A chameleon-like vehicle that changes color according to the driver's mood, suggests destinations based on facial expressions, and warns of cars in blind spots forms part of Toyota Motor Corp.'s vision for the future.
The color-changing car is among the concept models that Toyota plans to display at the biennial Tokyo Motor Show this month. Still a work-in-progress, the vehicle codenamed Toyota FV2 presents applications that engineers envision may come out of the automaker's research into humanoid robots and their use of facial and voice recognition.
Toyota joins automakers including General Motors Co. in introducing computer-assisted technology that helps reduce accidents and human error on the road, and may eventually allow cars to drive themselves. Mountain View, Calif.-based Google Inc., operator of the largest Web search engine, has been testing driverless cars in the U.S.
Toyota will also display a concept version of a hydrogen-powered car at the Tokyo show as part of plans to introduce a fuel-cell vehicle around 2015.
Government figures show a sharp and continuous fall-off in the number of farmers over the past five years that potentially threatens the landscape as its stewards leave the sector and are not replaced. (Japan Times)
Japan plans to boost financial aid to developing countries to help them tackle climate change by providing about ¥1.3 trillion (about $10.6 billion) a year by 2020, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Thursday. (The Japan News)
Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Friday re-arrested more than a dozen suspects, including one organized crime member, as a part of an ongoing health insurance fraud investigation that now includes comedians affiliated with a major entertainment agency, reports Sports Hochi (Nov. 28). (Tokyo Reporter)
No major gangster bloodbath has occurred in the three months since Japan's largest yakuza organization, Yamaguchi-gumi, split into two rival mobs, but to say the sides are living in harmony would be an exaggeration. (Asahi)
A 60-year-old man in Tochigi Prefecture, northeast of Tokyo, who claims to be an exorcist was arrested Thursday on suspicion of killing a diabetic boy by halting the administration of insulin, police said. (Japan Today)