I am constantly running into really well thought out design of products and objects here in Japan. This post is just about two of the hundreds of differently designed things that makes like easier in subtle ways.
Bicycles are quite popular here. Drivers are respectful and it is pretty safe to ride bikes, even in a big city like Osaka. Because so many people ride bicycles, there are many bicycle garages. In the Q’s Mall near our house, we put them into these holders that are easy to use and hold the bikes up strongly. To save space, a slightly higher rack is interspersed with the lower rack.
Another space saver in this populous country is the gas pump that comes down from the ceiling (below). This allows for maximum amount of use of surface for cars to line up and to come from any angle. Many gas stations have pumps on the ground and cars need to align themselves in the direction of the islands. This would restrict the number of pumps one could have.