Swing Out Sister back to PH this April Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. For Ina, portraying a zombie is like an ‘out-of-body experience’ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Thunder center Kanter says father arrested in Turkey China reports 17 new cases in viral pneumonia outbreak Ex-Bulacan town vice mayor, village chief shot dead Gerald: Just because I’ve been bashed doesn’t mean I’d stop working Trump’s impeachment defense, prosecutors dig in LATEST STORIES Gorayeb said Bualee is playing through a right shoulder injury and he instructed Sato to help their Thai import on the offensive end.“Every ball that went to Risa, she managed to kill it and I’m so proud of her because she wasn’t blocked in the first set,” said Gorayeb.Kaewpin Kuttika led Creamline with 16 points while skipper Alyssa Valdez had 12.ADVERTISEMENT FILE PHOTO- Grethcel Soltones of Bali Pure attempts a spike against two Philippine Air Force blockers. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBali Pure inflicted the first blow, beating Creamline, 22-25, 25-23, 25-14, 25-21, in Game 1 of their best-of-three semifinals series in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference Saturday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.Opposite hitter Aiko Urdas sealed the semis opener for the Water Defenders.ADVERTISEMENT For Water Defenders head coach Roger Gorayeb, complacency won’t be on their minds as they look to finish off the Cool Smashers come Tuesday at Philsports Arena in Game 2.Creamline hasn’t beaten Bali Pure in all three meetings this conference and Gorayeb wants it to stay that way.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnSPORTSBreak new ground“I just want them to have the wisdom, we are not yet in the finals and I told them beginning today that all of our games will be treated like games in the finals,” said an emotional Gorayeb who lost his cousin a few days back. “I want to give Bali Pure their first final appearance.”Jennifer Keddy caught fire for the Water Defenders finishing with a game-high 24 points while Risa Sato, who took over Jeng Bualee’s offensive duties, added 13. Trump’s impeachment defense, prosecutors dig in MOST READ End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite View comments
…thoughtsLike the obligatory post-coital smoke, your Eyewitness can’t let this big Jubilee Bash pass without some reflection as to what actually went down. After all, the theme for the entire week of celebrations was “Reflect, Celebrate, Inspire”. This is a reelection on the celebration but frankly, it wasn’t very inspiring! There was a “Jubilee Festival” at the National Stadium then with the Flag Raising Ceremony and the grand finale of the Float Parade on Independence Day itself. Was it as good for the participants and it was for the organisers?Well the Jubilee Festival – paid for by private companies, hustled to give “contributions” – kicked off on May 19 with “A night of Spiritual Upliftment”. But for some reason, not many showed up to be “spiritually uplifted”. Even GINA, the PR arm of the Government, couldn’t “big up” the attendance beyond “hundreds”. Is it that 50 years after Independence, Guyanese are less religious? Is that a mark of our social progress? The social scientists did predict “modernisation” will be accompanied by “secularisation”. Or is it because only “pro-Government” religious groups were invited?The next event was also scheduled for the National Stadium the following day – Everything Guyanese – showcasing our Indigenous Peoples’ Culture folk music. Your Eyewitness scanned every newspaper in hard copy and Internet …nothing…zilch…nada. So what does that mean? Indigenous Peoples are still the “invisible Guyanese”?The 21st had the “Night of Legends” and this came off…but with and even sparser crowd than for the “spirituality”. Either the legends aren’t as well known as they ought to be or else Guyanese aren’t too big on nostalgia. Who remembers Johnny Braff once ruled the airwaves all across the Caribbean around the time of Independence? Well, not the organisers since he was billed but not featured. And he’s in Guyana!But they did plan something for the presumably present-fixated youngsters… A Nexxt Generation concert that was supposed to showcase “young Guyanese talent”. Here again… Nothing. If two concerts occur and no one reported it – did they happen? Turned out the Govt organisers flubbed the media passes!Be as it may, there was for sure the grand Flag Raising at the spanking new wooden Durban Jubilee Park. But unfortunately, the snubbing of the Opposition entourage who didn’t get seats overshadowed the flag on the tallest pole in the country.The Independence Day float parade was almost an anticlimax – saved by the massive show of support for the Guyana Amazon Warriors.It was the only float drawing the full diversity of Guyana. Cricket’s still our unifying force.