Hakusanroku Journal 白山麓ジャーナル

July 2, 2019

“Technology increases at an exponential rate” was, at first, a phrase used to describe the accelerating improvement of computer transistor technology in the 20th century. However, it has come to be a theme for many different technologies in the Digital Age. From horse driven carriages to self-driving cars or from room-sized computers to smartphones that fit in a pocket, simple useful technologies quickly grow into amazing inventions that surpass even the wildest of dreams. These technological marvels can only be made possible through the hard work of scientists, engineers, and innovators with creativity and imagination.

At ICT, the students develop their creativity and imagination by experimenting with some of the innovative devices that school has to offer. Students are challenged to create unique designs and contraptions in their classes, and are able to meet those challenges by utilizing the 3D printers, laser cutters, and the other devices that the school provides.

The newest tool for the students to utilize are small-but-powerful drones, capable of being easily controlled through a smartphone app and able to record both photo and video. The participants of one of ICT’s summer programs had a great time learning about drone technology and exploring their countless possibilities, but it’s not all fun and games! Soon, the 2nd year Computer Skills students will be faced with the daunting task of programming the drones to automatically perform search-and-rescue missions. Hopefully the students can use their knowledge and imagination to tackle this problem and grow as future global innovators.

Ryan J. Vicencio





June 28, 2019

Hey, it's Jonathan. Here is another report from Hakusanroku campus. On June 22 Saturday, the first and second year students had a special field trip to discover and learn more about the nature and history of the Hakusanroku area. We visited Ichinose Visitor Center to hike and learn about the wildlife of Mt. Hakusan, and explored Shiramine village and visited Rinsaiji Temple to learn about the history of the area. After dinner, the Nature & Adventure club joined a local event to go see fireflies. It was a jam-packed day, here at Hakusanroku.

Ichinose Visitor Center is the starting point for those climbing Mt. Hakusan from the Shiramine area. There are some hiking courses, displays of wildlife, an onsen ryokan, and a camping area next to the nearby river. Here we took a short hike into the mountains which lead to a vantage point where you can see Mt. Hakusan. Our guide, Mr. Shinichi Hiramatsu is an expert of the nature of this area, and pointed out various plants and insects as we hiked. It was drizzling slightly. However, we were happily surprised to find Mt. Hakusan beautifully visible from the vantage point.

After the hike, we returned to the visitor center to learn about the wildlife and history of Ichinose. Mr. Hiramatsu explained that Ichinose used to be a bustling town, famous for its many onsen baths and people climbing Mt. Hakusan. However, in 1934 a devastating flood hit Ichinose, destroying everything. This flood was due that year's heavy snowfall melting, and there is even a legend that to this day a thousand snakes are trapped under the eternal snow covering one of the lakes on top of Mt. Hakusan and a flood will occur again if the eternal snow ever thaws. Mr. Hiramatsu also showed many plants and animals of Mt. Hakusan, including how to distinguish plants and trees apart, videos of bears, wild boars, monkeys, antelopes, and gold eagles, and live lizards and insects he brought to the center. On the way to Shiramine, we stopped at the "Million Kan Rock." (1 Kan = 3.75kg) This huge rock was pushed 3 km down the river during the historical flood and stands as a landmark as a testament of its shear power.

In the afternoon, we moved to Shiramine village to investigate and learn about the area. Shiramine serves as a hub for people climbing Mt. Hakusan and has many historic and sightseeing-worthy locations. First, students explored the area on foot. Many students decided to visit the popular Snowman Cafe for some dessert. Fully refreshed, we next visited Rinsaiji temple to listen to the history of Mt. Hakusan and view the many Buddha statues displayed there. Mt. Hakusan was always a focus of worship and these statues used to exist on the mountain peak until the Separation of Shinto and Buddhism policy was deployed in 1863. At this time, many Buddha statues were brought down from the mountain to avoid being destroyed and eight such statues are on display here.

