Friday, September 30, 2016

Ancient Roman coins unearthed in old Japanese Castle!

Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen, China).
Ancient Roman coin unearthed discovered found old Japanese Castle

A few days ago, I wrote about the discovery of 2000-year-old Chinese skeletons in ancient Londonium (Roman London). And now they've discovered ancient Roman coins at an old Japanese castle! Ancient Japanese coin collector?

History just gets more exciting as we discover more about our past (thanks in part to new technology that has allowed us to read even ancient scrolls that have completely unburned; absolutely incredible to me).

I've collected coins since I was a child, and my favorite is a Roman "Widow's mite"--a Roman lepton, which was minted long before Christ lived but because it was the lowest denomination coin, was likely the two coins the poor widow gave at the temple. Her offering may have been a joke to the wealthy Jews who ostentatiously gave small fortunes, but Jesus said she gave more than all the others because she gave all she had.

Each time I hold the Widow's mite in my hand, I am reminded that life is short, and that we all need to give all we have--perhaps not money (if we don't have it!), but at leave give all of our self to whatever we are called to do in this brief life.
Widow's mite Roman coin lepton drachma ancient unearthed Japanese castle

When my wife and I gave up a six-figure income to teach at Xiamen University for $90 a month (almost exactly 100 times less than we made in business), we felt like we'd given up everything, but we ended up with a much richer and fulfilling life than we could have imagined as we have witnessed firsthand (and even helped in miniscule ways) China's development. Of course, what excites me about China's development is not the changes in the country but the changes in the people--individual Chinese whom we have seen rise from abject poverty to, at the least, fairly comfortable lives, and some have become multimillionaires, even billionaires, but it's the farmers' stories that I love, perhaps because farming was my passion as a child. (I was in Future Farmer's of America--FFA--for 4 years, including positions as Chaplain and President, and captained Florida's state-winning forestry team in high school--so it was fun to lecture at Fujian's School of Agriculture and Forestry in Fuzhou!)
Indiana Bill Jones ancient Roman coins unearthed discovered found old Japanese Castle Amoy Xiamen Fujian China

But though I love agriculture, in my next life I want to be an archaeologist: Indiana Bill!

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com

Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Chinese Lived in Roman London 2000 Years ago?!

Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen, China),
Ancient Chinese in Roman Cemetery of Londonium London 古代的中国人在伦敦罗马
Unearthing Ancient Roman Chinese!

Archaeologists just found 2000-year-old Chinese skeletons in a Londonium (Roman London) cemetery on Lant street, according to the Sept. 24th Daily Mail. While this has surprised lots of folks, I'm not surprised at all. If anything, I've long expected scientists to find that Chinese were everywhere on the planet much earlier than we expected. [Sept. 30 2016 update: even weirder, ancient Roman coins were just discovered in an ancient Japanese castle! Scroll to bottom].

We know Chinese have engaged in global trade for at least 4,000 years or so because they've found 3,800-year-old Caucasian Mummies on N,W, China's ancient silk road. One 6' 6" "Celtic" mummy had blue eyes and blond-hair and wore "Austrian" salt-miner twill. And I've visited 2,000-year-old underground tombs in Gansu that have colored paintings of foreigners with their light hair and hooked noses.

Ancient Chinese in Roman Cemetery of Londonium London 古代的中国人在伦敦罗马
Ancient Roman Chinese Does Look Familiar
It's generally thought the world came to China but China never went far beyond its own borders but after the discovery of 2000-year-old Chinese skeletons in ancient Roman London, we know that's not true. And it stands to reason the Chinese traveled the world. In 800 B.C., they were trading in gold and jade, and in 130 B.C., the Han Dynasty sent 10 embassies each year to central Asia (Chinese liked their horses). In 126 B.C., Zhangqian 张骞, an official, described Western nations. Most telling to me is that archaeologists have found silk in Egyptian tombs dating from 1070 BC. It's not likely anyone but Chinese made silk that early because it wasn't until 522 AD that a Nestorian monk stole the secret and Byzantium began silk production. [That's another interesting point. It's said the first Nestorian monks came to China in 635 AD with Alopen, but a monk stole silkworm eggs in 522 AD? I suspect Christians came to China in the first or 2nd century AD. St. Thomas is said to have started the church in India and afterwards went to China. Historic references from the 700s suggest Nestorian Christians were in Tibet as early as the Tibetans].

In 43 A.D., Pomponius Mela wrote that the Seres [Chinese} of Serica were "a race eminent for integrity, and well known for the trade..." (Many think that the name Serica comes from the Chinese word for silk, Si 丝.

Ancient Roman coin unearthed found discovered Japanese castleWe may never know just how early and how far Chinese traveled, but thanks to new technology like that used to identify "foreign" skeletons in ancient Londonium (Roman London), we may get a better picture.

On Sept. 28, 2016 National Public Radio reported the discovery of ancient Roman coins in an old Japanese Castle! (I have an actual Roman "widow's mite"--my most prized coin. Just holding it is an experience, knowing that it was  used by contemporaries of Christ).

I love history. In my next life I'll be an archaeologist! Indiana Bill?

