Studying Abroad in China

I’m headed back to China on Saturday 30 June 2007. I made my first trip to Beijing last summer, when I attended DemoChina to cover emerging tech companies. I was lucky enough to bump into a number of familiar faces, including Lee and Sachi (who were on their yearlong tour around the world) and Sam Whitmore and Christy Andrade (who were also taking in the experience of DemoChina). This time I’m spending 6 weeks in Beijing, studying Mandarin at Peking University and site seeing around the city.
I haven’t made any specific plans to meet with any geeks while I’m in Beijing, but I’m hoping to meet a few kindred spirits while I’m there. The Maxthon offices are in Beijing, so there’s a good chance I’ll drop in on Jeff Chen and the rest of the browser development team. I’m likely to check in on to see what’s new with the Chinese equivalent of YouTube. I may also see if I can’t get a peek at what the Beijing offices of Microsoft are like, since I’ve already spent plenty of time at both the Redmond and Mountain View campuses.
My other big plan for this trip is to seek out some of the modern cultural flavor of Beijing. I saw most of the major historic landmarks of Beijing on my last visit, but I’m also curious about things like the kinds of live music people are playing, where the modern art scene in Beijing is, and what local people do for fun, which are some of the same things I look for when I visit a new city in the U.S. I’m also hoping to revisit some of the places that were under construction and renovation in anticipation of the 2008 Olympic Games. If you happen to be in Beijing or know anyone in Beijing, be sure to drop me a line.