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China Companies Entering Ponzi Phase

Shanghai, China’s uber-cosmopolitan city, is a frequent stop on my business trips. It is an intriguing place of frantic risk-taking, excessive materialism, international collaboration, run-away real-estate prices, and plenty of great cuisines. The tone of most gatherings of business friends is usually jubilant, opportunistic, and aggressively forward-looking. Whispers of a liquidity crunch, however, and inquiries of cash injection, had created a more solemn mood in our gatherings since the stock market correction last year.

A September 2015 report from the Australian investment bank Macquarie showed that it has become too expensive to service their debt for most Chinese companies. The report analyzed the bonds issued by 780 companies and how they are managing interest payments on the $3.47 trillion debt. Read more…


How Does Your Brain Learn To Read? Most Americans learn how to…

How Does Your Brain Learn To Read? Most Americans learn how to….

Why You Should Rub Your Stubbed Toe

Why You Should Rub Your Stubbed Toe.

Making of an Expert (re-post)

re-post from Harvard Business Review

Thirty years ago, two Hungarian educators, László and Klara Polgár, decided to challenge the popular assumption that women don’t succeed in areas requiring spatial thinking, such as chess. They wanted to make a point about the power of education. The Polgárs homeschooled their three daughters, and as part of their education the girls started playing chess with their parents at a very young age. Their systematic training and daily practice paid off. By 2000, all three daughters had been ranked in the top ten female players in the world. The youngest, Judit, had become a grand master at age 15, breaking the previous record for the youngest person to earn that title, held by Bobby Fischer, by a month. Today Judit is one of the world’s top players and has defeated almost all the best male players.

It’s not only assumptions about gender differences in expertise that have started to crumble. Back in 1985, Benjamin Bloom, a professor of education at the University of Chicago, published a landmark book, Developing Talent in Young People, which examined the critical factors that contribute to talent. He took a deep retrospective look at the childhoods of 120 elite performers who had won international competitions or awards in fields ranging from music and the arts to mathematics and neurology. Surprisingly, Bloom’s work found no early indicators that could have predicted the virtuosos’ success. Subsequent research indicating that there is no correlation between IQ and expert performance in fields such as chess, music, sports, and medicine has borne out his findings. The only innate differences that turn out to be significant—and they matter primarily in sports—are height and body size.

Read more…

View from highway, Taoyuan airport to Taipei city

Ever since the construction of what i called “Double Decker Highway System” near Taipei, I had always prefer to ride on the upper deck. (You can see the upper deck in one of the photos.) The segment that connect Taipei City to the airport is what I use more than any other.

I’ve been wanting to get photos of various views from the upper deck. It is closer to the mountains and offers different perspective than the lower highways. Since i am home once every 3 months (that is 2 trips from and to airport), armed with a cell phone camera, you would think snapping some photos will be simple in this day and age. In reality, photos have been a bit elusive for most of 2014 and 2015.

For example, I always take the public bus from Taoyuan airport to the city. Sometimes, the bus opted for the lower deck for no reason… well, that means no photo. Periodically, I traveled at night – no photo. shaky hands, no photo. (ok, super blurry photo) Weather is too foggy, no photo. Sit on the wrong side of the bus, no photo. Rain too hard, no photo. Super dirty window- no photo. Cell phone not charged – no photo. Fell asleep on the bus because I just took a red eye – no photo and I missed my stop! Talk about Moby Dick moments… not as grandeur or epic, of course… but repeated failure still!

This month, my “tiny” persistence paid off with a huge dose of luck, I managed to get some satisfying photos so I know it is possible. Enjoy this “few and the proud” photos, I hope the next batch will be soon and better 🙂

Jesus Of Nazareth, Enemy Of The State, Executed For Treason (re-post)

Written by: Jerry Bowyer

re-posted from

Jesus of Nazareth was executed today on the orders of the Roman State. Method of execution: Crucifixion. The charge under Roman law was treason, and under Herodian law blasphemy against the Temple. The evidence against this anarchist was so strong that authorities of both the Roman State and the Kingdom of Herod concurred with the arrest and execution, and he was subjected to trial by both governments. And in a rare uprising of spontaneous collective justice, the mass of people who were gathered for Passover called for his execution as well. The mob affirmed their loyalty to the state, chanting, “We have no king but Caesar.”

Friday’s execution ended a career as an anti-government agitator with a long history of lawlessness. The family was in possession of falsified, illegal, and unsanctioned genealogical records which claim to indicate that Jesus was of royal lineage, and undermined the legitimate claim of Herod to the throne. The malicious claim, which has been spread widely among the people, is that the King is an Idumean and not a Jew. The king is tormented by this claim, and laments that shortly after his father’s rise to power the genealogical records (which would certainly have proven his legitimate right to reign) perished in a mysterious fire, likely set by anti-government agitators.

8 Classic storytelling techniques for engaging presentations

(re-post from, authored by

A good public speaker takes their audience on a journey, leaving them feeling inspired and motivated. But structuring your speech to get your ideas across and keep your audience engaged all the way through is tricky. Try these eight storytelling techniques for a presentation that wows. 

You’re doing a presentation, so you start with the facts you want to get across. Wrong! Humans are hardwired for stories. They love heroes, journeys, surprises, layers and happy endings.

Deliver a presentation that captures the hearts and heads of your audience by stealing one of these classic storytelling techniques. Start with the story – the rest will be history.

Read more…