Bulletin of Keio University Faculty of Science and Technology
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3 Devoted to MEMS-based research, exerting unrestricted creativity

photoAfter fully enjoying your life at MIT for three years, you returned to Japan and came to Keio University, right?
      “If I do something, I should do something exciting.” With this determination in mind, I’m addressing research work exerting unrestricted creativity. Under the core theme of MEMS-based human interface, I’m currently handling a variety of research projects such as the sight line detector, tactile sensation display, and gestation/olfaction sensors. My motto, as my teacher Prof. Shimoyama taught me, is “Conceive like an amateur and do the job professionally.” This means that you should do a job with professional skills to produce a perfect result while maintaining an amateur’s inquisitive mindset when conceiving.
      There are 20 students at my lab, all cheerfully enjoying research work. During our training camp every year, we stage various recreational events and games such as paint ball (two teams using toy guns to shoot paint balls at each other), rafting, softball and so on. Of course they are serious when engaging in research, which is the main purpose. I think a balance between learning and distraction is important.
      Taking advantage of a weekly colloquium at my lab, we have common knowledge tests among the members. Students take turns coming up with questions on any topic – foreign capital city names, kanji ideographs, history, movies – you name it. I think common knowledge is important because it helps to enhance the quality of our lives. It may surprise you, but knowledge we learned through topics for college entrance examination contains much common knowledge. Speaking of myself, the English language ability I had acquired through entrance exam English turned to be very useful later when making academic presentations and living overseas. Some say cramming is meaningless, but if you have acquired knowledge for education, it can be put to practical use.
      In fact, I find my common knowledge highly useful when I communicate with foreign people. Topics like Japan’s isolation during the Edo Period are well received by them. Common knowledge must be also useful for expanding the scope of your research work. In addition to the academic basis required of researchers, I would like to foster my students into becoming persons of broad vision.

Just a word from . . .
A student: Dr. Miki is always cheerful, gentle and reliable. Learning many things from what Dr. Miki is doing, we are enjoying our campus life by maintaining a good balance between study and distraction.

(Reporter & and text writer: Madoka Tainaka)



1 Engaging in robotics research at University of Tokyo
2 Becoming an MIT researcher
3 Devoted to MEMS-based research, exerting unrestricted creativity
Profile Norihisa Miki Based on MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems) technology, Dr. Miki is developing diverse research activities in fields ranging from ICT and medical care to environmental conservation. Born in 1974 in Tatsuno City, Hyogo Prefecture. Completed the Doctor’s Course, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo in 2001. From 2001 to 2004, he served as a postdoctoral fellow and research engineer at MIT’s Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics. From 2004 on, he works for Keio University as Assistant Professor. As for pastime, he was keen on heavy metal rock music as a high school boy, mahjong and fishing as a college student, and golfing thereafter.

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