Tech

Artificial intelligence will learn from research papers and suggest compounds that may work to cure diseases, helping to slash the time and effort needed to develop new drugs.

Japan tapping AI to revolutionize drug development

TOKYO -- The Japanese government seeks to have researchers use artificial intelligence to streamline the development of new drugs, aiming to boost the nation's competitive advantage.The health ministry plans to make such technology available to pharm...

  • Japan moves step closer to scrapping trouble-prone Monju reactor

    TOKYO (Kyodo) -- The government decided Wednesday to rethink its policy on the plutonium-burning Monju fast-breeder reactor that has hardly operated over the past 20 years despite its intended key role in Japan's nuclear fuel recycling policy."Regard...

  • Looming shutdown casts shadow on Japan's reactor research

    TOKYO -- With the permanent shutdown of the Monju experimental reactor all but certain, the Japanese government is left scrambling to replace the cornerstone of its nuclear fuel recycling program.Monju, the fast-breeder reactor located in Fukui Prefe...

  • To bionic suits, logistics workers say thanks but no thanks

    TOKYO -- Robotic exoskeletons are designed to help with heavy lifting. Yet in a survey of Nippon Express staffers, 60-70% complained of extra fatigue.

  • Smartphone tech helping control drones from 60km away

    TOKYO -- The same network technology that Japan's smartphone users rely on is being tested to control drones up to 60km away. If commercialized, the method could speed up the proliferation of drones in the distribution, security and other industries.

  • With launch of second lab, China takes another step in space

    BEIJING -- With yesterday's successful launch of the Tiangong-2 space laboratory, China has moved closer to its ultimate goal of building and operating its own space station.In October, China plans to launch a manned spacecraft to the space lab. Astr...

  • Ferrotec to launch 200mm wafer production in China

    TOKYO -- Targeting increased demand from China's chipmakers, Japan's Ferrotec is set to invest 8 billion yen ($78.1 million) to begin local production of 200mm silicon wafers.The company, which makes parts for semiconductors and LCD manufacturing sys...

  • Japan's JSR puts $5m into 3-D printing startup

    TOKYO -- Japanese synthetic-rubber maker JSR has invested $5 million in Carbon3D of the U.S. with the hope of amping up its own 3-D printing business.Carbon's printers craft solid objects from a pool of liquid resin by applying ultraviolet light and ...

  • Researchers to develop Japanese-style AI

    TOKYO -- Japan is about to launch a gigantic industry-government-academia project to develop artificial intelligence technology matching the nation's specific needs.The project will include one of the country's biggest research centers, set up in the...

  • Japan aims to make 20% of autos driverless by 2030

    TOKYO -- The Japanese government is looking to have one out of every five cars autonomous by 2030, as part of the "fourth industrial revolution" initiative to revitalize the economy.A proposal containing that goal will be presented during Tuesday's m...

  • Robot chefs help alleviate labor shortage in Japan

    TOKYO -- The use of robots in the kitchens in Japan is going beyond mere novelty, as the machines not only fill in labor gaps, but also prepare dishes with greater precision than any human can manage.

  • Paralympics are showcase for cutting-edge assistive devices

    TOKYO -- The Rio de Janeiro Paralympics, which started on Wednesday, are a big event for manufacturers that support the athletes with cutting-edge technology. In Japan, makers of assistive devices are already looking ahead to the next Paralympic Game...

  • The company that helps Tesla make aluminum look sexy

    TOKYO -- Meet the old-school metal die-maker that can found new life doing what few other companies can do -- shaping high-tech metals for the cars of tomorrow.

  • Some Rio wheelchair marathoners will be racing in Hondas

    TOKYO -- Honda Motor, wheelchair maker.The Japanese automotive icon is trying to help Japanese athletes succeed at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Paralympics, which started on Wednesday. Besides developing sport-specific wheelchairs, Honda also uses 3-D tec...

  • Russia takes a page from Elon Musk

    MOSCOW -- Russia is working around the clock to develop its own version of the Hyperloop, a futuristic high-speed transport system proposed by U.S. entrepreneur Elon Musk. Construction of a route linking the Russian Far East and northeastern China is...

  • Lifeboat in a box: Northeast Japan's new marine rescue service

    KAMAISHI, Japan -- A British charity has set up one of Japan's first community-run marine rescue services in a region devastated by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami."This beach used to be full during the summer," laments hotelier Akiko Iwasaki as she ...

  • Japan has big plans for microsatellites

    TOKYO -- Even in the vastness of space, useful things come in small packages. These packages take the form of so-called microsatellites, which are significantly cheaper to launch than their full-size counterparts. Japan is hoping to turn the contrapt...

  • Japan to develop 3-D maps for self-driving cars

    TOKYO -- A joint venture in Japan will begin creating high-definition 3-D maps for self-driving cars in September as part of a government effort to have such vehicles on the road by 2020, when the Tokyo Summer Olympics will be held.Tokyo-based Dynami...

  • The technology that makes 'Pokemon Go'

    TOKYO -- Over a month has passed since the release of "Pokemon Go" in Japan. The initial frenzy may have died down, but not before the game was listed in the Guinness World Records as the world's most downloaded mobile game in its first month.But jus...

  • Japanese from all walks of life discovering fintech's power

    TOKYO -- For everyone from dairy farmers to white-collar workers, the marriage of finance and technology is creating new opportunities and simply making life a little easier.A prime example of fintech -- as the magic combination has become known -- i...