61 posts • joined Tuesday 5th May 2009 03:55 GMT
Colour me ignorant...
But does this mean that we'll see some wireless HDMI kit that isn't absolutely shocking in terms of range and doesn't require line of sight to operate? Or is this too much to hope for?
Re: Why block facebook?
Because they have a clone site for every single western "innovation"
ren ren wang = facebook
sina weibo = twitter
lashousifang = foursquare
tuangou = groupon (admittedly probably copied from China)
amongst others. They block it for two reasons:
- Free sharing of information with westerners
- All that advertising revenue would go to an american company, not to the state (which has fingers in most of the pies).
Once the Chinese ones are big enough, that they know they won't lose market share....
This is why I keep saying it's a fallacy for people to refer to China as a market. For Chinese companies it's a market. But a market by different rules. A market of face, relationships and how many cartons of cigarettes you can buy the politicians with.
Interestingly, I can confirm anecdotally that China Unicom have started cutting VPNs as soon as they're detected. I quite enjoyed having Facebook access on my smart phone over mobile (China Unicom are the only provider that supports proper 3G and HSPA), but recently, I've been unable to connect, even using "stealth" IPs from my VPN provider. Here in Guangzhou (canton) at least.
I for one welcome...
Perhaps it is merely the afterglow of our galactic neighbours who, years ago realised the danger and tyranny of black holes and are systematically destroying them all with massive weapons tech. Back to reading Culture novels...
Not a satisfying pay off.
Whilst boss-death is good, I was kind hoping for a summary execution at the hands of fuming board members sure to the boss's skimping on equipment and a subsequent triumphant rise in the IT budget. But I guess I'm too much of an idealist.
Re: I'm confused...
I've been playing online before: WoW, Team Fortress 2, CS:Source etc. I've had ping spikes.
I know enough about architectures that I put it down to ISP throttling, Server congestion, a hundred different things.
I didn't immediately think "Jeez, the feds, must traceroute". Particularly sitting at home playing on an Xbox? I'd assume lag would be part and parcel of playing on the closed XBox network.
I do concede your point that he is not-your-average-bear XBox living room tard. But still. For a spike - it's not a "anyone would do the same response"
Can traceroutes be done after the fact? Or was Kim Dotcom tracerouting his connection as a matter of course?
That strikes me as overly paranoid for someone who is doing nothing wrong.
Whatever the case, Spy agency or not, the UK should listen up. Snooping and man-in-the-middle attacks are ILLEGAL. Legislating to make it legal so they can read all our emails. Just wrong.
Not all fake goods
Batteries, LCDs, memory cards and other components are being boxed as are smartphones, and the labels being hastily applied to said items makes it difficult to believe that much of it is legit.
I live in Guangzhou, just up the road (relatively) from SZ and i visit the electronics markets quite a lot, for various things from cases, to thermal paste, to charging blocks for my laptop.
You do see smart phones being boxed up, but the reason is not necessarily because of fake items.
As you said, a lot of items are smuggled into China as "grey market" items from HK. For the profit and also because they're not "officially" available in China.
HTC have only recently exploded in China, (i.e. the last year) and it was very difficult to get original products from places like Gome (Guo Mei in Mandarin). It was only from grey market stores that you could get an HTC desire for instance. Now they're available everywhere. You could put this down to them being kept out because they're taiwanese, or for any other reasons.
But the point being that these grey market shops often open the boxes and pre-root them (in the case of android phones) or jailbreak them (in the case of iPhones) so they can pre-load them with a bunch of chinese shit.
There are obvious reasons for this:
1. the android paid store is not available in China. So they put pirated paid apps on the rooted phones
2. they're starting to turn phones into bloatware infested swamps (chinese anti-virus / games) AKA Dell / HP etc laptops of old
3. these apps aren't approved for the android store
4. Chinese consumers (in general) won't pay for anything after purchase or anything they can get around for free.
5. The OEM didn't put any chinese language support on the original phone (so the seller's put on a bunch of input sources they think the Chinese consumer wants)
In general, this means opening the box, and doing something with the phone. Some attempt to re-wrap the phone, but as long as you ask to see it before hand and do some testing, you'll soon find out if it's genuine or not.
