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Internet ready to shut up and take your money as preorders finally start for Cat Ear Headphones

Last summer, were you one of the many people who screamed “Shut up and take my money!” when we brought you news of the prototype cat ear-shaped headphone/speakers from recent startup AxentWear? If so, your harshly worded enthusiasm has been rewarded, as preorders have at last begun for the futuristically feline gadgets.

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Sonus Antiquitatum, Sonata for Two Game Boys in F Minor: Chiptunes for the sophisticate

While the popularity of retrogaming can sometimes be difficult to understand or accurately gauge, one of the more interesting aspects of its resurgence is the following that has developed around chiptunes. Though it would be a bit of a stretch to say that chiptunes music is massively popular, there’s no doubt that the genre holds a strong appeal for many gamers, especially those who grew up playing on older systems.

But the current chiptunes scene is hardly limited to old game soundtracks–thanks to software like Little Sound DJ, producers can make complex music that manages to be both old and new. And the best example might be a new release titled Sonus Antiquitatum, a sonata for two Game Boys in F minor, that not only sounds good for a chiptunes album but is actually a really enjoyable musical experience!

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Disney, Pokemon, Ghibli and more awesome handmade cosplay aprons and dresses for geeky girls!

Remember the Sailor Moon lingerie sets that were co-produced by Bandai and Peach John? They were such big hits in 2014, even the pre-orders with an estimated delivery date of June 2015 were swept off of the virtual shelves of the Premium Bandai website. It’s no surprise how popular those cute undergarments were given the huge following the manga and anime series has, but let’s be honest, it’s a little underwhelming since those cosplay undies can’t be flaunted in public like your regular cosplay getup.

If the Sailor Moon lingerie sets caught your fancy, chances are you’ll love these totally adorable geeky pinafores and dresses created by Darling Army. Not only are they creative cosplay interpretations, some of them would look absolutely cute as daily fashion too! Be it anime or manga, comics or games, there’s bound to be something that fits right up your alley. Check them out after the jump!

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Pet treats from China pulled from shelves, suspected in the illness/death of thousands of dogs

Any pet owner will tell you that pets are undeniably a part of the family. Everyone wants the best for their furry four-legged friend, and it is emotionally painful to watch them when they get sick or when their lives end. Even worse is when their already too-short lives are cut even shorter due to illness caused by something that was believed to be good for them. So, in response to consumer concerns that jerky treats manufactured in China have been the cause of thousands of pet illnesses and deaths, pet-supply chain Petco has decided to stop all sales of Chinese-produced dog and cat treats.

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American man builds perfect, tiny Japanese house that could be yours for $70,000【Photos】

In this consumerist culture of ours, it seems like the never-ending scramble to acquire more and bigger worldly goods and possessions is becoming increasingly futile as economic issues tend to scupper every attempt we make at achieving those perhaps impossible ideals. It’s no wonder, then, that people are increasingly turning to minimalism and simplicity in their lives and in their homes. The Japanese aesthetic concept of wabi-sabi extols the virtues of living a life that is simple, rustic and close to nature, and we’ve been seeing elements of this start to crop up increasingly in the west, with the recent adoption of tiny, eco-friendly houses providing a possible alternative to an energy-guzzling modern pile of bricks.

Today we’d like to show you around one such teensy home, modelled around a traditional Japanese house and encompassing only 10 x 20 feet of space. Perhaps the most interesting thing about this mini-house, though, is that it was all made by the hands of one man – American Chris Heininge.

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“Emissary of Hell” Spider-Man and his giant robot appear in American comic for first time!

Some of you may recall us looking back on Japan’s version of Spider-Man from the late 1970s that was so over-the-top it made the old Adam West Batman series look like brooding British melodrama set atop a dew-soaked Northumberland farm.

It kept pretty close to the original storyline of Spider-Man, like how a motorcycle racer got his spider powers from an alien along with a spaceship that transforms into a giant robot to battle the evil Professor Monster, and shouting out, “I’m the emissary of Hell!” in Japanese before doing so.

