Monthly Archives: April 2005

Thanks Everyone!

I am back from SFO trip to Shanghai (three days ago), and I joined another meeting and they don’t have Internet access, so… sorry for the pause of blogging these days.

I am still very excited about the trip, and feel so happy to have great friends in the bay area. I know I have a very long list to thank. Here is the abbridged version.

First of all, thank RC, Yumi and all the great persons in eBay for hosting me and showing me around. I had great time to meet with all the people I wanted to meet, and learnt so much – much more than I expected.

Special thanks to Carroll and Jim for inviting me to dinner at their beautiful house on top of the mountain. It was a very unique experience for me. I had great time there. The moment that we observe the airline landing toward the San Jose airport is a permement part of my memory in San Jose.

Thanks Tom and Andreas from BVCapital for inviting me to BV. I enjoyed the very interesting discussion we had on Friday and Saturday. I am so happy to meet Mathias, Yann, and Christian. Thanks for Yann to invite me to the sail boat and wish Christian recover soon.

Thanks to Chris from Rojo to host me in Rojo’s office and gave me the thorough introduction for Rojo. Chris was so kind to arrange my Six Apart tour. Thanks Mena, Ben, Barak and Ginger for your time with me. I also like to thank Charles and Jim from Jambo.net to share your great ideas and to come to my meetup. I love their slogan “Wireless Hello” very much. I weared their great gift , Jambo T-Shirt, today!

Sailing in the Bay

Believe it or not, I sailed for the first time in the San Francisco bay. Yann, Alex and Niki are so nice to invite me to join them to sail in the Bay. We started from the marina of the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge around noon, and soon pull on the sail and sail close to the wind. It is a little bit easier to learn how to sail. When we turned off the motor, and pulled up the sail, the boat when to the Golden Gate Bridge at the speed of 2.4 – 3.1 knots. Sometimes, the wind goes up to 30 knots and rains heavily. When we reached the gate and started to move out of the bay a little bit into the Pacific, it is sunny, but the tide is huge. :-) Yann is a perfect captain and we quickly learnt to how sail a sail boat (although not complete). All the pictures are in my camera but I didn’t bring the cable with me. I will post the nice pictures here when I am back.

Meetup in San Francisco, CA

I am thinking of hosting Wangjianshuo’s Blog Meetup in San Francisco at Cafe Flore. I have no idea about this place. I asked Andreas where should I put the meetup, SFO airport or downtown. He directly posted me to Cafe Flore. It must be good, I think, although it can be a little bit far from where I live. So here is the detailed information about the meetup.

Cafe Flore

2298 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94114

Time: 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM, Sunday, April 24, 2005

Map: Google Map for Cafe Flore

All my friends and readers are welcome. No RSVP required. Just show up at anytime within the two hours. It will be great if you post a comment to notify me your participation though. Jing and Nina, you are explicitly invited. Sorry for the late notice. I am not good at planning, and it is not easy to plan a meetup in a completely new different environment. I understand the same feeling for visitors to Shanghai. Sometimes, for visitors in a city, a meetup can be “Anywhere in this city”, but the problem is, where is the Anywhere.

I am excited to meeting you at Cafe Flore tomorrow morning. I will catch my flight back to Shanghai at 14:20 at San Francisco Airport.

The Silicon Valley Spirit is Back

I was sitting in the office of Rojo.com, the newly launched website to manage RSS more effectively with the help of tagging and friends’ recommendation (some kind of SNS). It is located in a large warehouse-like space – actually it is the AT&T building in downtown San Francisco. The reason it looks like a warehouse instead of an office is, it is a large space, in terms of areas and height. Evryone share the same open space by placing their tables in the middle. It is just like the architecture company in the Suzhou creek art district in Shanghai. There is no separation between – no cubicles, no offices, no meeting rooms – it is just a large open space.

Chris, the CEO and founder of Rojo.com, introduce the team to me. They are all nice persons and Chris showed me the functions of Rojo.com. It is quite impressive – RSS made it easier to track many feeds (around 100? Some has 1000? Are you kidding?), and Rojo helps to recommend those only matters to the user. I would recommend everyone to open an account, take a look and share your feeds with me. My account ID is jianshuo. Free feel to add me as your friend in Rojo.