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill 
Indiana Indy Bill Jones China Amoy Xiamen Fujian ancient Chinese skeletons Roman cemetery London Londonium 2000 years

School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com

Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Friday, September 23, 2016

Ancient UFOs in China 古代中国飞车

Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen, China)!
Shen Kuo UFO ancient China 沈括飞车古代中国 USAF OSI USAFOSI UFO
Shen Kuo, 1031-1095, saw "pearl" UFO

I've been interested in tales of UFOs since my time as a Special Agent of the Air Force OSI (AFOSI), which handled the Air Force's Project Bluebook (now declassified and available online). I'm convinced I did see a UFO once. I saw a bright light hover above a field perhaps half a mile away for half a minute, after which it shot straight up at a rapid speed and vanished. I can't imagine a weather balloon or the planet Venus doing that. But while about 700 of Project Bluebook UFO reports remain unexplained, most were easily explained, and many were outright fraud.

But I'm surprised at how many Chinese report seeing UFOs, and believe that ancient aliens visited China in UFOs. Lots of these stories, supposedly dating back centuries, are actually traceable to Western frauds like Erich von Daniken--farfetched tales like the Dopa Stones on the border of China and Tibet. There supposedly were hundreds of round, flat grooved discs that a Chinese deciphered to reveal the story of little aliens with big heads who had landed in China and were killed by the ignorant locals. Shades of E.T.! First--why would aliens with that kind of technology use stone disks? At the least, vinyl, like Pink Floyd used for their spacey compositions. Just Google Dopa Stones and you'll find several sites clearly refuting every aspect of them--though nothing is enough to deter True Believers--or True Frauds like Erich von Daniken, who wrote about them knowing the tales were false.

But, interestingly enough, ancient Chinese did write about unidentified flying objects--but that is not surprising because the ancient Chinese wrote about everything, and they watched the skies so closely for so long that NASA was able to use 3,200 year old Chinese observations to calculate how much the earth's rotation had slowed down! For the record, the earth now turns 47,1000 of a second slower than it did 3,200 years ago; so reset your watch.

But given that Chinese not only observed and wrote about everything but also invented everything, it may well have been some of the things the ancients saw were some strange flying invention. After all, 2,000 years ago they experimented with manned kites to spy on the enemy. It wasn't very safe, and the pilots of these kites were often people being punished: "Either lose your head on the ground, 100% or take your chances at going up and coming down alive. Up to you."

The ancient Chinese invented parachutes, hot air balloons (even today, on holidays they fill the air and look very alien as they glow and sputter--and sometimes move quite fast or erratically as they're buffeted by high winds).

So who knows if ancient Chinese UFO sightings were really extraterrestrial or actually from China (which to me is much like another planet in the first place; my masters was in Cross-Cultural Studies but I increasingly think Inter-planetary studies could have been just as appropriate).

One researcher claimed that over the centuries preceding 1918, Chinese had recorded over 700 UFO sightings. One was recorded in the Astronomical Record II, April 13, 905 AD.

One might suspect these night watchers had sipped too much rice wine or saki, but some of the men who reported UFOs 飞车 were outright geniuses--people like Shen Kuo 沈括 (1031-1095), who in his "Dream Pool Essays" 《夢溪筆談》  , "Strange Happenings," 《異事》, gave an amazing description of a UFO. Of course, the internet is full of supposed "ancient Chinese accounts of UFOs" but most of these are as fake as the Dopa Stones--they're not really in ancient Chinese records (of course, Marco Polo isn't in them either--which leads me to agree with Mark Twain--that he was never there, but just compiled his fanciful tales from stories told by jailmates).
Shen Kuo UFO ancient China 沈括飞车古代中国
Shen Kuo, 1031-1095, saw Yanghou "pearl" UFO

Shen Kuo, however, was real, he did see a UFO, and he was a genius: Just look at his accomplishments and you'll see why his claim to have seen a UFO is not easily dismissed. Shen Kuo was a head of the astronomy bureau, he observed that climates change naturally over time and suggested techniques to avoid deforestation, he developed a pinhole camera (1000 years ago!), made raised-relief maps and two atlases, used predator insects for insect control, he determines that rainbows were light refracted through water droplets, he was an art critic, etc. His fields of study and research included: Geology, Astronomy, Archaeology, Mathematics, Pharmacology, Magnetics, Optics, Hydraulics, Metaphysics, Meteorology, Climatology, Geography, Cartography, Botany, Zoology, Architecture, Agriculture, Economics, Military strategy, Ethnography, Music and Divination.

So if Shen Kuo says he saw something, I believe him! He wrote that a bright object like a pearl hovered over the city of Yangzhou 扬州 , and that it's door opened and blinding light appeared from within, after which it shot into the lake. Ancient Chinese weather balloon? No idea, but I'd believe Shen Kuo before I believed Erich von Daniken.

Do I believe in UFOs? Well, if they exist, why haven't one of the billion people around the world with cell phones photographed one? And I mean a photo that was not clearly photoshopped (like recent Chinese reports of cities appearing in the sky; a fata morgana does not appear that high above the horizon, as far as I know).

Oh well, still fun to read about, though. I myself am quite certain that this universe is too large for just us, but I don't think aliens capable of crossing interstellar space would be playing games with us. They'd have the technology to either remain invisible altogether or to make their debut once and for all.

 Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
School of Management, Xiamen University

School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com

Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Wifi Device to Detect Emotions for Advertisers!

Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen, China).
MIT Massachusetts Instiute of Technology WIFI Wireless detects emotions Forbes
Credit: CSAIL/MIT

I thought life in China was Off the Wall, but my disOriented life doesn't hold a candle to what's happening back home--such as a new device from MIT that will allow advertisers to use Wifi to detect your emotions and target products straight to your heart, bypassing your brain. It's not in use yet, but you and I both know that what can be done--and makes money--will be done.

According to Forbes, Sept. 20th 2016 (link to article at bottom), researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed a device that detects your emotions by sending wireless signals that measure your heartbeat by bouncing off your body. They claim the device is 87% accurate and can recognize happiness, sadness anger and how you react to stress. It's like an electrocardiogram that doesn't have to come in contact with your body!

I can see the good in this; it could be used like biofeedback to help us monitor and control stress, blood pressure, etc. The scary thing, however, is the articles closing statement:

"They say it could one day be used by advertising agencies to gauge audience reaction or in health care to diagnose depression or anxiety."

If it can be, it will be. Happy Thought. I remember reading, as a child, a science fiction story about a future society in which people went to great measures to avoid hi-tech advertising that bombarded them 24/7--including shrill flying robots batting against the window and screaming marketing slogans. But not even the author of that story could have imagined this scenario.

Well, I'm signing off because I have a sudden urge for a Big Mac, KFC and Pizza, followed by a trip to Xiamen's new Mall to pick up a 5,000 Rolex and whatever new incarnation of iPhone or Galaxy Note now lines the shelves. I think my new Chinese wireless router is acting up again.

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Click Here to read original Forbes
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com
Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Monday, September 19, 2016

How to greatly extend the use of your razor (over 1,000 times!)


Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen, China)! Today, I share how to greatly extend the use of your razor--and without using expensive shaving cream.


How to greatly extend the use of your razor for years over one thousand times 1,000When we first came to Xiamen in 1988, I quite by accident stumbled on to how to reuse a normal quality shaving razor (Schick, Gillette--take your pick--but not a cheap hotel freebie) for years! I've used the cheap Schick razor in the photo for about 3 years, so about 1,000 times. I've used it so much that the handle just broke, but I'm repairing the handle because the blade is still fine, even after 1,000 uses.
http://www.amoymagic.com/main.htm

Here's how I discovered the Everlasting Amoy Shaving Razor trick (and how to sharpen the blade if it dulls).

When we first came to Xiamen University back in 1988, it never occurred to me we'd not be able to buy quality razors in China, so I had to make my razor and 3 disposable blades last for 9 months. In desperation, I actually tried using a pyramid to sharpen the razor. Remember that craze? Way back in 1949, a Czechoslovakian named Karel Drbal tried to patent the Pharaoh's Shaving Device, which he claimed could sharpen razor blades if they were place in the pyramid in alignment with the earth's magnetic field. People believed this claim for decades. I scoffed at it until I ended up in Amoy without enough razors. I build my pyramid, carefully aligned the pyramid and razor blades--and I was rewarded with what you usually get with a pyramid scheme--nothing. That hasn't stopped others from building pyramid houses (for health and longevity; I wonder if residents call their mother's "mummy"/), to improve wine or to win hockey games. Read about Pyramid Power on Wikipedia; it's a riot!). In 2005, Mythbusters proved there was nothing to Pyramid Power--but that of course has not deterred the True Believers.

Bill Brown Xiamen University Admiral Charles Elliot Opium War Chinese TV SeriesBut, as it turned out, I was so careful with my meager store of razor blades that, even without a pyramid, I used just 1 blade for the entire 9 months!

And I do have a full beard. I've grown it long on many occasions when I played foreigners in historic Chinese TV miniseries. And my beard grows fast. I can shave in the morning and by evening it's rough. So what's the trick?

First--consider this. My dad shaved with a straight razor, which he whacked every morning on a broad leather strop. It was sharp enough to split a blonde hair--but do you think that those razors were any sharper than the almost microscopically thin edges on modern blades? I doubt it.

Of course, modern razors dull as you use them, but I've found that they work fine if you're careful with the razors (clean and dry them after use) and prepare your beard properly. [It must be a good razor to start with--not those freebies from hotels].  It seems that once the razor dulls a bit, it reaches a point where it keeps about the same edge for as long as you're careful with it (as I said, I've used the one in the photo about 1,000 times). 

And no shaving cream! I love shaving cream but when I can't get it, wetting the beard with hot water and lathering well with good soap (creamy soap) is enough to do the job.

Reuse a razor hundreds or thousands of times Amoy everlasting razor trickThere's also a trick to how you hold the razor. I keep it back at a sharp angle to the skin (experiment).

And you need to be careful to clean and dry the razor after every use so it does not rust.

Once you've shaved this way for awhile, you get used to it (and, perhaps, your face gets used to it as well).

I of course like a really sharp blade, and shaving cream is a luxury, but if you really want to stop throwing money in the deep pockets of Gillette, Schick, etc.--just try my Amoy Everlasting Shaving Razor trick!

