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Woman Fakes Own Kidnapping and Murder to Break Up with “Poor” Boyfriend

No one ever said that ending a romantic relationship was easy, but planning your own kidnapping and subsequent murder just to avoid telling someone “it’s over” sounds ridiculous. And yet, one Chinese woman did just that rather than tell her boyfriend she didn’t want to be with him anymore.

A 37-year-old woman from Wuhan, in central China’s Hubei Province, was recently arrested after it was revealed that she had faked her own kidnapping and murder at the hands of her ex-husband in order to avoid having to break up with her current boyfriend, whose financial situation she considered lacking. The woman, surnamed Yu, had been dating her boyfriend, Lin, for a while, but she only learned that he was poor after visiting his home during the Chinese New Year. It was something she apparently just couldn’t get over, so she decided to leave him, but fearing that he would get clingy and refuse rejection if she simply told him she wanted to end the relationship, Yu devised a plan to make herself disappear.

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College Course on Tobacco Allows Students to Smoke in Class to Better Understand the Subject

A series of photos showing students casually lighting up cigarettes in what looks like a college classroom have been doing the rounds online for several months, leaving everyone puzzled as to what is going on. As it turns out, it’s just a display of hands-on learning in a course on tobacco.

The controversial photos originally went viral on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, back in November of last year, but they’ve been resurfacing on various other social networks and news sites ever since. Young students can be seen lighting cigarettes and casually smoking them, while others take their photos with smartphones and the teacher casually observes the spectacle. Teen smoking is frowned upon in China, as it is pretty much everywhere else, so the photos caused quite a stir online even after the dean of the university where the smoking took place offered an explanation.

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Mother Abandons 12-Year-Old Child in the Street for Not Performing According to Expectations on Exam

A strict mother in China reportedly abandoned her 12-year-old son in the middle of a busy street in Luoyang City after he only managed to score 81 percent on an exam, which apparently wasn’t good enough.

Police officers in Luoyang’s Gucheng district found the boy wandering the streets close to where his mother dropped him off before driving away. They had been alerted by passers-by who saw the woman stopping her car in the area, pulling the boy out and then scolding and hitting him before leaving him there by himself. CCTV footage shows the officers approaching the disoriented child in an attempt to find out what happened. They later told local reporters that the boy had been abandoned for not achieving the 95 percent score that his mother expected on a recent exam.

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China’s Amazing “Human Money Counting Machines”

Money counting machines have been a staple of banks all around the world for decades now, and China is no exception, but here bank tellers still practice their banknote counting skills every day, and some of them can really give those automated counters a run for their money.

Videos of Chinese bank tellers showing off their amazing money counting skills have been doing the rounds online for a long time, and for good reason. There’s something oddly satisfying about watching someone breeze through a wad of cash in mere seconds, but if you go deeper down this rabbit hole, you’ll find that there’s a whole lot more to Chinese banknote counting, including several techniques, one more impressive than the other, and even a popular TV contest in which money counting champions of different banks compete for the title of fastest and most accurate “human banknote counting machine” and the bragging rights that come with it.

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Forget Face Recognition, Chinese Authorities Now Use “Gait Recognition” Technology That Identifies People By How They Walk

They say you can tell a lot about a person by the way they walk, but one Chinese startup has apparently developed technology that allows it to identify individuals by their gait, even if their face is covered or they have their back to the camera.

Known as “gait recognition”, the technology invented by artificial intelligence startup Watrix analyses thousands of metrics about a person’s walk, from their body shape and the angle of arm movement to their posture and whether they have a toe-in or toe-out gait. All these individual traits go into a database that the software then goes through when attempting to identify people. According to an official statement from Watrix, the accuracy rate of gait technology at the laboratory level exceeds 96 per cent.

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Man Cuts His Daily Commute from One Hour to 6 Minutes by Paddle-Boarding Across River

A 29-year-old insurance agent from Chongqing, China, has come up with an ingenious way to beat rush hour traffic. By paddle-boarding across the Yangtze River every morning he has cut his daily commute time from one hour to just six minutes.

Liu Fucao sells insurance in Chongqing’s Wanzhou District, but lives on the other side of the Yangtze, the longest river in Asia. Up until six months ago, he used to drive or catch a bus to work like everyone else, but then authorities started doing maintenance work on the bridge he had to cross every morning, and his daily commute got even longer than usual. It would take him an hour or more to get to work, and at one point he just couldn’t stand being stuck in traffic for so long. He has been paddle-boarding competitively for two years, and one day he decided to use it as an alternative means of transportation. It took him less than six minutes to paddle from one side of the river to the other, so he’s been doing it every morning since.

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China Unveils World’s First AI Female News Anchor, And She Looks Eerily Realistic

China’s state-run news agency, Xinhua, yesterday unveiled its newest news anchor, Xin Xiaomeng. Why is this newsworthy? Well, because Xin isn’t a real person, but an ultra-realistic computer generated model powered by advanced AI technology.

The perfectly coiffed Xin Xiaomeng introduced herself to Xinhua’s viewers in a short clip, announcing that she will make her professional debut as news anchor in March. She was developed by the state-run news agency in collaboration with search engine Sogou, and her appearance and voice were inspired by those of a real-life Xinhua broadcaster named Qu Meng. In her introduction video, the perfectly coiffed AI news anchor spoke only in Chinese, and it’s unclear if she’ll be able to tackle English news reports as well.

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Girl Uses “Handwriting Robot” to Complete Homework Faster

The story of a young student who used a so-called “handwriting robot” to complete her Lunar New Year holiday homework in record time made news headlines in China last week, sparking a heated debate.

