Go West Young Man

Monday, 29 June 2009, 7:55 am
Tags: , ,

asia.jpgI’m off for China on Thursday with my son, Henry. As you’ve probably figured out by now I love to travel. Last year I was lucky enough to visit Egypt, Australia, and France, but going to Asia has been a lifelong dream. I was a Chinese Studies major in college and yet I’ve never been closer to China than a one week trip to Singapore a decade ago.

I began planning for this trip last year when Neil Bauman of Insight Cruises asked me to go on MacMania 9. I love these Geek Cruises but I’ve been so busy building up TWiT that I haven’t had a chance to take one since 2006. When Neil told me the itinerary included China, Korea, and Japan I knew I couldn’t miss this one.

EEAD1B9B-D0CA-48B9-8351-B4858BCC878E.jpg

I’ve been working on four lectures for this cruise: 60 iPhone Apps in 60 Minutes, 60 Freeware Apps in 60 Minutes, Using a Mac mini as a Home Theater PC, and Using Social Media for Fun and Profit. They’re far from done but that’s what trans-Pacific flights are for, right?

The cruise itself is pretty quick and we only get one day each in Cheju, Korea, and Fukuoka and Nagasaki, Japan, so I opted for a one week land tour of China in the week before the trip. There’s no way I was getting that close to China and spending only one day there. Eight days is not nearly enough to see the vast Middle Kingdom, but Don McAllister of Screencasts Online, Henry, a half-dozen other intrepid Mac fans and I will get to hit the highlights: Beijing, Xi’An, and Guilin.

I’ve posted my full itinerary on Tripit.com – what a cool site. You can forward your confirmation emails to them and they automatically build your itinerary, plus there’s an API so a number of third party programs can also use the data.

IMG_0043.PNGThere’s a free Tripit app for the iPhone but I’m using Travel Assistant Pro instead. It updates flight information and helps you store checklists and notes. Plus there’s a cool presentation mode you can use for check-in at hotels and airports. Friends can view my itinerary on Tripit, too – and I can share details with other members.

I hope to post regularly from Asia. I’m buying an International Data Plan from AT&T for my iPhone and the hotel has broadband. I expect to be using the full social media toolkit including Brightkite, Twitter, Facebook, Smugmug, and Flickr. All of it pipes right into Friendfeed so that’s probably the best place to follow my trip.

Dom’t worry, TWiT will continue mostly intact while I’m gone. There won’t be much live video, but we pre-recorded all The Tech Guy, Security Now, and Daily Giz Wiz podcasts. Additional shows were recorded for FLOSS Weekly, net@night, and Windows Weekly, too. John C. Dvorak will host TWiT on July 5 (tune in early at 5p Eastern/2p Pacific for a special wine Q&A with John). I’m not sure yet who will host on 7/12.

There will also be some special events on TWiT Live. July 15 Chris Marquardt will take over the studio with a full day of photography interviews and information. I hate to miss that! And Alex Lindsay will be in (new baby willing) on many other days to host shows.

I’ll be back live July 19. See you then!

UPDATE: Don McAllister has one-upped me with a lovely iWeb page he’ll be using to post from the trip.

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18 Responses to “Go West Young Man”

  1. petes2cents on June 29th, 2009 11:21 am

    With all the new apps and social tools, I think your well organized and ready to go. We will miss your live shows, but I assume this is a well deserved vacation. I know you have lots of goals and projects in the pipeline. But a break is sometimes a necessity, more than a routine. I will be right here, assuming with thousands of other listeners and followers waiting for your updates and pics from China. Safe Trip and Tons of Fun…. :-)

  2. Theo Jones on June 29th, 2009 12:50 pm

    Enjoy, I did a similar China trip 3 years ago. Basically the same places you are going.
    Flickr highlights if anyone's interested: http://www.flickr.com/photos/theojones/sets/721

    I wish I had gone to Shanghai (As John suggested on TWiT) but there was more than enough to keep me busy.

  3. Sonia D Webb on June 29th, 2009 6:12 pm

    which iWeb theme is that Don Mc. is using? I have iLife '09 and don't see that theme.

  4. gerald miller on June 29th, 2009 8:04 pm

    Hey Leo

    Good luck to you and your son and have fun!
    Everybody will be watching.