By the way, to sharpen the blade, just rub it 15 or 20 times against flat jeans (making sure the top of the razor is facing the direction you're rubbing). This will smooth out tiny nicks and actually sharpen the razor a bit--though I've not even done this little bit of maintenance with the razor I've used for 3 years.

Enjoy Amoy!
And learn more about our beautiful little island with the Amazon eBook, Discover Xiamen.

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com
 Bill Brown
Xiamen University
www.amoymagic.com

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Free Electronic Whiteboard in Windows 7 to 10!


Ahoy from Amoy! (historic Xiamen, China.

Most people don't know that Windows has long had a built-in free software that turns your computer into one giant electronic Whiteboard--Windows Journal, which has been around since 1999.

Unfortunately, Windows is deleting Windows Journal in its new big update. Fortunately, I'll show you below how to get it back;

Microsoft is deleting Windows Journal because of security vulnerabilities in Journal--and there have been many. But if Microsoft can securely force all of their BloatWare on us (xBox, Microsoft Money, Cortana, Bing Health & Fitness, etc.), why can't they just fix Journal, which is an extremely simple but simple program that has changed little since its introduction in 1999?

Two--Journal: my Electronic Whiteboard! During my MBA lectures at Xiamen University School of Management, I don't use a whiteboard or blackboard. I simply open a blank page (no lines) in Windows Journal and Presto! Instant screen-sized whiteboard! With a finger or my stylus, I can handwrite or draw anything I need, and save the notes when I come up with something memorable or brilliant (sadly, a rare occurence).

Happily for lovers of MS Journal, Microsoft has shown a little heart and provided a way to keep Journal. Or, more accurately--you can't keep it, but you can get it back after they (or you) have deleted it.

If you've not had the update that deletes Journal, you can download that individual update, let it delete journal, and then download and install a new modified Journal that works just like the old one.

To Rescue Windows Journal from Oblivion:
Read more about the issue on Microsoft's site by clicking here, or go straight to the steps below.

1. Delete Windows Journal (just temporarily, and only if it has not been already deleted by the Windows normal updates--if anyone can all their new updates normal) by installing the Microsoft Update Catalog and downloading the Journal Removal update.

2. Download & install the new Windows Journal file:

Be sure to download the correct file, depending on whether your computer system is 32-bit or 64-bit. Click here for instructions.

Download x86-based (32-bit) Windows Journal by clicking here. (4 Mb; file name journal_en-us_x86.msi; version 10.0.73, published Sept. 14, 2016).

Download x64-based Windows Journal by clicking here. (4.4 Mb; file name Journal_en-us_x64.msi; version 10.0.73; published Sept. 14, 2016).

Install the file and you now have Windows Journal that should, in theory, survive future updates from Microsoft.

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com
Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Why Kindle Beats Smartphones for eBook Reading

https://www.amazon.com/Amazon-Kindle-Paperwhite-6-Inch-4GB-eReader/dp/B00OQVZDJM/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&qid=1474090771&sr=8-1&keywords=kindle+paperwhite&linkCode=ll1&tag=amomag-20&linkId=d80aa92374448313866948f04725d8faAhoy from Amoy (Historic Xiamen, China).

I used to laugh at folks who'd fork over $100 for a Kindle that was good for nothing but reading books. I much preferred reading on my Smartphone with either the free Amazon Kindle App or the great MoonReader Pro app that works with many formats. And smartphones let me see the book covers or illustrations and maps in color; Kindle is boring black and white. But here are 7 reasons why I switched from Smarphone eBook reading apps to Kindle Paperwhite --and I think you should to.

7 Reasons I Switched to Kindle Paperwhite from Smarphones

1. Kindle Paperwhite is only for books and documents. Once a big negative for me, this is now a great Plus!+  With a phone, I'm always tempted to check my email, surf the net, play games, etc.  With my Kindle Paperwhite, I only read books, and that helps cut the eClutter that swamps us from dawn to dusk (and in our dreams as well). If I read a Kindle Paperwhite at bedtime, I just read, and I don't get caught up in email or work. So I sleep better. I also sleep better with Kindle Paperwhite because it is indeed Paperwhite but no bluelight.

best bluelight filter for android iphone smartphones kindle ebook reader2. No Blue Light in Kindle! Smarphone Screens have blue light, which affects melatonin, the sleep-inducing hormone. Reading a phone before bedtime is a surefire prescription for insomnia. Having said that, I do still use a phone to read at times, but I use an excellent, free Android app called "Bluelight Filter for Eye Care" by Hardy--Infinity. 4.3% of reviewers give it a 5-star, and rightly so.

3. Kindle Paperwhite is really is ePaper--so easy to read in the brightest sun! This is what really sells me. Even on a blinding white beach outside of Xiamen University, I can read my Kindle Paperwhite with no strain at all. I can view my Smartphone screen, however, only in deep shade or from the bottom of a well.

4. Integrated dictionary and Wikipedia. I love looking up words, synonyms, etymology, etc. So convenient.

5. Notes, underlining, highlighting. It's easier than marking up real books because, later, I can easily search through my notes and copy them off on to my PC, phone, etc.

6. Amazon Kindle-owner lending library, book specials, etc. Amazon offers all kinds of specials, free books, etc. for Kindle Owners.