Later in the evening, there was an bonus event. Members of the Nature & Adventure club participated in a local event to see fireflies. This is an annual event held by the Oguchi Community Center. The ICT students and members of the local community traveled to the Dainichigawa river in Torigoe, which is about 15 minutes from the Hakusanroku campus by car. There were a surprising number of fireflies and the participants spent time taking pictures, catching, and simply observing a beautiful sight. Mr. Nakamura, a local and expert of fireflies, gave lectures on the insects and answered the students' questions. Some ICT students made friends with the local elementary school kids and everyone enjoyed a pleasant evening.

June 22 was a long and eventful day. Students learned much about the nature and history of the Hakusanroku area while also having a lot of fun. This is not our first time joining a local event or visiting a local sight of interest and I am continuously convinced that our location is crucial to becoming part of the local community; in addition to the convenience of being close and the ability to participate in such events at night thanks to our dormitories. I hope students had fun and found something of interest in the local area, which will help them create innovation in the future.


ジョナサンです。白山麓キャンパスからレポートをお届けします。6月22日(土)1~2年の学生が白山麓の自然や歴史について学ぶ特別活動を行いました。自然については市ノ瀬ビジターセンター、歴史については白峰村と林西寺をそれぞれ訪れ、地域についての理解を深めました。夕食後にはNature & Adventureクラブのメンバーが地元のホタル観察会に参加し、充実した一日を過ごしました。




日没後、Nature & Adventureクラブのメンバーは地元のホタル観察会に参加しました。このイベントは毎年尾口公民館によって開催されている恒例行事です。白山麓キャンパスから車で15分くらいの距離にある鳥越の大日川へ移動し、地元の方々と1時間ほどホタルを観察しました。驚くほどたくさんのホタルがおり、学生たちは写真を撮ったり、ホタルを捕まえたり、美しい光景を眺めたりしていました。また、ホタルに詳しい地元の中村さんが生態について解説したり、学生の質問に答えたりしました。地元の小学生と遊ぶICT学生もいて、皆が楽しい時間を過ごしました。



June 24, 2019

As we move into a surprisingly not-so-humid-yet rainy season, the students are continuing their experience of living in Hakusanroku. Many students like to take pictures outdoors, fly drones, skateboard with their friends, eat karaage, and more! The Kijitora Coffee Laboratory has limited edition drinks to welcome the summer: an Amaou Strawberry “Fu-nya-ppucino” and fruit sodas. Everyone here up at Hakusanroku is ready to welcome the summer!

The Amaou Strawberry “Fu-nya-ppucino” at Kijitora Coffee Laboratory.

But even as students are enjoying the weather and exploring outdoors, they are still working hard on their studies! In fact, you can often see the students studying together and teaching each other during the evening Learning Sessions. It’s great to see the students learning to cooperate with and support each other.

First year students studying Kikutan (English vocabulary) during Learning Session.

Next week, the ICT Hakusanroku Campus will be very busy! The ICT Global Summer Camp begins on Monday and our teachers are hard at work preparing to welcome the students and give them a taste of engineering design and innovation. We are also looking forward to a few other camps this year. It will be very lively!

Maesa-sensei preparing for the ICT Global Summer Camp.

Anne Isobel Tan





June 21, 2019


 米大統領であるトランプ氏の訪日について報じられたのは記憶に新しい。トランプ氏に同行したCNNのテレビ記者の第一報では、「Sumo, golf, and barbecue」(相撲とゴルフと炉端焼き)と日米間の懸案はそっちのけで訪日したトランプ大統領を皮肉った【注1】。

 ところで「炉端焼き」とは、日本の田舎屋風の店舗で店員が魚介類や野菜を炭火で焼いた料理を提供する居酒屋の一形態とインターネット上に説明されています。したがって「炉端焼き」を「barbecue」という言葉で報道すると情報が少々不足している感があります。たとえ「a type of Japanese barbecue-style cooking」としても訳しきれません。記者の伝えたかった事は「息抜き訪問として皮肉るため」となれば、この場合、具体的な料理形態はどうでもいいのでしょう。しかしながら私は、「日本語と英語が対を成すには難しいよね〜」と、このニュースを通じ思ったのでした。







小髙 有普

It's Kodaka, the Engineering Design II teacher. In today's journal, I would like to send a message to the second-year students.

