Daily Archives: April 12, 2017

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3 - Elyse Ribbons - China Movie TV Radio - The Beertelligence Podcast

“No one believed that a white (non-Chinese) girl wrote it”

Elyse, a self-proclaimed language nerd, has a very eclectic background spanning her 15 years in China. She has worked as a Movie & TV star in China, gotten a Masters in Peking Opera, written a play and been COO of a Chinese construction company (which meant she can drink Baijiu).

That’s not to mention her being cohost of one of China’s highest-rated nationally syndicated news radio programs called 老外看点 LaoWai KanDian(International Perspectives) as well as working at the US embassy, speaking fluent Mandarin and starting a theatre company all before entering Stanford Ignite Beijing to build a charity startup “GeiLi Giving”.


Through her career she followed a core theme of communication & bridge building, metaphorically and literally, striving to see other people’s points of view.

In this episode we discuss:
+ Being good at drinking & referencing Tang dynasty poetry
+ Translating for meetings with Bill Clinton
+ Traveling with 180 Chinese millionaires
+ Stanford Ignite Beijing
+ Teaching people how to hug in China (workshops)
+ Nano Wrimo (to write her novel)
+ Her dream of being Secretary of State
+ How former president Bush Senior (41) smoothed the path for Bush Junior in China before diplomatic meetings took place
+ The good & bad of philanthropy and how difficult it is in China
+ Moving from Detroit to small town North Carolina to a “Nerd school”, a public boarding school.
+ Playing Helen Snow in Red Star Over China
+ Doing stand up comedy in Mandarin & English
+ Why Chinese girls can’t talk about sex on stage
+ How acting helps in business
+ Her daily journaling habit

Mentioned in the episode:
Stanford Ignite Beijing

China Pacific Construction Group:

Nano Wrimo (national writing month):

Clinton Global Initiative:

The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World
by Jacqueline Novograt

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide
by Nicholas D. Kristof (Author), Sheryl WuDunn (Author)

Heifer International (Chengdu):

Panda Conservation (Chengdu):

The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics

Playing Helen Snow in Red Star Over China:

Kung Fu Komedy:

SOS Ventures / Chinaccelerator:

You can find Elsye online:
GeiLi Giving:


Google Elyse Ribbons or
Baidu 柳素英 liǔsùyīng (her Chinese name)


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2 - Siddharta Lizcano - Exp. Design - The Beertelligence Podcast

“My name is Siddarthhabbilizcaoadelapena, can you repeat that?”

Sidd grew up in London & Spain and has been in China now for the past 5 years. He has a Masters in Interactive Design and worked as an experience designer across many industries in his time at agencies such as Frog and Sapient.

In this episode, Sidd talks a lot about how he got into design and how he thinks about experience & service design, with a heavy focus on how the product is actually used in the real world with real users.

He also talks about how he started drawing images for old computer magazines so that he could work & travel the world. How would you draw a picture of “open source software”? Sidd used Bees. Then that paycheck kept him alive for 3 months in India.

From there we dive into a detailed discussion of neuroplasticity, the idea that the brain is constantly being reformed and there are new therapies evolving based on this idea to treat people with Parkinson’s disease or chronic pain.

Then Sidd shares one of his main parenting struggles – what to do with technology. His answer was to work with his kids to build games together that use real-world sensors and digital game mechanics. He wanted is kids to start playing with technology at an early age so that it doesn’t appear like magic.

In this episode we discuss:
+ Long names
+ Service design
+ Painting in the Himalayas
+ Rhino horn poo (a lot)
+ Neuroplasticity
+ Meditating since 7 years old
+ The power & peril of Keynote
+ Making games with his kids
+ Screaming kids in the hallway
+ Film storytelling in new tech
+ Alexa emotions & feeling like a family member

Find Siddhi online:


Resources mentioned in the episode:

Salvador Dalí biography:
Salvador Dalí Diario de un genio

Neuroplasticity book:
The Brain’s Way of Healing by Norman Doidge, M.D.

MIT Scratch:

Makey Makey controller:


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