A small U.S. company called Vuzix hopes a partnership with Lenovo will help it make a big splash in China’s wearable technology market. It wasn’t long after Google first revealed its Glass project in 2012 that technology companies reconsidered eyewear as a platform for wearable computing. Lenovo, the Chinese computing giant, was one of them. The world’s largest PC vendor, known for an experimental hardware streak that brought the world numerous convertible laptops and a concentric mobile keyboard, knew it had the software and applications that could power such a device. So it set upon making one for its home market in China, where Glass failed to tread.
Upstart takes smart glasses to China, where Google can’t go
Its main foe banished and silenced, Myanmar’s regime shows no sign of easing its grip on politics
EDITOR’S NOTE _ The Associated Press was granted visas to cover Myanmar’s constitutional convention, offering a closer look inside one of Asia’s poorest and most isolated nations. YANGON, Myanmar (AP) _ Cut off from the outside world, Myanmar’s most famous citizen spends her days reading, listening to the radio and meditating. The only visitor allowed into her rundown, two-story villa is a doctor. Her political party has been decimated by arrests and harassment.
Authorities predict up to 2,000 dead after major earthquake off Indonesia; panic throughout the region
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia (AP) _ A powerful earthquake struck off Indonesia’s west coast late Monday, killing scores of people whose homes collapsed on them and spreading panic across the Indian Ocean that another killer tsunami was on the way. Indonesia’s vice president predicted up to 2,000 deaths. Fears of a second tsunami catastrophe in just over three months eased within hours, as officials in countries at risk reported their coasts clear of the type of earthquake-spawned waves that ravaged a dozen countries in Asia and Africa on Dec. 26.
Failure of tsunami reconstruction leaves humanitarian agencies under fire
KAMPUNG JAWA, Indonesia — The tsunami of 2004 triggered the biggest humanitarian response in history, feeding the hungry, heading off epidemics and engendering the hope that out of a calamity that took 216,000 lives, a better Indian Ocean rim would emerge.But 18 months later recriminations are rife, with aid agencies standing accused of planning poorly, raising unrealistic expectations and simply being incompetent.
Tsunami prompts companies to play greater role in humanitarian relief efforts
CALANG, Indonesia (AP) _ Mike Gray spends most days as Rolls-Royce’s regional director selling jet engines to the Indonesian military or compression systems to oil companies across the country’s vast archipelago. But since the tsunami, the 54-year-old Briton with a boyish face has assumed a new role: spurring corporate relief efforts.
Tsunami’s environmental wreckage still huge, but human impact is even bigger
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia (AP) _ There’s enough tsunami trash in this Indonesian city to make a three-story-high pile covering 30 football fields. In Sri Lanka, the volume of waste dumped in lagoons and waterways is more than twice what was generated by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, by U.N. estimate. The environmental devastation in the worst-hit countries is immense, yet experts say it pales in comparison with what humans had already managed to inflict before the giant waves struck on Dec. 26, 2004.
Three months later, tsunami death toll steadies, but questions linger over accuracy, identities
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia (AP) _ The unmarked box sits in the corner of an Indonesian Red Cross office in a former Mitsubishi auto showroom. Inside, small sandwich bags hold what’s known about a few of the dead. There’s a government ID card issued to Junaidi Usman Banta, a 24-year-old fisherman. And there’s a mud-splattered wallet that indicates a man known only as Irwansyah voted last year and could afford a car.
After 3-week search for daughter in tsunami-devastated Indonesia, parents rejoice
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia (AP) _ The last time Amiruddin saw his shy 7-year-old daughter was three weeks ago when the tsunami snatched her away.In the chaos of flash floods, as the family scrambled toward the roof of their home, a utility pole fell, separating Putri from her mother. “We went to the roof and I couldn’t find her,” said the mother, Hernini. Like her husband and many others here, she has one name.The waters had barely receded when the family began its search for Putri, checking first among the corpses in the streets of their city, Lhokseumawe.
Peaceful protests by Buddhist monks catch the military rulers of Myanmar off guard
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ Armed only with upturned begging bowls, chanting Buddhist monks in Myanmar have caught the country’s military rulers off guard with their peaceful protests. They have emboldened the public to take to the streets by the thousands to support the most dramatic anti-government protests the isolated Southeast Asian nation has seen in a decade.
Paranoid and xenophobic, Myanmar junta leaders only know force in dealing with critics
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ Hunkered down in war rooms hundreds of miles from mass protests, the aging, hard-line generals in Myanmar are known as a suspicious lot who view the West with disdain and rely on browbeaten advisers and astrologers to guide them. Much like Myanmar’s former kings, they see themselves as the only ones capable of ruling, and their army as the only force that can transform the country into a modern state.
Accused terrorist in Indonesia remains free, a hero for many poor Muslims
CIANJUR, Indonesia (AP) _ Abu Bakar Ba’asyir is accused of helping plan bomb blasts at U.S. embassies and running a militant organization that wants to overthrow secular governments and establish a pan-Islamic state in Southeast Asia. But in an interview with The Associated Press, the bearded cleric challenged the United States to make its case against him, and warned that jailing him would provoke the ire of Muslims.
