While the last entry saw me complaining about an example of shoddy Chinese manufacturing, now we'll look at an example of Chinese manufacturing might. In this six-minute video currently making the blog rounds, we see an astonishing feat of design, engineering and execution: The 30-story T30 Hotel constructed in Hunan Province, taking just 15 days to erect.
Constructed by China's Broad Sustainable Building, a pioneer in prefabricated buildings, the hotel is made from neatly prefabricated parts. (Some ninety percent of the building's components were pre-assembled.) And it's no ordinary building, but boasts some seriously impressive credentials: It will reportedly withstand a 9.0-magnitude earthquake; it has quadruple-glazed windows and other green touches resulting in five times the energy efficiency of an ordinary building; the building's air purification system results in air that is 20 times cleaner than it is outside; and the entire structure was erected while yielding construction waste of just 1%.
With stats and documentation like this, it's no surprise that the video has yielded 4 million hits and counting.
The fact that China can produce structures like this at that speed, but cannot or will not make a simple sewing machine handwheel correctly, reminds me of the old American complaint from the '70s that people would utter after minor American product failures: "They can put a man on the moon, but they can't make [TV knobs that don't break / a toilet where you don't have to jiggle the handle / a car that doesn't need to go into the shop every month / etc.]"
What we'll look at in the next entry is an even more impressive—and chilling, to competitors—facet of Chinese manufacturing that will propel them into the future.
» Part 1: Getting It Wrong
» Part 2: Getting It Right