Monthly Archives: July 2004

Sleepless in Beijing

I am sitting at a big office in the capital of China.

This is the forth day I am in this big city.

In the last four days, the area I moved around is within 200 meters.

I stay in the Renaissance Hotel and the office is the building beside it. I didn’t take taxi these days – remember, this is a business trip, not a vocation.

Beijing is not as Hot as Shanghai

The weather of Beijing is nice, not as hot as Shanghai. After rain, it is crystal clear again. I can see mountains at three directions surrounding Beijing.

The Beijing airport is on the north. If you look on the northeast direction, you can see two or three plane line up near the landscape with exactly the same distance between, heading to the airport. The flies lower and lower. It is interesting scene. Beijing airport is the busiest airport in China, so the planes land one after the other.

I Love Technical Stuff

These days, I go to bed at 00:30 everyday. It takes some time to pick up technologies that I didn’t touch for two years. So I have to work hard. The good thing is, I found I am more happier to try to understand how programs runs. I checked my previous entry and found this one: I Still Know Software – ClearType and SmartTags. It is the feeling when I am living technical stuff.

I am researching on RMS (Right Management Service in Windows 2003). It is a very interesting topic.

Tip: Search Functions

With more than 700 entries on this site, the most effective way to location information is to use the Search box on the top of each page. It is my way to locate my old articles. Actually, if I need anything I remember I wrote before, I just type wangjianshuo keyword in the Google Toolbar and it always takes to the right page.

Update on Notification Problems

I will not send notification of this post to my Wangjianshuo’s Blog Update alias, before I fix the terrible multi-send problem. I heard most readers get 25 email with the same content. It is nightmare. But if you want to join the update to receive a notification when a new entry is posted (everday), you can join the update now. The subscription form is at the end of each page. There are 128 memembers right now, and it has been stable for about a month with one or two new members joining everyday and the same number of readers leaving. I will be happy if I see the number of total member increases.

I Saw my Name on BusinessWeek

Matt who grow up in New York City picked up the latest BusinessWeek at work and read the special report named Cult Brands. In the report, he found a IKEA fan named Wang Jian Shuo who has a blog talking about his IKEA experience. He was very interested in IKEA and “wanted to read what you had to say about IKEA in China.”. After surfing on this blog for some time, he finally dropped an email to Wang Jian Shuo. In the email, he said “Just wanted you to know you were mentioned in BusinessWeek in case you didn’t know about it.”

This is the story I learnt this morning. Matt is the first one to tell me my name is mentioned in the special report of the August 2, 2004 issue of BusiessWeek. But he is not the only one. I got more email like this soon.

I was very surprised and went to Google News, then in Wangjianshuo and there is no result. Then I searched for Wang Jian Shuo and the online version of the article Matt mentioned came out.

screen-wangjianshuo.ikea-business.week.png

Content in courtesy of BusinessWeek

The article on my experience of IKEA is More IKEA Furniture in my Home. I have more information on IKEA on this site. I have an IKEA category

IKEA (Shanghai) Pictures, IKEA Becomes Cheap in China and New IKEA Store Opens in Shanghai. I thought I will end my IKEA experience after I grow older, but Wendy and I finally did the largest Bulk Purchase from IKEA just one week ago.

Nice to be Noticed

I shared this information with my close friends and one said “Oh, my God!” when they see my name in the famous magazine. Wendy said “You started to be passionate about personality cult (Zi Lian) these days.” :-D Just as Cult Brands in the article, people started the cult of personality of oneself. :-D

It is just interesting. It does not prove anything, at least, I am not on the cover and the article is not about me. Wait a minute, what if I do put my photo on the cover? Haha. Just kidding.

The online version of the article is here:

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_31/b3894094.htm

The paragraph is under section “Group Think”. Check it out if you are interested.

Update Sorry again July 29, 2004

Oops. I thought I have fixed the email notification problem but it seems even worse. I sent out the same notification for 18 times today. I suspect it should has some relationship with MTBlackList. Sorry. Sorry. The good thing is, nobody complained yet. I will close the notification service for a while until I finally confirm the notification will never send multiple email.

Longest Business Trip in Beijing

Business trips are boring, especially you have tough assignments and you have to work over time till late to night – return to the hotel and find yourself in a completely empty space without the feeling of reality.

