Japan. Toby Pop. GEOGRAPHY.
An archipelago in the Pacific, Japan is separated from the east coast of Asia by the Sea of Japan. It is approximately the size of Montana. Japan's four main islands are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku. The Ryukyu chain to the southwest was U.S.-occupied from 1945 to 1972, when it reverted to Japanese control, and the Kurils to the northeast are Russian-occupied.
Japan is one of the leading nations in the fields of scientific research, particularly technology, machinery and biomedical research. For instance some of Japan's more prominent technological contributions are found in the fields of electronics, automobiles, machinery, earthquake engineering, industrial robotics, optics, chemicals, semiconductors and metals.
Legend attributes the creation of Japan to the sun goddess, from whom the emperors were descended. The first of them was Jimmu, supposed to have ascended the throne in 660 B.C., a tradition that constituted official doctrine until 1945.