Category Archives: Japan

Retro event in Akihabara: MyCOM Infinite PRO-68K

Posted by in Culture,Gadgets,Hardware,Japan,MSX,Retro,Technology | November 23, 2015

Yesterday I attended MyCOM Infinite PRO-68K, a small event about retro computers at the conference floor of the Akihabara UDX building.

I arrived a little bit after 1pm, in the middle of a talk by Mr. Mikito Ichikawa, president of Mindware.

Mr. Ichikawa during his talk (Click to enlarge)

Mr. Ichikawa during his talk (Click to enlarge)

The lights were dimmed during the talk, so I waited until it ended before visiting the stands.

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Let me explain with a quick diagram…

Posted by in Culture,Fun,Japan,Pets | September 12, 2015

Today I took Yuki to the vet for her vaccination. I always take her to the Nomura Veterinary Clinic in Nakano because this doctor is especialized in exotic pets. Not just ferrets, but all kind of animals that other doctors wouldn’t even dare to touch. Almost everybody in Tokyo who owns a ferret brings his to this clinic.


As an example, one day I saw a man come to Dr. Nomura with his 5-6 marmosets on his back . Click to enlarge.

Dr. Nomura’s clinic is a bit far from home, so I can’t just take Yuki and bring her there. I have to put her in her carrier cage and either take the train (inconvenient) or a taxi. We took a taxi today.


Yuki relaxing in her carrier on the taxi to the vet.

Every time you take your pet to Dr. Nomura he does a checkup to check that your little furry (or scaly, if you’re bringing a snake) is healthy. Usually there are no problems and your pet gets a vaccine or some other medication, and then you pay and go home.

Today it was a bit different…

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New retro shop opening in Akihabara

Posted by in Gadgets,Hardware,Japan,MSX,Retro,Technology | September 5, 2015

Good news for all retro computer users, including MSX:

A new retro shop will be opening in Akihabara during the next few weeks. The name: BEEP.

According to their still under construction website (, they’ll deal with retro computers, retro games, arcade games, and fanmade items. In the updates they’re posting on Twitter (@BEEP_akihabara) we can see that they have lots and lots of MSX-related stuff, including several piles of unopened, brand new Pioneer PX-V60 MSX computers that they’re selling for 19,800 yen each (they sell used ones for 8,000 yen).

They’re planning to open during the Japanese silver week, which is the week from September 21st to 25th. Unfortunately, that week I’ll be traveling out of the country, so I really, really hope they get a bit delayed so I can attend during the opening. :-)

Take a look at their Twitter feed: it’s worth it.

Twitter: @BEEP_akihabara


Akihabara BEEP
Nakaei Building (basement)
3-9-8 Sotokanda, Chiyoda-ku
Tokyo 101-0021

Japanese books for retro computer fans

Posted by in Hardware,Japan,MSX,Retro,Technology | May 25, 2015

During a conversation on Facebook earlier today I mentioned a couple of books by Japanese author Hiroyuki Maeda, and I promised to post more information later. These books are for retro computer fans, even those who can’t understand Japanese. Mr. Maeda has published several books about retro computers and game consoles, but in this post I’ll talk about two of them:

  • 懐かしのホビーパソコンガイドブック (The Nostalgic Hobby PC Guidebook, ISBN 978-4-7755-2339-1)
  • 海外のゲーム&パソコンガイドブック (The Oversea’s Game & PC Guidebook, ISBN 978-4-7755-2419-0)

Left: The Oversea’s Game & PC Guidebook. Right: The Nostalgic Hobby PC Guidebook.

These books contain lots of information about hundreds of computer systems and consoles from the late 70s to the early 90s. Keep reading for a taste of what’s inside

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Sony Design exhibition in Ginza: MAKING MODERN

Posted by in Culture,Design,Japan,MSX,Retro,Technology | May 6, 2015

If you’re following me on Facebook or Twitter then you already learnt about this earlier today:

This morning we went to Ginza for some important shopping, and afterwards we headed for the Sony Building. The reason: an exhibition opened there last week about the design of Sony products, and they have on display one of the coolest-looking MSX computers ever produced: a red HIT-BIT HB-101.

Place: Sony Building (8th floor), Ginza
Admission fee: Free
Companion book: Sony Design: Making Modern
Held from April 29th to June 14th, 2015

Sony HIT-BIT HB-101 (Red)

Sony HIT-BIT HB-101 (Red). Click to enlarge.

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18 meter tall, 30 meter long dinosaur spotted in Shinjuku

Posted by in Fun,Japan,MSX,Retro | January 17, 2015

Well, this actually happened almost thirty years ago, and it wasn’t a real dinosaur.

For years I’d been hearing about the dinosaur that Mr. Kazuhiko Nishi planted in the middle of Shinjuku to commemorate one million MSX computers sold. However, I never saw any real, detailed information about this, so I kept it inside the “Unverified stories that may or may not be true” drawer inside my brain.

Recently, while reading old MSX Magazines I came across a report about this event, so here’s a report on the report.


MSX Dinosaur Land (MSX Magazine, February 1986). Click to enlarge

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Posted by in Fun,Gadgets,Hardware,Japan,MSX,Retro,Technology | January 15, 2015

Today I had to go to Akihabara for work and something caught my attention in an electronics shop not far from the station:


What’s is this sorcery!!?? MSX cartridges? Sound boards??

In the background there was playing one of Salamander‘s themes, with perfect timing and perfect instruments. Initially I thought this was a custom-built MSX computers, but it wasn’t.

Keep reading for the details.

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Computer ads from the 80s are hilarious

Posted by in Fun,Japan,MSX,Non-important,Retro,Stupidity | December 13, 2014

“Imagine how much more fun we would be having if we plugged it in!”

MSX Magazine (Japan), November 1984 issue

MSX Magazine (Japan), November 1984 issue

Hakone again

Posted by in Japan,Personal | December 6, 2014


We’re spending the weekend in Hakone with the family. Last time I came here was probably April last year, if I remember correctly. It suddenly started snowing a lot on the way to the hotel, and now it is sunny again.

It’s going to be an interesting weekend.

Spaceship lands in the middle of Shibuya

Posted by in Architecture,Japan,Photography | November 30, 2014

Well, not really. It’s just the Humax Pabillion building.