Beijing is not as interesting as it should be if the only time window for you to explore the city is from 8:00 PM to 11:00 PM. It is especially so if there are still a lot stuff in your mind to worry about – the work.

Longest Business Trip

This time, I will be in Beijing for at least two weeks, which is the longest business trip I had so far – even longer than the Seattle trip in 2001. Wendy is having a hard time during my absence since she cannot drive right now. She is learning but it takes time for her to get a license. The car (we call it Goudaner) is nothing more than a big case for her.

A City in a Business Trip

This trip gave me better idea of the mood of my readers. People visiting Shanghai on business trip usaually start their email to me with

    “I am going to visit Shanghai for the first time in Febuary 2005”

and continue with

    “Since I am on business trip and I don’t have much time during the daytime”

Their final question will be

    “Where do you recommend to see in two or three hours at night?”

This is exactly the informaiton I am seeking for in Beijing. I know there is no perfect answer to this question at all.

If someone cannot feel relaxed, no place is right for him/her other than either a desk at office or a bed at hotel.

Starbucks

Eric sent me a map of all Starbucks days before. I am considering to visit all Starbucks in Beijing one by one in one day, as I did in Shanghai. It seems not very possible since I may need to work on technical stuff this weekend. I tell you, I do enjoy reading the white papers and PPTs.

My Previous Beijing Visit

Here is the recording of my previous Beijing visit.

(src)

BTW, Wangjianshuo in Google Approaches to 10,000

Searching Wangjianshuo in Google and I found there are 9,620 results:

screen-wangjianshuo-google.GIF

Courtesy of Google.com

It was 9,400 items when I checked the day before yesterday. There is a 200 increase in the last two days. Now the webpages containing wangjianshuo is approaching to 10,000 . Interesting, isn’t it? This is the wealth of linkage currency I have.

Nice Toys at Xintiandi

Xintiandi (or Xin Tian Di) is a nice place to go. It is the gather place of bars. What I found last time is the nice small shops with all types of small toys.

shanghai-bags-xintiandi.jpg

shanghai-mao-xintiandi.jpg

shanghai-tolls-xintiandi.jpg

shanghai-toys-xintiandi.jpg

These small toys reminded me of the beautiful photo Wendy took in German. It is one of the best photos she took. Let me put it there again.

Photographed by Wendy Fan, in German

Map of Xintiandi

Update Sorry for multi-notification July 28, 2004

Ops. Thanks for Henry’s notification. I discovered a servere problem with my last notification for Nice Toys at Xintiandi. If you are subscribers of Wangjianshuo’s Blog Update, you may receive as many as 10 notification emails for this single entry. I am not sure why this happens but I will look into it. Sorry for bothering you. Please be sure I am a pioneer for anti-spam and your email addresses are safe.

Three on the Bund – Part II

I decided to write an article about Three on the Bund the first time I visited and posted an article for it. However, due to the limited time I had last time, I didn’t talked too much about the fabulous place. Now I’d like to continue the article. So the Three on the Bund – Part II is here.

The Building

The fantastic character of the city of Shanghai is the old houses. The history from the end of the 19th century to the beginning of 20th centaury left the city big wealth. The old stone tower at #3 on the Bund, where Three on the Bund is located. is one of the excellent building.

There are many buildings on the Bund, but seldom do I see any building shining as this one. I visited some buildings. Splendid as the outside looks, the interior of the builds are very poor.

The building was renovated by Michael Graves, a guru in industrial design arena. The cooperate and brand identity will be designed by Alan Chan, the designer for Coco-cola Chinese logo.

Three on the Bund

There are 7 floors of the building. ARMANI opens its flagship store of Shanghai on the first floor. Most of the cloths are labeled with 6 digits price in RMB. I saw a t-shirt at 1800 RMB. It is definitely a symbol of expensive goods for local people since a suite of cloth will cost them whole year or many year’s saving. There are two stores on the first floor: Giorgio Armani and Emporio Armani.

The second floor is another fashion store and a Evian SPA. The third store is my favorite art gallery. It was a pity that the gallery was under renovation and the new exhibition should have started. If I were in Shanghai, I will go there and see the exhibition with Wendy.