Nice article, but it fails to mention the sky high prices in SZ (beer is 35-40 RMB per pint - 3.50-4.00GBP) in most bars, if not more. The bars play terrible terrible Chinese pop music all day and night and Pizza Hut is considered posh nosh. It's lacking any history or culture (if you into that sort of thing) but if you're into a party and getting wasted, then it's sin city for you.
For those looking for a bit of "company" too, it must be noted that as it has a massive immigrant population (it literally becomes a ghost town during spring festival (chinese new year) and the average age of the population is freakishly young @ ~ 28, it means that the local female wildlife is, well, smoking hot.
Paris, because she'd love the no soul hedonism of Shenzhen
The beginning of the end?
People have been saying for a while that it's only going to take one moron to duck with kick starter crowd source darlings before the trust bubble is best and confidence in the platform and method breaks.there was a brief scandal a couple of weeks ago. But this is wholly different, with mismanagement and hypocrisy at the firing.
I feel it is a bit harsh to judge boingboing here, as they were probably trusting her to not act like an idiot and betray that trust. You could label it foolish to trust someone asking for so much for what is essentially a vanity project, but there you go. No one forces people to donate.
It does make me wonder if kick starter has any protectionor contingencies in place against morally outrageous user of funds raised, or if there ought to be some other form of recourse for people who feel let down.
But one thing for sure. 35k is a small percentage of that total to save so you can get the best for what I would imagine is a fairly crucial part of the project and critical to its success. I guess exposure was more important to this clown than actually giving punters what they want (an awesome live show). Oh well.
When will it stop?
When will these fallacies stop being reported? Dominate the "market". There's no such thing as as market on China. No other companies stand a chance. China do business as China. Ostensibly as the country. In real terms as corporations who are the single biggest in their sector in the country. It's like the baidu thing . Dude google ever stand a chance against them in the Chinese "market".
I laughed because I take issue with go daddy on moral grounds. The shady practise of pre registration of domain names when people had searched them on go daddy is profiteering at best, criminal art worst. They should have been pulled up for that. Like so many others too.
Satisfaction or smugness?
Or is it that iPhone owners generally exude more smugness than satisfaction with their toys?
I mean, it's to be expected if you pay 200% more for a Fisher Price phone - you need to be happy it about it somewhere.
I would put in a caveat but I am definitely trying to troll the fanbois.
Pot / Kettle / Black?
"But we are the studio that has the financial and corporate resources to stand up and do something about it,""
Ha! Am I the only one seeing the irony here? Copying the Sims? Sims is people management? How many ideas are in the sims from them park / theme hospital / rollercoaster tycoon / other management games?
Software. Patents. Are. Bad. Simples.
Your assessment is surprisingly astute, much like China's blocking of western websites to economically protect the chinese clones (weibo, renren et al.).
There are big economic reasons - many people here don't expect or demand a higher bitrate service and will pay for the low speeds. Current iPhones (not fixed broadband I know) can't get real 3G on China Mobile, so they can sell them 3G priced packages for 2G / 2.5G service.
Living in China, I can attest that the internet service does suck. I live in Guangzhou in Guangdong province which, considering it's proximity to Hong Kong, i would expect to have faster than China average speeds.
The reasoning of the article, that it's the interuptions of the Great-Firewall that are causing it to be slow is very very true. I pay for an "8 Mbps" service, which does seem to fly along when visiting sites inside China and therefore inside the firewall. However, speeds drop to about ~2Mbps to sites outside. It's not just the time-outs and disruptions, it seems to be actually throttling the connection.
However, I believe the biggest point of contention isn't the advertised down speed. It's the up-speed. Connections in the UK have been not just racing up in download speeds, but uploads have been as well. Admittedly not in parity with downloads, but still pretty hefty.
At last check, my Chinese connection had 0.15Mbps upload. You wouldn't believe how seriously that bottle neck affects my connection. Particularly if the misses is streaming videos from Chinese streaming software such as PPS or PPTV.
And yes, there's the other thing. The COMPLETE lack of respect of copyright on China's "internal intranet"
One last thing. If we must adapt..
From the tech radar review for the new ASUS zenbook (MacBook Air contender).
t's a shame there's no Ethernet option, but there's no room for fatties at this party. However, if it's anything like the original Zenbook, there'll be an adapter in the box.
