Hello Kitty celebrates 40th Anniversary in Space!

August 16, 2014- S. Barton

Hello Kitty has gone where very few toys have gone before:To Outer Space! In celebration of the beloved character’s 40th Anniversary, her creators from Sanrio Co.,LTD, have sent her out of the world.

On June 19 2014 ,a 1.6-inch (4 centimeters) Hello Kitty figure rode aboard the nano-satellite, Hodoyoshi 3, launched from Russia. She’s riding in a compartment 28 inches tall (70 cm), and 20 inches wide and deep, which is also equipped with a digital display to show messages from Earth.

As part of the celebration, Hello Kitty will be taking your messages and reading them from space. From August 12 to  August 25, fans can send messages to Hello Kitty, in Japanese or English. However, only 10 messages will be chosen. Does your message have “the right stuff?” There’s still time to enter at Sanrio’s Official Website.

[The winning messages will be announced daily from 8/26/2014- 9/8/2014.]

via NBCNews.

Fun Facts:

Hello Kitty isn’t the first toy to have graced the starry skies, her predecessor’s include: Disney’s Buzz Lightyear, and LEGO’s. Want to learn more? Then check out Space.com’s photo gallery, Cosmic Playtime:Toys in Space. 

For our cat-lovers: The first “Astro-Cat”, was Félicette from France, she was launched on October 18, 1963, aboard Veronique AGI rocket, No. 47.

“Respect the Creators” Interview from New York Comicon 2013 with “Father of Hatsune Miku”Hiroyuki Itoh

itoh_comicon2These days, Hiroyuki Itoh, CEO of Crypton Future Media is everywhere. In May, he came to New York again to witness the moment that Hatsune Miku opened for Lady Gaga at Madison Square Garden (Megumi Sato-Shelley directed a piece for Japanese TV station FCI) . Then he flied over to Indonesia and attended Hatsune Miku Expo in Jakarta.

We interviewed him last year at NY Comicon. We had a mechanical trouble, and thought we had lost it completely. However, we could retrieve some audio components, transcribed and translated into English. (interview by Tony Yao, translatation by Megumi Sato-Shelley)

- How do you feel about the fact that the people call you “Father of Hatsune Miku”?

Since Hatsune Miku is singing voice software, it feels right when you call me developer or creator rather than “father.”

- What do you think about the global popularity of Vocaloids?

There’s no border in the internet society. So it’s very exciting to see that so many people in the world are sharing Japanese born Hatsune Miku. I’m very happy with that too.

- What was the toughest thing to produce the English version?

We needed the original Hatsune Miku voice actor Saki Fujita to master the English pronunciation. Painstakingly, she practiced it over and over and over. It was tough for us but it must have been even harder for her to do so.

- What’s the greatest moment of Miku Hatsune for you?

It was first released on August 31, 2007. On the same day, I saw a video Hatsune Miku video emerged on the internet. It was a great moment.

itoh_comicon1- Any advise to the creators?

You can create anything with Hatsune Miku all by yourself. But Hatsune Miku is more for collaboration. You create everything based on the creations by the creators in the past. So, it’s very important to respect your fellow creators.

- Any message to the global Vocaloid fans?

Now that English software was released, I suppose more English speaking creators will be joining us. There will be more opportunities for the creators to collaborate with each other to make something totally new. Why don’t we create new music, concept and culture together.

Related video: FCI Morning EYE, Hiroyuki Itoh Interview, May 2014