Sunday May 11, 2008
By jimgris on May 11, 2008
But Fortune seems defensive. We are supposed to "worry" about this, and we are told that American individuals "can avoid competition with Chinese workers by doing place-based work, which ranges in value from highly skilled (emergency-room surgery) to menial (pouring concrete). But the many people who do information-based work, which is most subject to competition, will have to get dramatically better to be worth what they cost. For government leaders: Improve U.S. education above all."
The first part of that paragraph is ridiculous. You can't "avoid competition" in a global economy, and I´m not "worrying" at all. Why not embrace the change as an opportunity? In fact, wouldn't be cool to live in China for a bit to check all this out first hand? Wouldn´t it be cool to learn some Chinese and interact with Chinese from their perspective for a while? I don´t see very many people in the US thinking this way about the rise of China (and India, for that matter, and some other emerging markets around the world, too). In fact, Sin-Yaw Wang has it right when he comments about the Fortune piece: "The new generation of business leaders, now in their 20s or 40s, must learn to do business in China and with Chinese. 7 years is not that long to master a language, especially when one is not even trying." I agree. And I´m reading this view (the not trying bit) over and over again. It´s defensive. Oh, well. I suppose that´s an opportunity for those who see it differently, right?
Thursday May 08, 2008
By jimgris on May 08, 2008
Thursday May 01, 2008
By jimgris on May 01, 2008
Monday Apr 14, 2008
By jimgris on Apr 14, 2008
Friday Feb 22, 2008
By jimgris on Feb 22, 2008
Wednesday Feb 13, 2008
By jimgris on Feb 13, 2008
Thursday Feb 07, 2008
By jimgris on Feb 07, 2008
I had a lovely dinner tonight with Akira and Ayako from the Sun Japan office and Sin-Yaw Wang and his wife, I-Woan Lee, from China. Sin-Yaw, who is a vice president in engineering and site lead for Sun China ERI, was visiting today to meet with
the engineering teams in Tokyo. Great day. Amazing dinner.
Friday Feb 01, 2008
By jimgris on Feb 01, 2008
Tuesday Jan 29, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 29, 2008
Cool. The more diversity here the better.
Wednesday Jan 16, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 16, 2008
The OpenSolaris Community in China may have broken a record here -- BJOSUG, 10JAN08: OpenSolaris, xVM, and ZFS -- where 160 people turned out for a user group meeting in Beijing. Really cool. Our numbers are growing. And its excellent to see the OpenSolaris Community in China collaborating with the Linux Community.
Monday Jan 14, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 14, 2008
This article articulates a trend that can only lead to one result: the further isolation of a closed network.
Sunday Jan 13, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 13, 2008
Very interesting article about many Japanese coming to grips with the reality that China and India are moving much, much faster, and leaving Japan behind. To compete in the future -- a global future -- Japanese education will have to change rather significantly. This piece focuses on Indian education techniques in Japan. English, computers, math, and science are big parts of it, too. Japan is absolutely a country that loves fads. But I hope this is not a fad. The more diversity and global awareness here the better.
Saturday Jan 12, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 12, 2008
Monday Jan 07, 2008
By jimgris on Jan 07, 2008
Some brief background first. Friedman breaks down the history of globalization into to three gigantic meta categories -- countries, companies, and individuals. Basically, globalization 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0. And we are just now entering 3.0, the era of individual globalization, where everyone who has access to technology (that`s Friedman`s "flat-world platform") has to compete with everyone else in the world who has access to technology. Now, it took 500 years of globalization to get here, but that`s where we find ourselves now. And I think the key point to the book is that globalization 3.0 is very, very different from globalization 1.0 and 2.0 because 3.0 is based on, in part, the individual. That`s where Japan comes on.
Although Japan comes up from time to time while Friedman discusses globalization 2.0, I could find very few (if any, actually) references to Japan and globalization 3.0. Friedman goes to great lengths to talk about how individuals can compete in the new flat world, but that discussion seemed to be focused primarily on the United States and Western Europe and the emerging markets in Eastern Europe, India, and China. That`s when it hit me that Japan seems vulnerable under Friedman`s theory since Japan is not based on the concept of the "individual" at all and it`s certainly not an emerging market. It`s all about "groups" here, and individuality is somewhat rare among the average Japanese -- certainly among the millions of workers that make up corporate Japan in and around Tokyo. I didn`t think about this when I read the book the first time since I hadn`t lived in Japan yet. It`s obvious now, though.