The Qianjiang Evening News reported the case of a junior high-school student from Harbin who spent 800 yuan ($118) on a copying robot that allowed her to complete her transcribing assignments and essays in no time at all. The girl’s mother, surnamed Zhang, became suspicious when her daughter turned in her holiday homework, neatly written and with absolutely no errors, despite having very little time to do it, due to Lunar New Year festivities and traveling. Then, while cleaning the girl’s room, Zhang found a bizarre metal contraption as well as its packaging, which claimed that it could imitate any handwriting.

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Excited Dog Jumps from Second Floor to Greet Owner, Lands on Him and Breaks His Neck

A dog owner in China ended up in the hospital after his excited husky jumped all the way from the 2nd floor of his house to greet him, landing on his head and breaking his neck.

The 67-year-old man, surnamed Liu, was returning to his house in Yongzhou City, China’s Hunan province, on Monday, after visiting some relatives, when something heavy fell from above and landed on the back of his head. Liu was knocked down and rendered unconscious by the impact, and his family immediately called an ambulance. Speaking with Sina News about the incident, Liu recalled that his first thought after waking up in the hospital was that the wall of his house had collapsed on top of him, but he later learned that he had been hit by his pet husky.  Apparently, the 60-pound pooch was so excited to see Liu come home that he jumped from the second floor of he house, landing on top of him.

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Man Has Toothpick Removed From Inside His Heart After Swallowing It While Drinking

A 29-year-old Chinese man can consider himself lucky to be alive after doctors removed a wooden toothpick stuck in the right atrium of his heart.

The man, known only by his surname, Zhou, underwent an open-heart operation on January 9, at a hospital in Nanning, southern China’s Guangxi Province, to have an excessive growth removed from his heart. He had been suffering from poor health, including constant lung inflammation and high fever, for about four years, and had spent a small fortune ($30,000) on medical care, but doctors had been unable to properly treat his illness. Some doctors claimed he had sepsis while others said he suffered from leukemia, but during his recent heart operation, surgeons discovered that the cause of his health problems was a simple toothpick.

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Teenage Boy Learns Makeup, Goes from “Ugly Duckling” to “Swan”

An 18-year-old boy recently shared the story of his impressive physical transformation to inspire other teenagers who consider themselves unattractive to start taking care of themselves and not to be ashamed to use makeup to improve their looks.

They say a person’s personality is more important than their physical looks, but try telling that to a high-school student who constantly gets ridiculed for their his acne, geeky glasses and poor fashion sense. The protagonist of this story knows all about that, but unlike most other teens in his situation he actually did something about it and recently took to the internet to share the details of his transformation, hoping to inspire other “ugly ducklings” to enhance their appearance.

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China Develops App That Lets You Know When a Person in Debt is Nearby so You Can Report Them

Authorities in the Chinese province of Hebei have created a smartphone app that allows users to see if they are within 500 meters of a person in debt so they can report or publicly shame them.

Failing to pay off your debts is generally frowned upon all over the world, but one country has been cracking down on the practice harder than any other. In the last couple of years, Chinese authorities have used a variety of techniques to coerce debtors to pay up, with public shaming being the most popular one. Last year, the local government in Hejiang county, Sichuan, started showing their faces and names during short clips played in cinemas before the main screening, and now authorities in Hebei have announced an app that detects debtors in a 500-meter-radius, allowing users to report or shame them.

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The Bizarre Reason Why Chinese Television Started Blurring Men’s Ears

TV viewers in China recently noticed something strange whenever certain male celebrities showed up on screen – their ears were digitally blurred as if to hide something. While Chinese television has yet to make an official statement on this issue, the measure seems meant to hide men’s earrings.

Last year, China’s media regulator banned TV stations from showing celebrities’ tattoos as well as other elements of “hip hop culture, sub-culture and immoral culture,” in an effort to minimize Western impact on China’s pop culture. It was only a matter of time before men’s earrings were targeted, and earlier this year people started noticing that earring-wearing male actors and other pop icons had their ears blurred. The hashtag #MaleTVStarsCantWearEarrings recently went viral online, with tens of thousands of people criticizing the move as discriminatory.

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Company Makes Employees Crawl Through the Streets for Not Meeting Sales Targets

A company in Shandong province, China, has come under fire for forcing six of its employees to crawl through the streets on their hands and feet as punishment for not meeting sales targets.

The humiliating procession reportedly took place in the city of Zaozhuang on January 14 and was recorded by shocked passers-by. Six people can be seen crawling on all fours through traffic behind a man carrying a red flag emblazoned with their company’s name. With no protection other than their office clothes, the punished staff struggles to keep up with the flag bearer, but somehow find the strength to keep going, probably fueled by the fear of losing their jobs.

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Man Secretly Marries Three Women, Gets Them Apartments in the Same Neighborhood “for Convenience”

A Chinese polygamist who was secretly married to three women managed to keep them from finding out about each other despite arranging for them to live within a one kilometer radius, for his own convenience.

The 36-year-old man, surnamed Zhang, is facing up to two years in prison for polygamy, after he exploited a loophole in the system to legally marry three different women in a period of three years. He worked as a real-estate agent in Kunshan, eastern China’s Jiangsu province, and made a lot of money thanks to the country’s booming property market, so providing for three different families was no problem, but he admitted that traveling between three homes up to 10 times a week could be a bit tiring. Not as tiring as it could have been, though, as Zhang made sure to buy the three women apartments within a one kilometer radius, for his own convenience.

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