During our talk, Chris mentioned there are many blogging related companies nearby. “Really?” “Yes!”.

“Six Apart is 2 blocks away”, Chris pointed to one direction, and “Technorati” is two blocks away” Chris pointed the other direction. “Feedster is there, also two blocks away”. I said: “Wow. That is cool!”

This is really cool. There are many small dot.com companies popping up this year (or becoming famous this year). I feel a little bit strange to call these innovative company “dotcom” since they no longer have the attribute of the old dotcom has. These services provide values and start to spread by the word-of-mouth. Some has succeeded already.

To be honest, I feel boring when I look back to the computer history between the year 2000 and 2004. It seems the curtain of the wonderful Internet drama was closed. When the legend of Apple, Microsoft, Dell, and HP fades in 1995, Yahoo!, Netscape appeared. But after the year 2000, there are actually not so many interesting application on the Internet. From the year 2004, new things are happening very month. Many blogging software, social network software, taggings, podcasting emergesÂ… Google start to become hot. It is exciting.

For me, to read the story from the history book (at least from magazines) is one thing, to experience it in real life with me is another. In my trip to Redmond last Decemeber, I met the wonderful guys Eric and James, the founder of picture sharing application Heypix. I planned to write an article about the product but they said “hold on for several days since our website will release in 3 days”. 4 months passed, I dropped an email to those guys and update the current situation. They replied and say: “We were just aquired by CNET”. It is amazing. When this kind of stories happen around me everyday, both in China and America, I clearly feel that the Silicon Valley spirit come backs again.

I Meet Mena and Ben from Six Apart

When I started to use MovableType almost three years ago, I could imagine MovabeType can be very successful (although I didn’t expect the name change to Six Apart). However, it is by no means for me to expect that I will finally meet Mena Trott and Ben, the founders of MovableType after two and half years. Yes. I visited Six Apart office today and was hosted warmly. The best part is, I met Mena and Ben in their conference room, and Barak, CEO of Six Apart. It was wonderful experience for me. I am a strong advocator for MovableType. I didn’t expect the star couple is so young (the same age as me) and they look very nice. Ben even looks a little shy. We chatted a little bit and checked if Mena and Ben mind if I put the conversation on my blog. They said “No. Not at all.” It is the reaction from a very experienced blogger and a blogging tool maker. :-)

What a wonderful day. I will update it later since I need to catch up my lunch at 7:45 pm tonight. I also met Chris, the CEO of Rojo.com and the team. It can be another very cool application on the Internet. Read here for more details.

P.S. I am at one of the top floor of the highest building of San Francisco, the Transamerica Pyramid. The view for the whole bay area is great!

Update About Mena and Ben

The story of Mena and Ben will be another classic startup story. They met in high school and got married before MovableType. Mena is a wonderful writer and among the first bloggers and she asked her husband to help to create software to her to write blog. I guess it can become a pattern for successful product: When a girl ask her boy friend or husband to create a tool for her, chances are, the product will be very popular for others as well. As Wendy put it, it is something with love – with a very specific persona in mind when creating the software. The persona guides the developer (boy friend or husband) to have a consistent view of who the user is. In addition, there is enough motivation to do that… So, I guess if someday Wendy ask me to create something, it can be a great thing.

Mena explained the history of Six Apart in easy and attractive way. It reminds of the old days when MovableType 3.0 Developer Edition was released, along with the charging model. It was a hard period of time for them. The feedback from the community was extremely negative. I remember, at that time, I understood the reason why MovableType changes to the charging plan and why people get so upset about the change. Finally, Mena started to write a series of article on her blog, explaining the thinking behind the change. I believe the articles worked perfectly. Mena handled the crisis extremely well. I though Mena should be something around 30 or 40 in age, judged from the article, but I was so surprised that she is so young, just like a (beautiful) girl next door. I will still be a MovableType fan. Just as Pierre, the founder of eBay, shared in the conference call with us, a human voice is critical to a successful community and business. Mena is the human voice for MovableType, just like Griff to eBay, Craigs to craigslist, and Bill Gates for Microsoft (in early days).

