Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Chinese need mortgages too

Ethnic Chinese have often been compared to the Jews. Just as the Jews have the Jew Diaspora, Chinese too have their Chinese Diaspora. In can find Chinese in almost every corner of the world including Asian countries where they are often regarded as rich towkays (business boss) associated with wealth. It is not surprising for Chinese ancestors have gone through very hard times and have honed their survival skills to a fine degree. Many have prospered because of hard work and emphasis on education. However, one cannot say all are rich. Many will need mortgages either to buy houses, to finance their business ventures, to finance their children's education. I know. I was one of them who had to get into debt to finance my children's education in foreign countries because it is almost impossible for them to get into subsidized public universities in my country. Even if they can get admitted, they will not likely to get their choice field of study. Further, because of flawed policies, none of my country public university made it into the top 200 universities of the world.

Chinese in United Kingdom

Wikipedia reported that the Chinese are the fastest growing non-European ethnic group in the United Kingdom, growing at 11% per annum between 2001-2003 with growth coming almost exclusively from immigration. Immigrants are not likely to be rich and obviously will need a roof over their head. So they will likely need to purchase residential properties. I doubt any significant ethnic Chinese in United Kingdom can afford to purchase residential properties with 100% cash. That can only mean one thing - mortgage. What exactly are mortgages? According to Wikipedia, a mortgage is a method of using property (real or personal) as security for the performance of an obligation, usually the payment of a debt. In most cases, the debt will be in form of a loan as part payment for a real estate property or to secure working capital for a business.

For ethnic Chinese living in the United Kingdom, it is obvious that if they ever need a mortgage, they will end up with a UK mortgage. It is most natural and most convenient.



Friday, February 15, 2008

More high IQ kids in China than in whole of North America

Did you know? Sometimes size matter. If you're one in a million in China, there are 1,300 people just like you. In India, there are 1,100 people just like you.

The 25% of the population in China with the highest IQs is greater than the total population of North America. In India, it's the top 28%. Translation for teachers: they have more honors kids than we have kids.

Did you know? China will soon become the number one English-speaking country in the world. If you took every single job in the US today and shipped it to China, it still would have a labor surplus.

During the course if this presentation

  1. 60 babies will be born in the US.
  2. 244 babies will be born in China.
  3. 351 babies will be born in India.

The US Department of Labor estimates that today's learner will have 10 to 14 jobs by age 38. According to the US Department of Labor, 1 out of 4 workers today is working for a company for whom they have been employed less than 1 year.

More than 1 out of 2 are working for a company for whom they have worked less than 5 years.

According to former Secretary of Education Richard Riley, the top 10 jobs that will be in demand in 2010 didn't exist in 2004. We are currently preparing students for jobs that don't yet exist, using technologies that haven't been invented in order to solve problems we don't even know are problems yet.

Name this country

  1. Richest in the world

  2. Largest military

  3. Center of world business and finance

  4. Strongest education system

  5. World center of innovation and invention

  6. Currency the world standard of value

  7. Highest standard of living

England, in 1900

Did you know? The US is 20th in the world in broadband Internet penetration (Luxembourg just passed us). Nintendo invested more than $140 million in research and development in 2002 alone. The US federal government spent less than half as much on research and innovation in education. 1 of every 8 couples married in the US last year met online.

There are over 106 million registered users of MySpace (as of September 2006). If Myspace were a country, it would be the 11th-largest in the world (between Japan and Mexico). The average MySpace page is visited 30 times a day.

Did you know? We are living in exponential times. There are over 2.7 billion searches performed on Google each month. To whom were these questions addressed B.G. (before Google)?

The number of text messages sent and received everyday exceeds the population of the planet. There are about 540,000 words in the English language, about 5 times as many as during Shakespeare's time. More than 3,000 new books are published, daily. It is estimated that a week's worth of New York Times contains more information than a person was likely to come across in a lifetime in the 18th century. It is estimated that 1.5 exabytes 1.5 x 1018 of unique new information will be generated worldwide this year. That is estimate to be more than in the previous 5,000 years. The amount of new technical information is doubling every 2 years.

