Chinese State Council Guidelines for Artificial Intelligence

The Chinese government's wish-list for AI researchers is pretty ambitious: "Breakthroughs should be made in basic theories of AI, such as big data intelligence, multimedia aware computing, human-machine hybrid intelligence, swarm intelligence and automated decision-making." Read the rest

Around the world, public perception of China's political primacy surges

The US is still viewed around the world as the top political power, but perceptions of China's leadership are growing rapidly, especially in African states with heavy Chinese investment, and in Russia. Read the rest

Man horrifically mauled after jumping into giant panda den

A foolish tourist in Nanchang Zoo, China, climbs into a panda den and approaches one of the enormous bears. Be warned: the predictable results are even more harrowing than the scene from The Revenant where Leonardo diCaprio's character is relentlessly savaged by a grizzly. Fortunately, he's going to survive. Read the rest

Look at the public bike purgatory in Hangzhou,China

The city of Hangzhou, China has more than 86,000 public bicycles. Unfortunately, when many people are done using them, they don't put them in the designated docking center but just drop them wherever. According to Wired, "police have rounded up 23,000 bikes so far this year and hauled them to 16 corrals around the city" like the one seen above. And that's not even the whole lot of 'em. Read the rest

Travel tip: don't throw coins into your plane's engine "for blessings"

A China Southern Airlines Flight from Shanghai to Guangzhou was delayed for five hours while maintenance workers fished nine coins out of the engine, whence they had been flung "for blessings" by an "elderly passenger" from the boarding ramp, as she was brought onto the plane by her husband, daughter and son-in-law. Read the rest

China orders mobile app stores to remove VPN apps

Starting July 1, the official Android and Apple App stores will no longer allow Chinese users to download the VPN apps that Chinese people rely upon in order to get around the Great Firewall of China, which censors information in China and surveils Chinese peoples' use of the net. Read the rest

Bank of International Settlements warns of global economic crash, "with a vengeance"

The Bank of International Settlements -- the "central bank for central bankers" -- has released its latest annual report, warning that the looming debt crises in China, Hong Kong and Thailand could precipitate an abrupt collapse, or, as BIS monetary and economic department head Claudio Borio put it, "That end may come to resemble more closely a financial boom gone wrong, just as the latest recession showed, with a vengeance." Read the rest

A Chinese vitamin MLM cult is replacing healthcare for poor Ugandans

Uganda is so poor that few can afford medical care, giving it one of the lowest life-expectancies on the planet -- this toxic combination made the country ripe for infiltration by Tiens, a Chinese Multi-Level-Marketing "nutritional supplements" cult whose members set up fake medical clinics that diagnose fake ailments and proscribe fake medicines, then rope patients into becoming cult recruiters who convince their friends to sign up for the cult. Read the rest

$28 Chinese app is a browser for insecure webcams

Chinese state media reports on a $28/RMB188 app that browses webcams whose default passwords haven't been changed, allowing subscribers to watch the goings-on in stores, living rooms, bedrooms, children's rooms, and anywhere a CCTV might be installed. Read the rest

Chinese wives, denied legal rights, hire "mistress dispellers" to keep their marriages intact

China's long economic boom and near-total lack of social and legal protections for divorced women has created growth industries in weird services that help women keep their marriages intact after their jerky husbands start treating them like shit and/or start having affairs. Read the rest

China's billionaires are disappearing into police custody and/or early graves

Dozens of the richest executives in China have disappeared under mysterious circumstances and are assumed to be in police detention as the country pursues an aggressive anti-corruption agenda. Read the rest

China suddenly approves 9 Trump trademarks it previously rejected, what, no reason, why?

Said one intellectual property attorney, “The speed with which these appeals were decided is mind-blowing.”

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A Hong Kong parking space just sold for USD664K

The 188 square foot parking space went for HKD5.18m (USD664,300) -- HKD27,500/sqft. Read the rest

Journalism After Snowden: essays about a free press in a surveillance state

Journalism After Snowden: The Future of the Free Press in the Surveillance State is a new essay collection from Columbia Journalism Review Books with contributions from Ed Snowden, Alan Rusbridger (former editor-in-chief of The Guardian); Jill Abramson (former New York Times executive editor; Glenn Greenwald, Steve Coll (Dean of Columbia Graduate School of Journalism), Clay Shirky, Cass Sunstein, and Julia Angwin. Read the rest

Chinese Apple employees and contractors sold users' private data for as little as $1.50

Police in China's Zhejiang announced that they worked with colleagues in four provinces to arrest 22 suspects in a data-theft ring that raided Apple's internal networks for Iphone owners' sensitive personal information ("names, phone numbers, Apple IDs, and other data") which they sold to criminals for as little as $1.50. Read the rest

Activists investigating Ivanka Trump shoe factory in China arrested, then 'disappeared'

A labor activist who was investigating labor conditions at a Chinese factory that makes shoes for Ivanka Trump’s brand was arrested by police, and has now disappeared, say his wife and a China labor rights group. Two other activists are also missing, and are also presumed to have also been detained by Chinese authorities for nosing around in Ivanka's supply chain.

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Chinese law requiring internet companies to spy on users comes into effect this week

While China has enlisted its internet giants -- such as Weibo -- in its system of social control and surveillance for years, a new "cyber security law" will come into effect on Thursday that expands and formalizes this role for tech companies, with implications for non-Chinese companies doing business in China. Read the rest

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