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Japan’s Ludic Futurism

Researchers from the University of Tokyo have teamed up with members of the Japan Origami Airplane Association to develop a paper aircraft capable of surviving the flight from the International Space Station to the Earth?s surface.

Seriously. A super-paper-aeroplane that can withstand re-entry.

At the Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, a research team led by professor Shigeki Toyama has developed a wearable power-assist robot suit designed to boost the strength of farmers working in the field.

Their plan is to have it out for retail within four years, for under USD $10,000. All of which may not sound all that ludens — but if they can bring it in under $10K (their target is $4500), then all kind of mad modders, dorkbots and circuitbenders are going to get hold of that thing and do strange things with it.

Launching a paper aeroplane from a space station: that’s a playful future. One day, that plane might be caught by some laughing welder girl doing powersuit Le Parkour over Shibuya.

Both links from the rather fantastic Pink Tentacle.

Published in researchmaterial