There's only one Costco that has a rice cooker and that's in Markham. I don't know why...
Anyway this is a Japanese model that forces the Japanese lifestyle on you. It said it did porridge right on the box, so I tried some oatmeal. What a mess! They mean Japanese Rice Porridge.
This machine is absolutely wonderful. It makes plain old Costco Basmanti rice into something wonderful, while using the 'slow' setting. We made some Chinese sticky rice dim sum in banana leaves, and that was fantastic. Well, I ran into another Japanese lifestyle thing when I was steaming the sticky buns, and I wanted to steam another one. Well, the smart little bastard didn't want to steam twice in a row. I tried a lot of things, and finally took the first unit back. And the second one did the exact same thing!
So for this one I phoned their support. The lady said: "What do you mean you tried to steam twice in a row? I've never done that." What, is this against Japanese culture? They have it in stone tablets "Thou shalt not steam twice in a row." I finally figured out to fool the smart-ass machine by starting a regular cook cycle for a minute, and then steaming. Take that!
Actually, it may also be "Never start with hot water, because we don't have running hot water in Japan." But since I tried two things, I'll never know.
Update: I now know why Japan was never a software powerhouse. I still can't get it to reliably start steaming, I think it is two things - cold water and start something else first. But you have to put your head down on it to see if it is starting, why would the display show anything important? That confirms that Japan and France have no hope, too isolated. :) I liken it to why Linux will never go big on the desktop, all the programmers love their command lines. It's a good thing all the car makers do this stuff in California. :)
Update2: Yeah, I separated it. You must always start with tap cold water for steaming, even though you'd think that hot water would be faster. Otherwise it just sits there, smiling, pretending to understand your request. :)