So, can Japan, which is famous for its vertically integrated corporations (the exact opposite from Friedman`s open and horizontally flat world), compete in globalization 3.0? How would "groups" of people even recognize this as a problem? And how would these groups of people transform Japan`s various corporate global supply chains into an economy that recognizes individual global competition? This is not as great a problem for the west since most western cultures are based much more on the concept of individuality -- especially the United States. Friedman hints at this cultural issue when he quotes various Chinese leaders who recognize this very problem in China. China (and Korea, for that matter) shares with Japan some of these East Asian characteristics of groups. But China seems to be changing specifically to compete on all levels -- country, company, and individual. That third part is most fascinating here in East Asia. Will China pull it off? Will Japan recognize the issue and engage down at that level?
Some Friedman flat world videos here at MIT and here on Charlie Rose and here at the NYT.
Friday Dec 28, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 28, 2007
At one point in the conversation, Friedman talks about getting three things right -- education, infrastructure, governance -- in the context of how some countries are modernization and globalizing more effectively than others. From Friedman:
"China and India, China in particular, actually increased the pace of its reform in a lot of those areas. So Mexico went from being right on our border to a thousand miles away, and China went from being thousands of miles away in some ways to right on our border. But -- And I’ll just finish this one point because this is important. People have to make choices. Governments have to make choices. Priorities. Look at India. Today they’re about, I think, 70,000-80,000 Indian foreign students in the United States. There are roughly a similar amount from China. I think there are about 10,000 from Mexico. Those are also choices societies are making in terms of how to get educated, what language to learn and how to become a competitor and a collaborator on this platform. So you have to -- Development is a choice. It’s not some inevitable thing. You have to choose to bring your infrastructure, your education and your governance to the level where you can access this whole new technology platform."
They are obviously talking about why Mexico has not fully realized the benefits articulated by proponents of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement). And although that issue is certainly complex, what shoots out at me is actually a country not mentioned in this 15,000 word conversation: Japan. Why is Japan not mentioned in the context of globalization? I think it has a lot to do with the quote I cite from Friedman: choices. Both government and individual. Now, many would argue that what India and China are experiencing is simply the result of their economies rapidly growing due to modernization and that Japan is already a mature market. Heck, many at Sun make that argument to me when I bring this up. Sorry. I don't buy it. That's only a small part of the issue. The biggest part is attitude. China and India want to globalize. You can read it in their political rhetorical can you can hear it and see it where you go there. Japan, on the other hand, shows little interest in globalizing compared to some of its biggest neighbors in Asia. Also, the "mature market" bit falls apart when you look at the United States the last two decades. To say that mature markets can't grow and change and continually modernize is just wrong. It's all comes down to attitude. Well, ok, it's more complex that than, of course, but that's where it starts.
Anyway, check out Stiglitz and Friedman. Very interesting stuff. Extremely complex, though. Can you predict where things will go? I can't. It's very cool working at a global company right at the foot of two massively emerging markets, though. There is such huge potential throughout all of the Asia Pacific region.
Wednesday Dec 19, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 19, 2007
The article is pretty critical. The bits I found most interesting were the language and culture issues, since I experience those walls every day. They are so much bigger than anyone on the outside realizes, and I think they go a long way to explaining Japan's lack of growth in certain global markets.
The article also states that Japan will have to compete with new sources of innovation in the future: "Over the next century, disruptive innovations won't be coming only from countries like the United States. They'll also be emerging from dynamic, hungry, rising economies that offer plenty of room for risk-taking, flights of fancy and cross-border synthesis." Although these sources are not directly stated, it's clear that the nations are primarily China and India, which are both embracing capitalism and globalization at blindingly fast rates, and both don't seem to struggle with the language and culture issues like Japan does.
Now, I've been told that these observations represent the distinction between emerging markets and mature markets. But I no longer buy it. Too much of that article describes my direct experience, so I no longer accept the excuses. But will Japan eventually react and change? Are the Japanese hungry enough to compete in a global economy? I actually think they will react and compete. And in ways that may surprise many of their critics. That's the cool thing about innovation and market disruptions. They cycle. When you are disrupted, that sets up the perfect circumstance to innovate do some disrupting yourself.
