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Friday, November 30, 2012

Our Shopping Cart Move

As with many merchants, I basically rent my shopping cart. I do not want the headache of hosting my own shopping cart, paying for fixes, and upgrades. If your a programmer, yes, you can do your own shopping cart.

I would rather have somebody watching it 24 X 7 that I can call up at 2AM, when my site is having some issues.

This is the fourth shopping cart for ChildBook.

A quick history:

V 1.0 - Static Web Page, only checks accepted. I did all the html.

V 2.0 - Credit Cards Accepted! It was part static pages, and a shopping cart called BigStep. The shopping cart was very limited.

V 3.0 - A semi custom cart. The headache was I had to pay for any bug fixes and upgrades. Customization was good and bad.

V 4.0 - My last cart I just moved from. I am not naming them right now, since I still have a store with them. It was the best cart around for the price range when I started with them about 5 years ago. Unfortunately they have had some challenges, and these challenges caused a lot of frustrations, that I don't really need.

V 5.0 - My latest cart. Once all the challenges are done, it will be nice. The speed is faster, and there are a lot of nice features I am looking forward too! I am also going to move the blog once the shopping cart settles down.


Chinese passport map causes diplomatic dispute

How to irritate your neighbors:

Chinese passport map causes diplomatic dispute - The Guardian

India's response was thoughtful:
The Indian embassy in Beijing has been stamping the passports with another map depicting the two disputed Himalayan regions as India's territory.

I find this scary...
China Doubles Down. Your Move, Mr. President? - Via Meadia

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Modern Day The Little Match Girl,

I had not read the The Little Match Girl, till I started ChildBook. One of the books I sell of Fairy Tales. Very sad story, that my wife knew - I had her translate it for me.

And then to read of this incredibly sad story in China, that has become so much richer, but there are still poor there:
China shocked by death of five boys who lived in a bin - Telegraph

The Girl Who Sold Matches (The Little Match Girl) - Softcover Chinese Picture Book with CD

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Trouble in China as three Italian labels blocked from using their names - Telegraph

Las Vegas Chinese Gangs

Take aways:
  • Chinese Gangs in the US exist
  • Gunman was involved in both San Gabriel and Las Vegas
  • Involved in Gambling in Las Vegas
Asian mafia assassin found guilty of stabbing casino crook 32 TIMES in crowded karaoke bar over $10,000 gambling debt - Daily Mail 

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515 Million Counterfeit Ring

My question is what is the 500 Million based on. Is it full price, or the actual selling price?

£515 million designer counterfeiting ring unearthed - Telegraph

The valuations can get ridiculous on pirated goods, such as musi. 24 songs got a $1.5 Million fine!
Dangerous music pirate finally brought to justice after sharing 24 songs on Kazaa- AV Club

Monday, November 19, 2012

Blog Spam

This blog is more of a hobby, and I get to write about what I like, which is usually related to Chinese Culture, Politics, Chinese Americans, Chinatowns, Chinese Food, and Learning Chinese. It's not usually a buy this type blog doing sell, sell, and more sell!

If you want to buy, please go to my website, and buy!

Meandering a bit here :-)

I just had to delete 58 at last count blog comments from the same person, all about a dress site. And it was not even my wife's dress site!  It was some site in the UK. Dumb. In blogger, all the comments got marked as SPAM. And Google, bless their automated hearts, pays attention and hatees SPAM as much as I do.

If your going to do SEO, get a clue and do it right! Don't SPAM people, it's bad manners, it upsets people (who may know a lot more about SEO then you and do something about your site, and it's actually hurts your search engine rankings.

While I was writing this, another 2 comments showed up from the same idiot.May be they are getting paid by the posting!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Conflict of Interests in China Shipping

Eye opening article. Basically a Brazilian mine owner to make their ore more competitive, had made some super huge vessels at a cost of $2 Billion Dollars. Unfortunately, the company did not realize how politically connected the current ore carriers are (dominated by a Chinese state owned company).

Beijing Wields Big Stick Against Megaships - WSJ
How China Closed Its Ports to Brazilian Miner Vale's Huge Iron-Ore Vessels

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Friday, November 9, 2012

13% of Chinese Blog Posts Censored?