Send to Kindle App for PC Apple Android Smartphone iPhone Xiamen University School of Management MBA
7. Send to Kindle app for Windows. You do not have to always obtain your Kindle books from Amazon! You can download literally millions of free books from numerous sites (Gutenberg, internet archives, etc.) and with "Send to Kindle" installed, just find the book in Windows Explorer, right click, select Send to Kindle--and it will be on your Kindle ASAP! You can also use this to send documents. Download Send to Kindle for Firefox or Google Chrome and you can also send news articles to your Kindle.  Send to Kindle helped me create a Kindle library of thousands of eBooks, most of which were free (and legal!) or purchased cheaply from various sites.

So that's why I switched from Smartphones eBook software readers to Kindle Paperwhite. I still read on my Android phone because I don't always have my Kindle PaperWhite with me (though they're so light I almost always keep one in my computer bag). But given a choice--especially at bedtime--Kindle PaperWhite has become my favorite.

Whether you use your Smartphone or Kindle, learn more about my adopted home of Amoy (Xiamen) by reading my Amazon eBook, Discover Xiamen!

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
Bill Brown
 
Xiamen University

www.amoymagic.com

Friday, September 16, 2016

How to Keep Windows Journal--and Why you should

Bill Gates Mordor Mordred Nazi Hitler One Note Windows Journal MordorSoft"OneNote to rule them all, and in the darkness bind them..." MordorSoft Mission Statement

Ahoy from Amoy! (historic Xiamen, China)

Microsoft is deleting Windows Journal and foisting OneNote on everyone. They say it's because of security vulnerabilities in Journal--and there have indeed been many. But if MordorSoft can securely force all of their BloatWare on us (xBox, Microsoft Money, Cortana, Bing Health & Fitness, etc.), why can't they just fix Journal, which is an extremely simple but simple program that has changed little since its introduction in 1999?

Bottom line: MordorSoft is using OneNote as one more tie-in for their all-encompassing cloud-based system so we will happily pay $99 a year or whatever else they decide to keep Office or lose access to everything on the cloud (and that has already happened to some folks).

Why keep Journal? For one thing, you must be online to use OneNote, and people like me aren't online all the time! And here in China, even when I am online, I don't always have easy access to overseas services such as OneNote unless I use a VPN to crack the Great FireWall.

Two--Journal is my Electronic Whiteboard! During my MBA lectures at Xiamen University School of Management, I don't use a whiteboard or blackboard. I simply open Journal, using a blank page (no lines)--and Presto! Instant screen-sized whiteboard! With a finger or my stylus, I can handwrite or draw anything I need, and save the notes when I come up with something memorable or brilliant (which hasn't happened yet, but I live in hope).

Happily for lovers of MS Journal, Microsoft has shown a little heart and provided a way to keep Journal. Or, more accurately--you can't keep it, but you can get it back after they (or you) have deleted it.
Bill Gates Nazi Mordor Sauron Onenote one ring to rule them all

If you've not had the update that deletes Journal, you can download that individual update, let it delete journal, and then download and install a new modified Journal that works just like the old one.

To Rescue Windows Journal from Oblivion:
Read more about the issue on Microsoft's site by clicking here, or go straight to the steps below.

1. Delete Windows Journal (just temporarily, and only if it has not been already deleted by the Windows normal updates--if anyone can all their new updates normal) by installing the Microsoft Update Catalog and downloading the Journal Removal update.

2. Download & install the new Windows Journal file:

Be sure to download the correct file, depending on whether your computer system is 32-bit or 64-bit. Click here for instructions.

Download x86-based (32-bit) Windows Journal by clicking here. (4 Mb; file name journal_en-us_x86.msi; version 10.0.73, published Sept. 14, 2016).

Download x64-based Windows Journal by clicking here. (4.4 Mb; file name Journal_en-us_x64.msi; version 10.0.73; published Sept. 14, 2016).

Install the file and you now have Windows Journal that should, in theory, survive future updates from MordorSoft.

And by the way--though Microsoft annoys me, I actually do appreciate what Bill Gates has done. He's the richest guy on the planet but look what he did to get it! He had vision during a time when men like Ken Olsen, fonder of Digital Electronics Corporation (DEC), who is infamous for having said in 1977, "There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." Thanks to Gates, we do have computers in our home--even in our pockets. (But in fairness to Olsen,  his quote is taken out of context; he meant he did not want computers controlling our home lives--and the more digital we get, the more I agree with him).

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com
Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Typhoon Meranti Photos and Update from Xiamen

 Ahoy from Amoy (historic Xiamen)

We were just whacked head-on in Xiamen with Typhoon Meranti, which with 40 foot waves and 230 mph winds was the worst we've seen in our 28 years here (and neighbors in their 80s have not seen worse either)....
Typhoon Meranti Xiamen China Fujian Taiwan destruction photos photo
Typhoon Meranti Xiamen Photos

The sheer devastation is unimaginable. It may be days before we can drive because toppled trees cover the road to our mountainside apartment. Fortunately, few were killed. One man was electrocuted riding an electric bike through a flooded street. Sad--but it seems he may have been a candidate for the  Darwin Award.

