Shanghai [ 上海 ] , PRC [ 中华人民共和国 ] , censorship and open access


For four days last week in China [ 中华人民共和国 ], at the Shanghai [ 上海 ] SunNetwork conference, we joined with five thousand Chinese partners in exploring the future of open access and open source in creating new products, new companies, and innovation in Chinese software.

We committed to join Chinese developers in open access to Sun technology. As Jonathan Schwartz said, "Make no mistake. We will open-source Solaris."


Representatives of CS2C, Ministry of Science and Technology, MII,
and Gong Li, SunLabs Beijing

We celebrated the success of the Chinese Standard Software Corporation [ 上海中标软件有限公司 ], formed by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology [ 中华人民共和国科学技术部 ] , in partnership with the Chinese Ministry of Information Industries [ 中华人民共和国信息产业部 ] , in providing open-source desktop software to replace Microsoft software across all desktops in China.

This initiative hopes to bring the talents of software developers throughout China to bear on creating new Chinese software, new companies, and a new Chinese initiative in education and entrepreneurship.

We celebrated our ten-year partnership with the Chinese Education and Research Network, headquartered at Tsing-Hua University [ 清华大学 ] in Beijing [ 北京 ].

China is changing rapidly; what direction it will take depends on the interplay of two forces: the force of change, and the force of conservatism. As Orville Schell, a China scholar and the Dean of the University of California, Berkeley School of Journalism has said, "The question is, will the Internet change China, or will China change the Internet? History suggests both will happen."

We saw the dynamic force of change in China creating new industries, new products, and new economic growth.

We also saw, on June 4, in the Shangri-La Hotel in Shanghai, as world news networks carried stories about the fifteenth anniversary of the demonstrations in Tiananmen Square, how the television screen went black---for BBC, for CNN, for all television channels mentioning the word "Tiananmen"---and stayed blacked out for the duration of the news story. Then, twenty or thirty seconds later, when the story was over, we saw the news broadcast reappear.

We saw the conservative force preserving stability.

China's technological and economic future will be determined in the process of resolving these two forces.

Comments:

John - I am thinking back to the summer of 1988 when we did our first demos of Sun workstations at the conference in Beijing. A fascinating and fun time. How do you see things there now compared to 1988?

Posted by Steve Christensen on June 09, 2004 at 07:59 AM PDT #

John: fascinating piece - but so hard on the eyes! Making every paragraph zoom out when you mouse over it makes things horribly jerky, and makes it really hard to "aim" for a hyperlink.....

Posted by Geoff Arnold on June 14, 2004 at 04:09 AM PDT #

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