The forth floor is the French Restaurant – Jean Georges. There are big dark green curtains hanging from the tall roof. Whampoa Club, the Shanghainese cuisine restaurant is the on the fifth floor.

The sixth floor is still empty and I don’t know what it will be. The top floor, the New Height Bar is a good place to go. It has great views – as shown here: Three on the Bund, but the price is not as high as I expected.

A cup of Tsing Tao bear costs 35 RMB and smoothies costs 48 RMB. What do you think? It is definitely not a cheap price compared to the 1 RMB ice-cream in IKEA and 2 RMB drink at Lawson store. It is just the reasonable price for a bar like this.

Some foreigner complained to me that there is “beer discrimination” for foreigners. They don’t understand why drink is so expensive for places foreigners gather and so cheap at places where local people go (like local restaurants). Well. Hehe. No comment on this.

The View

Shanghai don’t have seashore. If you do argue Shanghai is located besides the sea, I would say, yes, but Shanghai’s seashore is too far and the sea is too dirty. (picture).

If you do want to find some place that give you the feeling of seashore, visit the New Height Bar. Sitting at the corner to see the wide Huang Pu river flowing down, the buildings of Pudong spreading besides the river, the splendid Bund buildings, and crowded cars and buses running along the busy road of Zhongshan East 1 Rd, I just feel I am at the sea shore…

More and More Bars are Moving in

M on the Bund is more famous before. It is on the top of the nearby building – #5 on the Bund. Wendy’s friend just opened another bar at the basement of the same building.

Ron Gluckman wrote an article for Wall Street Journal: In Shanghai’s Bund, they’re partying like it’s 1939. Exactly what I see there. The spirit of the Bund is coming back and people start to party at the Bund again.

P.S. We then went to another party at Xintiandi 11:50 PM and get back home at around 2:00 AM again. This time, Wendy ordered a cup of cold water and she was charged 65 RMB for it. Ops. No. I bet it is discrimination. :-D

Blogcn is Down for the Third Time

Blogcn, the largest blogging service provider, shut down their server again. This time, it seems because of technical difficulties.

screen-blogcn-down.again.jpg

Image in courtesy of blogcn.com

As far as I know, there close friends of mine has been affected. Jackgu commented in his last post that he has lost passion for blogging since the 10-day downtime broke his pace of updating frequency and leaving unbearable blank on the blog history.

Claire and Eric were also driven mad. I am proud to help them to host their blogs on wangjianshuo.com. Their new homes are:

I love their writing styles so much. These two blogs, along with Wendy’s blog are the three best personal blogs I saw (in my friend circle). I am happy that I won’t lose them again.

Meanwhile, I still encourage people to start host their blogs by themselves as soon as possible. Check this entry: Blog, to Host it or Not? for reasons.

I hope Eric and Claire enjoy the new home (not fancy but stable home). I hope one day, they can move to their permanent address at http://www.clairehu.com and http://www.zhengziying.com, where their blog should reside at.

MTBlackList is Better than IP Banning

As my old anti-spam method, I used IP Banning in MovableType to fight against comment spam. This prevented some nice reader to post since they are banned due to being in the same IP range as the spammers.

I have tried MT-BlackList before, but my last attempt failed. Today, after reviewing the 150 spammers (within 10 minutes) for ringtone and 160 ping spam for some sex sites, I decided to try it again.

As luck would have it, it worked. I have successfully identified and deleted all those spam and added protection to future spam. More than 1800 entries are in my ban list, which is URL and keyword based. It should work perfectly in the future.

So, from today, I am deleting all the IP banning entries from my MovableType. So none one should be banned simply because they are in the same IP range as others. For back up proposes, I am publishing the IP range I have banned before. As you can see, I was using stupid method to ban the whole IP with mask of 255.255.0.0. That is, if there is any IP in a range posting spam, the whole 65025 IP addresses will be banned. I tried to be more specific, but the spammer seems to be smart enough to roam within a 255.255.0.0 IP space. I am happy MTBlackList finally worked, so the IP banning will be a history of my blog.

Since MTBlackList only works on MT 2.6 but not on MT 3.0D, I start to hesitate to upgrade. My server is stable enough and there is no explicit reason for me to upgrade.