The official response was incredibly fast. We lost electricity twice, but the first time it was restored within ten minutes and the second time an hour--though we were out of water much longer. The entire city was without water yesterday (and some still lack electricity and water even today).

We're thankful our old apartment fared well. Though skyscrapers and modern buildings were devastated, our old place got little more than a soaking (even though one third is covered with corrugated iron sheets). And our car was fine, though it was surrounded by toppled trees. Other cars did not fare so well, as you can see from the photos. Airplanes were blown about like toothpicks.

A few months ago, I gave Xiamen Airlines a new slogan, "New Horizons With Xiamen Airlines." None of us could have anticipated this particular new horizon!

So sad to see countless giant trees toppled--especially the beautiful banyan trees. But the rain had barely stopped before workers and police were out working with chain saws to clear things up. In another month, Amoy will be as beautiful as ever. Nothing keeps Amoy folks down for long!

Enjoy Amoy,

Dr. Bill Brown
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.com
Xiamen University
www.amoymagic.com

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Evolution of Golden Rule from Confucius to "Con"gress (Trump, Obama, EU)

Ahoy from Amoy (Xiamen, China)!

Chinese invented paper so they could invent paperwork and Red Tape (hence the name Red China). 

Chinese also invented the "Golden Rule," though Confucius' version  differed from Jesus Christ's. Confucius said "don't do to others"; Jesus said "do to others". Both have pros and cons. I'm not always keen on being done to. So with no further ado:

Evolution of Golden Rule from Confucius to "Con"gress 

Confucius' Golden Rule: Do not do to others what you don’t want done to you. 己所不欲,并非他人所不欲 

Jesus Christ's Golden Rule: Do to others what you want done to you.你们愿意人怎样带你们,你们也要怎样待人

Modern Businesses' Golden Rule (Trump): Those with gold make the rules. 谁拥有黄金谁制定规则

Modern Bureaucracy's Golden Rule (Obama, "Con"gress, EU): 
Those who make the rules get the gold. 谁谁制定规则抓住黄金

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University
Amazon eBooks
"Discover Xiamen"
 
www.amoymagic.com

Monday, September 12, 2016

Solved: Missing network or wifi icon in taskbar or System Tray Windows 10

Ahoy from Amoy! (historic Xiamen, China)

I upgraded to Windows 10 the first day it was available because it could not have been worse than Windows 8 (though Windows 7 was my favorite). I was right--but it does seem each time Microsoft does its mandatory Windows 10 update a new problem crops up. One of the latest is that the Wifi or Network icon has vanished from the system tray or task bar. Worse yet, I follow Microsoft's instructions to turn it on in Settings--but it's grayed out and can't be turned on!

I've still not figured out the cause but I've found a solution. Restart Windows Explorer, and then the icon magically reappears. Even then, it has shown "No internet available" even as I'm connected, but at least I have the icon and can easily switch between Wifi sources again (and the "no internet available disappears eventually).

You don't have to reboot to restart Windows Explorer (steps below).

First, make sure the notifications are turned on properly. If they are and still no icon, then restart Windows Explorer:

1. Go to All Settings (swipe left from lower right corner and tap All Settings).
2. Tap System  (Display, notifications, apps, power)
3. Tap Notifications & actions
4. Tap Turn system icons on and off
5. Turn Network notifications ON
     It should work! If it is grayed out, then restart Windows Explorer

Restart Windows Explorer
1. Right click the little Upward Arrow in the System Tray and tap Task Manager (or--you can touch Control, Alt & Delete at the same time and then choose Task Manager).
2. Right click Windows Explorer (at the top left, under Apps) and choose Restart.

The Wifi / Networks icon should have reappeared.

For some reason it may disappear again. If it does, repeat the above steps (for me, I found the only fast and sure solution was restarting Windows Explorer).

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
School of Management, Xiamen University

Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"

www.amoymagic.com

Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

Thursday, September 8, 2016

43 Amoy (Minnan, Taiwanese, Hokkien) Chinese Proverbs!

Ahoy from Amoy! (modern Xiamen),

Amoy (Minnan, South Fujian, Hokkien, Taiwanese) Dialect is closest to the ancient Chinese spoken 2,000 years ago and even today is spoken in South Fujian, Hainan Island, Taiwan, S.E. Asia--and anywhere else Minnan folk have settled--which is just about everywhere.

These colourful Minnan proverbs (闽南成语 ) adapted from "Chinese Proverbs in the Amoy Vernacular", China Review, March 1887 are a window on the wit and wisdom of those who speak it! Though some are similar to other Chinese proverbs, quite a few are unique to Minnanyu. They cover the gamut of human experience, and though I explain some, most really need no explanation whatsoever--proving that we really are more alike than we know. I especially love #22, "to shut the stable after the steed's been stolen," and #24, the "smiling tiger", which is similar to our own "wolf in sheep's clothing." South Fujian has many proverbs about tigers because it was the home of the Amoy Tiger--the father of all tigers. The beautiful tiger to the right was on Meihuo mountain in Longyan, West Fujian.
amoy tiger south china tiger xiamen fujian longyan meihua mountain
To learn more about Fujian history, culture, food, etc., try my Amazon eBook Discover Xiamen. (2.99)

Enjoy Amoy! 
Dr. Bill 

1. “Middle of the 5th month”   Chhit géh poa, ah-à m chai sí. (Ducks don’t know they’re soon to be sacrificed to spirits.  (Said of wicked people who have no idea that judgment is soon upon them).