Adapter in the box.
Not the £25 rip off piece of plastic and metal from Apple.
From the new reg article just posted:
From the new reg article just posted:
The retina screen is lovely, it really is, and I also believe that eventually retina-class screens will become standard on all computers. But this retina is blinding you (ho, ho) to what Apple has removed from the MacBook Pro: no optical drive, no Ethernet, half the storage space.
Apple's promo videos show a smart guy on a plane editing video using his ultra-quiet, retina-screened MBP while his fellow passengers - clearly non-productive dipshit Windows users - try to get some sleep.
What it doesn't show is the same man deciding to sit back and watch a DVD only to find that he can't because Apple took out the DVD drive. He really ought to have torrented some films before catching his flight, he supposes, but this can take days to complete despite his fast internet connection.
Even so, he's not sure he can spare enough space for 20 gigs of movies on his half-pint SSD. Later, he arrives at the New York branch but finds that he can't plug into the company network because Apple took out the Ethernet port, so he spends the whole jetlagged morning logging calls in a vain attempt to get a Wi-Fi login, only to have it keep dropping out because he's been given a desk on the "wrong side of the pillar".
After a few years, all of this will seem trivial. However, unlike Apple PR, I have to live and work in the real world today as well as - one hopes - in a few years from now.
Until then, feel free to keep reading about stuff that doesn't matter.
Re: ....you failed.
Yes, I do know it's an Intel technology. I also know that it's not the name Intel give it and that Apple would not be the first to rush to market with it if there was not some kind of kick back should other vendors start using it. There's no way they're being evangelical and trying to push standards "forward".
I know the rights for the Thunderbolt trademark have been transferred to Intel now. But there still has to be something in it for Apple.
Re: Why has video not taken up it's mantle?
Yes it is called SIP. But that's another protocol and it requires extra software to work. iOS, Android don't support SIP numbers out of the box. Like I said - unless it's integrated and made invisible. Are you willing to keep 2 numbers, one for voice and one for video.
Then we're back to the same problem. That your friends and family have to have a SIP number too.
Integration will be key here.
People use video-chat on Phones/FaceTime all the time.
But do they?
Let's take FaceTime as an example - seeing as you've decided that it is it's own entity and innovation separate from other "phones" (not just a single enabling technology such as skype, facebook (which has video chat) , google talk et al.) (#I smell a fanbois, or just a goon susceptible to marketing).
FaceTime only works over wifi. And you have to be friends with all the other apple fanbois. And you have to log into facetime. And so do they.
If I'm sitting at my lappy or my computer I'll use Skype. But then it's just generally easier to chat over text. Especially if you're busy or don't want to be disturbed.
I also read somewhere that 70% of men regularly make phone calls in the news. (Source: Scientific Proof Magazine). I think most of the time that would make me not want to make a video call. Unless it was some significant other on the other side. Plus - when the boss calls and asks why you're late, and you're still in your PJs and hungover from the night before, it's easier to hide behind a phone than video.
Why has video not taken up it's mantle?
Possibly because it's too unreliable. Still.
I use video chat on skype and QQ on my home broadband connection, and even across the world it seems to work fine.
I would list several reasons why (and it's not the end point application like Naptard says it is)
1. Incompatible products - everyone has a phone and single identifiable phone number. If I want to voice call my friends and family, I just call their number. I have about 25% of my contact book on Skype. The others, only their phone number. Either they don't have Skype, or I just can't be bothered to get their Skype address. So for every new app that is released that can do video, there's a separate contact list to keep.
As an example, Skype is terrible on phones. It never stays logged in, or it takes up too much memory that garbage collection comes around and kills it off if I open 1 or 2 new apps. This happens on Android and my iPad under iOS. So I'm never online long enough for people to call me. THEREFORE I can't just pick up my phone and dial like I would a phone number. Everyone has to be online at the right time.
Apple may have made an attempt with facetime to integrate it a little - but there is a REASON why they made it Wi-Fi only (however restricting that is). The current networks are just not good enough, as are the methods of actually initiating the call.
If there was some way to start a video chat simply by dialling the telephone number and choosing voice or video - I think a whole bunch more people would go for it. It would become second nature. I think 3 in the UK tried this for a while - do they still do it? But again, the problem is here - VENDOR LOCK-IN. Apple, 3 - only if you mates are on the same network or device, can you make easy, established ways to make video calls.
