Imaginary Dictionary – /2121 Futures In-Sight Exhibition

A Dictionary of Future Words based on Past Newspaper Articles



The “2121 Futures In-Sight” exhibition was held at 21_21 DESIGN SIGHT in Tokyo Midtown for six months from December 21, 2021. Qosmo exhibited a new art piece, “Imaginary Dictionary,” in collaboration with the Media Research and Development Center of the Asahi Shimbun Company



The “2121 Futures In-Sight” exhibition is an attempt to use the “Future Compass” tool as an opportunity to envision and visualize the perspective on the future inherent in the activities of the present, together with a diverse group of participants including designers, artists, thinkers, engineers and researchers. The exhibiting artists were invited to pick their own questions based on the “Future Compass”. We chose “How”, “Futures”, and “Imagine?” and asked the question, “How can we imagine Futures?”  We created “Imaginary Dictionary.” to answer this question.

「Future Compass」(Design:Yuri Uenishi/Photo:Madoka Akiyama)

Imaginary Dictionary is a dictionary consisting of words that may be used in the future and their meanings.

New words are constantly being created, and words such as “bubble,” “employment ice age,” and “vaccine passport” are words that were created/expanded in meaning by the events that symbolized this era. These words are like new words, fragments of history, born from the background of their time. AI has learned from newspaper article data over the past 30 years and generates new words and the meanings derived from several future possibilities. From these fragments of words, a variety of “futures” are woven together. This dictionary allows you to imagine various futures.

This work was produced in collaboration between the Asahi Shimbun Media Research and Development Center and Qosmo. We consulted with former Qosmo member Toru Urakawa, who now works at this company. In addition to the large amount of newspaper article data, the collaboration with their researchers in natural language processing made it possible to produce a high quality work.
During the planning stage, Asahi Shimbun Media Research and Development Center joined and designed the concept together with us. The roles of both parties were divided: Qosmo was in charge of planning and visualization, and the Asahi Shimbun Media Research and Development Center was in charge of new word inference and generation.

Imaginary Dictionary (2021)
Exhibition View(Photo:Masaya Yoshimura)



21_21 Design Sight


  • Concept

    Qosmo, The Asahi Shimbun Company Media R&D Center

  • Planning & Data Dramatization


  • Art Director

    Shoya Dozono(Qosmo)

  • Lead Engineer(Data Visualization)

    Jungers Robin(Qosmo)

  • Engineer(Data Visualization)

    Ryosuke Nakajima(Qosmo)

  • Designer

    Naoki Ise(Qosmo)

  • Project Manager

    Sakiko Ise(Qosmo)

  • Supervisor

    Nao Tokui(Qosmo)

  • New Word Prediction and Generation

    The Asahi Shimbun Company Media R&D Center

  • Technical Director/Language Modeling

    Toru Urakawa(The Asahi Shimbun Company Media R&D Center)

  • Data Scientist

    Takuro Niitsuma(The Asahi Shimbun Company Media R&D Center )

  • Supervisor

    Hideaki Tamori(The Asahi Shimbun Company Media R&D Center )

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