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Hiroshi Igarashi remembers feeling like a dinosaur when he was released from prison in 2011 after nine years behind bars. He had no idea how to use IC cards and phones as train tickets. Even the self-serve “drink bar” system in restaurants struck him as an utter enigma.

Feeling bewildered by changes in society is nothing unusual. In fact, it’s a feeling experienced by the majority of long-term inmates once they are released, and a major problem in reducing the crime rate, according to Igarashi.

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