Friday, November 30, 2012

Sequels in Nov. 2012

The last day of each month, I will make postscripts of my entries in this month.

NOV 26, 2012
Coming of KINDLE

KINDLE PAPERWHITE has come to my home. Wonderful!
The first impression is that it's a little heavy. Maybe due to front light, Kindle Paperwhite is not as light as it looks like. Touch screen is very smart. It is so sorry that audio function is omitted. In spite of some disadvantage, it is a cute gadget.

NOV 5, 2012
Politic initiative or abuse of power?

One week after, Ms. Makiko Tanaka, the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, withdrew her decision that she had rejected the establishment of 3 new universities. The 3 universities are permitted safely. Some rumor has occurred. Said, officials in the Ministry had asked Ms. Tanaka in advance to say “NO!” to show the force of the government to industry of academism. I do not know whether it is true or false. If the officials wrote the scenario, they are poor storyteller, I think.

OCT 31, 2012
New PC with WIN8 by Panasonic (2)

With many troubles, finally I asked for exchange of the machine to the vender. Now I am writing this entry with the new Let’s Note AX2. Unfortunately some troubles are still alive. The touchpad is quite unstable. The staffs in customer center were very kind.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Does the end justify means?

There are a few persons who use all means to realize their ultimate goal. In fiction, such a person is often described as a villain. And at last the hero, who has good intention and a correct way to perform it, defeats them.

So, is it incorrect that going a wrong way to get the final victory?

A person who does not concern to a right way is to be hated. He throws away former allies mercilessly when they become to be useless. People around him think that they are the next person to be abandoned. So he is often criticized that he has a good end but bad means.

However, is he to be really criticized if he had performed something good?

Theorists say yes. Good will does not justify the evil method. But in the real world, it is often happened that people in the different side attack the method of the leader only to blame him. Once the event ended, they often forgot their own criticism and started to blame another thing.

When this phenomenon occurs, the critics themselves have confused their own goal with the procedure to claim it. That is, they justify their purpose for their means. It is very paradoxical.

Indeed, there are some means not to be justified by any goals. However, we must always take account for the ultimate goal.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Modern Escape Games

Escape game is a category of the computer game. Perhaps its origin is traditional adventure games such as mystery house in 1980s. Escape games are easy to make generally worked with Flash and solved in a short time. So a lot of escape games are built in 2000s.

Mystery House in Apple II

Wikipedia: Escape the room

They are a fun indeed, but I am not satisfied with them, because its story has no reality. Usually the game begins with the protagonist locked in a room. But the reason is not discovered forever. Moreover, the methods to escape are not well explained. So I must click and click the display any number of times. Most escape games are no more than being to taste the circumstance.

Recently, some games are released, including the elements of escape games.

“9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors” is a Nintendo DS game. In this game, the protagonist was trapped in a building with great mystery and tried to escape from there. A total of 9 persons are struggling together, or betray each other. They have own purpose of themselves to be clarified at later stages. Several rooms to be challenged have reason to exist. Storytelling is exciting. At last this game has a particular feature only performed on the platform of the Nintendo DS. I strongly recommend it for all gamers. 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors

It has a sequel. “Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward” is released in both Nintendo 3DS and Playstation Vita. It is also good. Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward

These are easy to solve. For more tough player, “Misshitu no Sacrifice” is a gift. Puzzles in it are so extremely difficult that I could not solve any puzzles without information of websites. Unfortunately, there is no translated version into English available. Misshitsu no Sacrifice [Japan Import]

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Decision making is to abandon the future

What is decision making?
I will answer, to decide is to abandon.

Decision making is an important stage of almost every challenge.
In business project, we are to begin with problem setting, collect all opportunity with brain storming, and evaluate them from multiple points of view. At last the leader determines the final choice of strategy.

In evaluating the choices, we can dream several futures. But once decision was made, there is only one pathway. Other chances or time spent are never returned.

Decision making is a way to narrow the path. It is also a commitment to throw away the alternatives.

So after the decision, the leader must not wander. He has abandoned any other futures than selected. He will never know whether he did correct or wrong choice. He must be resistant for the anxiety forever. Any decision are followed by some anger or hatred of the opposite side. The only thing he can do is to believe his decision itself.

Abandoning without wandering is a necessary condition as a leader.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Coming of KINDLE

Today, I received an e-mail from to notice that KINDLE Paperwhite will arrive at my home tomorrow. It is good news.

