The SCMP broke the news recently that the proposed new Free Trade Zone in Pudong, Shanghai, would feature unfettered access to the internet. The whole FTZ proposal is — on the surface at least — meant to attract more international business, which will help shift the Chinese economy toward a healthier mix industries.
Allow me to be a crushing cynic: An international business zone that is Great Firewall free? Sounds amazing! All those international businesses in one convenient location! Facebook may be available but they’ve also created an epic industrial espionage honeypot.
Craft-brewing and Micro-brewing is a new thing in China and positively an international import; but it is catching on fast. My friend Mike Jordan is leading this charge at Boxing Cat Brewery. He makes great stuff, check out this short interview with Mike on the BBC. Another PDX export making it in Asia!
Barcamp Shanghai is coming again soon, and this is the 10th! I’ve been honored to help organize 6 of these so far (this will be the 7th). This bar camp will be at the Haworth Showroom in Jing’an district, March 3rd starting at 10am. I was recently interviewed by Settling Magazine about unconferencing, take a look at me trying to sound smart.
Beginning of Barcamp 8 from Techyizu's flickr account
I am just so thrilled about the group of people that has formed around barcamp — Techyizu was spawned from Barcamp organizers and community members. XinCheJian’s founders met at a Barcamp, I’ve made hundreds of friends, and we have together built an amazing community of people. Let’s keep it growing!
Shanghaiist recently ran a good piece explaining the basics of air pollution, which is a great segue into my occasional series of posts about Shanghai Air Quality. People are freaking out about the Air Quality again, which happens periodically.
In early 2011 I gathered some data about Shanghai’s air quality, did some simple math, and made a few graphs, wondering if the Shanghai World Expo had been a period of better air quality. Now that we’re a healthy term into 2012, I thought it was a good time to evaluate 2011 for air quality, and perhaps play with a few more graphs to see if we can make sense of Shanghai’s Air Quality in 2011 juxtaposed against the previous 10 years.
For review, Shanghai measures PM10, SO2 and NO2. Data previous to this set measured API in aggregate and always noted “Total Suspended Particulates” as the chief pollutant. So, that’s useless and thus excluded.
Also note that these numbers are not raw (otherwise they’d be in Parts Per Million), they are integers derived by the API formula, explained here. I suppose I could have done the math backwards ad derived the core values, but there are PhD candidates on top of that.
I make no claims of any sort about the accuracy of the source data, which was gathered from the Shanghai Environmental Education Center. The site and the ministry do not go into detail about their methods, testing sites, or any other pertinent details, which ruins the fun.
Here’s the big graph, PM10 for the last 11 years.
Click through to see the SO2 and NO2 graphs, and a much much more! (also click any graph to biggify)
I spent my national holiday working and watching foursquare airport/vacation check-ins scroll by.
I did have a wonderful China moment, thanks to an old Shanghainese man in a Lynyrd Skynyrd Confederate Flag hat.