Previous Banned IP Address

Database homewang_blog – Table mt_ipbanlist running on localhost

# phpMyAdmin MySQL-Dump

# version 2.4.0

# http://www.phpmyadmin.net/ (download page)

#

# Host: localhost

# Generation Time: Jul 27, 2004 at 08:00 AM

# Server version: 4.0.16

# PHP Version: 4.3.4

# Database : `homewang_blog`

# ——————————————————–

#

# Table structure for table `mt_ipbanlist`

#

CREATE TABLE mt_ipbanlist (

ipbanlist_id int(11) NOT NULL auto_increment,

ipbanlist_blog_id int(11) NOT NULL default ‘0’,

ipbanlist_ip varchar(15) NOT NULL default ”,

ipbanlist_created_on datetime NOT NULL default ‘0000-00-00 00:00:00’,

ipbanlist_modified_on timestamp(14) NOT NULL,

ipbanlist_created_by int(11) default NULL,

ipbanlist_modified_by int(11) default NULL,

PRIMARY KEY (ipbanlist_id),

KEY ipbanlist_blog_id (ipbanlist_blog_id),

KEY ipbanlist_ip (ipbanlist_ip)

) TYPE=MyISAM;

#

# Dumping data for table `mt_ipbanlist`

#

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INSERT INTO mt_ipbanlist VALUES (115, 1, ‘66.63.’, ‘2004-07-25 17:52:52’, 20040725175252, NULL, NULL);

Database homewang_blog – Table mt_ipbanlist running on localhost

“1”;”1″;”212.219.”;”2004-04-07 10:48:35″;”20040407104835″;NULL;NULL

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Flying to Beijing Again

Just got my flight ticket from to Beijing.

SHA MU5103 Y 27JUL 0900 PEK

1130 RMB for single trip and 2260 RMB for double trip. It is much more expensive than from Shanghai to Hong Kong (1600 RMB round trip) or to Singapore (1999 RMB round trip). It is even more expensive than from Beijing to Sinapore (1999 RMB round trip).

Packing my package and stepping onto my journey again.

What to bring?

  • Passport (My ID got lost again)
  • Tickets
  • Camera
  • Me?
  • Anything else?

This is a business trip again.

Three on the Bund

Finally visited Three on the Bund last night. We scheduled a party there but I was quite worried that morning – if the outside lightening system of the Bund is turned off that night, the view of Three on the Bund will be quite disappointing. It turned out to be 38°C which means, according to the energy saving regulation to fight agaist Energy Crisis, there will be no light on the Bund.

New Height

Although there is no light on the Bund and no light on the wonderful tower, it is still a wonderful place. The New Height bar on the 7th floor of the building – the top floor – has a large open area where you can see both the glorous Bund buildings and the Pudong new landscape.

View of the Bund.

shanghai-bund-from.3ob.jpg

© Jian shuo Wang

View of the other side of the rivere

shanghai-pudong-river.side.jpg

House of Flying Daggers (or Shi Mian Mai Fu)

Went to see Zhangyimou’s film Shi Man Mai Fu (or House of Flying Daggers) in the theator of Super Brand Mall.

screen-house.of.flying.daggers-v.jpg

Image in courtesy of Sina.com.cn

I don’t have too much comments on this film. A perfect film on visual effects but so-so in the story.

shanghai-theater-seats.jpg

Image in courtesy of the Theater at SBM

shanghai-theater-sbm.jpg

Image in courtesy of the Theater at SBM

Most of Shanghai’s theater has been equiped with cutting-edge audio, video and environment facilities. It is seldom see “large theater halls”. As shown on the pictures, the hall is not large – I was sitting at the left most seat of the last row.

Odds and Ends of Today

The real life starts after 6:00 PM. (Yes. Do you want me to explain the domains, ADMT, and Exchange Server stuff at work?)

IKEA again

We went to IKEA for the third time this week – the third time to buy many goods. I thought I have moved out of the target customer scope (src: this article), but again find it is more easier to choose IKEA stuff than other brand. (A reporter from Business Week interviewed me in Emal about my oppion on IKEA, I said, I love it very much!)