KINDLE is an e-book reader with e-ink provided by KINDLE store

E-ink is easy to read. It does not shine itself, so I can read a long story for a long time without hurt my eyes, different from liquid crystal display.
Indeed, before KINDLE several e-book readers had established in Japan. For example “Librie” was an e-book reader provided by Sony in 2000s. I bought one with glad. But Sony had failed to spread this item all over Japan. It is due to marketing misunderstanding and resistance of the traditional bookstore alliance, I guess.

Librie website by Sony (in Japanese)

Sony abandoned Japan market and started to sell “Reader” a new e-book reader in USA the first. The last year Sony started to sell Reader in Japan.


I have already used KINDLE since 2 years ago. This is 3rd generation KINDLE of the international version. Unfortunately, this KINDLE is no use to buy or read Japanese e-books.

Japanese KINDLE is now available. Tomorrow I will get it.
So, will KINDLE change Japanese culture of reading?

The people administering electronic appliance are cautious to KINDLE. If many people who love electronic items start to use KINDLE, they may buy items from, instead of real stores. Yodobashi Cameras, a famous electronic appliance store decided to not deal with KINDLE in their store.

Japanese market of bookstores is also complicated. In Japan, bookstores can return the books that are not sold to wholesale stores. So small bookstores in rural areas could work without risk of holding excess stocks. However, if e-book is generalized, sales of paper books will be decreased. Even the necessity of small bookstore will be lost.

I think e-book is a revolutionary tool. I am very interested in the habit of reading in the next era.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Suicide in Japan

To be shameful, Japan is deemed to be a suicide rich country.

In fact, over 30,000 people have killed themselves in a year since 1999 in Japan. It is a big problem. So the government makes an effort to prevent suicide. Basic Act on Suicide Prevention was enforced in 2006. However, in spite of all efforts of the government the number of suicide did not decrease.

Discussion about suicide is very difficult. I think many people fail to set the point of discussion to begin with.
The questions are…
1. Is Japan suicide-rich?
2. If 1 is true, why?
3. Is suicide in Japan increasing?
4. If 3 is true, why?
5. What should we do?

To be honest, I must accept that Japan is a suicide-rich country. According to the OECD data or other facts, Japan is one of the worst in developed country at suicide rate.
(OECD StatExtracts)
(List of suicide rates in Wikipedia)

Then, why does suicide occur so frequently in Japan? It is not easy to answer this.
Besides Japan, Korea and Russia have also a high rate of suicide. It is also said that suicide rates are high in communist countries. So some researchers claim that religious mind is related to suicide rates. Suicide is strictly forbidden in Christian culture. In the old culture in Japan, suicide as “hara-kiri” was a means to take responsibility. Nowadays, many people commit a suicide for a humiliating failure in jobs. It is not rational at all, I think. But not a few people think death compensate the failure and deletes all responsibility. Most people are tolerable for suicide, and the idea that suicide is absolute sin is not common in Japan.
But it is only a hypothesis.
The relationship between depressive disorder and suicide is also discussed. The more depression, the more suicide, it is obvious. But what cause depression has not clarified yet. Fewer daylight hours are positively related to depression. It may be one of the reasons of the high rate of suicide in Russia.

By the way, is it true that the suicide rate is increasing in Japan?

(* Statistical data do not exist in the term of WWII.)

Many people claim that politic problems cause many suicides in Japan.  Of course 30,000 people are not ignorable. But thinking about absolute number of suicide is not appropriate. The suicide rate is increasing with aging. The average age in Japan is rising. So suicide rate is to be raised naturally. Moreover, population itself in Japan had been increasing till 2005. We have to talk about not absolute numbers, but rate of suicide.

(* Statistical data do not exist in the term of WWII.)

In fact, the suicide rate in Japan is repeating the vertical movement.
But why?

One of credible hypothesis is the influence of national economic activity. After WWII, Japan had experienced a great recovery and rapid development in the 1960s. In this term suicide rates were relatively low. In 1999, Japan entered into severe depression and suicide rate was increased.
Now I am deeply concerned about Greece. What does the financial crisis in Greece will affect the suicide rate in this country?

It is very interesting that the word “depression” has double meanings, the both recession and melancholy.
Now what should we do?

Thinking about suicide is not simple. I am always confused, but should do something better.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Japanese delicious food

Recently, I wrote about problems in Japan. Yes Japan has many challenges and is in crisis now. But Japan has also some absolute advantages.
One of this is deliciousness of food.