I Feel Like a Rabbit when I Eat Salad

The stay in San Jose is great and food is generally good at large and beauniful cafetera at the community building. There are several different counters for food and they offer many options of daily special. For me, as for many Chinese visitors to the State, to order food is not easy. I like to order food with “this” or “that”. The name of Chinese food and western food is different. The name of the Chinese food tent to very short (3 or 4 characters at most) and not specific. For western food, it is a very long and descriptive, and typically has “with” in the name. I enjoyed my large plate Roasted Half Chicken w/ Flat Parsley-Goat Cheese Mashed Potatoes at Tapestry, Los Gatos. It was great, among the best American food I had have. Actually, the America menu should be easier to understand because it states the food, how it is cooked and all the ingredient. Although I can write an English blog, I still cannot read the menu well. It seems to be another language. My best practice is to look for an item with one of the following words: Chicken, Noodle, or Rice. It works great for me, since the result is very predictable. Just like I didn’t got surprised if I order orange juice.

Every meal, no matter what I ordered, it seems there are always fresh vegetables with green leafs in it. I don’t often eat this in China. I cannot remember that last time in China that I eat un-heated, fresh vegetable leafs. We eat many vegetables, but we often eat cucumber, tomato salad. We also put fruits into salad, but not leafs. For other vegetables, especially those with large leafs, we typically will fry it and turn it into hot dish. So I have some kind of feeling that I became a rabbit, with all kinds of green vagetables (which I don’t know the name) full of my mouth. Of cause, as you can imagine, I should be so-happy rabbit.

When Jian Shuo Leaves his Car (in CA)

It is not a big deal in Shanghai when I don’t have a car. The life is the same, and sometimes, I have even more freedom than having a car if the destination is in downtown Shanghai. In San Jose, I missed Goudaner so much. The problem is, my driver’s license is with it.

The morning for my flight to SFO, I wake up, packed everything and walked to my car to get my driver’s license (the secret is, I always keep it in my car). I went to the car only to find out Wendy has already driven it to work. Sadly, I left Shanghai without a driver’s license.

It was not a well prepared trip that I had no idea about where San Jose is, and how I could get there. To take a taxi to San Jose may not be a good idea since it costs 120 USD I guess. Thanks to the sign of SFO, there is a direction of BART to Millbra and transfer to CalTrain to San Jose.

So… I took the CalTrain and I enjoyed the one hour trip to Santa Clara and then took a short taxi to Hamilton Ave. I didn’t feel anything wrong until I talked with my friends in eBay. Everyone laughed (if not laughed at me) and looked me like “Are you the guy who took CalTrain?” Well…. Is there anything wrong with the CalTrain?

Actually, it is great! It is great because there is almost no passengers on board besides me. The trip helped me to understand the relative locations of famous towns, like Palo Alto (where Stanford is located), Mount. View (Google), Santa Clara (Intel)…

Not like New York (I miss the subway in New York), to move around in San Jose is not easy. The good (and bad) thing is, I have more than enough things to do and a long list of people to meet. I am excited to talk with talented and passionate people in eBay and didn’t feel boring at all even if I never left eBay Park. Larkspur Landing hotel provide free shuttle. I booked the shuttle to send me from hotel to the park in the morning (1.6 miles), and took taxi back. The taxi took 15 minutes to arrive. It was not a good idea to wait for a taxi for 15 minutes at around 1:00 in the morning. :-)

Joanna from marketing team told me, in San Jose area, they messure locations by numbers of (freeway) exits instead of block. The team in marketing planned to shopping at night, and they discussed and found out it is very near – only 3 exits away. :-) I started to calculate: “If I walk, is there any chance that I arrive there before the sun rise the next day?” San Jose is not so walker-friendly. :-)

Gift to Selim Freiha

Selim helped me a lot for the business. I chatted with him today and we searched Selim Freiha, his name, in Google, and found some. I said: “My PageRank in Google makes it possible for me to mention your name and I am sure the page will be the first result in Google soon.”

So, here is the test page. I present it as a gift to Selim, the great guy who knows Excel extremely well. Let’s see if it goes to the top of the search result in Google after three days – Google now index my site at max interval of 3 days now.

P.S. The last time I attempted to do the same thing was about Wicresoft, the Joint-Venture of Microsoft. Now it is the second result for Wicresoft in Google. :-)

Actual Speed of Maglev is 64 km/h

Sitting in the Larkspur Landing hotel in San Jose, I missed Shanghai a little bit, just like I missed Maglev. I mean I actually missed it when I left my home and went to Pudong Airport in Shanghai. I found out that the speed of Maglev is actually 64 km/h, instead of the 430 km/h from a traveler’s perspective.

