The World Computer Cowboy Championship the 3rd, Day 2

September 26, 2009

This is a continuation of the post about the World Computer Cowboy Championship day 1. The excitement of the previous day still remained among cowboys, and another excitement, day 2, came.

Day 2

The keynote for day 2 was given by Shinji Higuchi. 
He is a famous animation and SFX director in Japan and let us hear about the “Tokusatsu,” the special effects used for animation and films. Based on his experience as the director of Japan Sinks, Evangelion, Gamera series, and so forth.

keynote 2

He said that  the way to create attractive  and amazing visual effects is to add spice of something new to current technology. So he expects that better technology and better programming will make his film more attractive.

What he said important is that both artificial and natural elements are necessary to keep his SFX real. Excess of the digital defeats the real and excess of the real also defeats the digital. The balance of two is a key.


180 Rodeos: General

As Day 1, after the keynote, 180 Rodeos were given. That time was for general people. Thanks many challengers for joining the Rodeo! I would like to introduce all, but sorry, it is too many to do it. So,  I will introduce the three who won the prizes.

Kaisei Hamamoto
His BlogPolis is the search engine which visualize the popularity of blogs. This engine will possibly be applied to other systems, not only blog. He won the 1st prize in the whole 180 rodeos! congratulations!

Sunao Hashimoto
Picopon, the abbreviation of “Pico projector and Wii remote controller,” which project an image by the same way as normal Wii controller. This was the first prize in General section.

Takashi Ogura
He won the second prize in General section. His humanoid robot has iPhone 3G on his face.
The speaker, microphone, and camera became a mouth, ears, and eyes respectively. The robot wakes you up by tapping you physically!


Cowboy Rodeos

Takuma Iwasa(the president of Cerevo and known as “Waren-osyo”)
Cerevo is a maker of home electronics. His topic was about the projects to change the consumer electronics. The topic’s interesting point was the camera connect to network and share the photos on the internet. such as Cerevo Cam or DevCam project.

Kinya Tagawa (design engineer and the founder of takram)
takram is the company whose developing approaches is based on both design and engineering. The company developed many interesting products such as Phasma, i-Widget and Afterglow. In addition to that, he emphasized the importance of demonstration as well as  specification. To confirm the relevance of abstract planning, he always does concrete proof.

Naoko Tosa (a professor of Kyoto University and a media artist)
Her rodeo topic is about cultural computing and a software which connect culture, unconsciousness, and imagination.  Noticing the importance of own culture, she tries to add it to computers which tried to globalize to excluded the local uniqueness. In Zenetic Computer, which featured Japanese Culture and Sansui-zen, her unique project are fully expressed.


Shiroh Kawai (the developer of Gauche and an actor)
An expert of LISP talked about, of course, LISP. LISP can cheat and change the limitation of program. He also questions the rules of physics that we naturally take for granted and suggested the possibility to change it.


Isamu Kaneko
He talked about a new humanoid model. Based on real neuroanatomy, he analyzed the study model and pattern of reword gaining learning process. His goal is to equip the artificial human brain with computer!

Toshiyuki Masui (the developer of POBox and a professor of Keio University)
He suggested the smooth information communication in the future without “redundant” processes, such as registration, password, naming the files, and so forth. The samples systems are such as gyazz and Gyazo. His wide range of user interface research is aimed at realization of ubiquitous computing and smooth information communication.



His rodeo was the end of Day 2. All programs of Cowboy Championship has done. It was so exciting and impressive experience for us. Tokuriki said on his blog that the Cowboy Championship was an event like TED. He also pointed out that people with the same interests tend to gather in the same topic on the internet, but the Cowboy Championship added the elements of entertainment and design to it so that something new would be created as a chemical reaction. (translation mine)  

Ito said on his article in Ascii, that if I say in commonplace words, it gave me an energy. In other words, it showed me the bright future certainly waiting for us by smart brain and surprisingly wide knowledge. (translation mine) 

We believe that people who came to the event certainly got something in theirselves. Also we are really happy if people enjoy the event and the event showed you something helpful or hopeful.

To win the championship, developers should polish their skills, and their polished skills will develop more useful, helpful or creative things.  We hope such merit cycle would be happened by this Championship where from students to specialists involve.

Also, for ubiquitous computing, technology or idea should not always be exclusive. It would be better to be shared with a variety of people and to be understandable for non-experts too. 

Hoping that these events could provide some merit cycle, we think about the next WCCC.


WCCC operation team

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