Japanese food is admired all over the world for its high quality. Sushi, Tempura, Saki, and Kaiseki (full course) are world famous.
Among them Sushi is the best I love. High grade Sushi is very expensive. You must pay about $200 or more for first class Sushi course. But in Japan there are cheaper Sushi bar. You will satisfied with about $20 there. It is also good. Sometime I ate Sushi in foreign country but they are inferior.

(Sushi Bar in London; It tasted not so bad, but far different from real Sushi.)

Moreover, in Japan we can eat local cuisine from almost all country. French, Italian and China cuisines are popular in Japan. Korean or other Asian foods are also delicious.

I went US and UK sometime but unfortunately seldom met delicious meals.

A Thai cuisine ate at Chicago was very good.

(Duck Curry; I had not eaten till then.)

Japan is a resource-poor country but has rich international distribution. Tokyo is the best city of the world to eat something good, I think.

I am proud of Japanese taste. So I recommend you to come to Japan and try it.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Welfare problem in Japan

Poverty is a great problem not in developing country but in developed country such as Japan.

In Japan the Livelihood Protection Law is established to ensure human right to live. Everyone who is suffering from poverty can apply for welfare to live for healthy and civilized life. However welfare system in Japan has some problems.

For example, when a man loses a job because of mental illness and hardly recover, he may apply to welfare provision. But in that time he has to dispose all of his estate including his own car. So he lose any items need in future and it make difficult to withdraw from protection.

In last decade, some miserable cases were occurred in several regions. A certain officer of local government refused to apply the welfare for an applicant. It caused fatal result. Indeed welfare cost is increasing rapidly in most local government. For attempt to hold down the deficit of official finance, they investigate the applicant very strictly. This may result in the delay of application for needed people.

Recently, discussion was happened about the issue that a woman applied for welfare was revealed to be the mother of a famous entertainer who earned much money. Some people blamed the entertainer for not caring for his mother. Some politicians claim to strengthen the duty for caring for relatives. It is certain that family bonds are essential, but what do you think if you are ordered to care for your old family forever as a legal duty?

People receiving welfare is increasing up to 3 million in Japan. How to support them is a serious problem mirroring our own future.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Economic problem in Japan

Japanese economy is suffering from severe depression for several years.
Many economists and even non-professional people are arguing about the reason.

Some people claim that stasis of Japan is due to structural problem. Japan has a lot of legislation restricting companies. So entrepreneurs have to take more risk to change the environment. Innovation hardly occurs. Past Prime Minister Mr. Koizumi made a point of this and he carried out broad relaxation of restriction, so called “reform of structure policy” in 1990s. His leadership made a chance to change the society. But divide between rich people and poor ones was widened.

After that some leaders of Japan rose and fell one after another. In 2009, the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) got the majority of the parliament, and started to administer the government instead of long past ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). But Japanese fiscal problem did not improved at all.

Now the next general election is waiting in the next month. Each party is declaring about their own manifest. One of the points of conflicts is economic policy.

The chairman of LDP, Mr. Abe claims that Bank of Japan (BoJ) should make a quantitative relaxation of the money. He intends to reform the Law about administration of BoJ. Mild inflation and justification of deflation caused by appreciation of the yen will rescue financial crisis of Japan, he says.
Present Prime Minister Mr. Noda is opposing it. According to him, if the government invaded the independence of BoJ Japan money would lose trust and hyper-inflation occurs.

I do not know which is right. If I knew, I would earn more money.
Economy is difficult. We have learned many things from past experience. But the future is always clouded.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A New form of academic review

Sometimes I work as a reviewer of academic manuscript.

In academic field, peer review system is established to maintain the quality of newly reports of research. When some scholars or research groups completed a new work, they write a manuscript about their findings and submit it to an academic journal. Then editors of this journal would read it and investigate the contents. If they thought it is impressive, the manuscript is sent to some peer reviewers who are familiar to the region the manuscript refers to. Reviewers check it up carefully without knowing about the authors of this manuscript, and send back their opinion to the editors. After all, the editors decide whether the manuscript is accepted for publishing or rejected.

