Top News Stories –
Tokyo police roll out 3D mug shots –
Tokyo’s police force is to start taking 3D mug shots of suspects being held in custody, it’s reported. The images will form part of a database which officers hope will make it easier to analyse CCTV footage, the the Asahi Shimbun newspaper reports. All of the Japanese capital’s 102 police stations will be fitted with a 3D camera as part of the new process, which will begin in April. “As we can identify the suspects more quickly and accurately, our arrest rate is expected to become greater,” one senior officer tells the paper. Unlike regular two-dimensional mug shots, the 3D images can be adjusted to match the angle of security camera footage, which is often shot from above, rather than at face height. At the moment police only photograph suspects’ faces from the front and diagonally, making it difficult to match mug shots to CCTV images. Tokyo’s police force says it is the first to roll out the cameras across all of its stations – until now they have only been installed at some regional police headquarters in Japan. [BBC]
Australia makes ‘captain’s call’ on best words of 2015 –
Captain’s call – a phrase “plucked” from the cricket pitch and politicised by former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott – has become the Macquarie Dictionary’s Word of the Year for 2015. Mr Abbott’s controversial choice to award Prince Philip a knighthood was one of his many “captain’s calls”. The noun is defined as “a decision made by a political or business leader without consultation with colleagues”. The dictionary said the word “perfectly encapsulates” Australia in 2015. [BBC] See List of the Day
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List of the Day –
Australian Word of the Year runners-up
lumbersexual: a portmanteau of lumberjack and metrosexual – referring to urban men who adopt the style of an outdoorsman as a fashion statement.
deso: Colloquially refers to a designated driver, who refrains from drinking alcohol in order to drive others safely home. Also, deso driver.
open kimono: A business policy of sharing information freely with an outside party.
keyboard warrior: a person who adopts an excessively aggressive style in online discussions which they would not normally adopt in person-to-person communication, often in support of a cause, theory, world view, etc.
ghost plate: a clear plastic numberplate cover which becomes opaque when viewed from certain angles, thereby obscuring the registration number; designed to circumvent identification by speed cameras.
athleisure: clothing, shoes, etc., designed for both exercise and general casual wear.
tri-tip: a cut of beef, taken from the bottom of the sirloin.
digital disruption: Commerce the impact of digital technology in making various established industries and products obsolete.
abandoned porn: a genre of photography which romanticises abandoned buildings and urban areas in a state of decay. Also, ruin porn.
wombat gate: a swing gate installed in a ditch going underneath a fence, so that wombats, who follow very predictable patterns at night, can come and go without destroying the fence.
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Other News Stories –
- Armed conflicts and attacks
- Syrian Civil War
- The Syrian Army takes control of the strategic Turkmen town of Rabia in Syria‘s Latakia Governorate. The town had been under rebel control since 2012. (AFP via Global Post)
- Disasters and accidents
- Heavy snowfall in western and central Japan leaves at least two people dead and over a hundred injured. Snowfall was also recorded for the first time in 155 years on Amami Ōshima, a subtropical island in Japan’s southern Kagoshima Prefecture. (The Japan Times)
- A magnitude 7.1 earthquake strikes southwestern Alaska, leaving 10,000 in the Anchorage area without power and forcing the evacuation of several homes on the Kenai Peninsula. The National Weather Service reported that there was no tsunami following the earthquake. (USGS) (ABC) (The Los Angeles Times)
- Politics and elections
- Portuguese presidential election, 2016
- In sumo, Kotoshōgiku Kazuhiro wins his first makuuchi (top division) championship to end a decade-long drought of a Japanese-born championship winner. (Kyodo via Nikkei Asia Review) (Reuters via Daily Mail)
- 2015–16 NFL playoffs
- The Denver Broncos beat the New England Patriots 20-18 to win the AFC Championship and qualify for Super Bowl 50. (Washington Post)
- The Carolina Panthers beat the Arizona Cardinals 49-15 to win the NFC Championship and qualify for Super Bowl 50. (The Guardian)
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