We bought new sofa and three Billy bookcases:

BILLY BOOKCASE

BILLY HT EXT UT 175 RMB

BILLY BOOKCS 80 495 RMB

BILLY BOOKCS 60 445 RMB

BILLY BOOKCS 60 445 RMB

BILLY N GLS-DDR 500 RMB

SOFA

EKTORP CVR S03 595 RMB

EKTORP N FRM S0 1000RMB

They ship everything to my door tomorrow – I caught the promoption that runs between July 23 or July 27 to void shipping fee (75 RMB).

Singapore

I got newsletter about the Singapore trip. The round trip flight + two nights 4-star hotel only costs 1999 RMB. That is unbelievable. Now round trip of three or four days in Singapore or Hongkong all drops to about 1999 RMB now. It is the same for other Asia destinations. No wonder why China is the fastest growing traveller exporting country. (The flight to Singapore departs at 23:55 and arrives at 05:00 AM the next day.)

Blogcn Resumes

Blogcn.com finally resumed. Thanks for the mistake in the dates, I found my some old articles in my Server Side RSS Reader.

Eric’s Love Story

Eric is one of my best friends. Check this beautiful love story with Minji. I am very happy with them and my best wishes for them. Eric should be in Hongkong right now to spend the precious three days (or four) with his GF.

Scoble Said Hello to Me

Owen posted on cnblog.org to forward Robert‘s greeting to me? Oh. My! Robert Scoble’s blog is one of my favorite blogs and he definitely leads the blogging movement in Microsoft. Thanks, Robert and Owen. If you want to hear Robert Scoble’s voice, visit this audio clip (via cnblog english edition).

To Focus or Not?

This is the my thrid article on blogging this month. The previous one are:

This post is triggered by the discussion on the topic of blogging by Isaac, Fons and WebLeOn (Chinese site). I want to continue the discussion and share my thoughts.

Whether to Focus on a Subject

Regarding blogging, it is widely recongnized “focus” is the key to any success. So here is the question for every blogger: “Whether my blog should focus on a specific topic or not?” I was seeking for an anwser and here is what I got so far.

Hey, Focus! Focus! Focus!

In April 2004, I asked for advice from a very kind guy in advertisement industry in Amsterdam.

BTW, as you are in the advertisement industry, would you give me any suggestions on my site? I am thinking about moving wangjianshuo.com to the next level, but don’t have any idea. Do you have any suggestions?

Here is his advice:

Keep the promise you make: Events (in Shanghai) that affect my life (and others’)

I miss the focus on this proposition (you offer so many other categories)! Try to make (especially ‘the others’ part) as distinctive and appealing as possible! (i.e. special guided tours or hidden places in Shanghai things only you can offer!!) Try to become an outstanding point of information! Try to be as intrinsically appealing as possible. If you are.. the press will pick you up! And if the press (online/offline) picks you up, your site will spread like wildfire and advertisers will call you!

If you do not feel comfortable with your promise, try to find anotherÂ…close to you and your target group.

Greetings from Amsterdam, all the best

Mark

Marked implied I have too many categories and should keep only one Shanghai category and focus on it. I got many suggestions like this to keep a focus. This is also what I learnt from text book on marketing, on anything….

However, I felt a little bit boring when I keep focus. I post articles like bus information and Shanghai hotel review, but occassionally, I feel so excited about something that is out of the focus (Shanghai topic) and I’d like to share. That maybe on computer, on my personal life, on blog or on breaking news. I just cannot resist the tempation to share them. This is exactly the problem Fons described.

Like most other bloggers in China, I’m lacking that focus. Sometimes I think I should focus on economic developments, then I get taken away by a subject like this and write about the internet media. Wangjianshuo had his own development, first by dumping his potentially very interesting writing about his employer Microsoft as a possible subject, then trying to focus on services for visitors of Shanghai. Like most of us, he is still searching. (src)

Meanwhile, many readers are directing me to the opposite way.

