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Duck Duck Go search engine stickers

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Coffee

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Beijing in pictures


Courtyard

Originally uploaded by andyp uk

I’m spending a couple of weeks on business in China. It’s an exciting trip as it is my first time in mainland China, I’m getting to do a lot of travelling around, and I’m building some connections with my colleagues in IBM’s China Development Labs (and I was able to spend time with Chinese colleagues in the UK in preparation, learning about the business culture and language here).

It’s been a bit of a whirlwind already. Shortly after landing on Friday I gave a relatively impromptu 2 hour presentation to the WebSphere developers in CDL, which covered everything from life in Hursley, through my career, our product strategies, and the latest news on technologies like WebSphere MQ, MQTT, Message Broker and WebSphere Registry and Repository.

My first “free” day in Beijing, Saturday, was very wet… and I underestimated the distances on the map in an attempt to walk to an attraction which I deemed “fairly close” to my hotel. Word of advice: the guidebooks describe Beijing as “not very walkable”, and my impression is that it really isn’t; I should have taken a cab! Today though, the weather changed and I was able to get out to see a couple of the sights including the Forbidden City (which I’ve previously mentioned here on my blog, in the context of the Beyond Space and Time project which utilises IBM technology and our experience in virtual worlds), and part of the Great Wall. Really spectacular stuff. Colleagues helped me to arrange a tour with Grayline and I have to say that they were excellent. The one obvious issue here is traffic, which is really choking movement – other than that it’s a very pleasant, modern (but utterly vast!) city with some wonderful people.

I didn’t bring an SLR with me but I captured a few shots with the iXUS and iPhone 4. Keep an eye on Flickr.

Tomorrow it’s straight into workshops, roundtables and presentations, and I’ll be travelling around for much of the next couple of weeks, so online interactions may be limited.

There, and back again

Things have been quiet as I took nearly a month off(line) over the Christmas and New Year periods. It was well worth getting away from it all.

Christmastime in Hong Kong Volcanic lands
Singapore at dusk Saturday Jan 9th 2010


Hong Kong
was amazing and vibrant. Bali was beautiful, relaxing, varied, and hot (and a hair cut cost less then £2, which was crazy!); we dived and watched manta rays dancing just in front of us, and explored our first wreck. Singapore is probably one of my favourite cities in the world, based on just the one visit. And Britain… Britain… is home, but utterly rubbish at dealing with snow, floods, heatwaves, and indeed more-or-less any weather conditions apart from 15C, slightly damp.

If you want to check out the photos in more detail, click through the images above or explore the sets I’ve linked to. It will take a while to fill them all out.

Travel this year looks set to take me to Canada and the US at a minimum… looking forward to it.