For students starting a new four-year technical or college degree, this means that half of what they learn in their first year of study will be outdated by their third year of study. It is predicted to double every 72 hours by 2010.

Third-generation fiber optics has recently been tested by both NEC and Alcatel that pushes 10 trillion bits per second down one strand of fiber. That's 1,900 CDs, or 150 million simultaneous phone calls, every second. It's currently tripling about every 6 months and is expected to do so for at least the next 20 years. The fiber is already there. They're just improving the switches on their ends, which means the marginal cost of those improvements is effective $0. Predictions are that e-Paper will be cheaper than real paper.

47 million laptops were shipped worldwide last year. The $100 laptop project is expecting to ship between 50 to 100 million laptops a year to children in underdeveloped countries. Predictions are that by 2013 a supercomputer will be built that exceeds the computing capability of the human brain. By 2023, when 1st-graders will be just 23 years old and beginning their (first) careers, it will take a $1,000 computer to exceed the capabilities of the human brain. And while technical predictions farther out than about 15 years are hard to make, prediction are that by 2049 a $1,000 computer will exceed the computational capabilities for the human race.

What does it all mean? Shift happens. Now you know, share.

This is exactly what I am doing. And the easiest way to share is to embed the video presentation into a blog post, put it on the web and publish a transcript. Enjoy.



Sunday, February 10, 2008

Chinese likes to travel, especially to Spain

From ages ago, Chinese have been traveling. Admiral Zheng (Cheng Ho) explored the world with his mighty fleet and now some even claimed he was in the American continent before Columbus. Other Chinese traveled for different reasons. At one time in the past, Chinese in China faced great hardship, and many migrated hoping to find greener pastures and you now can find Chinese in many countries of the world. Just as you have the Jew Diaspora, you also have the Chinese Diaspora, except in my opinion, the Chinese Diaspora is more widespread.

Now modern Chinese travel for different reasons. Many travel because they have found their pot of gold and travel for vacations. Others are Chinese businessmen who travel for business. And they travel not only from China, but from all over the world because of the Chinese Diaspora.

Spain as a tourist and business destination

There are many things in Spain to attract the Chinese there. There is of course the pleasant sunny, warm Mediterranean weather plus the beautiful beaches. Then there are fellow resident Chinese in Spain itself plus their Chinese restaurants and the Chinese textiles and trade industries for Chinese businessmen. Some may want to catch a glimpse of He Zhi Wen, a world-ranked table tennis player.

Costa Brava, Spain

Costa Brava, Spain
Photo of a Costa Brava beach is property of S Khan
Costa Brava is a coastal region located at the northeastern part of Catalonia, Spain. The name itself conveys an impression of a rugged or wild coast for "Costa" is the Spanish word for "coast" and Brava implies "rugged" or "wild". You can find many rocky cliffs in Costa Brava, which is a long 60 kilometer coastal stretch from Blanes to the French border. It is now not so "wild" for in the Spanish Franco government in the 1950s identified Costa Brava as a region to be developed as a holiday destination, especially for package holiday tourists from Northern Europe and particularly the United Kingdom with it gloomy and frequently rainy climate. There are now large numbers of hotels and apartments in various seaside resorts like Lloret de Mar, Tossa de Mar, Blanes, and l'Estartit and the tourism industry is rapidly taking over from fishing as the major economic activity of the Costa Brava.

Online accommodation booking available at Costa Brava Hotels.

Costa Del Sol, Spain

Costa del Sol, Spain
Photo of Costa del Sol is property of Yareeh

Costa del Sol which is Spanish for "Sun Coast" or "Sunshine Coast", is the southern region of Spain as part of the autonomous region of Andalusia. This 150 kilometer stretch of coastal region had been transformed from a series of small, peaceful fishing settlements to a modern world tourist destination with a mixture of modern high-rise buildings and resorts and old styled low-rise local Andalusian architectural multi-dwelling blocks. You can still find those narrow streets that you see in the photo above which not be able to take the modern cars but which are tourist attractions in pockets of Costa del Sol.