Be Personal

Carroll is a kind reader who is always the first to jump up and post comment on the smallest things in my life – the wedding, the car. This is what she told me:

I would have to count myself among the readers here who found you first when searching for information about Shanghai, but I have stayed because of the occasional personal glimpses you have allowed us into your own life, and because I enjoy learning more about other parts of the world through the eyes of people who live there. In the process, I have also learned a couple of interesting new things about computers (among all the things I didn’t even come *close* to understanding when you write about the technical stuff ;-) so that’s an extra benefit for this techno-dinosaur. Your site, and the way you present things, appeals to a wide variety of people and helps many of us broaden both our interests and our knowledge of the world. Thank you for sharing so much with so many!(src)

She continued:

Well, it’s worth noting, Jian Shuo, that if you hadn’t made the decision to add a few of your personal insights, both about your surroundings, which of course was the original point of the Shanghai part of your blog, and about your personal experiences, I would have had neither the reason, nor the courage to comment at all. I think this is ample proof that the more people open themselves honestly to each other, the better the world will be. (src)

In the recent post, Carroll explained it in a more details.

You would not have kept my attention just by posting news links to other people’s stories, and I’m sure I would never even have been interested in, for example, Shanghai transportation issues, if it had not been for how you approached telling us about them from a personal standpoint.

George said:

A personal view of things is so much more entertaining and genuine than

either newpapers or guide books that always have their own and impersonal agenda.

This gave me great encourage to keep the site unchanged and keep its original pace and style.

Be Personal is More Important than Focus

In conclusion, I found be personal is more important that focus in blogsphere. I totally agree focus is important for a website – like any traditional websites. Blog can also be successful if it has a clear focus, like Google Weblog, but if you treat it as a personal stuff, instead of a serious business, to be personal is more meaningful for both readers and the writer. (I mean if you want the readers to be your friends or family).

Well. Enough about the theory. I like to insist on personal instead of focus on a topic. Back to Wendy’s question “Don’t know what to write… Should I write it as diary or around a fixed topic? Am I writing to myself or to others?” (which started this entry), I would suggest to keep a focus with strong personal presence. :-D

Last Google Dance

Have you heard of Google Dance? It is the monthly re-index of all web pages and recaculate PageRank for each individual web page. Since Google indexes more than 4 billion webpages with more than 10,000 computers, it takes so long to do the full re-index. This is interesting. You may learn more about Google Dance at the following links:

Enough about theory, I just find something interesting on my own website. I can declare that the last Google Dance (for this site) happens on June 6, 2004. Just take a look at this two page:

This page has PageRank of PR2.

screen-mowing.lawn-google.pr.png

This page, which is posted one day after has PageRank of PR0.

screen-successful-google.pr.png

You get the PR number from the PageRank indicator (right top of the screen) on Google Tool bar – the small green bar.

All pages before Mowing Lawn have PR2, PR3 or PR4, and all pages after Successful Presentation Skill Training have PR0.

That means, the 30+ pages will get the PR they deserve (at least PR2 I think) at the next Google Dance. When will it be? I am waiting…

P.S. This post is some kind of technial. I am afriad I have to disagree with what Fons that blog has to have focus. The only focus should be personal identy. Let me explain it in the next blog post.

Hot Hot Hot Shanghai

Shanghai is hot. Today is, maybe, the tenth hot day without any rain. The temperature is consistently above 35°C. Yesterday and the day before yesterday are all 37°C. This morning, the weather station issued red alarm for high temperature again – the red alarm rings every day.

According to the government’s regulation, all lightening system outside buildings are required to turn off if temperature is higher than 35°C. This is part of the effort to fight against the energy crisis. The Bund and the Oriental Pearl Tower are deeply affected.

Can you imagine if the lights on the Bund are all turned off at night, how it looks?

shanghai-bund-at.night.jpg

Image taken by Edward Wang. More Bund pictures can be found at Edward Wang’s On the Bund Album

Tourists are complaining about it. Some even sued the tour agent and asked for compensation for the lack of the view during their stop in Shanghai.

If you want to come to Shanghai, don’t come here now. It is toooooo hot. I cannot imagine a tour in the city at noon.

P.S. Claire hosted her blog at my site http://home.wangjianshuo.com/claire

MSN.COM Offers 2G Storage?

My frien told me to register a new email using the MSN Explorer, which is included in Windows XP to apply a new @msn.com email address. I applied one and saw I have 2000M storage space.

screen-hotmail-2G.PNG

Image in courtesy of hotmail.com

Is it true? I counted the zeros twice and was sure I didn’t make a mistake here. It should be a feature of MSN Hotmail Plus, but why it is free now? Puzzled. Anyway, email storage is not a *big* problem (I didn’t say it is NOT a problem) for me. Identity is. So I will stick on my exisiting hotmail address, no matter how small it is.