The calculation is easy. When I pull my luggage (a bag and a laptop) on to the taxi, the driver asked where I were going. I said “Maglev station”. The driver asked me: “Are you going to the Pudong Airport? How about I directly send you there?” I know the driver definitely want me to get to PVG. Well. It is a question without easy answer.

It was around 10:35. My home is about 4 km away from the Maglev and about 40 km away from the Pudong Airport. Well…

If I take the Maglev, when I arrive at the Maglev station, I should already miss the train on 10:40 AM. I need to wait on the platform until the next train arrives at 11:00 AM. Meanwhile, I have to bring all my luggage out, walk for a while (2 minutes?) from the taxi to the station, and get to the second floor of the station to wait in the line to buy the ticket, and then bring all my luggage with me and take the elevator to the third floor to wait for the train. The train is fast, really fast, I mean if it really get started. The top speed is 430 km/h, and it takes only 8 minutes to complete the 30 km journey. But after that, the nightmare repeats itself – get off board, bring the luggage with me and go along the long walk from the Maglev to the terminal. The bridge goes to the second floor of the terminal and I have to take the huge elevator to the third floor before I can find the United Airlines counter. Everything takes about half an hour. So, the speed for the 30 km is actually 60 – 64 km/h, depending on how fast I run, instead of how fast Maglev runs. :-)

If I take taxi, the same distance also needs 30 minutes. But what I need is to close my eyes and wait for the taxi driver to wake me up at the third floor of the Pudong Airport. This choice also creates a happy taxi driver, along with a happy Jian Shuo…

What about the fare? Maglev takes 40 RMB + 13 RMB taxi = 53 RMB. For taxi, it is 94 RMB. I am running out of time already. I finally took the taxi approach. The 30 minutes well compensated to my overnight work last night. When my taxi is heading to the viaduct to the terminal station, the Maglev flied away beside us. From the tourist’s perspective, Maglev is really cool. From a business traveler’s perspective, the speed of Maglev is not that good than a taxi.

First Impression of Silicon Valley

It is the first time I visit the Silicon Valley, the dream place for many people in IT industry. It is different from what I think though. This is what the Valley looks like in my imagination:

The entrance of the Sillicon Valley is Stanford University. At the back of the University campus, there is a small garage where HP started. Beside HP is a short street. Many two to three story buildings line up along road, with logos like HP, Apple, eBay, Yahoo!….

I don’t know how I formed this impression of Sillicon Valley. Maybe it is because of the legend that Sillicon Valley started from the garage of HP, or the joke that “when you goto the street of Sillcon Valley and say you have a project, a lot of VC will jump out to you”, or the fact that many people jump from one company to the other frequently… It turned out San Jose is not that near to Stanford (at least not within walking distance) and there is no all-star street there. It is a quiet place that is no difference from other small towns in U.S.

Trip to SFO

I am afraid there may be a short pause in the following days. I will be on my trip to SFO. I know I have lots of friends there in SFO, like Carroll. however, I am not sure if I have time during the trip to meet everyone. Maybe a Sunday meet-up (April 24) in Starbucks in SFO before I get on my flight is possible. The Art of Travel told people that when you assume that there is nothing new in something, you lose the passion for doing it. It applies to travel. I remember that when I was in middle school, I spent the whole month preparing my train travel to Beijing. But now, I didn’t pack anything for my flight of tomorrow yet. The easy answer is, I had enough time to spare for the training travel and I am just too busy these years. However, the real answer, as de Botton suggested: I lost the excitement as a traveler when I assume the UA858 is still the UA858 I experienced many times before, and the airport is still the familiar land I visited before. It is 11:00 AM PST, and I just finished some work. I hope I won’t experience too bad jet lag since I have been working according to the San Jose time for quite some days. :-)

Blogging about the Exhibition – Part II

Continued from Blogging about the Exhibition.

No 18. Joni visited on April 11. She went to the exhibition by walking from Shanghai Railway station. If I had more time, I will definitely write an article about how to get to the place with map, direction, and pictures. But unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do it. I hope our exhibition in August 2006 will be better. She wrote two articles (and said would write the third) on the exhibition: Article I, and article II. However, I was confused that except the only poster, the other pictures are all original oil painting by He Tian and his friends. I am looking forward to her third entry. Maybe there will be some picture about the exhibition. I didn’t go there in the last week and don’t know what happened there.