Some towns, particularly Marbella, have become playgrounds for the super-rich and famous visitors. Recently, many high quality golf courses, mostly centered around Marbella, have been developed and now Costa Del Sol is attracting golfers from Europe as well as the rest of the world.

Online accommodation booking is available at Costa Del Sol Hotels.

Alicante, the Spanish province

Alicante is a Spanish province in which there is also an Alicante city and also the costal Valencian coastal municipality, Benidorm, both of which will be described in more details below. Alicante, the province, is located in the southern part of the Valencian Community.

Alicante, the city

Alicante city, Spain
Photo of a street in Alicante city is property of The Joneses

Alicante, the city, is the capital of the Alicante province and also one of the fastest-growing cities in Spain. It is also a historic and still active Mediterranean port with regular ferry services to Algeria and the Balearic Islands. So Alicante can be your launching pad for visits to Africa.

Like the other places, Alicante economy is largely based on the tourism industry with its popular beaches. The influx of tourists has stimulated a construction boom which has transformed a formerly rundown port into a sophisticated city with clean beaches, world-class museums, wide attractive boulevards plus a new harbor complex. This also means you will be seeing the stuff that comes with a construction boom - tall cranes, half completed buildings, cement mixers, etc. But the old part of the city is largely preserved and active with bars, restaurants and shops.

Online accommodation booking is available from Alicante Hotels.

Benidorm, Spain

Benidorm, Spain
Photo of Benidorm, Spain, belong to Juan Carlos

Benidorm is a costal Valencian coastal municipality located in the province of Alicante beside the Mediterranean Sea. Benidorm can boast of having many tall buildings and is sometimes referred to as the "Manhattan of Spain" because of a similar skyline featuring many tall hotels and apartment buildings you don't find in other parts of Costa Blanca. The photo at the top shows the degree to which Benidorm skyline resembles that of Manhattan of the United States of America.

Benidorm is much frequently by British and Dutch tourists, particularly the British. It is possible that in the more touristy part of Benidorm, you may hear more people speaking in English or Dutch than Spanish. The extent of the overwhelming presence of British tourist can be seen in many Benidorm pubs touting the fact that they have "authentic British menu". Looks like what many people consider British cuisine as rather bland, British still prefer their own "bland" English food. Pretty much like many Chinese who when touring a foreign country, will head for a Chinese restaurant rather than sampling the local cuisine, something I, a Chinese, find strange. If I am in a foreign country, I would rather try out what the local cuisine taste like rather than sticking to the same old familiar food. Benidorm is also a popular tourist draw because starting from around 9pm and continuing into the early hours of the morning, there are free cabaret acts.

For online accommodation booking, try Benidorm Hotels.

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona is the capital city of Catalonia and the second largest city in Spain, after Madrid, the capital of Spain. Barcelona lies on the Mediterranean coast and is both a major economic center as well as one of Europe's principal Mediterranean ports. Chinese businessmen should be attracted to Barcelona like bees to honey. For Chinese tourists, there is Barcelona's rich cultural heritage and architectural buildings designed by world renown architects of old, like Lluís Domènech i Montaner and Antoni Gaudí. Their creations have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

La Rambla, Barcelona, Spain
Photo of La Rambla is property of Andy Wright

The center of attraction of Barcelona is probably La Rambla or Las Ramblas, a very busy 1 over kilometer pedestrian mall lined on both sides by trees as you can see in the photo above. La Rambla is much visited by tourists as well as locals, although the tourists will likely be the majority here. La Rambla can be very crowded during the major tourist season, and the photo above is very likely taken during the off-season. You can find many cafés, theaters, small shops and market stalls there, as you can see from the photo above. You may also see various street performances by actors, mimes, etc. The thrifty Chinese tourists are not likely to patronize the cafes and restaurants here as prices can be pretty high.

