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Back to Contents of Issue: March 2003

Ready for War: Military Technology in Japan -- The US Armed Forces have about 47,000 troops in Japan. They also have a whole lot of military weaponry and sophisticated technology here. Japan's Self-Defense Forces and several elites of the private sector have benefited from US military technology, but gaps remain. As the world's war machines rumble, what sort of role is Japan planning for itself?

Blast from the Past -- "I'm Elizabeth, also known as Mona Lisa," a voice says with a sultry Italian lilt. Mona is one of several historical figures brought to life by mobile content developer Index for subscribers to i-mode and EZweb cellular services. Leonardo da Vinci's sonorous tongue can also be downloaded, along with that of Japanese scholar Sugawara Michizane, who tells anxious users, "You definitely passed!"

The Low Cost of Living in Japan -- The Economic Intelligence Unit reported that Tokyo and Osaka are the most expensive places for expat executives to live. Well sure, if you take a taxi from Narita, eat cantaloupe for breakfast and live in a four-bedroom house with a two-car garage. But if you're trying to save, there are plenty of ways to live reasonably in Japan's biggest cities.

Plus: news on buyouts, gadgets, wireless tomfoolery, up-and-coming companies and, of course, savory slices of blowfish.

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