So we've got some key limiting factors: time, place, device, accessibility.
2. Video chews through bandwidth. Had the telcos kept the unlimited usage wonderlands, we might have finally got around to make video a part of our everyday business, but right now, they just don't want you / I / us using video all the time. They haven't turned on enough of their dormant capacity / aren't through charging exorbitant rates yet to welcome wholesale use of video
3. Video is time sensitive to delivery of packets. Voice is too if over an IP network, but it's a connected network and the established infrastructure is there to handle it. True, voice will also cut off in a tunnel, but the 3G / HSPA services are just not realiable enough, on the move, to give us satisfactory video chats. Skype suffers immeasurably over a wi-fi network for good quality video. It's different to standard video streaming with all the processing that needs to be done either side.
4. Devices aren't good enough. The cameras that go into phones - especially the front ones, go in as an after thought. They're ostensibly put there for the very subject of this article, for video chat. But nobody ever uses them - because they're not integrated as natural addition to the telephone network.
Until every phone network goes IP and Data only and even voice is across the data streams, so we can connect video to our phone numbers, then we won't take to the all seeing-all dancing video future. When this happens, over the top apps (Talk, Skype, et al) won't be needed, because the video call will be second nature. Pick up my phone, press the picture of my wife on the screen and a few seconds later it's replaced by a real-life grinning version of her.
Moreover on top of this - I've seen plenty of articles suggesting that telcos are worried about becoming simply commodity players, only providing the tubes for the dominating companies (Google, Facebook et al). Well, if they got their act together and actually started moving towards integrating the video into the network like this, without the need for apps or other providers, they could have a bonafide reason to start offering package deals and making money off of it, like they did with SMSs. Once again, 3 already did it. Why not the rest?
I for one, would welcome our new video overlords. Although I don't really fancy sitting on my metro to work in China listening to all the locals getting their face-time in with their squeeze early in the morning.. They're already loud enough on the phone - I fear with video the din would be deafening.
Resellers / Franchises - no sympathy
I have wondered in the past about resellers. If you're just selling Apple products then you are putting yourself at the mercy of Apple anyway. Same with franchises - you pay to use their image. But if their image is not good in the public eye, then you're screwed.
It has always smacked of laziness for me - those who cannot market well themselves or come up with their own ideas for business are resellers for others. I'm sure Apple won't cry over this.
Depends on what you call 3G
I live in China and happily move along on my HTC Desire with China Unicom and their "3G" service. Unless the phone is lying, that actually uses HSDPA.
The China mobile that most people use, and Unicom drops to on the metro is Edge. I thought that was considered 3G, or is that only 2.5G?
iPhones are incredibly popular here - but the major use for them in is to get weibo (microblogging) or read text based web pages. The 3G services are available (if you want to cripple yourself with a CDMA tech that only works there or you can go with Unicom).
People here are penny pichers - they want the iPhone to show off, but most of them don't have demand for videos or music streaming. They will simply download it and put it on their phones.
Chinese home-grown services like PPTV / PPS let users stream movies, but also download them. Copyright is non existent here. If you have a Chinese IP - Baidu has an MP3 search feature that lets you download any music you want. It's no surprise that outside of China the MP3 search doesn't work - the government doesn't want the west making accusations of rife copyright fraud.
You're right, subs will go up as will demand. But the demand is of a completely different nature here. The explosion of bandwidth use from apps such as spotify won't happen, because people won't pay unless the culture completely changes.
Someone has to pay...
This is usually the argument against free-tards and other people rubbishing the networks. Yes. Someone has to pay.
I agree totally. Either adverts. Or subscription. Or a blend of both.
What these networker execs and apologists don't realise is that maybe people are fed-up.
- Fed-up because the adverts are so noxious.
- Fed-up because since 1994 since we first had Sky in my home, he's seen the sub fee go up from £24 / month to a whopping £79 (that's all channels). That's a 229% increase in just under 20 years. Yes, it's gone digital, and we have Sky + boxes now, and HD tv streams. But as technology matures aren't prices meant to become commoditised / go down? Is there anyone out there that can actually justify >200% increase in price?