….J’ouvert?This Government has made a Herculean effort to move the Float Parade from Republic Day on February 23 to Independence Day, May 26. But they didn’t just move the date…they objected to the vulgar degeneration of the ethos of the Republic Day celebrations into a “poor man’s” sexualised imitation of the Trinidad Carnival. Including of late, even their messy J’ouvert. The coalition Government vowed to return “dignity” to the activity.One could understand Guyanese imitating Carnival because of its connection to Lent falling in February, which was also our Republic month. But what was the reason for now holding a “J’ouvert” in May – as one group did on the morning of the 26th? Is it that we Guyanese just can’t commemorate anything without it descending into vulgarity?It should surprise no one the Guyanese “J’ouvert” ended up with the being beaten with bottles when they tried to bring order to one scuffle.What does this mean? The descent into the abyss might be permanent?…excuseJunior Minister Nicolette Henry issued an “explanation” for the snubbing of the Opposition Leader at the Flag Raising ceremony that raises more questions than the “answers” in the explanation.For instance, who were the hundreds of persons who were in what she described as the “Presidential Section”.
By Allison Hoffman THE ASSOCIATED PRESS SAN DIEGO – Federal prosecutors rested their case Thursday against a defense contractor accused of bribing U.S. Rep. Randy “Duke” Cunningham without calling the former lawmaker to testify. Cunningham pleaded guilty in 2005 to accepting $2.4 million in kickbacks from contractors, including more than $700,000 from defendant Brent Wilkes. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Prosecutors wouldn’t comment on the decision against putting Cunningham on the witness stand. But legal observers said it likely indicated they felt they didn’t need him to win a conviction. “You’d put Duke on the stand only if you think you need him to make your case,” said Melanie Sloan, a former prosecutor who is now the executive director of the watchdog group Citizens For Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. “But you’d never put him on if you don’t have to – he’d be a total loose cannon,” she said. Prosecutors claim Wilkes provided Cunningham with prostitutes, Super Bowl box seats, high-end golf trips, private jet flights and $625,000 in payments as kickbacks for about $90 million in Pentagon contracts. Cunningham, a San Diego Republican who held seats on the powerful House intelligence and defense appropriations committees, was elected to eight terms before resigning in 2005. During the past seven days, jurors heard testimony from prostitutes, government workers and others about the Wilkes-Cunningham relationship. In a handwritten letter sent last September to reporter Marcus Stern of Copley News Service, who uncovered the corruption scandal that sent Cunningham to prison, the former congressman wrote that he thought former Wilkes associate Mitchell Wade bore the brunt of responsibility. “Wade not Wilkes has destroyed a lot of people,” Cunningham wrote. “Ninety percent of what happened is Wade.” Wade pleaded guilty in 2006 to paying Cunningham more than $1 million in bribes in exchange for $150 million in contract earmarks. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
1 Joe Ledley Reaching the quarter-finals of a major tournament would be enough to make any player dance – and Wales’ Joe Ledley is no different.Chris Coleman’s men progressed to the last eight in what is their first European Championships after beating Northern Ireland 1-0 thanks to a Gareth McAuley own goal.The achievement matches that of the Dragons’ only other appearance in an international tournament, where they were knocked out at the quarter-final stage by Brazil in the 1958 World Cup.And Ledley, who has been known to bust a move or two when celebrating Welsh success, took to the table in the dressing room to show the squad his latest number.See below for the video and let us know what you think!https://twitter.com/Arwel_Thomas7/status/747088702468464641
