In 2007 I graduated university and decided to work as a freelance feature writer for a pop culture magazine. I mainly wrote about documentary film reviews and director's interviews. For me, the most valuable experience was being involved in journalism. I met and interviewed Kazuhiro Soda, a Peabody Award winning film maker as well as journalist. I was strongly influenced by his filmmaking style, called the observational method of documentary filmmaking. In his film 'MENTAL' he recorded in a mental health clinic without any pre-shoot research or writing a script beforehand. In the film, Soda tried to reveal the boundary between normality and so-called abnormality.
Through these experiences, I realized that the one truth which a journalist reveals with his own eyes and feet appeals to people on a deep level and has power to provoke social discussion.
Since the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami until today (albeit just by coincidence), I have been heavily involved in science and technology journalism. Science and technology strongly impacts on modern society, from the Fukushima meltdowns to AI being the biggest eliminator of human jobs. I realized that observing from perspective of science and technology is the best way to understand the human condition.
As a freelance feature writer and journalist, I works on a lot of publications, including technology and science journal WIRED Japanese edition and investment and business journal Forbes JAPAN. In recent years, I recognized that more people living in modern society need a storyteller who can give an account of a narrative context between high-level science or advanced technology and current society, because like AI, cutting-edge science and technology have the possibility to transform our future drastically, regardless of our will.
I believe that our future should not simply be in what science and technology transform, but in what we strive for. That is why people need a storyteller for this field.
One of my feature works in WIRED Japanese edition is an article about the boundary between technology and humanity covering Cybathlon.
Cybathlon is the innovative competition for people with disabilities held in Switzerland on the 8th of October, 2016. Unlike the Paralympics, participants uses advanced assistive technology, such as powered arms and legs, exoskeletons and brain machine interfaces that enable people with disabilities to handle tasks, walk or to control devices.
Cybathlon was a state-of-art attempt to break down the barrier which people with disabilities face today. I saw the truth with my own eyes that the barrier of social awareness could not be broken down only through technology, but by also cultivating understanding for people with disabilities, healthy social diversity and man's everlasting passion.
Besides my work, I visited many countries and had valuable experiences, including staying at a hacker house in silicon valley with entrepreneurs from many countries and staying in the heart of Manhattan with dancers living in New York. In my university, studying languages, I learnt how to get along with people of different cultural backgrounds and this experiences has always greatly helped my work.
Many people in modern society increasingly live their lives online where they are forced to put themselves in “filter bubbles” created by algorithms and social media. In this digital life, people are divided into homogenous group in which all people have similar opinions, and unfortunately, they never break out of these bubbles.
Through working for WIRED Japanese edition, I become keenly aware that in this digital age, one story created by one story-teller's feet, eyes and ears will be the only way to destroy these filter bubbles and stimulate people to be more healthy and creative.
In science and technology journalism today, I think that a sense of inter-disciplinary cooperation is strongly needed. Therefore, I realized that I need to see and understand the human condition today, not only through science and technology, but also through areas such as culture, society, politics, ethics, and philosophy.