Peer review system is widely adopted in many journals regardless of the region of study. Non peer reviewed article is not assessed as valuable in general. The acceptance rate of world famous journal such as Nature, Lancet, New England Journal of Medicine, is less than 20%. So for a scholar, it is more honorable that his research is accepted by an authorized journal than introduced by newspaper or TV.
(Website of Nature)

However, peer review system has a serious disadvantage. It costs much time. Usually a reviewer needs at least 1 month to review a manuscript and make a comment. And you know that a deadline is very often broke. It is not rare that over 1 year or more time passes from beginning of submit to publishing of the final article.

Nowadays this slowness may be critical.
In region of study, new things are valuable, and old things are worthless even if it is interesting.

Besides, it is one more problem about it.
Recently region of study is divided into thousands of categories. For example, I am a psychiatrist. I have Japanese Doctor License. But I cannot perform a surgery of course. And my specialty is forensic mental health and I am not so familiar to pediatric psychiatry or geriatric psychiatry. I hardly understand about brain images or human gene.
Now, most scholars have little knowledge about their neighboring regions. Especially in niche category, it is very difficult to detect a researcher who can evaluate another one’s research precisely.

I think that making good use of collective intelligence will be a solution of this matter. Some attempts have been started. “ResearchGate” is a Social Network Service constructed of scholars. We can discuss various problems about specific research and review articles each other closely in the SNS.
(Top page of ResearchGate)

Recently I participated in a project for revision of a medical textbook. The reviewers of it were gathered with Twitter information. We had argument about the contents with mailing list without clarifying our own personal information. It is also exciting and I had a fun.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Three elements of spirituality

Today, I play a word puzzle.

In traditional Japan, “Shin-Zen-Bi” are three elements to be pursued as a human.
“Shin” means truth, a concept belong to logic, opposite to false.
“Zen” means good, a concept belong to ethics, opposite to evil.
And “Bi” means beauty, a concept belong to aesthetics, opposite to ugliness.

We always pursue the three goals in our daily life. But they are often conflicted one another. For example, telling the truth to other people sometimes hurts the listener. It is no good.

Then what do we call the mixture of two concepts of the three elements?

Mixture of truth and good is “Soundness.” Sound argument lead people to the correct answer. And it has based on justice. However sound remarks usually lack fun. It is sometimes denied emotionally because soundness is not always beautiful.

Mixture of truth and beauty is “Harmony.” Harmony is made from a correct melody and rhythm. Harmony is also attractive. However, too strong harmony creates a pressure to yield to the opinion of the majority. It is not good for an individual.

Mixture of good and beauty is “Virtue.” Virtue is a way of life for a citizen. Man of virtue is loved by everyone because of its goodness. And the virtue of modesty is beautiful. But it is not always true. Man of virtue is so humble that he sometimes disguises himself.

Yes, each cell is explained.
It is the last problem. What do you think about the center of Venn diagram? It may be the ultimate goal of human spirituality. Unfortunately I don’t know.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Why do we vote?

The lower house of Japan was dissolved in 16 Nov and now is going to the general election next month.

A light vote in younger people is deemed to a problem in Japan. Indeed, recently general vote rate is about 50 to 70%, and the majority of the twenties did not take a vote, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications.

The highest vote rate was recorded in North Korea. Some other countries such as Australia and Singapore have legislation to vote as a duty and penalty for non-voting. But Sweden has also high vote rate without compulsory voting. The vote rate is under 50% in Swiss, France and US.

Some scholars claim that a heavy vote does not mean that the citizens are aware of democracy. Forcing to vote can be an infringement of human right. Ignorance to voting might be an attitude not supporting existing politicians or political system itself. I will vote in the coming election, but I do not blame them for not voting.

In the world, why does a person vote? The possibility for your own vote to change the future is extremely low. Do we have a dream or believe a miracle? Voting is not free. We spend not a short time for voting. Of course, time is money.

Mr. Tim Harford, author of “The Logic of Life” says that they do not think that their own vote would be critical at all. According to him voting is a fun. This is the reason why many people take an unreasonable vote.

Then, to make a heavy vote it is helpful to make a social belief that voting is so cool in our community.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Amenity in convenience store in Japan

Japan is one of the safest countries in the world. A lady can walk around downtown without anxiety at midnight in few country.

Both one of the reason and result of safety is “convenience store” in Japan. In Japan there are many franchise store everywhere, even in rural area. Convenience store sells many kinds of commodity such as food, drinks, magazines, stationery, detergents, underwear, and so on. In convenience store we can use cash dispenser of banks or copy machine. And we can also pay the electricity bill, ask for send a baggage, or other requests. Moreover most convenience stores are available 24 hours.

