Category: Engineering

Throughout this month. I learned a lot of things. I learned about China’s business, culture, and Christianity.

The businesses in China we visited are mainly US companies and only some local companies. It is hard for a US business to grow in China because of government regulations. That is why, they need to have a joint venture with a local company in order to establish the government relationship. I also learned that due to China’s rapid economic development, it causes issues to the environment, making China one of the most poluted country in the world. China is still trying to fix this issue (e.g. electric cars).

Then, some of the culture between Chinese and Americans. Chinese people are more indirect in their culture (even though their language is very direct). In the US, people are used to being direct in coveying their messages. Also, the Chinese is a more together society whereas the US is a more individualistic society.

As for Christianity, it is easier to be a Christian and live out your faith in China compared to Indonesia, my home, because Indonesia is the most populous Muslim country in the world whereas here, the government doesn’t really care about religion as long as it doesn’t interupt the government. But as for Churches, it is hard to establish a Church. It needs to be approve by the government with strick regulations. The one that got approve may only preach shallow sermon. That is why there are unofficial church (a.k.a. underground churches) that also preached the Gospel.

Overall, through the businesses, I can see that God can use business to spread the Love of God. Although inderectly, other people can see God through the people who live their life according to the word of God. Only God can change a nation to be good in their moral values as well as advancing.

Categories: Business, China, Engineering

China through the eyes of a designer Pt. 1

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Warning: it is about to get artsy. Probably more in the vein or marketing, so hopefully this won’t be too much of a change within the wonderful writings of business and engineering heads. I wanted to talk about one observation I have so far about China from a graphic design/brand perspective.

China has a interesting relationship with its past. Their traditional styles are reflected in designs on buildings and in logos, advertising new clothes, expensive perfumes or KFC sandwiches. Especially in Beijing, where history, government and commerce meet, the classical Chinese look seems obligated to be invited to the party. I cannot determine if this is an unnecessary vice-grip on the past or an unspoken earmark written into China’s design culture. This unique sense of style also seems to be mixed with western ads featuring beautiful Scandinavian men with flowing hair holding a lambs in the Irish countryside. So as China wrestles with balancing governmental, cultural, economic, and environmental issues, what style will emerge? Will classical Chinese design be modernized? These are questions that I will continue to be asking as I am here, but also as Chinese design culture continues to mature.

Photo taken by me! Forbidden Palace in Beijing

Categories: Business, China, Engineering

Shanghai (上海): The Day Before Weekend

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January 13, 2017. I woke up at 6:00AM in the morning because we need to be at the bus at 7:00AM. Yet, me ans my roomate (my cousin) went down for breakfast at 6:50AM. We met Professor Tubergen on our way down in the elevator. He’s all ready and set to go. So then, we still had our 5 minutes of breakfast and rush off downstairs. It was such a rush. I just ate a couple of sausage, bacon, and bread. But I think it’s enough.

Then, we went to our first company of the day which is Nexteer, a public chinese company that focuses on electric steering wheel. The speaker is a Calvin Graduate, a brother of the speaker that we met yesterday, which is also a Calvin Graduate. We had lunch at the place.

The second company of the day is Autocam. This is a company that Calvin never visited before. This was Calvin’s first time. Autocam is a US company that join ventured with a Chinese company. It specialized on nanoparts for automotive. We got “souveners” which was in a form of metal parts.

Then we pack up and went home. It took us 2.5 hours to go to the first company and it took us 2.5 hours to get back to the hotel. It was a tiring ride whenever we’re in the bus. I usually sleep most of the time to reduce my wake time.

My cousin and I then went to our room to take off our suit and change clothes to get ready for dinner. We went in some random chinese restaurant again. Not knowing how to speak, we try to communicate with whatever limited chinese and english vocab we know. Thankfully, there is a chinese girl that knows a little bit of english. We just told her “we wanna eat pork, do u have pork?” Because we cannot read the menu. She pointed out some dishes and we bought the food. We ordered 3 types of food at first and only 1 is quite decent named xiao long bao (try google search it or use if you’re being blocked by the Great fireWall of China).

After dinner, my cousin wants to buy milk tea again (he loves his milk tea). So we went to a different convinient store than yesterday and search for drinks that has 奶茶 (naicha) characters.

Then we decided to just explore the place. We went to the subway. We got attracted to the crane doll picking machine. We wasted more than 6 yuan for a stupid arcade game that we knew we’d never have the chance of getting the price. It was stupid yet funny.

Overall it was a tiring day. But in the end, we can get our rest and fun. Tomorrow, we’re planning to join Professor van Drunnen to search for some clothings.

Visit at Vermeer

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Today, we visited Vermeer, which is a company that manufactures agricultural, drilling, and mining equipment. This visit was particularly interesting for me because last summer I was an intern for a company very similar to Vermeer.

The pieces of equipment that we saw being made were piping drills and wood chippers. The facility was small in comparison to the one that I worked at, but many of the safety and organization practices were the same.

The department that I worked with during my internship was the finishing department, so during this visit I was interested in seeing what sort of finish Vermeer puts on there products. What we found was that their choice in paint is a step ahead from many companies in this industry tend to choose. They use an environmentally friendly air-dry liquid paint for their products. This is uncommon, as many companies are using a powder coating which can be not so good for the environment.

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