More experiences in China

I am in this hotel Beijing Hotel that is connected to the Raffles Hotel and both are very top hotels. It is very surprising, then, that there are no decent coffee or drink places where one could sit and chat. I found the same problem outside also. Except for some areas that appear to be patronized by tourists, it appears that places like bars or coffee houses are not many. Clearly this is cultural and one does see many Starbucks, but I think this is one area that outsiders coming to China have to get used to.

Another problem — maybe that is because of the area of our Hotel — in prime tourist area near Tiananmen Square — there seem to be too many people targeting to offer ‘massage services’. This does become irritating particularly if you are walking alone.

On the other hand, more you see China, more you realize how fast this country is changing. For example a few years ago at conferences like this, there was hardly a research paper written by researchers working in China — in just a few years time period, they now dominate many research conference. Just a look at the program at this conference shows that very clearly. When I mentioned this to some of my friends, their reaction: “But are they doing original research or incremental research”? Similar statements are made about other progress in China — Have you seen their remote villages or have seen their family life — etc. What these people forget is that to judge a country (or a person) one should see trajectory not only the current position. And when you see the progress made by CHina in the last 20 years and where they are today and project that to the next 20 years — the thought is scary if you are to compete with China. I am very happy for China, but worried about the consequences for my original country (India) and adopted country (USA).

6 thoughts on “More experiences in China

  1. Dong Liu

    Dear Prof. Thanks for your praise of China.
    Maybe you can share your photo taken when you are receiving your awards at the banquet of ACM MM 2009. I think it will be great. 🙂

  2. Xiang XIANG

    You are always a diligent observer and thinker. I am glad to find you feel like to write your thoughts down and share them with others.

    During this MM09, you must don’t recognize me. But I keep observing you and listening to your talks. Your idears are really thought-provoking, though I don’t do much research on social media. I’ve read your Machine Vision long ago, but am not sure whether you still do research on that. If you do, hope to see your fresh thinkings in that field, as well as in Multimedia.

    Best wishes and China always welcome you.

  3. Ramesh Post author

    Thanks for your comments. I consider computer vision to be a component of multimedia and believe that progress in computer vision will not depend more on using context derived from other sources. ANd that is what I am trying to do. So I feel that I am still working on Computer Vision.

  4. Ramesh Post author

    I will put that photo on facebook and Flickr — that may take a few days — will do it only after returning back.

    Thanks for your kind comments.

  5. smitha

    You don’t worry Mr. Jain. India is in safe hands, and marching ahead confidently, I’m pretty sure the next decade, a much vibrant India would emerge. You got to understand how tough it was for people of China to move to urban areas for prosperity, unlike in India and USA for oppotrunities. Never in history a centrally planned country survived long, I only wish you would be around to witness the ultimate.

  6. Ramesh Post author

    Dear Smitha,
    Neither I nor you will be here to witness the ultimate and hence what I am interested in, and hopefully you are too, is to see the trajectory in India that points to what you and I hope for. I wish I and millions of Indian well wishers could feel the same as you say “India is in safe hands”.

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