DVD helps American tourists navigate Beijing

U student created a video tour guide after some mishaps abroad.

When David Lindeman traveled to Beijing to visit his brother, he had no idea of the cultural experiences and differences that awaited him.

“While in China, I experienced a very different way of life than I am used to in America. Shopping for a toothbrush, taking public transportation and communicating what foods I wanted to order were all a challenge,” he said.

Lindeman, a part-time marketing student in the College of Continuing Education , decided it would be helpful to create videos about his experiences to educate others about navigating Beijing .

Lindeman launched the website kangernova.com last semester after spending three months filming in China. The website offers footage of cultural activities from tai chi to kung fu , some lessons in basic phrases and foods.

A DVD is an extension of the website, with more than 300 phrases and download capabilities for all cell phone video devices, so they can be viewed on the go.

Office of Information Technology Digital Media Specialist Jamason Chen , who assisted Lindeman in editing, said as a native Chinese speaker, he liked that the website used a tourist’s perspective, not the perspective of an instructor.

“He brings his personal experience as a tourist, what American tourists really need to know. It is not from a Chinese perspective, it is not from an American instructor’s perspective, it is from the traveler,” he said. “I just helped him to finalize the product.”

Camdi restaurant in Dinkytown manager Kiet Phan sells Lindeman’s DVD at his establishment to help with promotions for the website.

“I have sold none, it’s been pretty slow,” he said.

Though he liked the sightseeing portion of the DVD, Phan said he would make some changes to make the product more interactive, such as having more dialogue procedures for using taxis and using younger, more attractive speakers to attract attention.

Lindeman said the increased interest with China as a country and a culture was the motive for crafting a tool to aid in understanding it.

“With a growth in China tourism and with the Olympics approaching, I really wanted to make it easier for first-time tourists and share the Chinese culture with people here in America,” he said.