Monthly Archives: April 2009

Review of the Willcom NS on Mobile in Japan

Just posted up a “Review” of the new Willcom NS PDA/planner thingy. I was obviously not in a good mood after my hands-on with the device. I was not very nice.

willcomns.jpg

http://www.mobileinjapan.com/profiles/blogs/review-of-the-willcom-ns-its

Sad thing is, I actually like what Willcom has done in the past, but this time I think it was just insulting.

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Danny Choo and Akiba

Had a one-in-a-million chance today to follow Danny Choo around Akihabara today while he was shooting for his next YouTube video. Also along for the show was Setsuko Harada with Jonny Li manning the videocamera.

Akihabara is one of the best places in Tokyo to get interesting, visually stunning, and socially confusing photos, and watching Danny do his thing is a sight to behold. I can’t believe the energy he has. We spent the afternoon dodging the fuzz, blocking traffic, harassing maids, and chasing high school students around town. Can’t remember the last time I had so much fun.

http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=70933

Can’t wait to see the finished video. If you want to see some of his previous vids, check out his page on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/tokyostormtrooper . Highly recommended!

Poken pack 到着しました。

The Poken have arrived! My first 12 pack. Now lets see how long they
last.

Back to business in Japan

The beginning of April marks the new year in Japan. Students head to school in new, crisp uniforms, and college graduates known as freshers head to their new jobs. Although this year is perhaps a bit different than years past.

According to Asahi 44% of Japanese of Japanese companies are planning to reduce their hiring next year. This is a pretty shocking development coming from a country that is also in the midst of a population induced labor shortage.

Asahi.com:   44% of firms hiring fewer recruits for ’10

and things just keep getting worse. According to the International Labor Organization, Japan ranks at the bottom for jobless benefits.

Breitbart.com: Japan’s jobless benefit conditions worst among industrial nations: ILO+

An ILO report that covers eight major countries including emerging economies said Brazil has the highest share of jobless workers receiving no benefits at 93 percent, followed by 84 percent for China, 77 percent for Japan and 57 percent for the United States and Canada. The share slips below 20 percent for France and Germany.

The high Japanese share of jobless workers receiving no unemployment benefits was taken to indicate that Japan has failed to develop safety nets for temporary and other nonregular employees while accelerating deregulation of temporary staffing services.

the lack of the government to prepare for such an environment is going to have lasting effect, both economically and sociologically in Japan for decades to come.

Google launches Google Ventures

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http://www.google.com/ventures

Google jumps into the VC world. I’m really curious about the direction that Google will take with this.

The better questions I guess is will Google be able to risk capital in start up incubation without becoming truly evil? I’ll be watching this one closely. VERY closely.