Promoted postJoin the Re-evolution of eating!! The 30 day Paleo challenge is being brought to Letterkenny by Neil Barrett MSc. (Master of Science in Human Nutrition) & Caitriona Feeney BSc. Hons. (Bachelor of Science with Honours in Food Science & Nutrition). With over 15 years’ experience between them working in a clinical nutrition environment, Neil & Caitriona are the only Nutritionists offering this programme in Donegal.With Paleo followers like Jessica Biel, Jennifer Lawrence & Matthew Mc Conaughey is it any wonder this way of eating is taking the world by storm.There are no pills, shakes, magic potions or quick fixes, it doesn’t even require exercise for amazing results.Paleo (caveman diet) is based upon eating wholesome, contemporary foods from the food groups our hunter-gatherer ancestors would have thrived on during the Paleolithic era, the time period from about 2.6 million years ago to the beginning of the agricultural revolution, about 10,000 years ago. These foods include fresh meats, fish, seafood, fresh fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and healthful oils (olive, coconut, avocado, macadamia, walnut and flaxseed).This is a lifestyle choice & not a FAD diet like all the rest & that is why it is offered in a 30 day format, because, Neil & Caitriona firmly believe that once you see the dramatic results after just 30 days, you will not be able to return to your old eating habits.What does the Plan Include?➢ Induction presentation explaining the process – No obligation➢ One to one assessment➢ Ultrasound body composition analysis ➢ A plan tailored to suit your personal needs with all the meal ideas, recipes & information you will ever need➢ Ongoing personal & online support➢ Final Ultrasound body composition analysis to compare results➢ Ongoing support when your 30 days are over The FREE information night will take place in Mount Errigal Hotel on Thursday 9th of January @ 8pm, everyone is welcome & even if you have no interest in trying the plan please come along & pick up some healthy eating tips.Neil & Caitriona are so confident that you will see dramatic results, that, if after following the plan strictly for 30 days you are not happy you will receive a FULL REFUND!!For more information call Caitriona 087-7951159Or Visit www.crossfitletterkenny.com NutritionOr Email: email@example.comDONEGAL GETS READY TO JOIN THE CROSSFIT PALEO CHALLENGE!! was last modified: January 8th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:30 day challengeCrossfitFeatureshealthLaunch campaignnewsRevolutionary Fitness sessions
160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Southern California Edison will start testing new meters next year in the beginning of a plan to benefit customers who use less electricity during peak energy-demand hours. Residents and business owners will pay less for energy used before and after usual business hours, when demand is lower, Edison spokesman Gil Alexander said Tuesday. The testing will involve up to 25,000 of the 5 million Edison customers, including residents of the Antelope and Santa Clarita valleys. If successful, the new technology, which shows hourly rather than monthly use, will be installed from 2008 through 2012. The state Public Utilities Commission wants customers to “give your appliances the afternoon off” and to know from meters when they using the most energy. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhy these photogenic dumplings are popping up in Los Angeles“We have asked meter manufacturers for enhanced meter functions and capabilities that provide customers with significantly more control over their energy use and costs,” said Lynda Ziegler, SCE’s vice president of customer service. “The industry’s response has been impressive, and we believe the devices being developed could benefit every home and small business we serve.” Alexander said Edison pays higher prices for energy during the hottest, heaviest-use time of day and will pass that on. Edison will reward customers who cut afternoon use.
