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Transliteration Notes

Kanji Ring

2013 Kanji of the Year is RING

A few days ago, the kanji of the year 2013 was announced in Japan. It is "輪 (wa)", means ring, circle, hoop or round. It seems like becoming the Olympic host 2020 affected Japan a lot this year....

Contributed on 2014/01/14

Kanji for Gold

Kanji for gold named year's best

The kanji "kin" (gold) was chosen as the best Chinese character to symbolize this year's national ethos...the word signifies the gold medals won by Japanese athletes at the London Olympic Games as well as...."

Contributed on 2012/12/14

Neorest Toilet

Japan's high-tech toilet maker eyes global throne

The Ultimate Toilet! The Neorest by Toto.

The Washlet's functions, laid out on a computerized control panel with pictograms, include water jets with pressure and temperature controls, hot-air bottom dryers and ambient background music.

Another function produces a flushing sound to mask bodily noises — a hit among the easily embarrassed — while some models have a lid that automatically opens when users enter the restroom.

Others feature seats and lids that glide back into horizontal position, possibly solving gender battles over flipped-up toilet seats in the home.

Contributed on 2012/12/13


Time to bring out the Kotatsu!

The Japanese kotatsu is a low table, which often has a heating element attached underneath. There is a double layered table-top, which allows you to lay a blanket on top of the table. Visit (in Japanese) to see different types.

Contributed on 2012/10/25

Tegami no kakikata


手紙の書き方』ホームページでは、手紙の楽しさを感じていただきもっと気軽に手紙を書いていただけるよう、 手紙 ... さまざまな情報や、きちんとした手紙から、友人、知人に出すような気軽な手紙まで、バリエーション豊かな 個人向けの手紙文例などを紹介します.

Develop and perfect your Japanese epistolary skills with this lovely, informative site from stationary company, Midori. You can also take a look at their exquisite products on the company's Midori homepage.

Contributed on 2012/06/15

All About Japan

All About Japan


生活総合情報サイト. その道のプロ(専門家)が日常生活をより豊かに、 快適にするノウハウや業界最新動向を発信....

Contributed on 2012/05/15


JETAANC | Japan Exchange & Teaching Program Alumni Association of Northern California

If you are in the bay area and are at all interested in Japan or Japanese culture and arts, get involved with the JETAANC. We have the highest praise for all the organizers we have met and the events we have attended.

Contributed on 2012/05/15

Geek4U laser projected keyboard


Japanese Tech gadgets -- From Japan to your doorstep

"Interested in cool, funny, adorable, odd, hilarious, crazy, useless, and useful products from Japan? Can't afford the travel expenses to get here? GeekStuff4U is here to help!"

Pictured here is an amazing laser projection keyboard from Elecom.

Contributed on 2012/04/15


Nico Nico Douga

An insanely popular video sharing website in Japan. Users upload, view and share video clips. What makes this website special is that viewers' comments are overlaid directly onto the video, so comments correspond directly to events in the video. It makes for a shared viewing experience and quite frequently, unmatched hilarity.

Anime, computer games, and pop-music videos feature heavily the site.

Contributed on 2012/03/15



"2k540 Aki-Oka Artisan is a complex of boutiques and workshops for artisans of both traditional and modern crafts. Lined up under the JR railroad tracks are some two dozen shops selling (and often making on-premises) jewelry, hats, ceramics, fabrics, toy, etc..."

Reviewed by Where in Tokyo - a site that offers fun things to do in the big city!

Contributed on 2012/01/15




Contributed on 2012/01/15


Japanese public chooses

In BBC News Asia

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

The Japanese word "kizuna", meaning bonds or connections between people, has been chosen as Japan's kanji of 2011.

Contributed on 2012/01/15

Job Guide

転職ならWebな人の転職サイトFind Job !

Here's a Japanese website on job hunting. It includes a helpful list of questions you might expect during an interview. For example:

1. 今の会社ではどんな仕事をしていますか?
2. 仕事上の実績をお聞かせください。
3. その仕事を選んだ動機は何ですか?

Contributed on 2011/12/15

japanese times

ジャパンタイムズ The Japan Times

The major English language daily in Japan. We have also included this online newspaper in our Habitual Places tab above.

Check out the shorter version, The Japan Times Weekly, a 20-page weekly, with core coverage and in-depth analysis of major world and domestic events.

Contributed on 2011/12/15

TTV Logo


Tokyo Television Broadcasting Corporation is the leading Japanese media company in the San Francisco Bay Area providing the highest quality Japanese programs since 1976.

See what's on TTV today!

Contributed on 2011/12/15

Google Zeitgeist

Google Japan Zeitgeist

See top queries across different categories: People, Film, News and more. in the New Yorker.

Contributed on 2011/10/15


Hiroshima and the Art of Outrage

Oe contemplates the role of Japan as a nation sheltering under the American nuclear umbrella and the dangers of nuclear power use. By Oe Kenzaburo, New York Times. See also: History Repeats in the New Yorker.

Contributed on 2011/10/15


Creative Destruction

Economic research tells us that for modern economies like Japan, the long-term impact of the quake on the Japanese economy could be surprisingly small. By James Surowiecki from the New Yorker's Financial Page.

Contributed on 2011/10/15

Penn Olson

The Problem with Facebook in Japan

Cultural norms that value anonymity make it difficult for Facebook to exceed 10% adoption. By Adam Acar in Penn-Olson: The Asian Tech Catalog.

Contributed on 2011/10/15


AneCan Magazine

The fashion magazine for older sisters (Ane) of the popular CanCam magazine. View Best Shots from their monthly magazine. Also, see their Fashion Focus for more detailed information on the styles featured.

Contributed on 2011/10/15


Japan's #1 shopping site. Buy hard to find Japanese products. Also, see Rakuten's Ranking Page to see top selling products across electronics, sake, mens and women's clothing, beauty products, food, shoes, jewelery and more.

Contributed on 2011/10/15

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