Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Dancing and Wireless Charging

A friend sent me some videos of her brother dancing. When he is spinning at the clubs he goes by the name of Crisis. Since putting up a shot of me dancing would certainly bring some good laughs, I will treat you with a video of someone who actually knows what they are doing. Look for my friend to jump in around the 2:30 min. mark. He is in the striped shirt.

Also, for those of us who hate to keep up with all the different chargers while we travel or who hate the unsightly wires all over the counter or behind the TV, I have good news. In the not so distant future, we will be charging and powering our devices without wires. This technology has endless opportunities. It would be great to be able to have an electric hybrid that charged without wires. Perhaps it would just charge as we are driving through town. Of course, how will the electric company bill people for their usage or how do we keep people from stealing our electricity? I will let another entrepreneur figure that one out. Check out the company here. If you want to see it actually working ABC's video does a good job. The YouTube videos were not as clear, but shorter.

Monday, July 09, 2007

300!...no, not the movie

Today I have reached 300 posts on my blog. WOW! What does this mean? I have come to only one conclusion. Which is, that I have spent way to much time on my computer. However, don't worry faithful readers, I will not be giving up the blog. Nor will I commit myself more to it. I am happy with the way it is for the moment and I hope you are too.

So, I had a co-worker today show me pictures of her new home. It was beautiful. I also got to see a picture of her cute little girl who just finished kindergarten.
This gives me a chance to highlight the differences in China when it comes to purchasing a home.

In China, you typically purchase a new build, sense everything is being built and not much has been in existence very long. When you buy a home it is a clean slate. The owner must pick out the flooring, where the walls will go, what colors they will be, what fixtures for doors, faucets, lights, cabinets, and everything else that goes with purchasing a home. In the US, if you buy a new-build, then you typically get the option of picking out many of the items that will be placed in the home. A new-build in the US offers many customizations, but typically the floor plan remains the same. Also, your customizations are limited to a few boxed choices, unless you want to pay a lot of extra money to go against the pre-chosen customization options. Yes, their is something wrong about having pre-set customizations. It sounds like an oxymoron, but it saves money.

I think that in China you are given to many options, sense most Chinese get approximately the same thing. The culture predicts this, since most Chinese do not want to stand out and do something "really" different.

However, this brings up a different cultural difference. The Chinese want to feel special and if you offered standard customizations, then this need would not be fulfilled. I will save this discussion for another day.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

We are covering 6 out of 7 continents...not bad

One of my fellow IMBAers, Dan Houck, put together a nice map of where all of the IMBAers are working this summer. If you click on a circle it will tell you the location and how many students are located there. Of course, you can move the map around by holding down the mouse button and zoom in as necessary.

Check it out by clicking here. We truly are a GLOBAL program!

Nanjing, China

After spending a night in my own bed last Friday, I was awakened by a friend's text message. I had a train to catch to Nanjing and I was late! Within five minutes I was packed and out the door heading towards a cab. Nanjing was China's capital city for six dynasty's and has lots of historical sites.

After slicing through the streets of Wuxi, between the people walking and riding their scooters to work, I arrived at the train station. I usually have to sit down and wait for the train to leave. This time I was able to walk through the station and out on to the platform without waiting. I thought that perhaps I should be late more often. Within a few minutes of boarding the train, I was on my way to Nanjing.

Four of us spent Saturday and Sunday seeing the sights. We toured Purple Mountain, where Sun Yat-sen's tomb is located. He ruled over China before Mao took over and is considered the father of modern China. Also, we checked out the Linggu Temple area which had a big pagoda and beautiful gardens.

Saturday night we went to Nanjing's newest bar area, called 1912. We ate dinner and danced at a night club. The next day we stayed at the hotel till check-out and then headed out to have lunch and see Confucius's Temple. We walked around the area after eating till we had to return to the train station. One block of shops was filled with animals and could have been a huge propaganda feast for animal cruelty. PETA should visit Nanjing and take pictures for its website and brochures. I have never seen so many animals kept in such deplorable conditions. The street food vendor at the end of the block did not look busy. Perhaps it was because he was selling the animals that weren't selling? Probably not, but you never know for sure when you are in China. Sorry if I made you lose your appetite.

