A Thought on the Technology of “Eden of the East”

Hey guys! Samurai here! Back in May, I wrote up a small article about the technology of the anime “Chobits” and how it was similar to the technology currently being employed in the modern-day; specifically with regards to mobile communication devices. I compared the little persocom Sumomo with my phone, a HTC Inspire 4G. Well, a few months later, and it’s time for me to upgrade my little road warrior to something a bit more reliable and full of helpful features. Which got me thinking–wouldn’t it be awesome if I could find a cell phone that was just like the ones Akira and company uses? To that end, we’re going to be taking a look at some of the features of the Noblesse Oblige cell phones and see how it stacks up to the phone that I’m looking to invest in: A Samsung Galaxy S III.

First, let’s take a look at some key features of the Noblesse Oblige phone. Now keep in mind, this is based on the features we’ve actually seen used in the anime and in the movies:

Phone Model: Noblesse Oblige

  • Uses Fingerprint Identification as a security measure to prevent unauthorized usage.
    • Though it’s never officially determined where exactly the fingerprint scanner is, I’m willing to bet, dollars to doughnuts, that it’s integrated into the big button used to call Juiz on the flip.
  • Has a near-infinate battery life
    • It has been established that the Noblesse Oblige phones have no visible charging ports or connectors on the outside, so perhaps some form of inductive charging method is employed.
  • Uses NFC [Near-Field Communication to transmit information
    • Akira is seen using the NFC function to pay for Plum Gum in Episode 2.
  • Live video streaming capabilities
    • Akira uses this feature in the last episode, however it is not 100 percent known if he is using an application to transmit or if Juiz managed to pull off the mother of all hack jobs.
  • Navigation with Turn-By-Turn directions
  • User-Friendly Operating System
    • It’s not clear what kind of operating system the phone employs..heck, it’s not even 100% clear if the phone is a Smartphone as we know them.
  • One-Touch Access to Concierge services and information
    • Press the button on the outside flip of the phone with the scales, and you have access to just about anything your heart desires.
  • Extremely rugged and capable of sustaining immersion in water to a certain depth
    • Seeing as how, throughout the anime, the phone has survived explosions, motorcycle accidents and the like, I would call that a very successful design.
  • Nice Modern-style design
      • Even though it’s a flip-phone, I really like the metallic almost Steam Punk-like design.
  • Image Identification System – Eden of the East
    • This program is awesome–pretty much all you do is take a picture of something, and thanks to millions of users on the internet plus some advanced software programming, you can instantly identify whatever it is you just took a picture of. It’s an amazing feat of tech.

And now let’s take a look at the challenger; the Samsung Galaxy S III:

Phone Model: Samsung Galaxy S III:

  • Uses Facial Recognition, Pattern-Lock and PIN Passcodes to prevent unauthorized usage
    • Something that comes standard in all modern cell phones
  • Battery Life is Rated at 8 hrs Talk Time and 200 hours for Standby
    • Heck, I only have a 450 minute plan! If I have to stay on the phone for that long, I’m using my landline phone. But that standby time is very sweet!
  • Uses NFC and direct Wi-Fi Connections to transmit data to other devices
    • Thanks to Google Wallet, all my credit/debit card information is stored so all I have to do is tap my phone to the pay pad and that’s it. I can also share pics, videos, and music with other phones in the area.
  • Live Video Streaming
    • There are hundreds of streaming apps that work with my camera that allow me to upstream and downstream video to my phone…granted, I have a limited data plan, so finding a Wi-Fi hotspot would be the way to go.
  • Navigation with Turn-By-Turn directions and satellite imagery maps
    • Thanks Google Navigation! It’s gotten me out of a many sticky situation.
  • User Friendly Operating System
    • Android names the different versions of its OS after deserts…how friendly can you get?
  • One touch access to a concierge-like service to provide information and services
    • While not quite as personable as Juiz, Google Now with the Jellybean release of Android offers a Juiz-like experience, allowing you to make requests and inquiries without feeling like you’re talking to a computer. Sadly, Google Now does not pray for your continuing service as a savior.
  • Tested to be reasonably rugged in normal day-to-day usage
  • Ultra-Modern sleek styling
    • Samsung phones of recent seem to follow the same form factor, and while it doesn’t get points for originality, it does look sharp!
  • Image Identification Software – Google Goggles
    • Actually, this program I currently have on my old HTC Inspire 4G and I find it extremely valuable. Much like Eden of the East, all I have to do is take a picture of something, and it will immediately give me information on what I just snapped a picture of. However, it’s not quite as advanced as Eden is; for example, Eden is able to identify not just objects, but people and pets as well almost in real-time. Goggles only identifies non-living objects so long as it’s in the database. However, the Galaxy S 3 does feature auto-tagging, where it can recognise people based on Facebook posts and contact pictures and automatically tag them in pictures, so, I would say that’s a pass.

So there you have it–a breakdown of the basic features of the Noblesse Oblige and the Samsung Galaxy S III. For an anime that came out in 2009, I have to admit, the creators actually hit spot-on making the technology of the Noblesse Oblige phone realistic enough that we can believe it’s possible, while making it fanciful enough to fit within the story. Otaku Oblige; I pray for your continued enjoyment of Japanese Animation.

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