Yesterday, I visited the

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Yesterday, I visited the Yahoo! Cafe in Harajuku, one of Tokyo's trendy neighborhoods. The two story buildling houses a Starbucks on the first floor and an Internet cafe upstairs. It's free to use, as Yahoo has cleverly gotten the sponsorship of major computer manufacturers and Internet service providers.

Each computer is donated by its maker and the Internet service is provided by competing vendors. YOu can try out the latest Sony laptop using NTT's ISDN, or IBM's notebook with DSL from Tokyo Metallic. I suppose if you were patient enough, you could could try them all and make purchasing decisions about which service provider was speediest and which laptop you wanted to buy.

I only sat at one Compaq laptop for about 20 minutes to check my mail and then I was off to continue my errands. But now I'm registered to use the cafe and I will return for a longer session later.

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