You may have seen some headlines about China managing to slip extra chips onto servers operated by Apple, Amazon and other US tech companies. This is a link to the Bloomberg piece with the original reporting that’s worth a read. It reinforces my view that internet security is a myth. | learn more
This series of 10 tweets (with pics and video clips) by Rishi Taparia showcases a new retail story that puts Amazon Go to shame – seriously. | learn more
MIT Technology Review tackles the fascinating subject of how China governs using data, AI and internet surveillance. | learn more
“It was considered one of the CIA’s worst failures in decades: Over a two-year period starting in late 2010, Chinese authorities systematically dismantled the agency’s network of agents across the country, executing dozens of suspected U.S. spies.” | learn more
“A move to let rainbow trout be labelled as salmon after a food scandal causes a splash in China.” I guess nobody should be surprised by another food scandal coming from China, but I imagine the problem is actually a global one. I’d love to see a food supply chain transparency solution, blockchain or otherwise. | learn more
This article has greatly expanded my perspective on China! “Jiayang Fan on how JD.com is expanding its consumer base with drone delivery and local recruits who can exploit villages’ tight-knit social networks.” | learn more
Here’s an interesting perspective from Wired UK that’s heavy on quotes from Kai-Fu Lee, one of the most famous technologists in China (he’s been an exec at Apple, Microsoft and Google). The author thinks China will win the global race. I think the jury’s still out. | learn more
Per the WSJ article, so far, it’s going better than Taco Bell’s attempt to break into the Mexico market. “The chain says it isn’t trying for real Chinese cuisine; diners want to know what Americans think Chinese food should taste like” | learn more
Author: Cixin Liu, Translated By: Ken Liu
This book is Chinese-language science fiction, translated into English. I’ve heard from a few folks that it’s all the rage among China’s tech community, and I couldn’t resist a chance to read it (hear it read) first-hand.
Judged purely as a science fiction book, it’s good. The story kept my attention and I didn’t want to put it down. There were plenty of interesting twists and turns, and it was full of scientific language and concepts.
That said, I don’t judge this purely as a science fiction book. For me, it was more than that. At the start of the book, I kept thinking “How did this make it past the Chinese censors?”
The book gave me a window into Chinese culture, in some ways directly and in some indirectly. It’s not often I read books written from non-western perspectives, so I really enjoy the opportunity!
This article was a great opportunity for me to broaden my perspective on healthcare innovation to include other countries – namely the big one across the Pacific. | learn more
I love avocados. This fun NYT piece sheds light on the history of avocados and their adoption globally (including China!). | learn more
CBInsights analyst Matthew Wong breaks down the 2016 regulatory and market conditions for online insurance in China. This detailed article even includes UX breakdowns for some of the key products. Reading this surely broadened my perspective. | learn more
As part of a scam to boost product rankings on Chinese shopping websites via fake reviews, firms are sending cheap products (or empty boxes) to people that never ordered them. | learn more
Egor Hamakov makes a compelling case for why Bitcoin miners concentration in China equate to centralization. |learn more
The OEMs are trying to crawl out of the low-margin manufacturing business by making investments into startups and collaborating more closely. This means better aligned incentives with those startups, who usually suffer from quality issues tied to low production volumes. | learn more
“The two Academy presidents Chunli Bai and Anton Zeilinger tested quantum encrypted communication between Beijing and Vienna in a live-experiment. The quantum key was transmitted via the Chinese quantum satellite Micius.” | learn more
A Chinese team has used a DNA editing technique called base editing to remove a genetic disease called beta-thalassemia from a human embryo. “Base editing is an advance on a form of gene-editing known as Crispr, that is already revolutionising [sic] science.” | learn more
“Located in a decaying industrial park on the outskirts of town, the mine employs about 50 and consists of eight single-story, warehouse-like buildings, each 150 meters (492 feet) long. Seven of them host 21,000 machines that, together, represent nearly 4% of the processing power in the global bitcoin network.” | learn more
Einstein derisively called quantum entanglement “spooky action at a distance.” Since his time, the phenomenon has been pretty well documented. Now, researchers in China have achieved entanglement over the longest distance yet, from the Earth all the way to orbit. It’s teleportation, but not in the Star Trek sense of the word (yet?). | learn more
Sometimes it’s easy to get myopic, forgetting that there are many great retailers outside of the US market. This Bloomberg article highlights A.S. Watson Group, which plans to open 1,400 stores this year – a third of them in China. Their profit margins in China are 22%. | learn more