What if you can wear a chair?

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Story highlights

Japan’s innovative wearable devices include Archelis, a “standing” chair designed for surgeons.

Tokyo’s first wearable expo made its debut in 2015, the largest in the world.

The wearable technology market in Japan is expected to grow from 530,000 units in 2013 to 13.1 million units in 2017.



CNN

What do Discman, Tamagotchi and Game Boy have in common?

They are all landmark Japanese inventions in the 1980s and 1990s, and are a symbol of the era when Asian countries are leading the world in technological innovation.

However, with the rise of Silicon Valley and American technology giants such as Google and Apple, Japan has produced fewer and fewer modern technologies in the past two decades.

Professor Masahiko Tsukamoto of the Graduate School of Engineering of Kobe University said that this situation is about to change due to a new generation of young entrepreneurs, increased international cooperation, and new partnerships with university scientists.

Japan’s focus this time is not on smartphones or games, but on wearable chairs, smart glasses and dog communication devices.

In short, weird wearable technology.

According to the Yano Research Institute, in 2013, 530,000 wearable technology devices were sold in Japan.

This number is expected to jump to 13.1 million units in 2017.

The launch of the first wearables expo in Tokyo in 2015 may be the best sign of the booming industry – At the time of its launch, it was the largest wearable technology exhibition in the world with 103 exhibitors.

It is equipped with electronic kimono, cat communication equipment and electronic gloves, which can record the finger work of the pianist.

At the next exhibition, from January 18th to 20th, 2017, the organizer expects to have more than 200 exhibitors and 19,000 visitors.

“With better features, lighter components, and smaller designs, wearing devices is no longer a fantasy now,” said Yuhi Maezono, the program director. “Wearable devices are attracting people’s attention as the next big growth market.”

Inupathy is a dog harness, planned to be launched at the end of this year, allowing pet owners to communicate with their dogs.

In addition to the heart monitor, the seat belt also has noise reduction technology that can isolate the animal’s heartbeat and track its response to stimuli such as food, games, people, and toys.

With this data, the seat belt will evaluate the dog’s mood and change the color to notify the owner.

The neckline is equipped with six LED lights, blue represents calm, red represents excitement, and the rainbow theme represents happiness.

Inupathy’s CEO Joji Yamaguchi was inspired by his corgi Akane, a nervous puppy. To better understand the dog’s anxiety, biologists developed Inupathy to monitor his heart rate.

“I always feel that I can’t understand Akane well, and I want to get close to him,” Yamaguchi said.

“Buddhism and ancient Japanese religions say that every animal, plant, and even rock has an inner spirit. When you can’t solve the problem that upsets them, the pressure will be great.”

Yamaguchi expects that wearable health tracking will also apply to humans.

“The personalization of artificial intelligence will change the rules of the game,” Yamaguchi said.

“For example, if you exhibit a certain behavior before you start to feel depressed, then predicting your depression from that behavior is extremely valuable to the individual. An artificial intelligence that works for you personally will eventually make this possible. ”

Archelis-a wearable chair launched in Japan this year-has also caused an international sensation.

The collaboration between Nitto Mold Factory, Polymer Technology of Chiba University in Japan and Hiroaki Nishimura Design in Japan was originally designed for surgeons who need to rest their legs during a long operation.

This chair enables the wearer to effectively sit down and stand up at the same time.

Archelis chair.
Akelis

Archelis chair.

“The Archelis concept is very simple, as simple as Columbus’s egg,” said Dr. Hiroshi Kawahira, the surgeon behind the concept. “Long-term surgery can cause back pain, neck pain, and knee pain-especially for older surgeons.”

Archelis is made of 3D printed panels and does not require any electronic components or batteries.

Innovation lies in effective design: flexible carbon fiber panels are wrapped around the hips, legs and feet to provide support and minimize pressure on the joints.

The system stabilizes the ankles and knees, so the pressure of standing up is evenly distributed on the calves and thighs.

Although the wearers appear to be standing, they are actually resting their backs and legs while working with their feet.

Other wearable devices are smaller.

BIRD is about 3 inches long and is essentially a modern thimble that turns your fingertips into a magic wand.

BIRD can control up to 10 devices at a time.
MUV interaction

BIRD can control up to 10 devices at a time.

The device uses algorithms to decode the user’s intentions and also has precise sensors that track direction, speed, and gestures.

This technology enables users to turn any surface into a smart screen and interact with other smart devices.

When walking around at home, users can project their laptop screens on the wall, turn on the coffee machine, read on any surface, and use their fingers to tap or swipe to shop online.

The developers-Israel’s MUV Interactive and Japan’s Silicon Technology-hope that BIRD will be accepted by the education and corporate sectors, thanks to its ability to create collaborative presentations.


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