. Japan, in an effort to help DC build a maglev train that would cut travel time to Baltimore down to 15 minutes, is offering up half the cash to do it. The question is: Does that make the… » 9/08/14 5:44pm 9/08/14 5:44pm

Japan's Decade-Long Mission to Mine an Asteroid

1999 JU3: It doesn't sound like a very noteworthy name. It's just one of more than 5,000 Apollo-class asteroids. But 1999 JU3 could become a household name if Japan succeeds in mining it—a mission that JAXA has struggled with for decades, often disastrously. And on Sunday, it revealed the probe that could redeem it. » 9/02/14 5:45pm 9/02/14 5:45pm

Japan Is Creating a Militarized Program To Deal With Space Junk

Last week, the world was transfixed by the story of a gecko sex satellite that Russia lost contact with after it was knocked by some space debris. Apparently, it was the wake up call we needed as a species: Japan has announced the creation of a program aimed at monitoring space debris, a military-based project that… » 8/04/14 11:04am 8/04/14 11:04am

Believe It or Not, the World's Fastest-Growing Drone Fleet Is in Japan

Japan is a peaceful nation, in no small part because its post-World War II constitution required it. All that changed last month when President Shinzo Abe ended the ban that's kept Japan's army in check since 1945. And do you know what the country did next? It started buying drones. Lots and lots of drones. » 7/21/14 6:10pm 7/21/14 6:10pm

There's a Trippy Walk-In Kaleidoscope Hiding In This Shipping Container

Drugs are illegal and often pretty bad for you. But who needs LSD when the world has talented designers like Masakazu Shirane and Saya Miyazaki. Last year, the Japanese duo took on the challenge of creating a mind-bending environment inside of a shipping container—and did they ever succeed. » 7/18/14 6:23pm 7/18/14 6:23pm

You No Longer Have to Go to Japan to Buy These Beautiful Blue Toolboxes

Trusco toolboxes have long been an elusive item, something only seen by tasteful travelers who spotted them in Japan. They lusted after them enough to fill a few pages on Instagram. But now Hand-Eye Supply is selling a whole line of these beautiful blue boxes, and they're surprisingly affordable. » 7/17/14 5:00pm 7/17/14 5:00pm

The World's Largest LED Hydroponic Farm Used to Be a Sony Factory

As climate change begins posing new challenges to conventional outdoor food production methods, hydroponic farming has made quick gains in popularity thanks to its space- and energy-saving design. This enormous indoor lettuce farm for example—the largest of its kind in the world—produces 10,000 heads a day in less… » 7/10/14 4:20pm 7/10/14 4:20pm

Here's What Saving $1.3 Billion On a New Stadium Looks Like

Yesterday we learned that London-based architect Zaha Hadid had rethought her design for Tokyo's Olympic Stadium, after widespread protests and a major budget cut put the original design in jeopardy. Dezeen has the new images of the redesigned stadium, and it's... pretty damn similar, despite a $1.3 billion budget cut. » 7/10/14 10:40am 7/10/14 10:40am