No. 19 Frankel posted an entry for the exhibition. Thank you all the same.

No. 20 bullfinch‘s record is among the best comment I have ever seen around this blog. I am happy that Bullfinch said it frankly that the photos themself are good, but by no means professional. He praised the “idea, the courage, and action” of the exhibition. The blog also mentioned the power of blogging that makes the words to spread out so quickly. This is the echo I want to get from the audience. As I told many visitor: It is more important to spread out the words, instead of inviting people to really checkout the picture. When the exhibition inspires people to think, the goal of the exhibition is already accomplished.

No. 21 Daidai also helped to forward the advertisement.

No. 22 Stefan asked those who visited whether it is interesting or not. What do you think?

No. 23 Ericfish is Clairs’ schoolmate.

No. 24 The sponsor, UUZone’s official site syndicts some key bloggers around this exhibition

No. 25 Jessie. I am happy that most of the post comes with the UUZone logo. I’d like to thank Robert Mao, the CEO of UUZone, for the sponsorship and especially Xie Jin Hui from UUZone – who not only helped to coordinate the exhibition, she also spend a whole Saturday with us and worked as volunteer. The pictures you see on the black board are her contribution. For me, commericalize is not always the bad thing. When the right idea meets the right sponsorship, many things that are not possible become possible. This is an example.

No. 26 Elvita not only copy paste, he/she removed some and added our names. It is very interesting. BTW, the music on the site is great!

No. 27 This blog on yourblog.org encouraged me a lot. The comment was: “I will go to visit this exhibition. No matter good or bad, they helped me and my friends to understand, keep doing, and the dream will come true.”

No. 28 My friend Elfe joined our contributor team for the exhibition in August 2006. The next year, we will put some suggestions on this exhibition to the new one. The next exhibition, there will be 100 framed pictures and 1,000 smaller pictures on the wall. If the first exhibition just inspires people to do something crazy, the next one, will be opporutnity for more people to express their thinking in a creative way.

No. 29 ppgz is not in Shanghai, but he/she also posted Claire’s article.

No. 30 Misittig (may be not accessible in China) and I met in the exhibition. He is a great guy. :-)

To be Continued..

I am sure many mentioned the exhibition but I didn’t find out yet – I was using Google and Baidu to discover these blogs. Please go ahead to visit Claire’s page and leave the URL of your blog under the entry. I may find out more if there are new mention when Google complete the index.

Lecture Today

I visited SHUFE (Shanghai University of Finance and Economics) tonight and hosted the first lecture of the “Kijiji Career Planning Forum”. It was a pleasant experience for me, as all the previous opportunities to communicate with the students. The students in SHUFE are very active and smart. It seems the connection between SHUFE is even better than other universities I saw. Just had the feeling…

Spring Comes to Shanghai

Spring comes to Shanghai. The full spring has arrived.

This two weeks, the tune of the Blue Danube of Johann Strauss is the background of my thoughts. I see the flowers blooming in my garden and new leafs come out of the trees. What a pleasant surprise to see some trees in my garden that I have claimed to death boom again and turned on a green look in the last two weeks. I was not able to tell the name of the trees (桂花,红枫,黄杨). But I love to see them in green dress again. The grass started to grow quickly too. The long winter completely passed.

The winter of this year is colder than any year before. It snowed several times (I, II, III) which is rare in the previous years. This winter is longer than before too. In the recent month, we cannot tell the weather of the next day. It goes completely out of rational. The temperature difference can be as large as 10 degrees. :-) The good thing is, it is over. The spring comes!

Second Run Way for Pudong Airport

The second runway for Pudong Airport has been put into usage recently, and the second terminal building is under construction. It means, very soon, the Pudong Airport will be twice as big as its current size.

