Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.


House of Light from Joichi Ito on Vimeo.

Joshua read about the House of Light designed by James Turrell on PingMag. We decided to try to get a group together to go out and stay there. As usual, we both got so busy, we ended up going by ourselves.

The art installation/house is in Tokamachi, Niigata, which is relatively out-of-the way in the countryside of Japan. The area is well known for the Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennial. The House of Light or 光の館, is a beautiful house that can hold seven people. It has a Japanese style bath, sleeping quarters and a kitchen. The main event a room that goes through a subtle light display during sunrise and sunset. The ceiling opens up framing the sky in the lighting around the ceiling of the room.

The whole house as a very Japanese-style attention-to-detail, a practical and livable layout and a well-designed art installation feeling.

I'd recommend it for any group of up to seven people who want to spend a weekend together in a beautiful and peaceful place.

I took some photos as well as the video above.

Downloadable MP4

This year, the Digital Garage New Context Conference and Ellen Levy's Silicon Valley Connect worked together on a program for visitors from Silicon Valley to Tokyo. Silicon Valley Connect is a program that Ellen runs which brings executives and visionaries from Silicon Valley to various parts of the world. This year, we organized a group to visit Japan.

As part of the "cultural program" we decided to take a tour of Akihabara, the mecca of all things otaku, anime and electronic in Japan. I asked a very special friend, Danny Choo, son of the famous shoe designer Jimmy Choo, to lead the tour. I call Danny "The Prince of Akihabara". He is one of the world's experts on Japan's otaku culture and has one of the most popular English language websites about Japan.

One of his favorite things is to dress up as a storm trooper and spread his love and happiness in Akihabara. He is often accompanied by his side-kick Darth Vader, played by Hector Garcia who also has a super-popular blog about Japan. (Danny on CNN talking about this hobby of his.)

When I talked to Xeni Jardin about this, we decided that this might make a good Boing Boing TV episode... and I think we were right.

Thanks to everyone who participated and helped.

Participants from Silicon Valley included Ellen Levy (LinkedIn), Ken Glidewell, Loic Le Meur (Seesmic), Geraldine Le Meur (Le Web), bunnie Huang (Chumby), Jean-Marie Hullot (Fotonauts), Matt Flannery (Kiva), Julie Hanna Farris (SocialText) and Chamath Palihapitiya (Facebook).

Enjoy.

As announced [ http://creativecommons.org/press-releases/entry/9554 ], Creative Commons is studying how people understand the term "noncommercial use". At this stage of research, we are reaching out to the Creative Commons community and to anyone else interested in public copyright licenses - would you please take a few minutes to participate in our study by responding to this questionnaire [ http://v2.decipherinc.com/survey/mds/mds08002?list=2 ]? Your response will be anonymous - we won't collect any personal information that could reveal your identity.

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Mizuka and Joi's Wedding from Joichi Ito on Vimeo.

Mizuka and I just got married. We went to the Inbamura town hall, filed our papers and visited the local Shinto shrine, Munakata Shrine.

It's the second marriage for both of us so we decided to keep it pretty minimal.

The only non-minimal thing was setting up and taking shots of ourselves...

UPDATE: Message from the WITNESS team. Thanks!


Congratulations Joi & Mizuka from WITNESS from Blogger WITNESS on Vimeo.


Six Apart Japan 5th Anniversary Party from Joichi Ito on Vimeo.

Today was the fifth anniversary of Six Apart Japan. I had to talk about how it all started and tell funny stories about Nob.

I decided to try to shoot people for today's video. I experimented with timing my transitions with music. I used Garage Band to make the "music".

I was using the cheesy random loops as a place holder and was going to try to do a real track, but I ran out of steam for the night...

Also, some of the colors seem blown out and the white balance seems a bit off. I guess I need to start looking into either white balancing more properly in the camera or post processing the color.

I wonder how long I can keep this one video a day thing going...

I used a Canon 5D Mark II with a 85mm f/1.2 lens. Shot in 1080i, edited with Final Cut Express, exported to 720p. Music made with Garage Band.

Make sure you watch the video in "HD" mode.