Jurgen Klopp has suggested Liverpool may not play their Carabao Cup quarter-final tie if the EFL cannot give them an appropriate date for the fixture.A crazy fourth-round game had an equally dramatic finish as the Reds beat Arsenal 5-4 in a shootout at Anfield on Wednesday night after Divock Origi’s goal deep into injury time had made it 5-5 in normal time. Spurs investigation into alleged racial abuse of Rudiger is so far ‘inconclusive’ Liverpool transfer news live: Mbappe latest, Lille star wants to join Reds in future Top scorer in 2019: Messi, Mbappe and Sterling trailing Europe’s top marksman Steve Round reveals how Mikel Arteta convinced him to join Arsenal staff LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS Chelsea fan arrested for allegedly racially abusing Heung-min Son on target 1 appointed Ian Holloway thinks Arsenal have made a mistake in hiring Mikel Arteta Liverpool’s manic month statement AFP or licensors targets Match dates for the last-eight round of the Carabao Cup are scheduled for the week commencing December 16, when Liverpool will be in Qatar at the FIFA Club World Cup.The Reds are due to play the semi-final of the global club competition on December 18, with a final or third-place play-off three days later.Klopp said: “If they can’t find the proper date for us and I don’t mean Christmas Day 3am… then we can’t play the game. Our opponents will progress.“We will not be the victims of this problem.“Hopefully it starts now that they think about the fixtures.“I think a lot of people from the Premier League were watching on TV hoping Arsenal do it. Sorry!” update latest rookie error He added: “FIFA tells us we have to go to the Club World Cup, the Premier League tell us we have to play in the Carabao Cup so we try to play it, but if we don’t find time it will not happen in our winter break or whatever they give us, because we need that.“So, I don’t care to be honest. It just shows what the problem is. Everybody wants us to play constantly, we’ve just thought about tonight – we’re not thinking about the next round.”The English Football League released a statement in reply to the Liverpool manager’s comments, saying: “The EFL is in discussions with Liverpool to identify an alternative date given the club’s participation in the FIFA Club World Cup competition.”Liverpool’s participation in the Club World Cup, which has come about after they were claimed their sixth Champions League title in June, has already postponed their league trip to West Ham.And the European Champions are due back in England just days later for a Boxing Day clash against Leicester. LATEST Strugglers Wigan hold Blackburn to goalless draw in Championship PEP TALK Pep Guardiola gives Man City injury update and talks Christmas schedule Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti stalemate Klopp has suggested Liverpool may not play the Carabao Cup quarter-final Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ December 4 – Everton (H)December 7 – Bournemouth (A)December 10 – RB Salzburg (A)December 14 – Watford (H)*December 16/17/18 – Carabao Cup quarter-finals scheduled to take placeDecember 18 – Club World CupDecember 21 – Club World CupDecember 26 – Leicester (A)December 29 – Wolves (H)January 2 – Sheffield United (H)January 3-6 – FA Cup third round
“I wrote the first book, Quantum Physics for Babies, almost five years ago,” he said, “and I wrote that when I only had two kids. I was reading quite a few books to them and started looking for science books. I found a couple, but there were really no physics books to speak of, so I thought maybe I should write one myself and use it to read to my own kids.“There were kids’ books about human anatomy and dinosaurs, obviously, so there were some science elements (in children’s books) but physics was something that was definitely missing. And when I started trying to come up with more specific ideas, the idea of quantum physics popped into my head because that’s the kind of research I do. Eventually, I shared it around with friends and family and their school teachers, and people seemed to like it, so I thought ‘why not just put it out there?’ I ended up self-publishing it, then a publisher picked it up and the rest is history.”While Ferrie – and his publisher – initially wondered if his idea to turn toddlers onto concepts such as robotics, nuclear physics and quantum entanglement was a bit too far out for bookshop owners, kids and their parents, people starting buying his books in droves, intrigued by Ferrie’s colourful, child-friendly introductions to rather complex scientific concepts.By giving precocious preschoolers a chance to explore scientific themes – some of Ferrie’s titles include Astrophysics for Babies, Neural Networks for Babies and the ABCs of Engineering – Ferrie said he hopes his books can light a spark and encourage a love of science in even the youngest reader.Although Ferrie said there are no firm figures on how many of his books have been sold, his American publisher has shipped more than 1.5-million copies of his books to stores worldwide and has estimated that Ferrie’s books are approaching a million in sales.Becoming a popular children’s author was something Ferrie could never even have imagined while growing up in Chatham.“No, not at all,” he said, laughing. “I have one sibling and a few cousins, but I had never really interacted with young children until I had my own. But once you have kids, you realize there’s a completely different world out there, there’s so much out there for kids.“It’s something that wouldn’t have crossed my mind before I had kids, though.”Feedback from families who have purchased his books has been incredibly positive, Ferrie said, even touching at times.“It’s kind of been uniformly positive, which I’m quite happy about,” he said. “It can be pretty overwhelming at times, too. I get a lot of messages from parents with children with special needs, very emotional messages about how useful these books have been for them to connect with their kids.“I get daily pictures of babies holding my books, too. It’s hard to feel bad when you get cute pictures of babies holding your book every morning,”And even though his books are targeted towards toddlers, older readers have found many uses for them as well. Parents routinely buy the books as gag gifts for their graduating children, Ferrie said, while an MIT professor told Ferrie he bought 50 copies of Quantum Physics for Babies for his advanced physics class.Ferrie’s books are also helping people around the world learn English.“It seems to work for a lot of audiences as well, which was surprising,” Ferrie said. “I had an email the other day from somebody who teaches English to teenagers in Japan, and he said that children’s books are great for teaching English as a second language, but usually the themes in the book are also for children. So apparently, this teacher told me, Newtonian Physics for Babies is the best way of teaching Japanese teenagers English, so it’s pretty funny to see that happening.”Looking ahead, Ferrie said he plans on continuing writing science-based children’s books for the foreseeable future, though perhaps the books will be geared towards older children.“I’m running out of topics in my own area of expertise, but I’ve been collaborating with other scientists on other topics to make more of these baby board books,” he said. “And as my kids grow older, I’m being exposed to new kinds of books for those audiences, so I’m thinking about how to bring science into those styles.”As for his double duties of being a university faculty member as well as a popular children’s author, Ferrie said he is thoroughly enjoying both experiences.“It’s great. The feedback for the children’s books is much more positive than my other writing, which is academic writing. Academics don’t send me heart emojis when they review my academic papers,” he said, laughing. “But I’ll keep doing my academic research not anticipating the same feedback that I get for the children’s books. It’s actually nice to be in both worlds.” Dr. Chris Ferrie and his four children. (Handout) jpg, CA A Chatham native’s foray into the world of children’s literature has resulted in estimated sales of close to a million books.Chatham-Kent secondary school grad Dr. Chris Ferrie, who lives in Sydney, Australia, with his wife and four children and is a faculty member at the University of Technology Sydney, has added bestselling children’s author to his long list of accomplishments. He’s penned 29 popular children’s books that deal with different facets of science, engineering and quantum physics.His 30th book, There Was a Black Hole That Swallowed the Universe, will be published in September.Ferrie, an award-winning physicist who obtained his doctorate in mathematical physics at the University of Waterloo, said the genesis of his highly popular, science-themed board book series came shortly after the births of his first two children.