2. “Though dead, the eyes won’t close” 
Sì liau bàk-chiu m goān khoe  (The affair, though apparently forgotten, and over now, will turn up again to cause trouble)

3. “He’ll let people eat the flesh but won’t let them gnaw the bone” Bah, ho làng chiàh; kut, m ho lang khoè.  (That man will let people speak ill of his friends, but only up to a certain extent)

4. “To spread the best shellfish on the top, and water the oysters well.”
Pho’ biu thau, chìm chui   (Tricks of the trade--still common to this day)

5. “A tortoise in the drain.”  Am-knàng-ku   (A man who rarely leaves his house, a book worm, etc.)

6. “If 3 short men enter a city, they’re sure to create a disturbance.” Sa oé jíp sià, bò hoán

7. “In 3 years, the child should be as big as the mother.”  
Sa ni, chí bú tiù
(The interest and principal shall be equal)

8. “A mouse transfixed on a cow’s horn.”
   Niaú chhú tèng-jíp gu-kak  (In a fix)

9. “If you don’t give credit, you can’t do business; if you do give credit, you’re ruined.” Bu sia, put seng tiam: sia-liaú, tiam put seng.

10. “To take shelter under another man’s umbrella.”
Png tang-i-hō-sòu ng   (To benefit at the expense or trouble of a man)

11. “A blunt knife brings out the workman’s skill.”
Tun to cchut tai chhiù

12. “When you’re a passenger on another man’s boat, you want the boat to go fast.  When you’re interested in any project with a partner, you want him to succeed.”  Che tang chun, ai tang chun chaú  (Like our ‘all in the same boat’)

13. “To eat the bread of idleness.” Chiàh eng bì

14. “There is honour amongst gamblers, but all tradesmen are rogues.”  Pòuh-kiaù lòng kun, boé-boē chat

15. “Too large for a beam, too small for a pillar.” Boē tsún fu, boē tsún thiaú   (Of a man or thing, unsuitable for our purpose)

16. “Barren land absorbs much water.”  Chhan yau sò chuí  (A lean man eats much.  Debts swallow up gains)

17. “What you earn in foreign parts you spend there.”
  Po-thau chiu, po thau eng.

18. “To bind up a girl’s feet just when she’s about to be married.” Beh ké, chiah pák kha   (Of preparations begun late)

19.  “After escaping from a highwayman, to meet with a tiger.” Chán chhàtgu-tiò   (Out of the frying pan and into the fire)

20. “To strike the gong after the thief has gone off.”  Chhàt khì chiah phah lo

21. “A handsome woman isn’t without some defect; an ugly one isn’t so in every respect.”  Chhin-chí bo cháp-chung, khiap-sì bo ka-nug.

22. “To shut the stable door after the steed’s been stolen.”  O-á-ki kek kui tong    (Birds of a feather flock together)

23. “If you lack the courage to enter the tiger’s lair, how can you expect to get the cubs?”
Put kám jìp hò hiát, ian-leng tek hò chù.   (Nothing ventured, nothing gained)

24. “A tiger with a smiling face.” Chhió  (A wolf in sheep’s clothing)

25. “To hit your own head with the hoe you’re carrying.”  Kiák pe-put, kakí kong hiàh   (The engineer hoist with his own petard: caught in one’s trap )

26. “To advance or retreat is equally difficult.”  Chin-thè liòng lan  (On the horns of a dilemma)

27. “Fresh or salt, he eats up all indifferently.”  Tin kiàm Chiák  bò kiam  (All’s fish that comes to his net)

28. “Iron sharpens iron.  Diamond cuts diamond.”
  Thih kong thih.

29. “It’s by drinking one little drop after another that a man at last becomes drunk.”  Pòh pòh chiù Chiak lang oé chuì  (It’s the last straw that breaks the camel’s back)

30. “In one ear and out the other.” Chìt ki-kang jìp chìt ki-khang chhut

31. “If you’re waiting to get the rice, it takes a long time to get soft; if you’re waiting to get married, the girl’s a long time growing up.”
  Tán bì oh noà, pán bò  (A watched pot never boils)

32. “He’s got ten trades, but nine of them he doesn’t know.”
Sìp gé, kiù put seng     (A jack of all trades, etc.)

33. “When the sun’s out, you should store up some provisions for rainy days.”
Chhat jìt, tiòh chek ho lai niu    (Make hay while the sun shines)

34. “To hit two at one stroke.”  Chìt phah siang kìok   (Kill 2 birds with 1 stone)

35. “The rice being brought by the chopsticks up to your lips, falls down after all.”   Hgeh kaù  chhuí khaù, chiah ka-láh  (There’s many a slip between cup and lip)

36. “A man who does not know how to sail about complains of the river being narrow.”  Bóe hiaù sài tsun  hiam khoe  oéh   (Bad workmen blame their tools)

37. “When you go to a country you must follow its customs; when you enter a channel you must follow its windings.”
Jìp hong sui siòk; Jìp kàng sui own   (When in Rome, do as the Romans do)

38. “To dive into the sea, to feel for a needle.”
Hài bong chiam   (To look for a needle in a haystack)

39. “Four eights are the same as thirty two.” Sí poch, sa cháp jì  (Six of one and a half a dozen of the other)

40. “His heart is greater than the tyrant Bong’s.”
  Sim kou khah toá ong Bòng
 (He out-Herods Herod).

