- Created on Friday, 07 October 2011 07:16
- Written by Andrew Coad
- Hits: 1075
This article is in response to Cesar Harada's TED Talk debate question: "Japan, Tohoku : after an earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis, how can the people overcome political inertia and implement new ideas?" The debate in full can be found here: http://www.ted.com/conversations/6128/japan_tohoku_after_an_earth.html
Friday Oct 7th and a new day for me. Awaking after a good night's sleep and I am brimming with confidence that Japan's "New Day" is on the horizon. Taking a patently optimistic view on Japan's future, and that optimism might not be that misplaced, I can foresee not only a "New Day" for Japan but also a "New Dawn" for the world. For what reason am I so optimistic this fine morning?
In a previous post I had mentioned the expectation from a Japanese businessman that a lot of new technology will be given a chance to prove it's worth in the coming years. It is just that I hadn't really appreciated the scale of what this could mean.
There is a long list of technological advances that have been made during times of acute human suffering. The classic example is the invention of radar during WWII but the list goes on (mental note - research this and make a list). An example of a significant invention that has resulted purely because of the Fukushima disaster can be found in the work of Kyoto University professors Dr. Hidehito Nakamura and Dr. Sentaro Takahashi (http://www.kyoto-u.ac.jp/en/news_data/h/h1/news6/2011/110629_1.htm). Here, a low-cost radiation detection material that uses the same plastic as does PET bottles, has been invented. Drs. Nakamura and Takahashi in fact have a long list of inventions and patents and have been working with plastic scintillators for many years. Yet it was the Fukushima disaster that focused them on deeper research into a plastic that they already knew had scintillations properties. They found, quite quickly, that by adding more oxygen to the plastic the scintillation efficiency increased dramatically. Necessity is, as they say, the Mother of Invention.
- Created on Monday, 03 October 2011 16:45
- Written by Andrew Coad
- Hits: 23507
Published by Atlantic Books
"A.D. Miller’s Snowdrops is a riveting psychological drama that unfolds over the course of one Moscow winter, as a young Englishman’s moral compass is spun by the seductive opportunities revealed to him by a new Russia: