Monthly Archives: December 2013

Blissful State of Mind

I am in China. I am in a very relaxed and happy state. There are two possible causes for this blissful state of mind.  Either I was in a dreadful air accident and I am actually dead and living cheerfully in heaven, or finally I have been recognised as the supreme being I always knew I was and I am being treated accordingly.

I am staying in the Marco Polo Hotel in Shenzhen, which is a glorious hotel.  The rooms are beautiful and the food is fantastic.  I feel like I am staying in a hotel from the 1950’s complete with Bell Hops, Concierge and beautiful, sweeping architecture.  A 1950’s hotel which comes with free broadband.   All the people we have net since we landed in Hong Kong have been very kind and pleasant, very eager to help.

I am in China as part of a research group with other PhD students from the Web Science DTC researching social machines and the Web observatory with students from the Graduate School at Tsinghua University.

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The view from my room

The research we are engaged in is very exciting and is looking at how to visual data from twitter and Weibo in a meaningful manner taking into account not only quantitative but qualitative research methods.  I have tried out MongoDB and the php extension for Mongo, as well as having a go with some python scripts.

I have also had time to do some much needed housekeeping.  I cleaned out all my Hotmail contacts that I had not spoke to in the last six months.  I think I had some which I had never contacted.  I also downloaded Skype on my work laptop and deleted the many contacts from there that I did not want.  Jet lag can be productive.  I am glad I have done this as I have been promising myself that I would do so after I undertook a similar exercise with Facebook and twitter at the beginning of the year.  Facebook and twitter do not work in China.  luckily I have been able to contact my very good friend (who keeps me sane) through BBM.  I also have email to keep me in touch and I have been writing letters.

The week I get back I will have my graduation ceremony, which I am pleased for.  Expect the obligatory Facebook pictures. After that I will be busy with Christmas and all that entails.

Expect a post in New Year with all my latest DTC related news.