AP Exclusive: Terror suspects linked to Bali bombings and al-Qaida elude police, plan new attacks
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Two of Asia’s most wanted terrorists are armed with explosives and planning fresh attacks on Western hotels and banks _ possibly disguising themselves as beggars and receiving shelter from fellow radicals, officials told The Associated Press. Malaysians Azahari bin Husin and Noordin Mohammed Top _ both alleged leaders of the al-Qaida-linked Southeast Asian terror network Jemaah Islamiyah and believed to have been key players in last year’s Bali bombings that killed 202 people _ are the target of a massive manhunt following their narrow escape from a police dragnet in the West Javanese city of Bandung on Oct. 31.
Bali in shock _ flowers on blast site, lack of security on island
BALI, Indonesia (AP) _ The corpses were gone and the search for victims was over. But beer bottles and a pair of scorched tennis shoes still littered the streets of the once-thriving neighborhood laid to waste by a pair of terrorist explosions. Two days after the bombs went off, dozens of onlookers pressed against yellow crime-scene tape Monday to get a look at the wreckage where 180 people were killed. Investigators and detectives sifted through glass, brick and twisted metal scattered through the streets.
Village struggles with loss of drivers killed in Bali blast
KEPAON, Indonesia (AP) _ This was a village of taxi drivers, home to men who hauled tourists across Bali from nightclub to nightclub. There was no glamour to the job, but it put food on the table and was safe _ until the deadly terrorist bomb blasts at Kuta beach. The Oct. 12 bombings killed nearly 200 people, including six cabbies and an ice cream delivery driver from Kepaon.
Rugby team decimated in Bali blast searches for answers, says goodbyes
BALI, Indonesia (AP) _ Staring blankly at the pile of rubble that once housed the Sari Club, Peter Chworowsky shook his head and hugged his fellow rugby players. Teammate Kelvin Bezuidenhout sobbed as a group of Balinese threw rose petals on the site of Saturday’s bomb blast. Behind the charred remains of a nearby pub, someone sang “Amazing Grace.”
Indonesia revels in 5-year-old democracy but still waits for the payoff
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Dedy, a gaunt news vendor with a weary smile, should be thriving in the new Indonesia. Five years after the Suharto dictatorship fell, his selection of newspapers has tripled, dishing out a steamy stew of political scandal, celebrity gossip and grisly crime _ “Mob Beats Thief, Cuts Off His Hand,” “Prosecutor Calls Entire Provincial Parliament Corrupt.”
Indonesian parties offer cash, free circumcisions ahead of presidential vote
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Walking past open sewers and crowded tenements, the campaign organizer for President Megawati Sukarnoputri pointed to a glistening white and beige mosque, boasting that her party spent 15 million rupiah (US$1,600) to renovate it. The Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle has also handed out rice, instant noodles and fish in this impoverished north Jakarta neighborhood, Kaprawi said proudly, and plans to offer free circumcisions for boys, a Muslim tradition but often too expensive for Indonesia’s poor.
Acting for US, Thais detain alleged Russian arms smuggler known as `Merchant of Death’
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ A Russian dubbed the “Merchant of Death” for allegedly supplying weapons to Africa’s bloody conflicts over power and diamonds was arrested Thursday in Thailand on suspicion of conspiring to smuggle guns to Colombia’s leftist rebels.
Viktor Bout, 41, whose dealings reportedly inspired a 2005 movie about the illicit arms trade, was arrested at U.S. request in his hotel room in Bangkok, said police Lt. Gen. Pongpat Chayapan. Bout had eluded arrest for years and was finally seized after a four-month sting organized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.
Critics say deposed Thai leader used power to benefit business empire, enrich his family
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ When fallen Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra endorsed a multimillion dollar government loan to Myanmar two years ago, it was billed as a chance to help the impoverished country finance construction and telecommunications projects using Thai suppliers.What the billionaire tycoon neglected to mention was that the US$97 million in low-interest assistance would also benefit Shin Corp., a telecommunications conglomerate controlled by his family which already was doing business with Myanmar’s military junta.
Swimsuit poses problem for Miss Universe hopeful from Muslim Indonesia
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ Artika Sari Devi looks the part of a beauty queen with her million-dollar smile and hourglass figure. And she dreams of becoming Indonesia’s first Miss Universe. There is only one thing holding her back _ a swimsuit.
Poverty, economic troubles overshadow East Timor’s first anniversary of independence
DILI, East Timor (AP) _ A year after independence, dozens of burned-out buildings dot East Timor’s capital _ haunting reminders of the country’s bloody history. Unemployed men hang out on Dili street corners hawking phone cards, oranges and cigarettes. In the countryside, residents live on as little as 55 cents a day. Clean water and electricity are luxuries most do without The impoverished state of this half-island has cast a shadow over celebrations planned for Tuesday, its first anniversary of independence.