ilya's Comments

9 Hosted US Congress Delegation

Dear Jian,

some people think if three big manufacturers (GM, Ford, Chrysler) go bankrupt, then lots of related businesses will go bust as well, and then many people will lose jobs and the whole economy will take a hit. Some parts for automobiles are probably manufactured in China too, so those businesses will have problems too. Then there is a general thing that Americans will have less money to buy consumer things, many produced in China too.

Not everybody thinks this bad scenario will realize. So those people say -- let them go bankrupt. That makes the debate, and it's a heated debate, this is why you read about it so much.

Posted by ilya at 2008-12-17 00:54:26. More

8 Upgraded to Movable Type 4

Hope the registration feature comes as well.
Posted by ilya at 2007-08-19 01:17:15. More

7 Controversy Car Plates

I guess many good ideas end like this - some people doing offensive things, others complaing and officials scrapping the whole program. Sure it's understandible they weren't happy of being in the middle of controversy.

Yet, it looks like when people are allowed to do what they want many start with doing quite stupid things. May be this is an illustration along the lines of democracy being not right thing for China in the foreseeable future.
Posted by ilya at 2007-07-26 04:50:43. More

6 Real Estate Price Keeps Crazy

Also, since there credit is not as easy as in America few years ago, people might lose their past earnings, but not future ones.

I think the main drive for apartments is still not speculation, but just the fact that best level of live and best jobs are in Shanghai, so coming here makes lots of economic sense (compare it to capital investment that pays off in 10 years...).
Posted by ilya at 2007-07-16 18:21:44. More

5 Foreign Language Only Signs?

Well, I went to Xintiandi this evening. All menus and information, including information booth with the list of shops, are bilingual. As for the big neon labels, the ones that have some meaning, like 'Coffee Bean' or 'Rendez-vouz', have a few charactes in the title. For most others, like Starbucks, I wasn't able to spot any Chinese. This doesn't seem to hurt anyone since if you never seen 'Starbucks', then you won't be helped much by knowing it's a 'Sin-ba-ke'. I guess that's something along the lines of original regulation.

So, it just looks like the whole thing isn't a ground-breaking news.

If anyone wants to re-check by yorself, you can also catch the performances in Xintiani on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 8pm this month. Saturdays are Chinese Opera.

This site was diplaying 'You have exceeded your CPU quota' when I tried to post just now.
Posted by ilya at 2007-07-14 23:06:17. More

4 Foreign Language Only Signs?

But - the best part!!

Do you think Starbucks' espresso, macchiatto, latte, short, tall and grande are standard English?

I've seen signs in American coffee shops: 'We are local. We don't speak Starbucks'
Posted by ilya at 2007-07-14 02:03:01. More

3 Foreign Language Only Signs?

I think many people, foreigners and locals alike, are going to Xintiandi to get the taste of its unique atmosphere, which is neither truly historical, nor similar to what the center of NYC or Boston might look like. If it will be not appropriate to put big English signs on historic Buddhist temples, it makes sense to question whether it is appropriate to put big Chinese sigs on a place with its own established look.

> "I wouldn't like to have foreigners coming to my country, set up businesses and put up signs that no one but themselves can read"
Well, that may be the reason why some people were not fond of Chinatowns in American cities, where you might be able to find the whole street in Chinese. And now, many people are against Mexican immigration for reasons roughly in the same direction. Again, these days people in America think differently (most oppose only the part of immigration that is illegal).

Does 'cannot read' apply to our situation at all - isn't there an obligatory English in the schools and the obligatory knowledge of pinyin? Also, many 'locals' who live in the area for years, are, in fact, foreigners or overseas Chinese. I would think that all restaurants at Xintiandi had Chinese language in the menu - correct me if I'm wrong - so the customer's already the king.

Thus the decision looks regrettably political. I understand that many Chinese people are proud to administer the places that were once administered by (often unjust!) foreign administration. But look, I bet none of foreign tourists going to Xintiandi is against that. Also, most of people come here because of some fondness to China, and so would be happy to learn or advance Chinese culture.

I must plead guilty to be foreigner, even though the regulation will benefit my language learning process, where I often take the bus just to get involved into deciphering real-life bus stop signs.
Posted by ilya at 2007-07-14 01:42:26. More

2 Difficulties as a Foreign Visitor

Hi, Wang!

I want to visit Shanghai in July... If the promotion will be still up, I'll be happy to be interviewed! Sure, if anyone will be offering help with hostels, places, etc. I'll be glad to accept any help.
Posted by ilya at 2007-06-20 15:11:09. More

1 Booking China Domestic Flight Outside China

Thank you, Jian Shuo!

I found some tickets on - works great. Can you tell me what airlines are better? Those in question are (Haikou-Beijing, 18/06/06):

* Hainan Airlines
* China Southern Airlines
* Air China

I primarily mean which one is likely to have better service.

Yours, I.
Posted by ilya at 2006-06-07 19:15:03. More