Now not a few people use convenience store as second refrigerator, salon, or office.

Convenience store is a result of standard of demand for high quality service of Japanese people, I think.

Recently many convenience stores started advertising some character goods related movies or animations.

This is “Relakkuma.” It is a coined word from “relax” and “kuma (bear),” a famous character in Japan.

This is “Puella Magi, Madoka Magica.” It is from Japanese newly animation movie.

We can see something new every day in a convenience store. It’s a real fantasy.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Trilemma of medical care

Yesterday I caught a heavy cold and broke down. Now I still have a headache.

Medical care is a big issue in every country. Administration of a hospital is similar to other business but actually far from normal business. Purpose of medical care is to normalizing human, whereas purpose of business is to enrich human life. Therefore, medical care tends to deal with poor people. So if medical care system declines to business too much, it would changes to so call “poverty business.”

It is said that the system of medical care have trilemma. The three elements are cost, access, and quality.

In US, the level of medical skill is so high that many famous persons move to US to be treated. But it costs quite high. Recently Obama administration decided to apply health insurance for all citizens. I feel this policy quite natural but it is criticized by several states.
In UK, all citizens become a member of national health insurance. So they can be treated for free. But they have to wait quite long time before consulting specialized doctors.

On the other hand, Japan has also national health insurance. So Japanese can be treated for not so high cost. And Japanese can consult any doctor as they want to do. Cost and access is guaranteed in Japan.
Quality of medical care is not so low in Japan. Infant mortality and life expectancy are first classes of the world. WHO also set a high validation on medical care in Japan. The Lancet, one of leading medical journals, made a special issue for medical care in Japan
(Wikipedia about infant mortality rate and life expectancy)
(THE LANCET Japan: Universal Health Care at 50 years)

However Japanese people are not satisfied to medical care. Some researches show that satisfaction level to medical care in Japan is the worst of the world. I do not know the reason. Perhaps level of demand for service of Japanese is too high. I often feel this matter in other fields.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Translation Problems

Even if I am an English beginner, sometimes I work as a translator of English articles about psychiatry.

Translation into other language is a difficult task. I guess it is harder in ordinary contents than in specialized ones. Surprised?
I often read special articles about psychiatry which is my specialty. It is not so tough for me if I have enough time. On the other hand, I hardly read English novels.

What is the difference?
Every article has own context. And contexts are based on their culture. I have to know culture in the context to understand them completely. Psychiatry is based on science. So I can understand articles about psychiatry based on scientific context. Since culture of science is universal.
However, I have to understand culture of foreign country and another era when I read English novels. It is not so easy.

One of the most difficult tasks in translation is to translate words which are rhymed. Translators can be distressed if the original article has many rhymed words.

It is one example of a good job in translating.
In cognitive psychology, it is said that a person in front of obvious danger feels excited emotion. It is called “fight or fright.” A scholar translate it into “tohsoh ka tohsoh ka” in Japanese. The former “tohsoh” means combat, and the latter “tohsoh” means escape. There are same in sounds but differ from each other in Kanji (Chinese character). This translation is cool, isn't it?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Cognitive Bias and Risk Control

We live in the real world. But it is not true that we always see the real world. Because there are a lot of cognitive biases.
Cognition of human has begun to be studied since late in 20th centuries and is one of hot topics in not only neuropsychiatry but also other region, such as marketing, politics, economy, and so on.
According to leading hypothesis, we tend to distort our thought in order to simplify the phenomenon we have seen. It is a result of evolution. However, sometimes a cognitive bias harms us.

For example we tend to make account of avoiding huge loss in front of us.

Last year Fukushima Daiichi atomic power plant was crippled by 3.11 earthquake and tsunami disaster. Not few people moved away from Fukushima prefecture to western region in Japan. But actually there was not so much risk of life by radioactivity except the area nearby the power plant. Rather the cost involved in evacuation and mental stress with moving were not ignorable. But when we hear the severe accident, we overestimate the influence of the matter.

In USA, similar problem occurred after 9.11 terrorism. Many people deemed airplane as dangerous and use land transportation instead of airline. The result is increasing traffic accident to death.

I have empathy to the people being afraid of the risk. However politic decision making has to be based on scientific evidence and overall optimization.

Many biases are around of us. We are to be aware of it, even if it is not avoidable completely.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Treasures in Okinawa

There are many treasures in Okinawa.