A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… sarah perez The weekend is the perfect time to get started on computer projects that you just didn’t have time for during the week. This weekend, my project of choice is backups. Although I can safely say that the majority of my files are (relatively) safe in the cloud, it never hurts to make a run through and upload those that got overlooked. My documents are spread out across Google Docs, Office Live, SkyDrive, and Box.net. My photos are on flickr and Facebook. My music and video collections are backed up locally to multiple external drives (since I’m too cheap to pay for the hundreds of gigs of online storage needed), but one thing that wasn’t backed up anywhere but on my own PC was the thing that may be the most important of all: my iPhone. Although iTunes does a good backup of your phone prior to each sync, that won’t do you a lot of good unless that backup is also stored somewhere else besides your own PC. Computers crash, hard drives fail, and sometimes, sadly, laptops are even lost or stolen. Obviously, an iTunes-only backup is not a good system for the most important social network of them all – the people I actually speak to in real life. The people in my phone. How Do You Backup Your Contacts? The Results of the Twitter/FriendFeed Poll Is an iTunes backup stored off-site the most efficient way to go? Is that how most people handle this issue? Curious, I did what any social media addict would do: I asked Twitter and FriendFeed. The answers I received have me pondering my options. After receiving nearly 30 responses, I was surprised to find how many people rely on Google as their address book (14 responses). In fact, keeping your addresses and phone numbers in Google and syncing that address book to your iPhone is actually what a lot of people consider a “backup” these days. But as much as I trust in Google, the old I.T. girl in me can’t help but think “single point of failure, single point of failure!” Truth be told, several folks must feel the same because they also used another method on top of the Google solution, often MobileMe. MobileMe wasn’t as popular as I would have expected, though. Only five people said they used it. That number would probably be higher if it wasn’t a paid service. Seven people counted on iTunes to do the backup for them, but a few were careful to also make sure their PC was backed up as well. I’m hesitant to sync my Google contacts to my iPhone for reasons I’ve stated before, but it couldn’t hurt to make sure that my iPhone contact information also exists in my online address book…something that I know isn’t the case as I recently found out when the phone’s battery died during a phone call and I frantically searched for my friend’s number on the web. iPhone Contact Backup: Yep, There’s An App for That I also recently happened across an additional solution which you could add to your backup routine with ease. Called iDrive Lite, this free iPhone application will quickly backup all your contact info to your device in case you ever accidentally delete an important address or phone number. You’ll also want to activate the app’s “Web Enable” feature which backs up your contact data to the web where you can access it anytime at idrivelite.com. Not bad for a free service. Your Turn! RWW PollIf you didn’t have a chance to participate in the Twitter poll, please participate in this one below. Now, we know not everyone is an iPhone user here at RWW, but we know that a lot of you are, so let us know how you backup your contacts! If you find yourself marking “other,” feel free to comment and explain. Tags:#Apple#Polls#web Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting
5 Outdoor Activities for Beating Office Burnout Related Posts Rekoo (??), CEO: Yong LiuFounded in 2008, Rekoo is one of China’s leading social gaming developers with several domestic partners: RenRenWang, 51.com, Alibaba, Baidu and Sohu. Rekoo also has strategic overseas partnerships with Facebook, MIXI, Myspace and Cyworld. Rekoo’s most successful games are Sunshine Ranch and Animal Paradise.IsMole (????), CEO: Edwin ChenFounded in 2008, IsMole started off as a market-leading game developer for social networks, but quickly lost its competitive edge to others like 5 Minutes and Rekoo. IsMole’s is best known for its Xingfu Chufang (below) cooking social game that has been released in five different languages across seven countries on thirteen different SNS platforms. guest author 1 Kingnet Games (????), CEO: Yue WangFounded in 2008, Kingnet first released Tower of Babel in April 2009, and within three months had over 500,000 users. In July 2009 Kingnet received venture capital investment from KPCB China. In October 2009, Kingnet had over 2 million users on Facebook.Challenges Facing Social Game DevelopersSocial game development in China has entered a period of tremendous growth, but it has yet to fully mature. Companies compete fiercely with varying levels of experience and capital to create the next winning game. Two major challenges have arisen as a result of this environment.1. Lack of Innovation: There is an overall lack of diversity in gaming context. Copying is rampant amongst competitors – once a social game is proven successful, competitors begin producing their own versions. For example, there are numerous games that take place in farms such as 5 Minutes’ Happy Farm: Rekoo’s Sunshine