DEVP203 – Old Documents

Just found out a lot of old documents in my computer. There is a folder called DEVP203 – Development Process No. 203, or Microsoft Development Management Training Serious – Microsoft Development Process Overview. We did put a lot of effort into that training course, and delivered many times of the training in many different software parks, in many different cities back in 2002.

I also found a folder called WebRAID, another half year project. There are almost 100M of documents and code. I was so surprised how much effort we spent to create that project. They are in a height that I even cannot imagine that I have ever being there.

Wendy wrote about the same feeling (Chinese) many days ago. In short (her article was already very short), she said when she thought of the old good times, she still could remember the excitement and devote people put into the projects. She used the word “war” – hmm… that is exactly the word to use (war for excellency).

Crazy New Year

This is the craziest new year I have ever experienced. Just to list a few.

  • It is snowing. Crazily heavy in Shanghai – the heaviest snow in recent years. Looking outside our office – I feel I am in Beijing.
  • No railway station. From today to the Spring Festival, many stations have stopped all ticket selling. No ticket at all.
  • Highways closed. In provinces like Anhui, all highways have been closed because of snow.
  • No electricity. Shanghai’s storage of coal to product electricity has been left for only two days, according to media today. What happens after two days when there are not enough electricity in Shanghai?
  • Things get expensive. Due to half million people waiting in the train station, someone are selling boxed meal at 10 times or higher price.
  • My friends in office called people who have ticket. The price as been 3-4 fold, from 300 RMB to 1000 RMB, and increasing.
  • Snow caused the most important railway line – Beijing to Guangzhou line – broken for 20 hours. People with tickets cannot leave the city.
  • Many airports are closed. No aircraft have left or arrived since then.

Disclaimer: I didn’t personally see the facts with my eyes except the Shanghai snow. I rely on the sources in news in this article, and those sources are not always reliable.

Traveler Tide in Spring Festival

In the next half an month or so, we will experience the largest transportation tide. It is maybe the largest scale of people move in the planet. It is because of the Spring Festival.

Why So Many People Need to Go Home

Although people do not treat spring festival as serious as the previous generations (some may ignore the Chunlian, or couplet, some may ignore the traditional events during the festival), most of people still keep the tradition of going back home during the Spring Festival.

Spring Festival is the biggest holiday in China. For many people, it is maybe the only holiday for them to have a chance to leave where they work or study and get back to home. No matter where you are, most of the people will try to get back home.

How Many People

I don’t need to mention the population of China: 1.3 billion or 1.6 billion (depends on which source you get the information). The change in the recent few years is clear, more and more people are mobile. They move out of their home town and move to larger cities, like Shanghai, Beijing or move from smaller village to cities nearby. This adds to the demand to transportation capacity during the Spring Festival. During this peak time, many train stations are sending more than 200K passengers per day.

No Way to Get Ticket

Every year, during this period of time, it is extremely hard, if not impossible, to get a train ticket. People have to wait in cold for hours, or days, just to hear the person in the ticket counter to say “no” with their own ears.

Let’s just imagine this scenario. If I decide to go back to Luoyang, my choices will be:

  • Go to Train station to get ticket. Definitely no way. There are no train tickets, and even the tickets without seat (standing there for 19 hours) are sold out. For every ticket, there are at least thousands of people there waiting for it.

  • Pay high price – even those resellers who charge double to triple the price cannot help you. You have money, but you cannot get the ticket.
  • By Air? No way. All tickets are booked long time ago.
  • By Bus? All bus tickets are sold out. No way to get more. Don’t dream about cheaper price. Full price tickets already disappeared.

Snow and Bad Weather Cause Bigger Problem

I just read the news. Due to snow, there are already 0.6 million people jammed in the train station. More and more people are coming. The Metro Station in Guangzhou has been used to hold these passengers.

I just talked with some people who decided to go back home, but don’t have a ticket. All the door closed to them. It seems there is only one door left for them: walk.

I run into the same problem before, but this time, we decided not to go back home. My parents visited us before the festival, just to avoid the rush hours.

More Transportation Capacity Seriously Needed

The huge demand for transportation and the relative weak supply caused the big problem. In the future, I do want to see the government put more money form the huge tax dollars into transportation, and do something to help the people to get the ticket they need, and help them to get back home (including me).

Finally, My Daocheng Video is Online

Thanks to YouTube, I am finally able to post the Daocheng video XGE helped to create 6 years ago online.

The Daocheng Trip is the most amazing trip and memoriable trip I had. As you can see from the video, it is a great place.

P.S. I also got another comment (the first comment I got on YouTube) about the other video I posted:

worst video in history of videos in the world of videos

Not surprisingly, the video got a 1 (out of 1 to 5) rating. If you are interested in this “worst video”, here is the link.

Labor Day (May Holiday) Canceled

I know this is not news. That was announced last December. The interesting thing is the other day, I talked with my good friend from California in Xintiandi. He talked the T.I.C (This Is China) moment.

He asked his friend what they are planning to do during the May Holiday this year. His friend told him very easily: “It was canceled”.

“What? Canceled”, he was very surprised, “It is just like U.S government suddenly announce Thanksgivings is canceled, which is unbelievable”.

Well. It IS possible in China. Personally I do not think negatively about the change, and the quick move of the change, like this. I mean I think so personally. However, I know many people in travel and hotel industry really hate the news.