The weekend was supposed to be filled with thunderstorms and lots of rain. Well, the weather did not disappoint us. Luckily, it seemed that whenever we decided to go somewhere the rain would stop, then after leaving a place the rain would start again. It was incredible that the only weather we had to put up with was rolling up our pants to avoid getting them wet in the puddles that had formed. Of course, some big puddles formed as the pics show. I guess Nanjing's drainage system has not kept pace with the rest of its growth.

So the weekend was a lot of fun. I was a bad picture taker and left it up to everyone else. You can check out my previous post on Nanjing from my first week in China that has pitures to see more of Purple Mountain. Thanks Wiki for the pic at the top of the posting.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

The show is just about over

APPPExpo and More

The picture album above includes the APPPExpo I have been attending and some Karaoke pics I was able to score from Greg. Greg is a family friend of Adam's (my boss) and has been visiting China for the last three weeks. He just graduated high school and is heading to Duke in August. Go Greg!

As for July 4th in Shanghai, it was non-existent. I did nothing special except tell the people I work with happy fourth of July. No fireworks, no "Old Man River" on the bluff of the Mississippi River in Memphis, and no parties. A magazine Greg was reading that afternoon stated that one of the top twenty things to do in life is to celebrate the 4th of July outside of the US. I wasn't sure why. It is like spending any other holiday away from your family and friends.

Actually, I really can't say that is true. While the fourth of July was not mentioned, I did have dinner with my boss, his wife, Greg, and some other people attending the conference on the Bund at one of the nicer restaurants in Shanghai. The view was great, the wine wasn't made in China, and the meal was delicious. If you don't know...the Bund is the bend in the river located in downtown Shanghai. You can see pictures of the Bund here.

Well, as much as I love being pampered in a hotel, I am looking forward to a night at home in my rock-hard bed in Wuxi.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

APPPExpo in Shanghai

I have been attending the APPPEXPO 2007 this week. My first day spent there I was reminded of high school/college career fairs, except the booths are often much bigger. However, my second day I spent the day trying to remember different jobs I have had in the past. First, all the marketing jobs I have had have made me an informed consumer, so I often look at the beauty of the marketing rather than the message they want the average consumer to see. Then I was walking past huge printers that reminded me of my days at Signal Graphics Printing in Boulder. Then later I was reminded of working at my uncle's photo finishing business in Memphis when I was fourteen, because of the enormous photo developing machines.

I have two more days of expo-ing and I will make sure to take a few pictures of the cooler looking booths. If you like advertising, printing, photos, colored lights, big displays, and anything else that has to do with creating these things, then you would enjoy this expo.

This weekend I will be heading to Nanjing for sightseeing. Aside from the expected rain, I am predicting some wonderful sights, food, and fun.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

10th Anniversary of Hong Kong's Return

Yesterday China celebrated the 10th Anniversary of Hong Kong's return to return from the British. This entailed a weekend long series of news covering how Hong Kong has evolved over the last ten years. The TV also covered countless interviews and speeches, many of them given by the President of China, covering how wonderful it is that Hong Kong is part of China.

So, what has the last ten years brought China. All I can tell is that it has brought the right to say that Hong Kong is part of China and not part of Britain. Oh, and it has created a day long holiday that some how stretches into two days of non-stop propaganda on TV. I can't tell how anyone in my town was affected by this event. Most Chinese can not visit Hong Kong, since you must obtain a visa to cross the border and their is a yearly restriction on how many are issues. I am sure I am missing something, but this is what it looks like form the outsider's view point. Most of you probably didn't know that this holiday was being celebrated or even existed. I sure didn't. Instead you might have noticed that July 1st is Canada Day, by looking at your calender. Don't worry, you didn't miss anything!

The past weekend's events...
On Friday I headed into Shanghai for a night of Karaoke with Shaun and some other people that we have met during our time in China. For three hours we sang in a room with nice couches, a huge TV, and interesting selection of English songs. It was a lot of fun. Don't worry, I won't be dragging anyone out to the karaoke bars upon my return, but if I end up in one I won't mind getting up there and singing a tune.

Saturday I headed home and went to a friend's housewarming BBQ. It was a very clear day and not to hot, so sitting on the roof top, eating burgers, and looking out at one of the hills surrounding Wuxi was awesome. Also, the host has a great selection of music, which I was delighted to run across.

I made it an early night and proceeded to do nothing on Sunday. This was a rarity for me, but I needed to chill our from all my recent travels and re-group. Tomorrow I am headed out for four days in Shanghai for a sign convention. I will try to "brighten" someones day with Colite's patented LED signs. OK, bad sign joke:)