- Fed-up because the adverts have become longer, louder and more frequent.
- Fed-up, because to support adverts, networks will actually cut parts of films to stick to their advert schedule
- Fed-up because Pay-TV has pushed up the price for important events and shows for national broadcasters, therefore pushing up the sub cost.
- Fed-up because most people would actually be reasonable if the broadcasters weren't so fugging greedy. How about just one advert break in a 30 minute show?
- Fed-up, because much like the practice of raising the volume for singles on the radio so they sounded louder than the last, fed-up up that your fugging adverts come on louder than the program I was just watching.
- Fed-up that you invade the base reason I watch TV dramas - to escape reality, with fugging product advertising.
I have absolutely no sympathy. Why do they think ad-blockers are so popular on browsers. Because they're invasive, obnoxious and way too frequent. If they rescinded their greed and offered quality programming all the time, people might tolerate their shit advertising a wee bit more.
Death to sales & marketing goons.
Apple have actually innovated. Style over substance any one?
I didn't think there were so many Apple fanbois who hung out on El Reg.
To be fair, The Reg does seem to be a bit like the South Park boys. "Equal Opportunity Offenders" (of tech companies and their ilk).
If you will really take the "Foxconn Rebrander" comment seriously, you're either new here, or you may be retaining something in your anus. Either way. GTFO.
Re: Great deal, it's not a Kindle
The ability to convert formats is the ONLY major influence on the choice of which ereader to buy. Support of formats and their readability is what you are buying it for, no?
I had heard the Kindle's performance with PDFs was also terrible.
There are so many many bad films
Die Hard 4
The fast and furious films
Most things with Will Ferrell
Where the wild things are was just boring - jonze pissed all over that one
the last lord of the rings
any film that was meant to be dark and then ended up having a happy ending because of those hollywood studio fucks seeing the dollar rather than the art.
anything with ben affleck (except good will hunting and chasing amy)
Mega Fault (a straight to DVD film with that fiend in it before she died, Brittany Murphy. My god, it's that bad. Shame, because she was in some aswesome films (sin city, girl - interrupted).
I'm in China, with an account
Despite the rumours to the contrary, I'm a "foreigner" in China and I still have a functioning weibo account. Strange. but true.
They will not have the problems of Internet trolls or cyber bullying. -> advantage? Is cyber bullying really that much of an issue outside of isolated cases that make excellent tabloid fodder? And internet trolls are part of the internet. It makes it, not breaks it. Half the commentards would have nothing to do if there were no trolls to respond to.
This is just plain bad in my view.
"I actually sort of agree with Limbaugh's point that society (through health insurance) paying for birth control is essentially society helping people have sex for pleasure. Yes, there are medical reasons some for the use of birth control, but as a general rule it's about worry-free romping.
However, he's wrong in that we're not paying people to have sex. We know they're going to have sex. We're actually paying to reduce unwanted breeding, which, as Freakonomics fans will know, causes crime."
And what's wrong with having sex for pleasure? We're one of a few species on the planet able to enjoy our copulation (3 or 4 others right?). Why does the Christian right seem so intent on denying their own humanity? Their life in the bedroom mug a sad tale to behold.
Ultimately, our goal as humans should be hedonism through invention and devlopment? To use the sense we have to fulfill our desires? To use what resources we have to perpetuate this for as many people as possible?
Sadly these people see pleasure = selfish = sin. Not a balanced equation I feel and it breaks my heart for them.
Bob Cockshott, who is a...
Challenge Delivery Manager at the government's Technology Strategy Board ICT Knowledge Transfer Network.
And they wonder why our economy went to hell in a handbasket. How does he justify his existence?
I am not a freetard...
the only thing I have to say on the matter is, you cannot have one rule for one, and one for another.
Hypocrisy is the worst of any moral offence.
The Pirate Bay, as much as I dislike it, INDEXES torrents. So does Google.
It's not a straw man argument. Technically they are doing the same thing, just through a different protocol. In fact, Google probably links directly to some illegal downloads.
QED. Attack all, or no offenders. Not just the most (in)famous.
Demand high quality at low cost?
Ha, didn't this very publication publish figures that the unit cost of an iPhone is $188, but retailing for $699?