It’s been a while since those good times but now the Japanese fans that still remember the series are tickled to see Spidey’s old war machine Leopardon has returned in the latest issue of Amazing Spider-Man!

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Here’s how Zen meditation changed Steve Jobs’ life and sparked a design revolution

When Steve Jobs showed up at the San Francisco airport at the age of 19, his parents didn’t recognize him.

Jobs, a Reed College dropout, had just spent a few months in India.

He had gone to meet the region’s contemplative traditions — Hinduism, Buddhism — and the Indian sun had darkened his skin a few shades.

The trip changed him in less obvious ways, too.

Although you couldn’t predict it then, his travels would end up changing the business world.

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“Why, Japanese people!?” American dude has us rolling on the floor laughing with his comedic sketch

He’s lived in Japan for four years but has only been an entertainer for two months. Even so, this guy already has Japanese celebrities roaring with laughter.

Meet Atsugiri Jason (厚切りジェイソン), whose stage name translates to something like “Thickly-sliced Jason.” This up-and-coming comedic genius was recently featured on a Japanese TV New Year’s special, where he performed a short sketch entirely in Japanese which proved to be so popular that the internet is already buzzing about him making his big break this year.

Anyone who has ever struggled with learning kanji is sure to appreciate this video. Check out his comedy sketch after the jump!

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The impossible circular staircase is just that… impossible【Video】

Need a break from reality? Take a look at this video created by a student from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT).

The video features the mythical Escherian Staircase (aka Penrose Stairs), or the never-ending staircase where you go up two flights of steps and end up at the same place you began. It’s said that Filipino architect Rafael Nelson Aboganda is the genius who built the “Impossible Staircase.”

There is something fishy, however. This physics-defying creation – first thought up more or less simultaneously by the Lionel and Roger Penrose team, and M.C. Escher in the 1950s – was built by Abgonda in the 60s, yet no one knows about it― not even students at the school, despite being a seemingly physically impossible feat! Hmm….

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Dirty Car Art is the perfect excuse not to wash your car ever again

Have you ever doodled in the dirt on your car before you finally got around to washing it? Or perhaps when you were younger you wrote something rude in the dust on the neighbour’s rear window? American artist Scott Wade took his doodling many steps further and now creates this stunning Dirty Car Art that you’d never want to wash off.

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US actor Misha Collins meets “Santa” in Japan, tweets about it in Japanese

When American actor-director Misha Collins, who you might know from roles in Supernatural and 24 or appearances in CSI and ER, visited Japan recently, his tweets sparked excitement online. Mr Collins tweeted several snaps of his time in Japan, including his encounter with a very eccentric Santa Claus!

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In the name of the moon, I will marry you! Couple holds awesome Sailor Moon wedding in L.A.

A while back, we took a look at some Japanese wedding receptions that took cues from Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda and Konami’s Beatmania rhythm game. Japan isn’t the only place where fictional fandom and romantic nuptials cross paths, though.

This month, an American couple that seems to love Sailor Moon almost as much as they love each other took their vows, and not only are the outfits they wore for their ceremony the classiest cosplay we’ve seen in a long time, they’re just the beginning of the wedding’s many elegantly beautiful anime-inspired touches.

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Taco Rice: Yummy Tex-Mex cuisine, Okinawan style!

Hands up everyone who loves Japanese food. Now, hands up everyone who loves Tex-Mex. Okay, you can put both of your hands down now. If you’ve never had the pleasure of chowing down on a bowl of delicious “Taco Rice”, then you’re seriously missing out! This Okinawan dish is a staple of the islands, being both tasty and filling while at the same time satisfying many a US military serviceperson’s hankering for a taste of home. We recently picked up a “Taco Rice bento box” from one of the best Taco Rice establishments on Okinawa. Read on for our thoughts!

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Big Hero 6 ads in Japan leave out the action, moviegoers surprised to find awesome robot flick

Last weekend, my wife and I decided to go to watch Disney’s Big Hero 6, which had just opened in Japan under the title Baymax, after its marshmallow-like central robot character. As we made our way into the theater, she asked me if I had a pack of tissues, adding, “I heard the movie is really touching.”

