The popular image of Japan is as a wildly technological place that strides boldly into the future. Sometimes, visitors to Tokyo will swear that the city already is the future.
But a wonderful feature by the BBC's Michael Fitzpatrick suggests that Japan may not be as tech-crazy as casual observation indicates. Check out these two pieces of evidence:
One government poll shows that although 44% of Japanese use the internet at least once or twice a month, the rest responded that they use it 'hardly at all' or 'not at all'.
"Japanese banks, post offices, government offices, all are staffed with three to five times the employees because they must do every process once on paper and then again on computer," says Taro Hitachi a technical editor and patent reader at Hitachi. "Do you see the pattern here? Japanese aren't all that happy about spiteful machines and distrust automation."
Check out the full piece, too. It's got great color.
Via Matt Novak
Alexis C. Madrigal is a staff writer at The Atlantic and the author of Powering the Dream: The History and Promise of Green Technology.