    Ger

  5. bob roberts on June 30th, 2009 1:45 am

    Leo,

    Remember to not accept the first price offered. Always bargain, offer a price half of what is given

  6. Lau Sau King on June 30th, 2009 8:53 am

    Hey Leo – Have a wonderful trip. You're coming all the way to China and NOT visit Hong Kong? Aiyaaaa. Still you have a great itinerary – covering more places than I have ever been, and I was born & bred in HK. Yes, definitely “Made in HK”. As to bargaining – you should offer only 25% of what they want, and then move up to maybe 30%. If you really like the guy/gal – give them 35%. Give them 50% and you spoil it for the rest of us who live in these neck of the woods. Anyway, hope you'll make it to Hong Kong one of these days, and I promise to give you a great tour with plenty of photo opportunities too.

  7. Daniel Harker on June 30th, 2009 9:54 am

    Leo!
    I'm going to china this thursday as well! I'm going to Beijing, xi'an and shanghai! How random for me was it to turn on my radio last Sunday and hear that you were headed there on the very same day! I leave from Vancouver Canada… So I'm sure we won't be on the same flight. Either way if I see you at the great wall or the taracota soldiers, I will definitely come up and say hi. We will geek out together.

    Just look for a white guy with a black girl. We will be touring all of old china this week. :)

    How could I post on your page without asking a question?

    I'm taking my camera to china with me. But it has a battery pack that is charged with canadian/American charger. Do I have to shell out a ridiculous amount of money for a converter? For their plugins?

    You're the best Leo. I know it's a big country. But maybe well cross paths.

    Canada dan

  8. MacBreak Weekly 147: I Lost My Handy « TWiT Netcasts iPhone on June 30th, 2009 10:17 pm

    […] Leo will be blogging during his trip to China […]

  9. suzie on July 1st, 2009 3:27 pm

    A guy I work with & son were there 3 weeks. Dad wanted to see if Son could get them thru w/the Chinese he's learned! You & Henry have fun!

  10. karenz on July 1st, 2009 8:29 pm

    any chance you can get munchcast to tie-in w/ your food travels in china? And what about cruise food commentaries?

    I miss Munchcast!

    Have a great time!

  11. Boilerbots on July 3rd, 2009 5:39 pm

    I spent almost two weeks recently in Dalian, China with my girlfriend and her family.

    A few surprises for me: 1. Essentially no wireless anything, anywhere except cell phones. 2. Couldn't ever find an ATM. 3. Electronics where more expensive than in the US. 4. You can be turned away from tourist places because you look western. I was denied access to several WWII related historical sites because I looked western. 5. In China they have Russia Town where people sell Russian things on the street, strange!

  12. Stephen Henry on July 4th, 2009 6:46 pm

    I also did about the same trip in 2006 and made a website in iWeb '06 funny enough with the same template Don is using. Made daily notes and when back to the states sorted through 1400 photos and notes to create the site which can be viewed at http://web.mac.com/chezhenry/China/Home.html

    All I can say Leo, is go for the food! Get off the package deal and experience the real local food. It is incredible. Nothing like the westernized chinese food in the states.

  13. minifan on July 5th, 2009 8:53 pm

    Thanks for sharing! Got some photos to my travel blog.

  14. John Richards on July 7th, 2009 10:57 pm

    Leo, hope you have a great trip. I've been listening to Twit for about two months now and gotten hooked! Can somebody help me with a Google Ad Sense question? Google sent me an email and said I was officially in for an Ad Sense account to use for my website posted on iWeb, but using an address through GoDaddy. Problem is Google's links to get me started don't work and there is nothing, I mean nothing on their endless pages of tech support. Does anyone know any actual people at Google they could refer me too. At this point I'm not sure there are any besides the CEO Leo is friends with. Do Shey, John R

  15. Michael on July 9th, 2009 11:19 am

    Go west or go east? As long as you get there safe.
    ???????

  16. Michael on July 9th, 2009 11:22 am

    Go west or go east? As long as you get there safe.
    ???????

  17. Oscar on July 10th, 2009 2:27 am

    Leo….. hey I'm from Bay Area and doing a month long trip around ASIA… just finished my Beijing leg… in Hangzhou now.. had a great time.. Hey I found through friends of mine killer Peking Duck in Beijing.. I see you return to Beijing on your final leg of the trip.. if your interested I can give you the address?… they also do a dinner show.. hand drawn noodles which blew me away and several other things.. which was included with our dinner…. Best meal I've had so far in ASIA… Enjoy the rest of your trip.. I am for sure..

    cheers,
    Oscar (from livermore ca)

    PS… If you haven't noticed but several days ago China blocked Twitter and Facebook.. quite annoying since most of my friends are following my trip via Facebook..

  18. bollywoodgossip on July 15th, 2009 4:49 am

    Dear sir,

    It's very great post i like it,

    Thanx for it.

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