July 25, 2009

 The First Time Interaction with Malaysian Friends!

20090725_unimaswebcam.JPG Today, we have done the first time interaction through Webcam with Malaysian friends. Although, we experienced cut-off of the Internet connection in the rehearsal due to thunder storm which often occurs in Malaysia, we overcame the problems and participants successfully enjoyed the activity. Children, 21 at Kyoto and 20 at Malaysia, felt closer each other through the Webcam beyond distance, language and culture.

This time, we practiced the brand-new activity 'Nazoren'. We needed to conquer language difference since it was a kind of the word association game. To cope with this, we applied the machinery translation system of 'Language Grid Project' and children made communication through real time chat. Children was typing hints on the key board and waiting for answers. When chatting communication made sense successfully, both sides cheered gladly. Children's impression towards today's activity, such as 'I understood Malaysian friends were so warm', 'I was so glad to be called my name', or 'I do want to see them again', exactly expresses their enjoyable time.


Thanks to kind cooperation from many supporters, the activity succeeded safely. We, Pangaea, deeply appreciate it. We intend to widen such Pangaea activity network for children worldwide. If you are interested or have any enquiries, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Takekazu Hanada a.k.a Hana-pooh
Chief Administrative Officer

Posted by: kumakinoko | 1. Activity Report | Permalink

July 06, 2009

 July 06 Newsletter: Yumi's Monthly Note

The rainy season started in Japan. Since then, temperature has gone up to over 30C in Kyoto, which is slightly odd in June. Of course, humidity started to rise and has stayed high. This unusual hot weather arrived like an unwelcome guest. Geeeez, it is really bugging me.

Talking about influenza, initially I was going to visit Thailand to attend a conference at the beginning of June. However, the conference has been postponed due to the global spread of influenza. Seemingly the flu outbreak has forced the cancellation not only of our activities, but also of public events across the world. The good news is - influenza seems to be now under control in Japan. In early May, nearly everyone was wearing surgical masks both in Osaka and Kyoto, but recently I have seen very few people wearing them. And then, bad news once again... I just received the news from Sarawak, Malaysia: it also has reached Sarawak, so that our upcoming activity scheduled for late June was canceled. Sigh... I am getting worried about our July Webcam Activity connecting between Malaysia and Kyoto. Hope the webcam activity will be held on schedule.

Well, our new term began in Mie, Japan, with support from Tsu City Board of Education and Mie University. On June 13, we got 10 brand-new facilitators at Mie University. Those facilitators were recruited by Mr. Hitoshi Susono, professor at Mie University. He is not only a new liaison between Mie University and Pangaea, but also an enthusiastic promoter of Pangaea. I remember the first day he visited our activity site at Mie University - in spite of heavy snow. It was Saturday and he showed his warm feelings toward our children during our activity.

Every year around this time, we arrange and provide our training sessions at our activity sites. I used to go visit every activity site to train our facilitators. Now I have been handing over the task to our chief administrative officer, aka Hanapooh. This is because we reassigned our tasks in order to create positive changes for Pangaea. Expectedly, Hanapooh became a dependable trainer and goes to our activity sites to offer training sessions. Meanwhile, I am spending my extra time on planning our financial strategies.

This is our announcement regarding "The Pangaea Seminar and Workshop 2009." It will take place on August 22- 23 in Tokyo. Last year we held our summer camp near Mt. Fuji so as to exchange our ideas to improve the Pangaea Project. This year our "retreat" aims at letting more people know our project as well as at recruiting new members. We have invited three guest speakers: Mr. Inoue, Ishida, and Sanada.

Mr. Inoue joined NTT and supervised the department of research and development. Currently, he is the president of the Telecommunication Technology Committee and has been actively working with Asian countries. That is why he could be a bridge between Sarawak and Pangaea to launch the Pangaea Project in Malaysia. Actually, I was introduced to Mr. Inoue at the luncheon meeting held in Thailand last year. The meeting was organized by the CyberBrain Project, started by the Agricultural Land Reform Office (ALRO) to support farming communities in Thailand. Representatives of those communities were also invited to the meeting. Perhaps I might have lost my mind..., during the meeting, Mr. Inoue and I went up on stage to sing and dance together. I can easily share my thoughts with him because he is very approachable, plus, we have many things in common. For instance, basically we are both inquisitive, and things that make my blood boil are similar to his. Most importantly, we care about children! He applied for our membership on the day we met at the meeting in Thailand.

Prof. Ishida is a pioneer of the Language Grid. Prof. Sanada is an economist and has been serving as our board member. Those three specialists will share their perspectives on what's happening in the world. Please come join our Seminar and Workshop.

Ms. Ayako Edahiro is the Pangaea Ring writer for this month. She is a multitasking volunteer for Pangaea. She designed our original website and blog. In addition, she has been helping us as a volunteer translator as well.
Thanks a trillion!


Posted by: kumakinoko | 3. Newsletter | Permalink

 July 06 Newsletter: Pangaea Ring: Ms. Ayako Edahiro

Ms. Ayako Edahiro is the Pangaea Ring writer for this month. She is a multitasking volunteer for Pangaea. She designed our original website and blog. In addition, she has been helping us as a volunteer translator as well.
Thanks a trillion!

Hi, I'm Ayako Edahiro, a Pangaea volunteer. I work for personnel affairs in City Bank, the global financial group headquartered in the U.S. I learned about Pangaea for the first time in the fall of 2003 when I heard "There is an amazing project bonding children all over the world through the internet" from Ms. Keiko Yamamoto, my close friend from college days. She is a reporter of NHK and was introduced to this Pangaea Ring. I couldn't understand exactly what Pangaea was at that moment. However I was very impressed by her when she talked about a huge-scale project with bright eyes. I remember she wasn't satisfied with my comment, "you're such a mysterious person", but I had intended to have praised her very much.

Later on, I had a chance to meet Ms. Mori and Mr. Takasaki through Ms. Keiko Yamamoto in the fall of 2005. When I summarized what I had heard from them at the end of 2005, I felt something strongly knocked at the door of my heart and I felt happy that they didn't die in the attacks on September 11, 2001. Because it was so strong that the door would break if I left it, I e-mailed Ms Mori immediately to tell her that I wanted to help Pangaea. She replied soon as I expected. I remember this happened on New Year's Eve. Since then I've been helping Pangaea by update and translation of the homepage and a setup of the blog.

As for my wishes for Pangaea in the future, I hope the Pangaea activity will continue forever and expand all over the world by becoming an aspect from lines as well as the line from points. I'm very happy to help Pangaea with this.

Ayako Edahiro, Volunteer

Posted by: kumakinoko | 3. Newsletter , 4. Pangaea Ring | Permalink