Ranch, Kaixin001’s Kaixin Huayuan, and Zhiming Xingtong’s Happy Farmer.2. Lack of Continuous Improvement: There is a tendency for developers to stop investing in the game after it is on the SNS platform. In some cases this is due to lack of sufficient capital, while others stop because they’re trying to make multiple games to obtain a quick return on investment. This lack of continuous improvement creates short game lifecycles, as user experience ultimately suffers, and a short period of success finally leads to replacement by the next popular game.To win in this environment over the long-term, it is unavoidable that operational costs will continue to rise, as developers must continuously improve the quality and uniqueness of their games to fend off domestic competition and maintain their market share.This Is Only The BeginningDespite these challenges, there is tremendous growth potential in social gaming in China. The first years of growth in China’s social game development have served as a foundation. The next few years will see a convergence between social games and 3G mobile gaming. The social game user base that is predominantly comprised of students and young white-collar workers will continue to grow with even more older players joining the crowd.While Chinese companies will continue to face a competitive market at home, the best companies will develop unique winning strategies domestically and localize them to win success overseas. In a recent interview, 5 Minute’s CEO Shaofei Gao was quoted as saying: “China’s netizens are becoming more mature, they are gradually becoming more accustomed to paying for gaming, and social gaming market opportunities will definitely continue to increase in the future.” 9 Books That Make Perfect Gifts for Industry Ex… It’s no longer a secret that China’s online gaming industry is booming, and growth is set to continue with companies such as Shanda Games, Netease and The9 leading the way. In 2009, China’s online gaming industry earned nearly $4 billion, growing 39.5% from 2008.Each day, millions of high school students trying to forget the pressures of college entrance exams and young adults discontent with their jobs flock to Internet cafes to play online role-playing games. They’re part of China’s 384 million netizens, and they sit in front of rows of computers in dimly lighted smoke-filled rooms for upwards of eight hours at a time, living in virtual worlds to escape the pressures of contemporary Chinese life.Guest author Joel Backaler writes The China Observer, an award-winning blog focused on Chinese technology trends and consumer culture. His writing has appeared in and he has been quoted by the Wall Street Journal China Journal, BusinessWeek, and Seeking Alpha. Joel is a Mandarin-speaking former Fulbright Fellow who has worked and lived in Taipei, Beijing and Singapore with Frontier Strategy Group. Follow Joel on Twitter.But beyond the Internet cafés, social games have emerged as a convenient alternative for students and workers alike to gain a sense of release and revitalize themselves before tackling the next assignment of the day in their everyday lives. They take breaks to tend to their garden on 5 Minutes’ Happy Farm (Kaixin Nongchang) farming game, or steal their friend’s car parking space on Kaixin001‘s Qiang Chewei. RenRenWang (formerly Xiaonei), Kaixin001 and Tencent’s QQ Xiaoyou are leading SNS portals, and are the go-to sites to access China’s most popular gaming applications.The widespread popularity of social games is not solely limited to white collar workers in their 20s – social gaming appeals to China’s youth, their middle-aged parents, and even elderly retirees looking to share a common hobby with relatives spread throughout the country. The social gaming landscape is developing at an extremely rapid pace, with competition growing increasingly fierce by the day.What Makes a ‘Winning’ Social Game in China?The most popular social games in China are simple to play and appeal to a broad audience. These winning games take place in easily recognizable environments such as kitchens, gardens and parking lots, and only require a few clicks of a mouse to have a shared social gaming experience with your friends.Happy Farm is the most popular Chinese social game to date. Created by Shanghai-based social game developer 5 Minutes, the game is quite similar to Zynga’s FarmVille. Players own a virtual farm where they plant fruits and vegetables. They purchase supplies like seeds, pesticide and fertilizer at a virtual market. While part of the game is about growing and protecting your own harvest, the real fun is sneaking into your friends’ farms to steal their vegetables. The game is easy to learn, taps into traditional Chinese farming culture and is extremely addictive – appealing to the young, the old and everyone in between.Which Social Game Developers in China You Should Know About?5 Minutes (???), CEO: Shaofei Gao5 Minutes was founded in 2006 by three college students. In November 2008 it released Happy Farm (below) and achieved immediate success, partnering with leading SNS portals, and receiving a one-time multi-million Chinese RMB payment from Tencent for full rights to the game on its QQZone platform. At the end of 2009, 5 Minutes received $3.5 million in venture capital funding from Draper Fisher Jurvetson. Tags:#gaming#web 12 Unique Gifts for the Hard-to-Shop-for People… 4 Keys to a Kid-Safe App