Qt Developer Day Beijing and a mini tour in China

About a month I was asked to attend Qt Developer Day at Beijing and Jolla developer events at Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzen at the beginning of June. I had never visited China before and so I agreed to go.

Our hosts arranged a fancy meal for the first evening in a gourmet restaurant. The food was delicious. I tasted the famous Beijing duck and many other great dishes.

The conference was at the second day. Marc held a keynote, and Joona had presentation about the user interface. The guys did a great job in their presentations. I had a smaller demo session about "Getting started in Sailfish SDK" in a smaller room. To my surprise the room was packed full. My colleagues didn't even fit the room. It was nice. There were many questions and people seemed really interested. Our booth was also quite popular.

Before my talk I went to my room to concentrate and I discovered this wonder:

Apparently you can have instant coffee that is also good.

In the evening we had dinner at a restaurant with a traditional upper class (royal?) style. The atmosphere of the place was amazing. There was traditional Chinese decorations everywhere and the staff were in fancy costumes. They also presented couple of dances and old music for us.

During our last day in Beijing we had some time to see the sights. We woke up really early to visit the Great Wall. Unfortunately, it was raining heavily and there was also fog, so the views weren't great. It was still nice to see it though. After coming back to the city, we wen't to the Forbidden City since we had some time. It was one of those places that are much bigger than you think. Buildings were pretty, and there were a lot of tourists. Everybody were taking pictures, all the time.

Developer meetup was at a coffee shop that was decorated in a true hacker spirit. For example the walls of men's room were filled with old keyboards. The event was nice, and people seemed genuinely interested in what we are doing. I loved the experiences we had in Beijing, but I did not like smog, traffic, and hugeness of the city. During the time we spent in Beijing I did not see the sun, the pollution was that bad. Our hosts took good care of us and I'm more than happy to revisit, but it is not place I'd recommend for ordinary tourists.

In the next morning we woke up really early again and took a bullet train to Shanghai. Shanghai felt completely different than Beijing. The skyscrapers were taller and prettier, there was a breeze of fresh air from the sea, and the old colonial style building by the river, opposite of the famous Pudong area, were really looking nice.

After the meetup in Shanghai we went to 30th floor sky bar which had amazing view towards Pudong. After one drink we head back to hotel, since the wake up was even earlier in the following day.

The last day of the trip was the longest one. We flew from Shanghai to Shenzen and went straight to the meetup. Again we met nice and enthustiastic people and they gave a really nice calligraphy as a gift to Jolla. After the meetup we drove by taxi to Jolla office in Cyberport, Hong Kong for quick visit. The office was quite small, but the place was really nice with a really cool views.

It really was a super busy week and I was totally exhausted after getting home, but it was an amazing trip and I'm so happy that I had opportunity to do it. All in all, I'm quite positive about Jolla's chances of making it in China.