This kind of took me by surprise. Sure, most Disney films have a heartwarming side to them, but wasn’t this movie about a team of superheroes and their robot?

If you’ve seen Big Hero 6, you know by now that it does a solid job of handling both action and emotional scenes. You probably wouldn’t get that impression from the tender Japanese ads for the movie, though, which is why many Japanese moviegoers were pleasantly surprised to find that Baymax isn’t just sweet, but also pretty awesome.

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Piccolo saves Christmas when he’s not saving Namekians

Comic book fan, cosplay aficionado, and 15-year veteran deputy sheriff Michael Wilson (@knightmage) brought cheer to countless families on December 18 when he strolled into his local Ohio TOYS R US dressed as Dragon Ball‘s Piccolo and paid off everyone’s layaways.

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Rock band KISS collaborating with Sailor Moon Crystal’s Momoiro Clover Z

The U.S. rock band KISS is no stranger to merchandise collaborations with Japan, but the maskedglam rock band is marking its first time working with a Japanese musical artist with a new single next year. KISS and the Japanese pop idol group Momoiro Clover Z are set to release a new single together on January 28, 2015.

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Street Fighter II creator Yoshiki Okamoto talks games and his new project, Monster Strike 【Interview】

When Street Fighter II creator and retro gaming legend Yoshiki Okamoto announced two years ago that he was leaving console games forever to pursue mobile gaming projects, many probably thought he was joking. A lifelong arcade and console game creator abandoning ship to work in the much loathed and parodied mobile platform? This must be some kind of pre-retirement prank, surely?

As it happens, Okamoto was dead serious, and – far from having retired – has made good on his promise to focus on mobile games, working with a protege to crank out one of the most successful mobile games of all time: Monster Strike.

Monster Strike has reached over 16 million players in Japan and Taiwan, exceeding all expectations and becoming a cultural institution in the game’s native Japan. Sensing it was time to strike out into other territories, Okamoto, game producer Koki Kimura and his team are now working to expand the game into the west and beyond. We caught up with Okamoto and Kimura in San Francisco at Monster Strike’s North American launch party to talk about the game and the industry in general:

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Here’s how the CEO of Sony tweaked ‘The Interview’ after North Korea threatened war

Sony’s film studio, Sony Pictures, was hit by a massive hack that resulted in the leaking online of a huge trove of documents from the company.

Re/code reports that one of the files posted online was the email archive of Amy Pascal, the company’s co-chairman. Her inbox contained emails sent by Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai in which he instructs Sony Pictures staff to make an important change to the ending of coming comedy “The Interview.”

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Christmas cards are too mainstream, get your hands on these awesome anime-inspired cards!

It’s almost that time of the year! The time of the year that people who work for postal services probably dread the most. Tis’ the season for greeting cards, be it for Christmas or for the New Year. While electronic greetings have become a major trend, what with the wide range of social networking platforms we have access to nowadays, handwritten snail-mailed cards just pack that much more warmth and sincerity than mass sending a copy-and-paste kind of generic message to every friend, family member and I-don’t-remember-who-you-are on your contact list.

If you’re a manga or anime fan who likes to send cards with a touch that represents who you are, or if you know someone who would be thrilled to receive an anime-inspired greeting card, these awesome hand-crafted anime/manga-inspired cards would probably be your best bet!

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Apple opening first non-U.S. development center in Yokohama, Japan

To many visitors, both coming from elsewhere in Japan and abroad, Yokohama seems quaint and relaxed. Sure, it’s the second biggest city in the country, but Yokohama is best known for its bayside parks, giant Ferris wheel, and Chinatown (plus its occasional Pikachu outbreaks).

But Yokohama has also been the entry point to Japan for some of its largest cultural and technological influences. It was the site of Japan’s first gas lamps, photography studio, and even brewery as the country opened itself to outside visitors and innovations in the latter half of the 19th century. Viewed from that historical perspective, it’s fitting that technology giant Apple is setting up a new research and development center in Yokohama.

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