Tag Archives: China

Google Android has more than quarter billion followers in China

Google’s Android operating system looks to be more popular than the Communist party in China – at least according to a recent study by the Chinese search engine Baidu.

The figures for actual users are a bit hazy…a bit like Beijing at midday, really. OK, Beijing at midday is downright foggy, but still – the point is that the number is a bit of a guesstimate, as there aren’t any centralized office that looks into this sort of thing in China.

Instead Baidu have had to count trends and then do a bit of creative maths.

Much like the Chinese Communist Party when they do their ‘user satisfaction’ studies, then….

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China lines up the death penalty for pollution

Serious polluters in China are going to risk more than a hefty fine for their actions, according to the Chinese state media, Xinhua news agency.

The company recently reported that the Chinese government has given the country’s courts the option of handing down a death penalty in serious pollution cases.

“In the most serious cases the death penalty could be handed down,” Xinhua said.

The move comes as protests have started to mount against the continuous industrial push in China.

Last month, for example, thousands of Chinese took to the streets in Kunming to protest against the planned production of a specific chemical at a local plant.

It’s all hack, hack, hack this week, isn’t it?

Hackers seem to be here, there and everywhere in the news this week. Stealing building plans here, weapon plans there and just generally making sure that the international diplomatic core has something to do.

The Washington Post reported that Chinese ‘cyber spies’ had somehow gotten access to what it described as ‘many of the nation’s most sensitive advanced weapons systems’.

Not to be outdone, agents from Iran were attacking US energy firms, according to this, rather unfortunately titled piece in The Register.

However, the Chinese ended up running away with the prize as the ‘most hackingest nation in this week’s news’ by heading south and stealing the blueprints for the new ASIO building in Canberra, Australia.

ASIO is short for Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, so there’ll be some red faces down under – and not just from spending too long in the sun.

Pentagon points cyber espionage finger at China

The Pentagon have released a new report on cyber espionage that points an accusing finger at China.

“China is using its computer network exploitation (CNE) capability to support intelligence collection against the US diplomatic, economic, and defense industrial base sectors that support US national defense programs,” the report says.

“In 2012, numerous computer systems around the world, including those owned by the US government, continued to be targeted for intrusions, some of which appear to be attributable directly to the Chinese government and military,” the report continued.

Although it’s hard to know with any certainty, part of the reason for China’s more and more brazen hacking activities might be that there aren’t any international rules that determine how the US, or other countries for that matter, can react to a cyber attack.

China ups ante: photocopies entire village

The Chinese seem to have built the world’s biggest photocopier. OK, so that might not be the exact way they managed to replicate a whole Austrian town and put the copy in the middle of their country, but it’s still bloody impressive.

To begin with the Austrians were, to put it mildly, not impressed when it turned out that the copy of Hallstatt – a centuries-old village of 900 and a UNESCO heritage site – now had an identical twin in China, but since then they’ve grown more used to the idea.

It does, however, pose some serious questions about what you need to put a trademark logo on in the future….

Sun no longer shining on solar industry?

The market for solar power is going through a bit of a crunch lately, with many of the companies that opened less than five years ago, all thinking that solar power was the next big thing, poised on the edge of bankruptcy.

Strangely enough, the market for solar power has been growing over the last five years. Unfortunately, the growth hasn’t been smooth, but marked by start-stop growth that has made it impossible for companies to predict what way the market was going. Coupled with a massive over capacity on the production side – especially in China – has meant that many companies have fallen on hard times.

Another problem has, according to this article from Reuters, been that the world’s energy markets are currently flooded with very cheap natural gas.

One of the latest casualties was the German company Solar Millennium. The fact that several German companies are currently struggling it particularly worrying for the industry, as Germany remains the biggest market for solar power in the World.