Good article - this caught my eye:

A recent study by Harvard University’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science of 11 million posts made on Chinese social media websites – but excluding Weibo – concluded that roughly 13 per cent of all blog posts in China are censored.

And four groups of new rich in China per the article:
  • First were the small-scale entrepreneurs – getihu – who sprang up in the early years of the reforms.
  • Second were the children of high-ranking officials, 'princelings’ who in the 1980s got rich by what became known as 'official racketeering’, using connections to gain control of surplus products generated by state enterprises.
  • Third were the land-speculators, whose Party connections enabled them to purchase choice parcels of land and secure loans from state-owned banks.
  • Fourth group are former managers of state-owned companies, who became wealthy during the rapid, notably corrupt conversion of public enterprises into private and stockholder-owned companies in the 1990s.

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Give the Gift of a New Language

I recently visited a friend's house, and I was so surprised at how fast her 4 year old son could pick up concepts. The little boy's quite a fast learner. It is within these early years when learning ability is at its best, and so I asked my friend if she was interested in teaching her child a new language. It turns out that they were already planning to teach their child Chinese as a second language, and in an excited buzz, we talked about the many books available to help them get started.

Why be multilingual? We live in a world made small by globalization. A second language is an advantage for business and for travel. And with so many economic opportunities in China right now, learning the Chinese language is definitely a good idea.

I have built my life around helping parents and their children learn Chinese. And so one of my greatest accomplishments is that I have put together resources for Chinese made easy to learn. I have books for beginners, intermediate learners, and advanced level students. My friends also love that most books come with audio CDs to speed up learning and absorption.

Back to my friend's story. I asked them to check out our page on learning Chinese resourcesappropriate for ages 3-5 years old. We have many fun and exciting learning Chinese books, CD's, and DVD's that make learning Chinese a snap. I am sure after a few months, her son will be teaching them how to speak in Chinese.

If my friend can do it, so can you!This Holiday season, why not give the gift of a new language to your child? True, a child opening a book for Christmas might not get you the reaction as the latest toy would. A toy would probably be the favorite for the duration of the season, but the benefits of learning Chinese will last a lifetime.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Taiwanese Burger?

Something I have not heard of before:

A Groupon Deal

Bun Bun – Arcadia

Taiwanese Burger Meal for Two or Four with Fries, Potato Balls, and Drinks (Up to 53% Off)

My translation - basically a cheese burger, with the meat with some Taiwanese spices in it.
My dear wife vetoed getting this one :-)

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Future of Publishing

Good article, and scary in some ways as a book reseller.

From what I can tell, Apple has not had a huge monetary impact on the book publishing industry yet. The Kindle, and Kindle App has for eBooks. 60% of eBook are sold by Amazon.

Amazon and Apple rule the roost in publishing - The Telegraph
Technology companies are the new publishing power-brokers, so traditional players like Penguin and Random House have to hatch a new plan, says Katherine Rushton


Thursday, November 1, 2012

English Nephew for China's next President

With more and more of the children of the Chinese leadership going overseas for the college education, my guess is you will see more of this.

The mop haired British entrepreneur soon to become an official part of China's first family - The Telegraph
When 36-year-old Daniel Foa needed to impress a group of Chinese and Western chief executives, he simply booked the one dinner spot in Beijing that no outsider could ever access: The Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square.

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China one child policy changing soon?

My guess is the one child program will be more limited, till it finally disappears.

Per a radio program I was listening too yesterday was part of the reason not to move, was because of all the negative press in the West about the one child policy, and some in the Chinese government do not want to be seen as giving in.

China 'should move to two-child policy - The Telegraph
China should immediately end its one-child policy and instead adopt a two-child scheme, a foundation with close links to the highest levels of the Communist party has said.


Sharing with China - Smuggling Tips

I have mixed feelings on the article. On one side, China does have a smuggling issue, but on the other side China also has a lax attitude (to put it mildly), towards intellectual property.

Chinese officials seek Canadian anti-smuggling secrets - Global News


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