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Japanese Culture
Akihabara (秋葉原, Akihabara) ("Field of Autumn Leaves"), also known as Akihabara Electric Town (秋葉原電気街, Akihabara Denki Gai - A neighborhood in Tokyo, Japan. It is located less than five minutes by rail from Tokyo Station. Its name is frequently shortened to Akiba in Japan. While there is an official locality named Akihabara nearby, part of Taitō-ku, the area known to most people as Akihabara (including the railway station of the same name) is actually Soto-Kanda, a part of Chiyoda-ku.

Akihabara is a major shopping area for electronic, computer, anime, and otaku goods, including new and used items. New items are mostly to be found on the main street, Chūōdōri, with many kinds of used items found in the back streets of Soto Kanda 3-chōme. First-hand parts for PC-building are readily available from a variety of stores. Tools, electrical parts, wires, microsized cameras and similar items are found in the cramped passageways of Soto Kanda 1-chōme (near the station). Foreign tourists tend to visit the big name shops like Laox or other speciality shops near the station, though there is more variety and lower prices at locales a little further away. Akihabara gained some fame through being home to one of the first stores devoted to personal robots and robotics.

Otaku culture in Akihabara represents one aspect of the people who shop and 'hang out' there in the recent years. Some people there have unique lifestyles, centered on technological enterprises and an obsession for Anime/Manga, that have made them outsiders in other sections of Japanese society. These otaku are given the chance to gather here and to meet others who share their specific interests. Akihabara is currently seen as one of the shopping districts that represents a 'mecca' of sorts for otaku, as well as to the term Akiba-kei, or Akiba-type.

Recently, with increased exposure of "otaku" culture in the Japanese media, new buildings, and the opening of another new railway line, Akihabara has seen a boom in popularity and is a popular destination for many young people interested in its unique atmosphere. Like many urban neighborhoods, Akihabara has drawn criticism for gentrification, particularly for the expansion of chain retailers such as Yodobashi Camera and Starbucks into the area. On June 30, 2007, an "Akihabara Liberation" protest was held, attended by over 400 self-described otaku.

Information source: “Akihabara.” Article date: 30 Jan. 2008. Retrieved: Wikipedia. 8 Feb. 2008 <Akihabara>.

Video - The following video is of Tommy Lee Jones in the infamous boss coffee commercial series. In this video, Tommy Lee is in Akihabara. Click the following for the complete commercial series.
Tommy Lee Jones





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