Just cuz this shouldn’t go unnoticed — Japan Just Lost to NK in Soccer


First NK shuns Japan at the 6-party talks, now their soccer team is making Japan look like a bunch of fancy boys. I gotta say, the North Koreans sure know how to make someone feel unwelcome:

Japan stunned by N. Korea at E. Asian c’ship

Monday, August 1, 2005 at 07:38 JST
DAEJEON — Japan’s hopes of lifting their first east Asian championship title suffered an unexpected blow on Sunday after a shock 1-0 defeat to North Korea on the opening day of the four-team tournament in South Korea.

Kim Young Jun capitalized on some poor defending to strike the decisive goal in the 27th minute at Daejeon World Cup Stadium as North Korea avenged their recent 2-0 defeat in the Asian zone qualifying competition for next year’s World Cup finals.

I couldn’t find any pictures from the game but this was linked on Xinhua’s site:

Yowzer!

People are going to find this article on search engines for all the wrong reasons and that scares me

GTO, my favorite manga of all time, featured a teacher who got caught doing exactly this except it was more of an outhouse instead of a church:

Pastor Allegedly Videotapes Women, Girls With Hidden Camera
Four Girls On Tapes Were Under Age 10

GREENVILLE, N.C.—A North Carolina pastor is charged with sexual exploitation and peeping after investigators found videos of women and girls at his church undressing and using the bathroom.

The 54-year-old minister, Leon Harris, has been released on bond, but was ordered to stay away from Rose Hill Free Will Baptist Church.

Pitt County detectives said at least eight females were videotaped on June 9, including four girls under the age of 10.

The arrest warrant said the videos are believed to have been recorded by two miniature cameras installed in a church bathroom.

Ew.

Repliee

All of a sudden we’re getting large numbers of search engine referrals from people looking for videos of the Repliee Q1.

I was wondering what could have caused this sudden surge, until I realized that BBC News just wrote about it.

Japanese scientists have unveiled the most human-looking robot yet devised – a “female” android called Repliee Q1.

She has flexible silicone for skin rather than hard plastic, and a number of sensors and motors to allow her to turn and react in a human-like manner.

She can flutter her eyelids and move her hands like a human. She even appears to breathe.

I wrote a post about the Repliee a little while back, but for people who may not have seen it, I’ll just repeat the part that I translated from Japanese.

You can also find an older brief article at
National Geographic.

For more information, photos, and best of all video, see the official project website at Osaka University’s Intelligent Robotics Laboratory.

The Japanese language website of NEDO (New Energy and industrial technology Development Organization) has some additional information worth mentioning.

The name “Repliee” is supposed to suggest the French word replique (replica).

The Repliee Q1’s skin is made of silicon and colored in imitation of human skin. The android uses air servo actuators to subtly inflate and deflate the chest in imitation of real human breathing. The Repliee has been designed to respond to its environment in the unconscious ways that a human does. For that purpose it has extremely sensitive touch sensors throughout its body, and different kinds of touched trigger different responses. It also has microphones to pick up and respond to human voice.

Size: 680mm wide, 1,500mm tall, 1,100mm deep
Weight: 40kg
Power: air servos (external air compressor)
Movement: Upper body moves via actuators with 42 degrees of freedom
Operation: controlled via serial link to external computer
Usage environment: indoors
Controller size: 1000mm wide x 680mm tall x 850mm deep
Compressor size: 900mm wide x 1360mm tall x 900mm deep

Since the video on the university web site is fairly large and slow to download, my friend Matt has posted a tiny, tiny recompressed version on his website.

More bugstores in Taipei

Just a couple of days after posting about the Starbugs Beetle store I happened to run across this pet store specializing in various creepy-crawlies near the Shulin area in north Taipei. When I got there the proprietor was just starting the process of mounting one of our friends from the other day for presentation and was good enough to let me take some photos of his work.