Kudakajima is located in southeast from Okinawa. It is called "God living Island." I tried to go to Kudakajima some times but have not reached yet. The last week I unfortunately missed the last ferry to Kudakajima. Maybe my piety was not enough to get it.

Kudakajima is seen at a hill besides the sea. There are many strange shaped rocks on the hill. So the hill is deemed as a sanctuary, called "Seifa-Utaki."

This is a glance from Seifa-Utaki for Kudakajima.

These are scenes at Seifa-Utaki. Pupils are to pray at the rock ground but general people are prohibited to pray, I heard.

This is a cafe on a hill, named "Kurukuma." by Nakazen corporation. You can eat delicious curry and Asian foods here.

In Okinawa you will see "Seesaa" in any place. It is a guardian lion like a gargoyle or griffin in western culture. This is the entrance of the hotel I stayed.

And we Japanese must not forgot that Okinawa was the only hand-to-hand battlefield in Japan in WW II.
This is "Peace Tower" at Peace Memorial Park.

Even in late Autumn, it is hot in Okinawa.
I ate big chipped ice "Shirokuma," like a white bear.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Air Asia, a convenient LCC

I had a trip to Okinawa this weekend.
Actually, I used Low Cost Carrier (LCC) for the first time.

Air Asia Berhad is a one of famous LCCs, originally established in 1993 as Tune Air. And Air Asia Japan began to provide the airline between Narita and Okinawa since this summer. The two-way boarding ticket fee is only 15260 yen ($190), about half of that by major carriers such as Japan Airline.

I have never used LCC ever before. So I was a little anxious about this. It is unlikely that the airplane got troubled, but it might be inconvenient, isn’t it?

The fact was that I had very comfortable travel at all. The crews and attendants were very kind. And the seat was not so narrow.
Indeed there were some differences from major carriers.
The waiting room was far distant from the center of the airport. So I had to spend much time to move.

The waiting room was very simple. I could buy few items in the travel shop.

At the entrance the attendants did not use computers to identify passengers. They checked the boarding tickets with their eyes and marked them with a marking pen, even if there was a information barcode printed on the ticket!

"All Nippon Airline" was printed with the boarding machine.
Perhaps Air Asia Japan borrows a boarding machine from ANA.

Cost cutting is an important matter for not only LCCs but also major carriers. Besides, needs of passengers are various. I do not want superior service when I am boarding airplane alone. So I welcome LCCs. And it is good for everyone to make a choice from many alternatives.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Good habit is Mikka-Bouzu

Ten days have passed since I started my own blog. Actually I am proud of myself to continue writing.

In Japan we say "Mikka-Bouzu" as an idiom. It means as "3 days priest." A person makes decision to continue some good habits or abstinent like a Buddhist priest, but only after 3 days the oath is broke easily. Maybe you also have experienced?

Good habits is hardly to be continued, bad one is easily to. One of the reason is the reward. If you did exercise only once, your body weight would not decrease at all. Besides, when you take a tobacco or alcohol you have a fun quickly!

So if you want to continue something, it is necessary that you give yourself a little reward just after you got it. Admiring, something to drink, make records, bless by a friend, and so on.
Several days after beginning, you will find yourself to do it as a habit. How long it takes is various. Maybe it is ten days for me.
It is certain that the behavior established as a good habit once is invulnerable. And it will be a weapon with you.

By the way, tomorrow I will not write an entry. It is a good day for trip!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Smart or Dull, Industrious or Lazy?

Someday I met my friends in a bar. We talked about organization.
One of them told me that, we had to categorize the employee into 4 types with 2 factors, smart/dull and industrious/lazy.

Who is the best?
1. smart and industrious person
2. smart and lazy person
3. dull and industrious person
4. dull and lazy person

This kind of story is often told as a method for good organization or self-developing. Of course I had already known.
For example, Mr. Hironao Ashida, past a principal of Tokyo Vocational School of Industry, made a speech for the graduates in 2005 about this issue.
(Summary of the Speech by Mr. Ashida: in Japanese)

He said in the speech that you should not be a person of effort. Because, persons makes effort greatly tend to compensate the low quality or ineffectiveness of the work for more effort. So they should abandon the effort and change their mind.
According to him, dull and industrious person is the last one to be hired with welcome.

Well, how to manage them? Consider each type of person.