I went to the Pudong Airport twice in the last weekend, once on Saturday and once on Sunday. Every time, the airport is crowded and full of people. I remember when I visited the airport about four years ago, I didn’t see many people and I wonder – will it be a project that aims to be big, huge, beautiful, but wasted too much money? It turned out my worry was not necessary. Now, the capacity of the first terminal building is not enough for sufficient transportation, especially the UA and CA flights in the afternoon – it is almost as crowded as a train station – the long line goes in Z-shape till to the entrance of the terminal, blocking other passengers’ way. According the plan, when the second terminal is completed, the third and forth will be constructed so the Pudong Airport will be four times as big as the current one.

T.I.C Moments

My foreign friends told me that when something goes wrong (sometimes because of culture shock and sometimes not), they will say: T.I.C.

Later, I found out T.I.C means: This is China! They even have the expression of the “T.I.C moment” to describe the time they want to say T.I.C.

It is the most interesting term I heard today. T.I.C! Sometimes it gives me some negative feeling because it may be perceived as “Don’t complain. You should have your expectation here. This is China.”. But generally, it is still a positive thinking if you say it with the meaning that “When in Rome, Do as the Romans. Accept the difference and find some workaround…”. The topic of T.I.C. can be interesting and helpful for both people in China and foreigners to understand the differences. It is the same for me because I also have many T.I.A. (This is America) moments in U.S. and T.I.X (X may be the city I am visiting). It is normal and it is the reason we travel. Maybe when we travel, we are intentionally seeking for T.I.X moments in the destination.

T.I.C! The three letters may mean their understanding of the differences between countries/regions. It may serve as relief of anger or shock that they have nothing to do for it; or it simply means their acceptance of the reality that it is their homeland and something may not work as expected.

I believe there may be many T.I.C moments for foreigners who just arrived in China. What is your T.I.C. moment? Do you want to share some? It helps me to see the same city in a different angal I have today.

Inside Jin Mao Tower

It is strange for me. Jin Mao tower has been the symbol of Shanghai, along with the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, for many years. But I never really went into the tower.

I went to the top deck of Oriental Pearl TV Tower for twice, was amazed of the nice view, but completely unsatisfied with the facility and service there. It is more like a tourism place (actually it is), instead of a restaurant. It is somewhere you only need to go for once in your entire life.

Influenced by the experience, I hesitate to try the Jin Mao Tower. I have been to the office building of the Jin Mao tower (lower than 54F). The impression is so-so. It is just normal office building with a better view. When there is strong wind or it is raining, the steel decoration outside makes big noise. So, I didn’t try the 88F observation deck or the hotel. Tonight is the first time I really goes into the Jin Mao Tower. It is exactly the difference of Enjoy Doing or Being Able to Do. The experience, in short, is fascinating.

86 F Jin Mao Club

Tom and Andreas were kind enough to invite me to have dinner together at the 86F Jin Mao club. The restaurant faces west, the direction of Puxi. The view was optimized for us today since the visibility is low, but the topic we discussed really inspired me. Andreas is so passionate to try news things that he put a Canon camera pointing to us and take one picture every ten second during the talk. I don’t know how he produces it and what the result of so many pictures. I don’t worry about it though because Dr. Weigend is the professor on Data Mining in Stanford University, so he must know some good ways to find something interesting outside a mass. Not surprisingly, our photos arrived on the public Internet quicker than I arrived in my home.

shanghai-jianshuo.weigend.jpg shanghai-jianshuo.weigend-lean.jpg

© Andreas Weigend.

56 F Lobby

Later, I went to the lobby at 56F of Jin Mao Tower. Jin Mao is a complicated building. The Lobby of the Hyatt hotel is at 54F, and you need to change the elevator to 56 F lobby. (86F club is nore wired that you need to get to 85 F first and exchange for the third elevator.) There are great public areas and it was almost full when we were there. Looking up, you will see the most famous view of the tower (ranked immediately after the exterior look) – the hall to the top of the 86F. I didn’t bring my camera with me, but the view looks like this. I didn’t realize we were at the bottom of such as huge vertical tube. When I looked up, I heard WOW coming out of my mouth. Later, I asked Andreas to look up – he didn’t notice it yet, and he said: “WOW….”.

shanghai-weigend.zhangzhang.jianshuo.jpg

© Dr. Andreas Weigend

I am happy to have the rest of the time with JL, Lisa and Zhang there.

More Jin Mao pictures.

Meet the Photographer Event

We will hold the meet the photographer between 2:00 – 4:00 PM on Sunday, April 10, 2005. We will share why we wanted to hold it, the stories for preparing, and answer any questions you may have. It is a great opportunity for people to meet each other.