Backed Up All My Documents

Before I install Windows Vista tomorrow, I want to back up all my files on my Drive D.

My rule of file management is always:

  • Reinstall Windows system every two months.

  • Reinstall all software again.
  • Backup my all my documents during this time

I bought a new 60G Mobile Disk with USB 2.0 Interface. It costs me 470 RMB (I know I over paid but I didn’t have too much time). It has a HITACHI 60G Disk with a SSK disk case.

E:\>dir
Volume in drive E is Jian Shuo Wang's Mobile Disk
Volume Serial Number is 108C-60BB Directory of E:\
01/22/2008 02:03 PM 2007
0 File(s) 0 bytes
1 Dir(s) 61,669,658,624 bytes free

Hopefully, I will have full back of all my docs every year.

P.S. A New Tooth

Just found out I got a new tooth in my month – pretty painful. I am expecting my son Yifan to have his first tooth, and finally, I got one.

Skyscrapers in Lujiazui

What a day!

This is a not completely-normal normal day. It is not normal, since my typical working day is in office. It is also normal, since this is a typical day in Shanghai. Let me tell you what exactly the life here looks like – since many people didn’t get the change to visit Shanghai yet. Today, I am visiting several places in the Lujiazui area.

Shangri-La

The hotel of Shangri-la is still having a good business. The UBS Greater China Conference 2008 was going on in many floors of the hotel. So many people with black suits and ties attended. Well. Business meeting of a wealth bank is much more luxurious than a meeting of Internet company.

From Shangri-La to Jin Mao Tower

I admit that I haven’t been to the Lujiazui area for a long time. To my surprise, many new buildings appeared. By “new buildings”, I mean those skyscrapers higher than 40 floors, or something around 200 meters.

Side by side with Shangri-la, is the Hopson International Tower. I don’t know when they started construction, but it seems to be opened to public soon in 2008. Behind it is another tower as high as the CITI Bank Tower.

Turning the corner, is the new twin tower (260m) of Shanghai IFC (International Financial Center), or with the new name – HSBC Building, Shanghai IFC. In the same tower are the Ritz-Carlton hotel (second in Shanghai), and the W Hotel (first in China). It is to be completed between 2009 to 2010.

Meeting in Jinmao Tower

The meeting in the afternoon is in the Jinmao Tower. We talked about the office rent price. Compared to the office building of 3.8 RMB or 0.5 USD per sq. meter per day, I guess the price of Jin Mao must be high. I am right. It is more than 1 USD per sq. meter per day. My host told me that the World Financial Center on the other side is asking for pre-leasing price of 3.3 USD per sq. meter per day.

It was a law firm, and they are expanding rapidly. Their staff is working days and night (seriously, till 2 AM sometimes) but still cannot meet the demand. With more and more office buildings and the moving-in companies, I can see their business must keep growing.

The other side of Jin Mao

When I stepped out of the busy Jin Mao Tower, I realize the restaurants on the other side of road were already closed, and many of them were pulled down. That is also a reserved space, called Z3-2. That piece of land is for the future skyscraper named “Shanghai Center”. The final design has not be chosen, but the idea is to have something between 550 to 700 meters in height. Hmm…. Another tall building.

Crazy? Pre-Bubble?

Maybe the photos in this post: World Financial Center give you some idea about what the skyscrapers in Lujiazui looks like.

Everyone is very optimistic about the future of Shanghai. I am so too. However, most of the bubble happens when people get over optimistic.

Shanghai Car Plate is NOT Investment

This is a follow up post for my entry Shanghai Car Plates IS Investment I wrote 4 months ago. Within just 4 months, the high valued car plate dropped dramatically.

My Record on Car Plate Price in Shanghai

From my blog post on Car Plates in Shanghai, you can get some idea about how the prices of a car plate in Shanghai changes over time.

Shanghai’s Car Plate Bidding

Shanghai is the only place in China to have Car Plate Bidding practices. Every month, around 7000 car plates are issued to the public and people bid for the plates in a public auction. With the high demand for private cars, and limited number of car plates, the car plate price in Shanghai went all the way high to more than 50,000 Yuan last month.

This Month

This month, the lowest bidding price for car plate dropped to 8,100 Yuan, and the average winning price is 23,370 Yuan, less than half of the record high of 56,042 Yuan in December, 2007.

What Caused the Drop?

The most important change is, this time, the authority made the bidding price of all the other buyers public, so people can see how much other people want to pay. Also, people are given a second chance to change their bidding price according to other’s price. This helps the higher bidder to lower down their price, and the lower bidder to raise their price – to finally make the bidding price more concentrated among a certain number.

Before that, the price guideline is given by the car dealers – they have some sort of information sources to tell the buyers about the finally winning price, so everyone has to pay higher than that, and this guidance price always raises.

The other reason is with the Spring Festival in Feb, they pause the Feb bidding and double the amount of car plate supply this month.

The final reason is because of the bottle neck of the Telephone and Internet system of the authority, many people could not dial in via telephone or logon to the web site. This further reduced the number of Would-be buyers.

Is it an Investment?

Everyone is trying to predict the future. I am the same.

Four months ago, I regret that I didn’t bid for a Shanghai Car Plate in my post: Shanghai Car Plates IS Investment. I changed my mind this month, and very likely, I will change my mind again in the next few months if the car plate price goes all the way high.

P.S. This post should have another title: Shanghai Car Plate = 8100 RMB