My opinion is that, smart and industrious person is suitable to high-class business. They are also easy to manage as colleagues. However smart and lazy person is hardly to be handled in Japanese organization. In Japan there is strong trend to admire effort. Lazy persons are discriminated. And they do not like to work under controlled by other people. So they sometimes establish their own business.

My friend had other opinion. He claimed that the person who is smart and industrious is to become the boss. And smart and lazy persons are to command the dull and industrious persons under the control of the boss. He guessed that smart and lazy persons would respect the person who is smart and industrious, so the organization could work well.

Is it true or false?
Anyway to be smart is the point. Effort cannot overcome the deficit.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A spam e-mail mimicing Google

I received an e-mail by “Google beta.”
They said that I won the award of Google 13th anniversary project. So they would give me the prize, up to GBP800,000,000. And they asked me to send my personal information.

It was obvious that the e-mail is kidding me. They assumed Google and tried to get my personal information for a evil purpose, maybe.

I searched the word in the e-mail with Google. Soon many reports about an example of the spam e-mail were found.

Google 10th Anniversary Awards Lottery Scam

Yahoo Answers: Google 12th anniversary scam?

From the commentary of above websites, it is a kind of a fraud and the criminal is to ask the victims to pay upfront fee.

Also in Japan, I receive a lot of spam e-mail like this every day. The majority of this is about sexual items or free sex partners. But an article imitating other famous company is rather rare. English e-mail is tend to be seen as serious. So I have to be much cautious.

By the way, I am sorry that the spam filter by Google could not reject this spam.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Table-talk RPG, my favorite

I like games.

There are many kinds of games.
Nowadays, many people would think that “game” means computer games. But the history of computer games begins only a quarter century ago. Among computer games I like Role Playing Games (RPGs) the best. It is said that the first computer RPG is “Wizardry” or “Rogue” in 1981. Wizardry is so famous in Japan that even now many related works are continuing to be published. “Dragon Quest” series and “Final Fantasy” series by Square-Enix are also popular. My best choice of computer RPG is “the Elder Scroll IV: Oblivion” by Bethesda Game Studio.

But... computer RPG is originally a substitute of table-talk RPG.
Wizardry was made for solo person not to be able to play “Dungeons and Dragons,” an ancient table-talk RPG (now newest version is available), with nearby friends.

What is table-talk RPG?
It is a little difficult to explain the fun of table-talk RPG. It is similar to “table-talk” or ad-lib play.
In traditional style of table-talk RPG, one person plays as the Gamemaster, and other persons are play as heroes or heroines. They are coordinating each other and storytelling. Different from computer RPGs, players can act anything as possible as they imagine. The story is not bound by the rule set by a programmer. So the variety of the story is infinite. Every player can win the game. The absolute rule is to fun!

Table-talk RPG was in fashion in 1980s to 1990s. However computer RPG is replaced them because of their playability and functioning.
I now play table-talk RPG about once a year. And I hope that it will be a lifetime hobby of me.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Politic initiative or abuse of power?

Ms. Makiko Tanaka, the newly Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, rejected the applications for establishing 3 new universities in the next year. The reason of reject is deemed to the excess of colleges.
(Daily Yomiuri Online, Nov. 3 2012)

The Japanese law provides that approval by the minister is necessary to establish a university. But the Minister is to refer the opinion of the special committee about higher education. In this case, committee allowed the establishment of 3 universities. Of course it is likely to impossible to evaluate the value of each university for a minister. So former ministers have not ever rejected the proposal by the committee before.

Stakeholders of fetal universities are in confusion now. Some local governors claimed that the decision of Ms. Tanaka was abuse of power.

In future, population of Japan is decreasing. It is a strict fact.
And it is also said that not a few universities in Japan are useless for its low quality. Some universities cannot collect appliers and even are in financial crisis.
Maybe, the adequate number of university in Japan is less than now.
Because of this, some people admire the decision of Ms. Tanaka. They says that the Minister showed political initiative.

However, I think that the two things are different each other.
Decreasing facilities and improving quality of chosen ones are important and long-term challenges. Whether she approves the new establishment of a university or not is a here and now issue. It is a different matter, and maybe less important.
The Minister should make long-term plan for justification of universities with a long-term point of view.