Online accommodation booking is available from Barcelona Las Ramblas Hotels.



Saturday, February 2, 2008

Lucky panties for Year of the Rat

Chinese calendar is based on the moon (lunar) and each year is associated with an animal. The coming new year is Year of the Rat and now it seems wearing panties with an image of a rat is lucky for the wearer for that New Year. Here is an example of what Chinese seeking good fortune may be wearing (it is a combination of 2 photos):

panties with photo of a rat

This photo is a combination of photos belonging to Crystal Foxx and Beau Wade

Want to try it ladies? Maybe it can bring good fortune for non-Chinese wearers of such panties as well. Who knows? You my win a million dollar lottery as a result of this tip. If you happen to get such good fortune, please do not forget me.



Sunday, January 27, 2008

Chinese too need life insurance: Chinese are not immortal

Chinese Immortality

There are plenty of tales about Chinese immortality. It seems there is a Chinese herb called Jiaogulan (jow-goo-lawn) that has such a long list of rejuvenating properties that in China they call it the "immortality" herb. Then there are "The Xian" Chinese Immortals blessed with the ability to fly, weightlessness, invisibility, longevity, mastery of the elements - earth, air, fire, and water. Add in the Ba Xian or Eight Immortals of Taoist mythology, well known throughout Chinese culture. There is a Chinese saying, "If you cannot get to heaven, then go to Hangzhou" with some Chinese claiming that Hangzhou is one of the great power spots in the universe which drew the most renowned immortality master in Chinese history, Master Ge Hong, the ancient Guan Yin community, the immense Buddhist influence at the Ling Yin temple and the majestic Song Dynasty capital. Qin Shi Huang referred to as "King Zheng of Qin" conquered the last independent Chinese state in 221 BC and ruled over the whole of China. In the final stage of his life, Qin Shi Huang feared death and desperately sought the fabled elixir of life, hunting for that elixir all over Zhifu Island sendin a Zhifu islander Xu Fu with ships carrying hundreds of young men and women in search of Mount Penglai, where the Eight Immortals lived. These unfortunate souls never returned, as they knew that returning minus elixir of immortal life will mean execution. Qin Shi Huang was buried in his mausoleum, with the famous Terracotta Army, near modern day Xi'an (Shaanxi province). Perhaps in that way, he had achieved some kind of immortality.

Why Chinese need life insurance

But are the common Chinese immortal? I haven't met one yet. Without immortality and especially if they have dependents, Chinese need life insurance like any other mortals on earth, to provide for their dependents if they leave their earthly life behind. Before Internet was invented, to get life insurance, you have to get it via a life insurance agent. But try to get term insurance, the purest form of insurance (protection) requiring the lowest premium and giving maximum coverage, from a life insurance agent. You are likely to be persuaded to get something else that promise things like getting your money back, etc. But these comes with higher premium and fatter commissions for the life insurance agents. This website Advantage Quotes is different. Prominently displayed on their website is this statement: "LIFE IS COMPLICATED....BUT TERM LIFE INSURANCE DOES NOT HAVE TO BE". Plus you can get an instant quote online. Just answer some question. After that (getting a quote), I do not know what happen but hope any readers who have experience will leave a comment to let us know how it went.

Term Life Insurance Calculator

Perhaps even before you fill in the online form, you should look at Term Life Insurance Calculator which helps you estimate how much life insurance cover you may need depending on your circumstances. To be even better informed before you request for an instant quote, read their Life Insurance Glossary so you can understand what you are involved with.



Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Chinese in Spain

Chinese are all over the world, including Spain. Some says Chinese immigrants started arriving in Spain in the 16th century, but significant number of Chinese immigrants only started arriving in the 1920s and 1930s. They started with humble beginning, as peddlers. Then the Chinese started, you know it, Chinese restaurants and later became traders as well as ventured into the textile industry. The largest wave of Chinese immigrants into Spain was quite recent, in the 1980s. They congregate mainly around Madrid, the capital city of Spain, Barcelona, a popular tourist destination and the Canary Islands.

