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Friday, November 4, 2016

China's Buying of Hollywood

Good read about the Chinese Billionaire who has been buying up parts of the US Movie Supply chain, from a studio to the movie theater, over $7 Billion dollars so far in acquisitions. Usually when a wealthy foreigner comes in to Hollywood, such as Sony and Columbia Studios or German film investors, they usually lose a lot of money. Hollywood is expert on separating investors from their money.

Wanda Chairman Reveals Ambitious Plan to Invest Billions in "All Six" Hollywood Studios - Hollywood Reporter

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Netflix Gives Up on China

Another US Company Gives Up on China

Netflix joins ranks of U.S. tech companies admitting they can’t conquer China - Market Watch

Translation - Netflix figured out the Chinese government is not going to give up control in a Foreign company in the media space.

Netflix new strategy is partnering with local providers. This is safer, for the profits will be a lot less. And China's government requires that 70% of content be local.

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Why the Golden Rule Matters

Prenda Lawyers Careers up in Smoke - Ars Technica

Could not have happened to nicer people. I hate trolls of any type, including piracy, copyright, and commenters. On the Internet, be nice. It's a good idea in general and will help your mental health as shown in Mindfulness with showing gratitude, but it will also help your reputation.

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Books as Status Symbols

 Good read. I have a bit of this, since I have a lot of business books that I have not read yet. I find it much harder to read a business book, than a fun book. And I have some beautiful leather bound books, collections such as all of Sherlock Holmes, Shakespeare, etc. from when we used to have a local Barnes & Noble, that I have never read. Books for me are more about reading and good content. I buy books new and used. And some of my books are falling apart from overuse. The headache is some of those are out of print...

Books as Status Symbols - Acculturated.com

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Learning Chinese DVD & CD Sale

Learning Chinese DVD and CD Sale 

 Chinese DVD and CD Sale


Q. Should I buy DVD or CD's to Learn Chinese?
A. Yes - They are an excellent method and most of the CD's and DVD's

Q. Why are they on sale?
A. I want to focus the site on Learning Chinese Textbooks, so I have put all the CD's and DVD's on sale.

Q. Do you think DVD's or CD's are going obsolete?
A. Yes and no.
 They are not selling for me. My textbook sales vs DVD's / CD's are 20 to 1 at least. So getting rid of inventory that does not sell makes sense for my business. Then I can simplify my website, and focus on what sells.

Q. Do I think they will be obsolete?

A. Personally no.

I prefer having a CD or DVD. MP3's and video files moving them around are a headache from device to device for those of us less technically advanced. At least with my current hardware and software set up. And a lot of the content on the DVD's are not available online at this time. 

The Video market seems to be moving to an all you can eat, with limited selection, pricing model such as NetFlix. So DVD sales industry wide have dropped dramatically. For teachers, I see DVD's as a great solution since the material is not available online, and this is specialized market. Yes, Youtube has some Learning Chinese Materials, but it's nice to be able to play a video without any advertisement. Plus, this way you don't need to worry about having a good Internet Connection.

 One of the Learning Chinese Textbook Series I carry went to MP3 replacing a CD and I disagree with the decision. I wish they had kept the CD, and added the MP3 files. They are hosting them on their website, and websites are not always accessible. Plus it's not 100% clear where the actual files are located.

Same with the Chinese Reading Touch Pens, which went from CD to MP3 with no notice, so you have to download, that was a huge headache for me to figure out and caused some customer frustrations I did not appreciate. Plus downloading files from China is not super fast. CD has great usability and no downloading issues.

Q. Are they new?
A. Yes

Q. Are they guaranteed?
A. 100% - which means they will work when you receive them. This does not mean you open them all up, say you don't like them, and return them theoretically without copying them - I am sure nobody would do this... I have more in my return policy about CD and DVD returns. I changed the return policy after somebody bought a bunch of DVD's, opened them all up, and then returned them since they did not like them. All in the same series.

Q. What zone are they?
A. Most are zoneless, but you need to look at each product page. It should be there.

Q. What is a DVD zone?
A. The wonderful people at the big movie studios, made zoning for DVD's. That means a Disney DVD made in China in Chinese, will not play a standard US DVD Player. You can buy a zoneless DVD Player, which takes care of the issue. If I understand correctly, zoneless DVD players are not legal in the US, but they are available. Chinese and Korean electronic retailers carry them. This also applies to Blue Ray DVD's. On the back of DVD's there is a picture of a globe that has a number below it, that is the zone. US is Zone 1. Taiwan Zone 4. China 6. Often DVD's are more expensive in Europe, than they are in the US. Or DVD's are cheaper in China, than in the US. It's frustrating, since in the US it's a pain to get DVD's dubbed in a foreign language (Disney does an amazing job, there US Mulan DVD has Chinese on it).

Q. What language are the DVD's in?
A. Mandarin Chinese with English.

Q. Are there sub-titles?
A. It varies, please check each DVD.

Q. Can you play English sub-titles with Chinese
A. Depends on the DVD.

Q. What language are the CD's in?
A. Mandarin Chinese - check each CD. I have some CD's that are used to teach English.

Q. Do you have CD's or DVD's in Cantonese?
A. No. Back in the days of Cassette Tapes, I bought some Cassette Tapes with Books, and they were very slow to sell. I used to get lots of requests for Cantonese, so I was surprised at the lack of sales.

Q. Which accent of Mandarin?
A. It varies. Look where they are made. If made in China or Taiwan it will have their respective accent. Ones made in the US vary in the accent. I prefer the Taiwan accent over the Chinese, but I am married to a Taiwanese...

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Machine Translations Update - Chinese

Google Translate just got better: AI-powered software is now almost as good at translating Chinese as humans | Daily Mail Online

My wife last month saw a notice in Chinese at a Elementary School we walk by that probably used Google Translate for a Chinese version, and she thought the wording was strange. When I have a chance I"ll post it. I took a picture. 

I am surprised they did not have one of their teachers polish the Chinese a bit...


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Chinese Touch Reading Pen

Chinese Touch Reading Pen

I have a limited quantity available of the Touch Reading Pens. I have gotten quite a few requests about them, but I was reluctant to sell till I was 100% sure it would be a positive experience for the customer and me.

The touch pens are fun to use. Basically you have a special book, and the pen then reads the text in Chinese. If there is not a CD provided, I will preload the pen with the needed software. The download from the publishers site is slow, so there will be a day or two delay in shipping touch pens while I test everything. A specially written English Manual is included with the touch pens that I wrote.

Chinese Reading Touch Pen Sets
Home Page of Touch Reading Pens

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