Here is the detailed guide of how to get there. Sorry that I didn’t find some time to put it online until now (one week after the exhibition opens).

Note: The following pictures were taken by byebye, Eric‘s friend. She went to see the exhbition but the door was locked. Sorry for that. You are welcome to attend the meetup on Sunday. The pictures are used under permission of Byebye.

Map

Pictures

shanghai-chunming.jpg

© byebye.

The gate of the factory at #50, Moganshan Road.

shanghai-board.jpg

© byebye.

The map of the buildings inside the art area.

shanghai-photography.exhibition-board.jpg

© byebye.

Enter the art district (fatory) and go straight forward. Within 100 meters, you will find a direction board like above on your left hand.

shanghai-hallway-to.exhibition.jpg

© byebye.

Turn left at the sign and you will see a long straight lane like this. go straigtly ahead into this lane until you reach the last door on the left.

shanghai-wuse.jpg

© byebye.

This is the entrance to the exhibition. I am sorry the door was closed for byebye, but I am sure it will open widely to welcome everyone on Sunday

Is 10,000RMB/Month a Ridiculous Offer?

Aims, who lives in London, was surprised to get an offer of 10,000 RMB per month before tax in Shanghai.

Hi!

I’ve been offered a marketing position with a foreign company in shanghai, but was shocked to hear that the salary is only 10,000RMB before tax, plus a 1000RMB monthly accommodation allowance.

To me this seems ridiculous, and something not worth even considering, as it’s less than I earn working part-time, just 10hours per week, here in London.

What are your thoughts? Would I be able to live comfortably on this? Would there be enough money to have a social life outside of work? What kind of accommodation would I find for 1000RMB/month? Would it be nice?

Any comments will be HUGELY appreciated! I only have a limited amount of time before I have to make a decision and sign a contract!

Thank you,

x

Here is my answer.

Aims, to me, it is not a surprise. The average salary for newly graduated student (from not so famous university) drops to 3000 – 4000 RMB per month (before tax) this year. It was much higher before (6000 RMB?), but it is not rare for some university students to get offer of only 2000 RMB. The top students from computer science from top university (Jiaotong or Fudan) can expect higher, but 6000 RMB is already high. Don’t get me wrong. I do know some friends who get 300,000 – 500,000 RMB annual salary immediately after graduating from university, but it is just the exception.

I am not sure about what the level of the position you mentioned. You should expect more than fresh graduate, but that is the range. 10,000 RMB is a reasonable salary in Shanghai. The fact is, labor is cheap in China. Don’t expect to get as much as you get in London.

There are always exceptions though. Many foreign companies relocate senior managers to Shanghai to start the business. This person is so unique that it is impossible for the company to find a replacement in local job market. In this case, his/her salary should be the U.S. or European salary + a percentage of increase to compensate the relation. So the life is nice, really nice. There are many expats here so correct me if I am wrong.

It seems in your case, the marketing position is not that unique and the company can easily find someone more than happy to take the job in local market. You cannot expect big advantage over the local candidate just because you are coming from abroad.

I can understand it seems ridiculous for you to make the move, but it is reality. When people enjoy the cheap China goods, they should have the expectation for lower salary here.

The other side of the coin is, though, the food is cheap and most daily stuff is of 1/4 price of that in Seattle – this is just my guess and there is always exceptions. House is not cheap. You cannot rent any place with only 1000 RMB. I guess 1500 RMB for a place far from downtown Shanghai but with subway is possible.

So consider twice. I believe you may already make the choice not to take the offer. But do think twice. I believe the experience in Shanghai will help you a lot in your career in the long run – if you want to seek for future opportunities in Asia. It is interesting experience. The conclusion is, you can leave pretty well in Shanghai with the salary, if you won’t expect the absolutely same kind of life you have in London.

Met with Dr. Weigend

I met with Weigend, the former Chief Scientist of Amazon.com in Shanghai tonight. It was a great experience to talk with them on the new ideas around blogging and social software. I totally agree his two principles on new generation of software: 1) Fast Feedback 2) Low threshold for participation. Dr. Weigend believes with tags and analysing of user’s behavior, we can create something very new. I agree. He took a picture of us with his Palm and send it to Flickr. :-)