Many of you may remember United States President Donald Trump's recent visit to Japan. A CNN reporter described this visit with the phrase "Sumo, golf, and barbecue" as a form of satire to point out how little time was devoted to business. *¹

This word "barbecue" refers to "炉端焼き (Robata-yaki)", which, according to the internet, is a Japanese-style barbecue of fish or vegetables cooked in front of the customer, and usually served in old-fashion Japanese restaurants. As you can see, the single word "barbecue" is somewhat insufficient for accurately describing it. Of course, I am sure all this reporter wanted to do was to mock the visit of being more of a vacation than business, and that the details of the dish are mostly irrelevant. However, this news report made me think about how difficult it is to find a perfect match for Japanese and English words.

Every December, "the kanji of the year" is chosen at Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto. People can submit one kanji character they feel represents the events of that year and the one with the most submissions is selected. This tradition is a nice opportunity for people to reflect on the passing year and transition into the new one. I am always impressed by kanji's ability to represent so much information in one single character.

The ability to combine two kanjis opens up endless possibilities for numerous words. For example, the kanji "雨 ame (rain)" can be combined to create the words 春雨、五月雨、梅雨、冷雨、霧雨、時雨、氷雨、村雨、慈雨、雨音、香雨、酒涙雨、and 漫ろ雨. There are even words about rain that don't even use the kanji "雨" such as 天泣、神立、秋霖、鬼洗い、and 狐の嫁入り. There are over 400 names of "rain" in the Japanese language. This is because each character has its own meaning and holds Japanese cultural perspectives such as scenes and situations that people can picture in there mind. Using kanji, we can express smell, color, emotion, and seasons. In addition, kanji can transmit this information to the reader instantaneously. How convenient kanjis are! And stylish too.

The next question is "Are the engineers of a country with such an elegant language equally elegant in their engineering?" Japanese design is a product of skillful handwork and attentive consideration for others when crafting something. The rich Japanese language is the foundation for expressive communication and enables more specific communication of details.

The second-year students are currently conducting fieldwork research to discover value here in the Hakusanroku area. The key to research is to observe the deeper meaning or history beyond what's obvious to the eye. You are in Hakusanroku, in an extremely fortunate environment to feel the essence of Japanese culture. Focus on developing your sensitivity and observe the world around you. You are smart enough to notice the hidden meaning beneath the surface of kanji. I'm sure you understand the importance of your given task and can accomplish it at a higher level.

Engineering Design education in Japan is different from that in other countries. Actively absorb experience and transfer it into creativity and productivity.

*¹: Yahoo News May 29

Arihiro Kodaka

June 10, 2019

On June 3, I had a chance to visit the "Engineering Context IIA" class at Hakusanroku campus. Engineering Context, combined with Engineering Design are the core of International College of Technology's "monozukuri" and "kotozukuri" education. The Engineering Context class is unique to the first and second year at Hakusanroku campus, and explores how to utilize various resources, while also teaching the ethical values necessary for an engineer to innovate in the age of SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). 

The second year students were on their second week of studying the SDGs via cardgames designed by students of Kanazawa Institute of Technology (KIT). To learn more about these special SDGs classes, please read Yamazaki-sensei's journal about last week's Engineering Context IIA. On their second week, the second year students continued learning about the SDGs by playing two additional card games also designed by the KIT students: "Food Salvage" and "ESG Investment Game."

Food Salvage is a card game designed around food loss. Mizuno-san, the facilitator and main designer of this game, explained that around 1.3 billion tons of food is lost every year worldwide, which is approximately one third of the food produced. Also, it was estimated that 6.43 million tons of food was lost in Japan in 2016, which is equal to twice the amount of food aid in the world. However, one in eight people are still starving in the world today. Mizuno-san and the other KIT students designed the game to simulate this and provide an opportunity to learn and think about food loss and how to "salvage" the wasted food. Players take turns drawing food/ingredients cards with the objective of completing a randomly set dish. Each player can discards cards they don't need into the "food box", which other players can retrieve by saying "Salvage!" At the end of each round, the designated cook of the table must create a meal from the discarded cards in the food box.