In Japan, for several years, the prime minister changes every year. So ministers and other politicians also hardly have enough time to think. They tend to make simplistic thinking. It is a big problem in Japan.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Legal battle of Apple and Samsung

Apple has replaced their comments about the trial with Samsung on Apple UK website.
(Comments on Apple UK website)

Apple insisted that some products of Samsung had invaded some copyrights. So Apple sued Samsung and two great companies fought each other.

As far as I know, the winner of the legal battle is Apple. Samsung had to pay a great amount of money for Apple as compensation.
However some courts such as in Japan or Korea declined Apple’s claim.

And English court also decided that Samsung had not imitated Apple’s design. Furthermore, the court ordered Apple to make a notification about the court decision on the web site.

But Apple had a tricky response. The comment appeared on the website was far from loser’s one. Even if Apple referred the comment by one of the judges, said  “Products by Samsung are not so cool as Apple’s.”

Apple made the court angry. The English court blamed Apple’s behavior as a violation of the court order, and re-ordered Apple to replace the comments on the website.
At last Apple surrendered and announced the simple comment above.

I think personally that Samsung copied Apple’s products sometimes. But it is no good to prohibit any copies at all. Many innovations can be born from imitation.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Softbank's Challenge

Mr. Son Masayoshi, the CEO of Softbank declared the intention to buy up Sprint, a mobile phone company in the US.
His challenge to purchase the third largest company of mobile phone in the US may be considered to a dangerous gamble by marketers.

(Today's article on The Telegraph, English)

Mr. Son Masayoshi is naturalized Japanese. He spent his childhood in poverty, but had excellent talent and made a great effort. Now he is a billionaire and is also called as “Bill Gates in Japan.” He donated 10 billion yen ($125M) from his own estate in the stricken area by 3.11 earthquake and Tsunami disaster in 2011. Some Japanese dislike him, but I think he is a magnificent man.

I have no idea whether his challenge will succeed or not. Mr. Tetsuya Isozaki, a Japanese analyst told in his e-mail media that Softbank had some advantage. First, financial status of Sprint is getting better. Second, the contract promised that Sprint would pay a large amount of penalty fee for Softbank when the purchase was failed for the reason of the fault by Sprint.

(Isologue, Mr. Tetsuya Isozaki's site, Japanese)

Softbank has announced the acquisition of E-Access, a Japanese company of mobile phone and data communication just recently. And I had cancelled my account of E-access before a few days. I have no eyes of foreseeing at all.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Beautiful Okinawa and The Busena Terrace

I have visited Okinawa several times.

Japan is a narrow country. But the climate of Japan is variable, for its unique terrain.
Okinawa is southern islands of Japan. It is located at N 26 degree,  categorized
to subtropics.
The sea around Okinawa is extremely beautiful. I guess it is the best of the world!

In Okinawa there are many resort hotels. But I recommend the Busena Terrace.
(website of Busena Terrace, in English)

Last Summer, I visited there. The cost was so expensive, that I stayed only one night. But even so short visit, I was completely satisfied.

It's Busena Terrace.

How modern and gorgeous!

And you will see a great sight of sunset at the main hall of Busena Terrace.
Like this.

I also enjoyed snorkeling in Okinawa sea.
The water was warm and very clear.

Okinawa is both part of Japan and different from Japan.
So that I love Okinawa.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

False image of Forensic Mental Health

I am a psychiatrist and my specialty is forensic mental health.

When I introduce myself so, many people is interested in it.
"What is forensic mental health?"
"Have you seen a serial killer?"

Actually, most of my work are far from excitement.

Psychiatric evidence is one of my work.
I meet a mentally disordered offender, and interview with him, examine him, and make a diagnose for him.
Sometimes I am summoned to a court and am ordered to tell about it for judge as a witness.
And then? That's all.

You often see a report about a criminal with mental disorders on a newspaper or internet news site. The contents may include discussion at the criminal trial. Some famous psychologists make a comment about this case.

To be honest, I advise you not to trust them.

The discussion in a criminal trial is hardly understood by non-specialized reporters when it include some special issue such as psychiatry.
Then, specialists can make mistakes about the fact due to incomplete information by news source.

Recently, in Japan, I had an opportunity to get some information about a murder case.
I can not tell about this in detail. An young apprentice killed his master, like a Star Wars Episode.
A famous criminal-psychologist had presented a comment about this case, so called the reason of the murder, or "his dark of the mind."
Indeed, I read the true material with trial and knew that the criminal was suffered from severe psychosis.

So, I have no comment about the case itself after I watched the news about mentally disordered offenders.