Blog, to Host it or Not?

blogcn.com, the largest blogging hosting provider (like blogger.com), has been down for about 8 days.

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Captured from blogcn.com’s homepage on July 21, 2004. Screenshot in courtesy of blogcn.com

Massive bloggers were affected and became homeless. It breaks the update pace of bloggers and caused big problems in the blogsphere. I am using my RSS reader to pull RSS from other bloggers. 1/3 of them are hosted on blogcn.com and now, the source became unavailable.

To Host or Not

“Where to host my blog today?” is the question in many bloggers’ mind. Many changed BSP (blogging service provider). When a service goes down, people have to think of ways of migrating it to another service. Sometimes they lose all the previous post. It will be heartbreaking.

I will NOT Host on BSP

I don’t want to host my blog at any Blog Service Provider. Instead, I choose ISP (Internet Service Provider) to host my virtual host and run blogging software by myself.

The baseline is to keep the URL of my old article never change.

Run Your Blog Under Your Own Domain

I regret I didn’t start my own domain earlier. My first homepage is hosted on Kali with URL http://www.kali.com.cn/myhome/wjs in 1997. The site does not provide free personal website service now so my site disappeared permentantly from the earth.

If I have had more money at that time, I may have started my own domain. (Actually, it is a matter of mindset. Everybody has money to have a nice dinner, which is enough for one year of domain hosting. Yes. In Shanghai, 30 RMB per person can be pretty good dinner already) The domain name is life long assert. I may change my server but the URL remains the same. Nobody noticed my server switch (first time, second time) or IP change, since my URL remains. What if I switch a BSP, for example, from www.blogcn.com to www.blogbus.com or others. The URL changes. Readers get lost and old links break. Linkage is called by somebody to be currency on the Internet. The more links you have, the more Internet Assert you have.

To register a .com domain name has dropped to 6.95 USD at GoDaddy.com. It is not expensive.

Considered to Host Your Site at Home?

Technical guys like to host a website on personal computer at home. Run is doing so. Hacky also did so. I did it too at early stage. Later, I gave up. I explain it to people this way: “When I start it for the first week, it is exciting. After two week, I started to wonder the meaning of running the server, consuming electricity power and sending out noise and heat. Just to serve the 20-50 visits per day (30% comes from myself)?

At last, I decided to put the hot potato in a cheap server room. 380 RMB is not bad for me (at companycn.com)

Start Your Own Domain and Hosted, Blogcn Users

I suggest people who suffer from the pause of service of blogcn to register a personal domain rightaway and host your blog under your own name. Since blogging is part of personal identity on the Internet, so should your URL. Then find a cheap hosting provider and install blogging software like MovableType. Then you are sure that it will follow you for a long time.

Resources for the Move

HP Pavilion a610cl – My New Home PC

Let me show off my new home PC – HP Pavilion A610CL.

The front of the box. Looks nice

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© Jian Shuo Wang

I opened the box to add additional 256M memory.

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© Jian Shuo Wang

Clean motherboard.

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© Jian Shuo Wang

I installed Windows XP on it.

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© Jian Shuo Wang

I went to buy a new PC because I am tired of typing on laptops. I have a Dell Latitude D600 and Wendy has a Dell Latitude C200, but we have to bring it to the company and back home back and forth. As the keyboard instruction on the laptops indicates, the laptops are designed only for mobile computer and not for office use – long time typing on a laptop keyboard may hurt the hands and arms. I believe in it since my hands start to hurt when I type a long blog entry. So I need to get a home PC in my home.

Buying a PC is convient for me. The Metro City computer super market and the Pacific PC are just downstairs (if you are interested in the location, here it is: #1111, Zhao Jia Bang Rd. You can get there by Metro Line #1, Xujiahui Station).

This is the first time I buy a branded PC for myself. This is the second PC I have in my home. The first costs 8400 RMB (as I remember) and was bought when I stayed in my rented Meilong house

I bought every computer part and assemblied together. Later, I became very frustrated with the computer due to the drivers’ and compatibility problems. I bought very nice display card but I seldom play game on it after I bought XBox. (Yes. I didn’t play XBox often after getting it for a while). So I decided to buy a branded computer with tested compatibility, with driver CD and service. Then my choices are either HP or Dell. Dell has a longer shipment cycle. Do they really manufacture by order? So how many days it takes between building it in Xiamen to send it to my home? When I want something, I just want to bring it home immediately.

