Even when BLACK graduated from university, couldn't make yo-yo as an everyday job and became a systems engineer reluctantly. He was depressed, lost and felt "I'm dead". Not only him, most yo-yo champions were not valued by society and he wanted to change that environment. He quit from the company and started new career as a professional performer in 2007 to aim performing yo-yo in Cirque du Soleil to change public's image of the yo-yo. He merged ballet, jazz dance, acrobatics and even choreography from video games into his performance. His passionate attitude even brought him to original TED conference as a TED speaker in 2013. And in 2014, finally, BLACK began performing in Cirque's show Kurios: Cabinet of Curiosities as their first yo-yo artist in Cirque's history. BLACK’s goal these days is to tell people how to make the dream comes true to let them enjoy the life filled with happiness through his performance and talk.
Abigail Terrien believes we can be trendy and still keep the Earth clean and green by buying organic, fair-trade and biodegradable goods. Her quest began when the Swiss and English entrepreneur came to Japan from France with a newborn in her arms. Wanting to provide most natural baby clothes, toys and other products for her children and friends children, Abi started bringing in products that matched her expectations on sustainability. Others took notice. She opened up Small Is More, a popup shop in central Tokyo dedicated to offering eco-friendly fashion, accessories and lifestyle for kids as well as various workshops, entertainment and a cafe. Abi’s newest project is called MyOrganic.City—a guide to cities with nice places to eat and shop that offer healthier, more natural options yet retain the trendy touch globetrotters prefer, with Tokyo as the launch point.
If you’re looking for the model of a Renaissance woman, we suggest Helene Liu. She has an academic background in business and finance, and has managed a portfolio of companies in the cosmetics and fashion industries. Yet she also founded The MasterMinds—a niche consulting firm dealing in creative leadership and corporate culture transformation—after observing that most issues plaguing corporations and individuals spring from mental models. There’s more. After earning a master’s degree in Buddhist studies from the University of Hong Kong in May 2015, Helene joined Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s School of Design as a Ph.D. student last September to research the role of design in behavior engineering on social media, with a special focus on Instagram. A certified firewalk trainer and hypnotist, Helene is also performing artist, having appeared on stage as an amateur actress, singer and dancer for the last two decades.
Humans have five senses, one of them being taste. And Hiromi Nakamura is changing the norms for how taste is experienced using a new technology of the 21st century, electric flavoring, and computer science to solve dietary problems common in this generation. Hiromi was originally a music major at university, but the various types of technology and research used for media art fascinated her, and she eventually made a radical switch to studying human-computer interaction. Starting her research on electric flavoring in 2010, she proposed "A New Food Content Using Electric Flavoring" at 2010's Unexplored IT Talent・Personnel Training Project, and earned the title of “Super Creator.” Over the years she has been refining a prototype of an “electric flavoring utensil,” which controls taste by delivering electricity to the tongue through the food.
Hiroshi joined the MIT Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1995 at the age of thirty-nine, and looks back at this event as the “reboot” of his life. His research now focuses upon the design of seamless tangible interfaces between humans, digital information and the physical environment, seeking to change the “painted bits” of GUIs to “tangible bits” by giving physical form to digital information. In 2012, he presented a new vision he calls “Radical Atoms” that takes a leap beyond tangible bits by using the power of computation to build a new, dynamic digital and physical medium for artistic expression, design and communication meant to breathe life into static forms. The CHI Academy—which focuses on the computer-human interface—made him a member in 2006 in recognition of the global influence of his research and longstanding achievements.
Rinna is an AI, and Microsoft developer Kazuna Tsuboi and her team created her. Already 4.6 million users have connected with Rinna through SNS and enjoy friendly chats with her. Rinna was developed with the objective of creating an AI that could emotionally connect with users in conversations. They succeeded: Her witty and striking comments and emphatic reactions are so human that some are convinced a real human being is behind all this. Kazuna’s next goal is to use this advanced technology to help individuals and businesses interested in establishing good relationships with people.
Meanwhile, this school girl just keeps getting smarter, and the world awaits her evolution with excitement.
Curiosity and creativity have always been integral in Mike's life. Growing up, Mike always supplemented his academic studies with activities that enabled him to express his creativity. At UC Berkeley, Mike pursued a degree in Cognitive Science because he was fascinated with the workings of the brain - while also choreographing and dancing for The Movement, a hip hop dance group on campus. The combination of creativity and curiosity came to an intersection in 2006 when Mike joined global design and innovation firm IDEO.Today, he leads a team in Japan to help catalyze change and unlock the country's creative confidence. Mike believes that the eternal thirst for curiosity should never be quenched -- it opens our minds and hearts to feel things we've never felt, learn things that can never be taught.
Aloha. More than a simple greeting, that single Hawaiian word is an entire way of life. Shenan “Shen” Brown, a musician who grew up on Oahu, believes in the spirit of aloha. As one half of the renowned Jawaiian group Def Tech along with Yuki “Micro” Nishimiya, he’s gone on to drop eight albums full of positive reggae-influenced island vibes and sell five million copies. In December 2015, Shen decided to launch a movement to proactively spread the aloha spirit. In addition to writing music and performing, doing talk sessions and media appearances, he now serves as an “aloha ambassador.” Shen says the spirit of aloha is the key to opening your heart to connect and communicate in a constructive way, and he wants you to share the harmony. Just like you’d expect, membership in the movement is free and easy.
Shizuka Aoi tumbled into the world of gymnastics at the age of six and continued it until college, leaving a great record of accomplishments at many major competitions. Making great use of the physical talents she had acquired from gymnastics, she dove into the realm of dance while attending university.
While performing on numerous stages and actively working as a choreographer, she created an entertainment group, Sadalsuud, which fuses both elements of dance and gymnastics.
With top-class gymnasts and dancers of Japan, she continues to create new and unique stage shows.
Currently, she makes performance shows collaborating with gymnastics and also works on creating choreography for artists.
"I want to create things that only I can create."
Her challenging pursuit to push the limits of dance and performance art continues to this day.
Nuclear Reformer and Green Power Proponent.
Tetsu Iida was a leading figure in the antinuclear and renewable energy movements long before the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in 2011. He believes power in Japan should be clean, green and 100 percent renewable, and focuses on exponential changes in the renewable energy as well as IT area. Tetsu sees the potential to reform the structures of society worldwide. He believes that the people rather than government will drive reform, so we must make global connections to encourage that transformation. As a social entrepreneur, he’s established several entities—the Japan Community Power Network, Fukushima Renewable Future Fund and Renewable Energy Institute—to promote renewable energy. He also works in Yamaguchi and other local society to spark a “creative local society of the 21st century.
目標や夢を前にして大切なことは言い訳しないこと。 「でもお金がないから」「でも時間がないから」「でも才能がないから」。 「でも」という言葉で自分を縛らない。それからバランスをとろうとしないこと。本当にやりたいことがあるのなら、極端でいいのだ。 最後に自意識とプライドを捨てる。バリアを張らない。プライドなんて捨てれば、誰にでも声をかけられるし、なんにでも挑戦できる。それが堀江貴文の持論。 1972年福岡県八女市生まれ。1996年、東京大学在学中に、インターネット関連会社の有限会社オン・ザ・エッヂ（後のライブドア）を起業。2000年東証マザーズ上場。 国内最大級のオンラインサロン「堀江貴文イノベーション大学校（HIU）」を主宰。 近著に『なんでお店が儲からないのかを僕が解決する』がある。