I wouldn't exactly say people are 'demanding' apple products at low cost. Appe products by and large are exorbitantly expensive and until the tablet boom, any similar product at similar spec would likely be several %age points cheaper.
Apple it would seem have forced a trend with tablets where every vendor is now trying to sell normal products and "premium" prices. and most of them are making massive profits.
How about Apple shave some of that ridiculously large profit margin and pay them more or move their production to another place where it's easier to check on conditions? Feel free to pay them more, oik.
Reminds me of...
"only by reading a breadth of The Register does our equal-opportunities approach become clear."
Reminds me of Messrs Stone and Parker, creators of South Park. They said they were "equal opportunities offenders". It doesn't matter who it was they were lampooning. Everybody was up for it.
This is so indicative of the music industry. and when I say industry, I mean the labels.
bunch of f**king parasites. I used to be one of those that this publication came to refer to as "freetards". I used to champion stealing music from sites like what.cd because I thought it stuck it to the man. But several arguments later I ultimately realise that we should buy if we want to support the bands we know and love.
But one of the reasons I still haven't fully converted to the paying light is because of these miscreants and scrotes that scheme Machiavellian to rob the creators of their money. 10 to 20 % only for a sale?!?! that is absolute day light robbery. Jesus, just imagine if recruitment agents said that to new employees? We've found you a job but we're going to take 80% of the salary that's paid. They would be about as welcome as a fart in the batsuit in the labor market. The only thing archaic here is the ridiculous distribution model and how artists are still held ransom by the trafficking thugs.
Adapt or die. Darwinism they called it. Phones were capable of SMS texting way before it became popular, except the telco's never really supported it, because it wasn't popular. As soon as it boomed the stuck a big price on it and started commoditising "packages" of messages.
Technology has simply enabled the market to move on. It's time the telco's bucked the fuck up and started innovating new ways to make money, rather than relying on governments to legislate and protect their already shrinking share.
I thought capitalism was meant to drive innovation, not stifle it? Assholes.
Although, when facebook was still available in China it spawned a pixel for pixel clone in xiaonei.cn and then renren.com (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renren) that now holds the largest user base in China for a social network. Even striking a deal with Baidu, I would like to see how facebook China, being exlcusively in use for the Chinese and being monitored by the authorities would manage to:
b: take those users away from renren (which incidentally is 50% of the reason why facebook is blocked - they wanted their own homegrown version to have the economic advantage as well as subversion avoidance - I wrote a blog about it here: http://www.geejayoh.com/blog/2010/11/china-censorship-not-what/)
c: keep us stinking ex-pat lao wai off the service (so not exactly exclusively chinese) unless they used some kind of reverse firewall implementation and blocked others getting in?
d: keep any of their design or code as their own, when copyright and recourse against infringement are literally NON-existent. Every new feature would just be copied by renren reverse engineered by their code-monkeys (and there is a lot of them)
still, I guess they're trying to get a foothold, if China EVER opens up, they would have a foothold and just merge the userbase. Wait and see time I guess.
I experienced it...
I live in China, in Canton and it happened here. I came home from work and my girlfriend said she'd been around 6 different supermarkets trying to find salt. I tried to explain to her the absurdity of the situation but she said we needed it. She ended up by a kilo.
Table salt doesn't even come from the sea!
"""-What arrogance. Living in poverty with no prospects has always been the cause of revolutions, but apparently this time it was a western web site which caused it even though most of the people taking part in the revolution have never seen it.
What an arrogant technocrat. """"
Listen to that man. He talks sense.
This is not just about the games
I live in China and this is a Chinese phenomenon. But people will just say "addicted to games". But this problem is not game addiction per se, and neither are games 100% responsible.
This problem is actually endemic of something deeper in society. We often comment on the ridiculous bureaucracy and health and safety campaigns in the UK - well it's worse here. People are shit scared of doing anything more risky than walking to work in the daylight.
It terms of a government that has spent years pursuing a way of fearing its people into submission and trying to make them behave as they want, they are now paying the price. It's simply that a bunch of youngsters really just have nothing else to do.
It is also endemic of an education system that does not reward freewill, but repetition of mechanical action and thought, something computer games are well designed for and will satiate a hunger / habit for.