The second game, ESG Investment Game, is designed to simulate investment. However, it also focuses on ESGs (environment, society, and governance). Players each have money and take turns advancing through the board, buying and investing in various businesses similar to the well-known board game "Monopoly." However, the investments and special cards are designed in consideration to the ESGs and increase awareness in the development of our real world's future. In the final round, the three teams competed in who could develop their world the most. Check the video below to see the results.

I asked the four facilitators how the ICT students preformed and they answered that they had taken the games to several events, but the ICT students were the best players at the games so far. More specifically, they were quick to understand the essentials of the game and come up with effective strategies in a short period of time. Apparently, many players struggle with creating meals out of the food box, but the ICT students effortlessly produced ideas for menus using multiple cards. I found this interesting, as at first glance it looks like they are simply having fun (as you can see in the video). However, my guess is that their ability to innovate and come up with ideas has grown in the past year here at ICT, perhaps without them or me even noticing it. Next week, in the final SDGs focused Engineering Context class, students will create their own original version of the "THE SDGs Action cardgame X (Cross)" designed by Takayuki Shimada and Itsuki Kameda of KIT. I cannot image that there are many schools that take this much effort and time (three whole dedicated classes) to study the SDGs. It is truly a characteristic of ICT and KIT's education.



この日の授業では、2年次の学生が金沢工業大学(KIT)の学生が制作したカードゲームを通してSDGsについて学ぶ集中講座の第2回が行われました。このSDGs集中講座について詳しくは先週の「エンジニアリングコンテキストIIA」を紹介した山崎先生の白山麓ジャーナルをご覧ください。2週目となる今日は、KITの学生が制作した2つのカードゲーム「Food Salvage」と「ESG投資ゲーム」をプレイしてSDGsの理解を深めました。

最初にプレイした「Food Salvage」はフードロスがテーマです。メインデザイナーの水野裕太さんによれば日本のフードロスは年間約643万トンで、これは世界の食料援助量の約2倍に相当するものです。さらに、世界のフードロスは年間約13億トンで、これは世界全体で生産された食料のおおよそ3分の1です。しかし、現在でも世界では8人に1人が飢餓で苦しんでいます。KITの学生はこのカードゲームで世界のフードロスの現状をシミュレートし、世界で失われる食糧の理解を深めたり、サルベージ(再利用)する方法を探るのが目的です。各プレイヤーは順番に食材か調味料のカードを引いていき、ランダムに設定された料理の完成を目指します。不要なカードはテーブル中央のフードボックスに捨てますが、他のプレイヤーは「サルベージ!」と宣言することでそれを回収することができます。各ラウンドの最後には指定された料理長がフードボックスにある食材を使って創作料理をひとつ完成させます。


ファシリテーターとして参加してくれた4人のKITの学生に感想を伺ったところ「今まで様々なイベントでプレイしてもらったが、国際高専の学生が一番上手い」という答えがありました。詳しく聞くと「短時間でゲームの本質を見抜き、効率よく目標を達成するのがとにかく上手い。例えば、フードボックスから料理を作る時によく戸惑う人がいますが、国際高専の学生はたくさんのカードを使ってクリエイティブな料理を作る」のだそうです。動画で見てわかるように、一見楽しそうにプレイしているだけなので、興味深い観察点だと思いました。もしかしたら、この1年間でイノベーターとしてアイデアを生み出す能力が伸びているのかもしれません。来週はSDGs集中講座の最終日になります。この授業ではKITの島田高行さんと亀田樹さんが開発した「THE SDGs Action cardgame X(クロス)」のオリジナルバージョンを制作します。3週に渡る集中講座を行い、これほどSDGsに注力する学校は珍しいと思います。この集中講座は金沢工業大学と国際高専の連携教育の取り組みです。


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