As usual, like other oversea Chinese of olden days, Chinese in Spain were not spared occasional persecution. In Elche, when the locals were unhappy over cheap imported merchandise from China which they felt deprive local workers of jobs, a Chinese-owned shoe warehouse was burnt down. The local Spanish also says Chinese make little effort to integrate into Spanish society.

There are almost 100,000 Chinese residing in Spain in 2006 and they ranked ninth among non-European Union foreign community in Spain.

So if Chinese are to visit Spain, they would not be without compatriots and if they hanker after Chinese food, Chinese restaurants are aplenty in Spain. Plus Spain is a popular tourist destinations.

Madrid, capital city of Spain

Madrid is the major financial center of the Iberian Peninsula, a city of great cultural and political importance with a modern infrastructure, but also had preserved many of its historic neighborhoods and streets. Maybe if you visit Madrid, you may chance upon ancient mosaic works like the Mosaic Works Hercules you see below:

Mosaic Works Hercules
Photo of Mosaico Trabajos Hércules is property of Luis García

If you like to watch bullfighting, Plaza de Toros, the largest bullring of Spain is located in Madrid and Plaza de Toros is considered the world center of bullfighting. If this is your interest, you will have to go between March and October which is Madrid's bullfighting season. If the sight of blood turns you off, you can always go pub crawling for Madrid has an vast number of bars or just enjoy its very active nightlife which can last as long as until the sun rises at 7 am.

Europe is no stranger to me, but when I was traveling around Europe, Internet was non-existent. Now with my 24 hour broadband connection, if I ever visit Madrid, I will first book my accommodation online at websites like Madrid Hoteles. I am not going to waste my expensive tourist time hunting for suitable accommodation only upon arrival.

Barcelona, capital city of Catalonia

Barcelona, capital city of Catalonia lies on the Mediterranean coast between the mouths of two rivers, Llobregat and Besòs. Every city seem to have its unique communication tower, and Barcelona is no exception. Here is a beautiful photo of its Sobre el cel de Barcelona:

Sobre el cel de Barcelona
Photo of Sobre el cel de Barcelona is property of Ramon

Barcelona is a city full of modern buildings, parks plus cultural and leisure activities. When you visit Catalonia in which Barcelona is located, make sure you bring along your handkerchief because your mouth will be drooling at its food is interesting, regarded as one of which some consider as the finest gastronomies in the world, with cuisine like Catalan cream, the bread with tomato (pan con ttumaca), the Catalan champaign (cava)

If you plan on visiting Barcelona, get your accommodation online from Barcelona Hoteles, online hotel booking websites which claims you can find anything from 5 star luxury hotels to hostals (hostels and small boutique hotels) at the last minute and year round at the cheapest price.

La Rambla, Barcelona

La Rambla is a 1.2 kilometer-long tree-lined pedestrian mall in central Barcelona full of street theatre, cafés and market stalls and is the emotional hub of Barcelona. It is also referred to as 'Les Rambles' (Catalan) and 'Las Ramblas' (Spanish) because it is actually a series of shorter streets, and these are the plural forms of La Rambla. It must be a pretty iconic street to evoke Spanish poet Federico García Lorca to call La Rambla as "the only street in the world which I wish would never end".

La Rambla, Barcelona
Photo of La Rambla is property of Son of Groucho

For accommodation, surf over to La Ramblas Hoteles. This is a Spanish website, and I can only manage a few Spanish words like gracias and adiós, certainly not enough to understand what that website is all about. For Anglophiles like me, I will have to make do with Ramblas Hotels.



