Rich countries have low birthrates (in part because they have more rights for women, and women who can control their bodies and fates choose to have fewer children on average than women who live in poor countries with fewer rights for women); Japan, one of the most xenophobic of all the rich countries, has the killer combination of a near-total ban on immigration from poor countries (where all the young people are) and a high standard of living.
That's some of the subtext of all those "caring robots" we see being demoed by Japanese R&D labs: "We would rather have robots change our parents' diapers than nurses from the Philippines."
The decline in the Japanese population -- a million people over five years -- is the first population decline since Japan began its census in 1920.
Japanese officials, who have trudged down an increasingly nationalistic path in recent years, have touted the country’s homogeneity. Accordingly, immigration has been limited, and the foreign population, as Joshua Keating points out, is only 2 percent.
That isn’t expected to change dramatically soon, either. According to the government, 40 percent of the country will be 65 years or older by the year 2060.
Land of the Falling Son
[Adam Chandler/The Atlantic]
(via Super Punch)
(Image: life passes by, Tinou Bao, CC-BY)
Fukuoka, Japan is home to the Ichiran ramen museum, where you can see ramen noodles being made. You can also eat at an Ichiran restaurant, where you buy a menu item ticket from a vending machine then sit in one of the walled-off cubicles along the counter, so you can eat without having to interact […]
Amami Ōshima is a small Japanese island a little north of Okinawa. A plant called cycad grows in abundance there. It’s poisonous unless it is properly prepared by drying and fermenting it. This video shows you the process and has interviews with people who explain why they revere the cycad plant. Image: YouTube
The only noises to be heard are footsteps and video editing suites firing up. The nice ceremonies come later.
You want wireless earbuds to make an impact on your mood and workout, not the environment. If that’s the case, we’ve got a new contender for AirPod market share: Brio Phantom X7 True Wireless Earbuds. The features on these tiny, comfortable buds are impressive even without the environmental angle. Their Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity is good […]
We don’t ask for much out of our charging cables: Juice up our phone, do it fast and don’t break. It’s supposed to be simple, but keeping your phone plugged in for the night – as most of us do – can actually degrade the life of your battery by overheating it. That’s why one […]
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