Monday Dec 17, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 17, 2007
Sunday Dec 16, 2007
By jimgris on Dec 16, 2007
Monday Nov 19, 2007
By jimgris on Nov 19, 2007
So, could the power of community be used to transcend some of these obvious language and cultural barriers? I don't know. I go back and forth on this. Language and culture are so critical to a functioning community and the understanding of even the most basic assumptions. And although open source communities are surely growing in a variety of languages and cultures, that's not the hard part. The hard part is linking the communities across their natural barriers and communicating with understanding. That's where all the good stuff happens.
Thursday Nov 15, 2007
By jimgris on Nov 15, 2007
Sunday Nov 04, 2007
By jimgris on Nov 04, 2007
Saturday Nov 03, 2007
By jimgris on Nov 03, 2007
Here are some pics from OpenSolaris Day in Beijing. It was a long day, but we had a nice turnout on a Saturday with about 180 people. It was great to see the Beijing OpenSolaris User Group for the final session, and it was great fun giving away the Ultra20 to Baojian Chang, a kernel developer in Beijing.
Tuesday Oct 30, 2007
By jimgris on Oct 30, 2007
Saturday Oct 27, 2007
By jimgris on Oct 27, 2007
Today we went to Nanjing University for a really cool time with over 400 university students. Lots of conversations about OpenSolaris technology, community-building, and Project Indiana. And a bunch of Chinese conversation that passed right over my head.
Special thanks to John Jiang for running this event today. John had quite a problem on his hands last night. He got a call over dinner alerting him that the event was over booked by 200 students! Nice problem to have, eh? Anyway, some quick -- and resourceful -- thinking and he found a second venue. Then he split up our team so we could cover two locations, so we ended up engaging more than 600 students in total today. Wild. The scale of the OpenSolaris operation here is impressive the say the very least.
A couple of things blew me away about today: the students really asked some advanced questions about OpenSolaris, which means they are starting to understand things in depth and that means the information is starting to resonate. Also, they were very animated and interactive as well. The language barriers are still there, but on this trip I've really started to see significant improvement. Also, many students stopped me in the hall after my talk and asked how they can participate and contribute. Their boldness and excitement is palpable, and it's very encouraging. Also cool to see is John's Java application enabling the audience to give live feedback using their cell phones with the data displayed on the screen, which, of course, generates a lot of active participation (and shouting and laughter, too).
Below are some images from the Nanjing event with presentations from Sin-Yaw Wang, John Jiang, Liang Ye, and me as well as the ACM/ICPC programming contest event earlier in the day.
Friday Oct 26, 2007
By jimgris on Oct 26, 2007
Some shots from OpenSolaris Day in Shanghai yesterday. Special congrats to Kevin Wu for winning the Ultra20 computer at the end of the day. It was a long day but great fun. I presented an overview of OpenSolaris and we had talks from Scott Tracy, Leland Chen, Eric Yu, Max Zhen, Jarrett Lu, Xinfeng Liu, and the Shanghai OpenSolaris User Group.
Thursday Oct 25, 2007
By jimgris on Oct 25, 2007
The Intel OpenSolaris engineering team treated me to a nice dinner tonight in Shanghai. It was such a pleasure hanging out with these guys. We had some great conversations about OpenSolaris and how to work more effectively in the open around the world. Some of the engineers have a lot of experience in the Linux community, so I expect they'll be able to help us in some areas as they simultaneously all become experts in OpenSolais kernel development. Oh, and if you forget your root password on your laptop (like I did), there's no better place to have dinner, that's for sure.
So, anyway, meet the Intel OpenSolaris engineering team in Shanghai: Allen Lu, Aubrey Li, Chen Zhihui, Li Ting, Borun Fu, Eric Guo, Frank Zhang, Ma Ling, Frank Wang.
Intel OpenSolaris team on Flickr.
Wednesday Oct 24, 2007
By jimgris on Oct 24, 2007
- Tokyo BarCamp 2010: Photos
- BarCamp Tokyo 2010: 4 Days Away
- Photos: Tokyo Make Meeting 05 2010
- Tokyo OpenSolaris Study Group: May 2010
- Tokyo OpenSolaris Study Group 2010.04
- OpenSolaris Night Seminar 041610
- Tokyo Linux User Group 041610
- Sun Japan
- Tokyo Linux User Group 041010
- OpenSolaris DTrace @ Yokohama Linux UG
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