Thursday, January 17, 2008

Chinese in America

Chinese first started migrating to the United State of America, but the significant number of Chinese immigrants only started arriving in the States in 1848 during the California gold rush. Majority are male with low educational qualifications from the Guangdong province (who speak the Cantonese dialect). I understand they were not very well treated. In fact, Chinese were banned from migrating to the United States of America from 1885 to as recent as 1965 when the Immigration Reform and Control Act removed the ban. Racial relationship have since improved tremendously since then. Much of that I think is due to the fact that most Chinese are hardworking and do not like to interfere in the affairs of a country to which they have migrated and only want to be left alone to live their life.

However, according to a A 2001 survey of Americans' attitudes toward Chinese Americans showed that 68% of the those who responded to the survey negative or very negative attitude toward Chinese Americans. There are some positive result though. The study found that 91% had positive perceptions of Chinese Americans' strong family values, 77% had positive perceptions of Chinese Americans' honesty as business people and 67% had positive perceptions of Chinese Americans' high value on education.

Many Chinese reside in cities like Boston, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Houston, Plano, Seattle, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Portland. In fact I myself have a nephew in Dallas, and niece in Houston and a distant nephew who did his tertiary education in Houston and frequently travel there. I also have a sister-in-law in Yuma, Arizona, but whose husband now works as a Pharmacist in Las Vegas. Chinese Americans represent nearly three percent of the population of California. You can find many Chinese restaurants spread all over the United States of America. My sister-in-law in Yuma in fact, owns a Chinese restaurant there.

Prominent Chinese Americans

Some Chinese Americans have succeeded in making some headway in American politics. Among them are Gary Locke, the first Chinese American governor in the United States, March Fong Eu, Hiram Fong, Thomas Tang, Daniel Akaka, Matt Fong, David Wu, Norman Bay, Elaine Chao and Leland Yee.

Others have done well in business. Some of them are Rupert Jee who owned of the Hello Deli and had made many appearances on The Late Show with David Letterman, Andrea Jung, the Chief Executive Officer of Avon products, Charles Wang, the founder and Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Computer Associates, An Wang, the computer engineer and inventor who co-founded the Wang Laboratories, and Alex Chiu, an eccentric promoter.

Many Chinese Americans have also done well in the scientific field, and in my field Physics I can count among them some Nobel laureate in Physics - Paul C. W. Chu (superconductivity), Steven Chu, Tsung-dao Lee, Samuel C. C. Ting, Daniel Chee Tsui, and last but not least - Chen Ning Yang.

And don't forget Ieoh Ming Pei, better known as I. M. Pei, a Pritzker Prize-winning Chinese American architect, considered as one of the most successful architects of the 20th century who have designed famous buildings all over the world.

Louvre and Louvre Pyramid
Photo of Louvre Pyramid is property of Stephen Carlile

The one I like best is shown above, the glass Louvre Pyramid in Paris, New York. Others include a landmark of Hong Kong, the Bank of China Tower, Raffles City in Singapore, The Gateway also in Singapore, Miho Museum in Shiga, Japan, Miho Museum, near Kyoto, also in Japan, Musée d'Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, Essensa East Forbes in Fort Bonifacio, Philippines, Tour EDF in La Défense, France, Torre Espacio in Madrid, Spain, Museum of Islamic Arts in Doha, Qatar, plus a very long list of projects in the United States of America itself.

Chinese are know not only for their hard working nature, but also for thrift. Thrifty Chinese Americans can sure use the Free Classified Ads. Free classified ads!!!! Which thrifty Chinese would not have use of free classified ads when they have something to buy, sell or rent. Perhaps I should draw my nephew in Dallas to Dallas Classifieds and my niece in Houston to Houston Classifieds. If my niece from Houston who is now in my home country for her sister's wedding find that useful, perhaps I should hind at a good "makan" (a 9 course dinner) for a favor done.

To make it more convincing, I have posted a test free advertisement at Offer: Freelancer for SEO jobs, freelance writer, help for bloggers which will tell me if I can use HTML. Conclusion. HTML is supported. I now know how to prepare a free classified ad and can assist anyone who want to post a free classified ad there, and will post a real classified ad when I have the time.