I never used HP before but want to have a try. I have to say the “Plus” advertise worked well for me – it brought a new face to HP.

There are many local PC providers. The largest is Lenovo. However, I checked the PC and found it is almost the same (if not worse) than the manually built system – the design, the configuration and the compability problems.

From this purchase experience, I found Wintel is really facing big challenges. The CPU in HP Pavilion a610cl is AMD Athlon XP 3000 and operating system is TurboLinux. The reseller offered to install any version of Windows system for me after my purchase free of charge. This happens all the time.

S/N: CNA42801JY

Exciting Shanghai Night Life

Saturday night is pleasant. Wendy and I hang out on the Bund. It was not easy to find parking lot there. I finally managed to pull my car over at the parking area at the intersection of Xin Kai He road and Zhuang Shan East 2 Road. It charges 10 RMB for the whole night. It is reasonable price but we have to walk about 10 minutes to where we want to go.

We went there because Wendy’s friend just opened a bar called Number 5 on the bund. It is located at the underground story in the old style building at No. 5 of Zhong Shan East 1 Road. We rushed in and found almost all foreigners in the city gathered in the 600 square bar. I am kidding. I said so because I seldom see so many foreigners in Shanghai.

The Bund is still the most exciting and attractive place in Shanghai. Check the great pictures in my friend Edward’s Onthebund Album. He owns great (expensive) Nikon SLR digital camera and takes professional pictures. (Remember? he told me about the album software JAlbum). The bar is located the left most building on the bund in his night picture.

Old Building, New Interior

Going out of the bar, we wandered among the buildings on the bund, with other friends. I came out an idea to visit every building on the bund one day. We came into the building near #5 on the bund – it is called Three on the Bund. The interior reconstruction has completed. I remember during the 6 months I work in the Bund Center, the 7-store building, which was built in 1916, was completely destroyed inside. There is only a shell left and all the floors were pulled down. I entered the construction site (Wendy always laughs at me when I enter a construction site to “inspect” the site. She said I am like a construction worker), I found the whole building is like a huge stadium that I can directly see the high roof. I worried very much at that time because the historical building had been completely destroyed. When I entered the building again, I was very sure the architect was right. Now the Three on the Bund has been transformed into a super high quality entertainment, art, shopping and dining center. The construction cost is reported to be 35 million USD.

A Whole New World

Wow. You know what, my heart beat quickly when I entered into the building. I never have such feeling before. There is an art gallery called Shanghai Gallery of Art on the 3rd floor of the building. The current exhibition is called Space anew. There are two 35mm film players there and there is a old man sitting there. I cannot understand what the art is (I never really understand art) but I am happy there is a place like this.

The Three on the Bund is definitely a place to visit in Shanghai. It calls for luxurious and decent life, which people in China have intentionally shied away for decades.

Xin Tian Di

The next destination was Xin Tian Di. I left my camera in the car. It is a pity that I didn’t capture the vivid life there. We had tea at a bar at Paradise enjoyed the singing of two girls. At night, if you really want to go to bars, Shanghai is a better place than many cities. The Number 5 bar’s owner, who is an America and living in Singapore, talked about Shanghai excitedly: “Oh. I miss Shanghai so much! I am back! I don’t want to go to Singapore!!!”.

I wrote about Night Life in Shanghai. Nightlife seems to be boring in that article. It is what I feel about the city at THAT time. When I go back to the heart of the city, I myself saw something I never realized before. Shanghai’s western style night life is exciting. The majority of this kind of lifestyle is still foreigners and ex-pats.

The Lake

Lying down near the lake of Xin Tian Di (called Taipingqiao Park), we stayed there for two hours, watching the reflection of beautiful building on the surface of the water. (Picture below)

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© Jian Shuo Wang

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© Jian Shuo Wang

At 1:00 PM, there are still foreign tourist coming to us and asked for direction. Different lives continue at different corners of the city – the big melt pot of different cultures and economic classes.

We went home near 2 AM in the morning.