These marathon gaming sessions and their resultant deaths are merely just the logical conclusion of the process.
Therefore, don't blame the games, blame the society it's happening in.
Showing the big four labels?!
Excuse me, I don't have to show anyone I can be trusted. Fuck the labels. They can rot in hell.
The most interesting thing to note here is the relative pricings in the UK and the US.
I think this is the first thing being sold online for a decade where the price in the UK and the US actually reflects the exchange rate rather than people directly and flagrantly ripping us off.
Understanding the Chinese market...
@rxdg, @ghormax, @jaitcH, etc...
There is a fundamental mis-understanding by so many commentators in the West about the nature of Chinese censorship. Everyone shouts blue murder about the "censorship" that occurs as if it's the the primary reason that sites get blocked in China.
@ghormax, these "web 2.0" site you refer to. I pose a question that what do sites like Youtube, facebook, twitter, foursquare, tumblr have in common? The answer would be that they all have behemoth "competitors" within China. Notice how facebook was freely available as was youtube until the chinese "competitors" established themselves and got notoriety in China. I say "competitors" because like so many many many things here in China they were almost all direct and complete knock-offs of the originals.
The Chinese facebook began as "xiaonei.cn" or "little campus" was set-up just like the face book model, for college students only. Now it's "renrenwang" or "everybody net" and everyone can use it. When this site appeared it was a byte for byte clone.
Now the same goes for that wretch Baidu, the chinese twitters, foursquares and what not. Half the social market in China is all cornered by Tencent (QQ makers). Youtube has it's clones in Yukou and tudou. China's "censorship" is simply blocking and tantamount the most overtly subversive, but to some (under the shade of polticial censorship) economic protectionism. They simply don't want foreign companies to have a foothold in China. They keep the market in their market.
Robin Li's statements also smack of overbearing arrogance. As mentioned, business in China is just simply not based on a meritocracy of sorts as it might be in the west. A business does not become most successful by offering the best service and being the most popular. It just doesn't happen. Whilst there are lobbyists and corporate shills in the west, corruption is ENDEMIC in China, at every level and every entry point.
It's simply not the case where countless articles criticise google for failing to "crack" the chinese market. It's not failing to understand the market either as Robin puts it. He is being cheeky as fuck. Google have simply not been allowed to succeed. Google's image search is routinely hampered by non-loading results due to the Great firewall - and here is the most important part.
If you visit google outside of China you get a much sanitised version of the engine. Baidu as a google knock off offers music and movie searches with direct downloads to pirated material. Something that Google would be destroyed for in the western media if they ever tapped into the market that way and offered the same service. You won't get the same illegal results from Baidu from outside of China as you will in.
Trust me when I say, the censorship of the Internet in China is goes much deeper and far beyond political censure. It's a far more insidious world we live in. The old way used to be invade a country and conquest. China is just going to do it economically and the trust fund starts at home.
You've clearly never been to China then either
Chinese censorship is noticeable and rife from any point of entry.
The statement of a Chinese intranet is necessarily not accurate but a good catch-all approximation.
Image search through flickr, google and others is regularly interrupted, amongst others. Any links that haven't passed the censors or they've forgot to take off black lists are blocked, youtube and facebook aren't periodically blocked, they are permanently blocked, as are twitter, foursquare, tumblr and a whole host of other web 2.0 outfits.
Links with RSS, blog or other keywords that the firewall censors are also blocked. With the added side effect that your net connection is dropped for a couple of minutes.
And I personally believe it's not a censorship thing, but an economic activity to boost the markets of companies like Baidu
Forgive me but
This article is patently false.... Have you researched all of the comp sci courses from British Universities and averaged their content to see what programs offer the most varied range of subjects?
I studied at and graduated from Computer Science at The University of Reading in 2005. During my time reading @ Reading (ba dum tish!) I studied everything you are whinging about, C++, C, Java, Pascal, C#, POP11, even CAML. We had a thorough grounding in formal database languages and SQL. We studied Operating Systems in C (including their algorithms), formal algorithms in, well, pseudo code, amongst other interesting and completely varied subjects.
It's simply not true that we don't learn "proper" programming any more. Taking a sample of one university and bemoaning that all of us cannot spell is irresponsible journalism and scaremongering.
Boo-urns sir, boo-urns.