41. “To be born in “Soochow or Hangchow, and to die in Quánzhōu, Fújiàn, is the height of good luck.”  Siu tì So-Hàang jí chiu.  Si ti Hokkien Choan-chiu.

42. “A good man kissed [struck] by lightning.”
Hó sim, khit laic him.  (Said of a man undeservedly injured)

43. “In buying and selling, one should be very particular; in entertaining, expense should not be thought of.” Boé boé sug hun sa Chhìa bo tun.

Enjoy Amoy!
    Dr. Bill
School of Management, Xiamen University


Amazon eBook "Discover Xiamen"
www.amoymagic.comBill Brown
Xiamen University
www.amoymagic.com

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Easily Convert any image format (SID, TIFF) to JPG, TIFF, etc (100% free!)

Hi from Amoy!

I just received an 80 MB SID image file--and had no idea how to open it. I'd never seen an SID file, and could not find how to convert SID files to TIFF or JPG formats. I tried many online and downloadable (contenta-convertor, for example) conversion programs but all failed. Some said it was too large, and others simply did not recognize SID files (even though they claimed to). And then I remembered my old favorite: IrfanView, which converts virtually any image format--and is 100% free!

I'd used IrfanView a few years ago and loved it, but it got lost in the shuffle when I upgraded Windows--and then I forgot about it. So I downloaded the program--and it didn't work. But then I downloaded the plug-ins, which covers every kind of image file imaginable--and it worked like a charm! It took several minutes to open the file (80 MB) but it converted it properly to an over 2 GB TIFF file! If it can handle a 2 GB TIFF file, it can handle anything you will throw at it.
convert any image format to any image format with irfanview jpg jpeg sid tiff gif

Best of all, IrfanView is free--and it does much more than just open any kind of image you have, or convert it. It has easy to use editing and drawing tools--and it runs on virtually every operating system there is, from all versions of Windows to Linux (using Wine) and Mac OS X (using Winebottler). The installer comes in 25 languages--everything from English and German to Chinese, Korean, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Finnish, Estonian, Romanian and Arabic.

20 years after IrfanView's debut in 1996, Microsoft and Apple still can't come close to something as useful, simple and practical. So a big thanks to IrfanView's creator Irfan Skiljan, who hails from beautiful Jayce, Bosnia and now lives in Vienna. His site says he's received over 65,000 emails from grateful users, and as soon as I post this I'm emailing him too. As we say here in China, Xiexie! 谢谢!Irfan!

Visit his site at: http://www.irfanview.com/

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University

Amazon eBook
"Discover Xiamen"
Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com

A Hubby Lobby for Hobby Lobby?

Ahoy from Amoy! (Modern Xiamen, China).

My wife loves crafts--especially card-making--and volunteers teaching to Chinese and foreign children in Xiamen (and retirees too). So each time she visits the U.S., she heads straight for Hobby Lobby--me in tow, of course. And I don't mind--much. I encourage Sue's hobbies. But....
Hubby Lobby for Hobby Lobby China Amoy Xiamen
Why on earth doesn't Hobby Lobby have a Hubby Lobby for husbands to sit while their wives wander the aisles of crafts, dried flowers,  and Christmas specials that come so earlier I'm reminded of a Dec. 26th newspaper that warned, "Hurry! Only 364 more shopping days until Christmas!"

And for you PC Police: Hubby Lobby" is not sexist profiling. I've seen countless men entrenched in the entryway awaiting their wives but nary a wife awaiting her hobby-smitten hubby. No doubt there are exceptions, but for the most part, Hubby Lobby fits the bill--plus, it sounds cool. And not just to me. Last time I was in Hobby Lobby, I tossed the idea to employees, customers and wall-hugging hubbies, and got hearty laughs--and thumbs up!--from all of them.

So come on, Hobby Lobby! Your store's about the size of Costco, so surely you could begrudgingly give up some space by the entry or along a wall or in a corner. It would make life easier not just for spouses but also children, elderly parents--perhaps even the shoppers themselves who might like a break or a place to exchange ideas with other shoppers (my wife is always exchanging crafty tips with other Hobby Lobby shoppers--which translates into more business for HL). You could even place a few hobby magazines on tables--and enlist a few more in your legion of hobbyists.

A Hubby Lobby would make Hobby Lobby more inviting for everyone. Please consider it, Hobby Lobby! I just saw on the news that big cheering crowds turned out for a new Hobby Lobby in San Diego. I bet more would cheer if they had a Hobby Lobby Hubby Lobby (or Hobby Lobby Lounge, Hobby Lobby waiting room, etc).

Enjoy Amoy!

Dr. Bill
Academic Director, XMU OneMBA
School of Management, Xiamen University 
Amazon eBook "Discover Xiamen"

Bill Brown Xiamen University www.amoymagic.com