In the late 70's China was an awakening giant; decades of depressing self sufficiency theories left the country technologically, industrially and agriculturally backward. By 1975, Chou En Lai and Deng Tsao Ping recognized a renaissance of technology and open economy was required Achieving those goals required engagement with the U.S. to replicate, leapfrog and provide a starter engine. The engine which had accelerated the West's economies was the ubiquitous computer. How was China to get one?
The United States strictly controlled the export of computers to the Communist world, particularly since the Korean War.
The world leader in computers, IBM, was sought and responded. This book presents IBM and China's one year 1977 struggle in Beijing to write a contract that unleashed IBM's, China's and the U.S.'s restraints on computer exports and delivered China's first large-scale computer in 1978. The book presents the basis for China's ensuing economic boom. It tells a story of humor, strife and of lasting personal bonds. It reveals the mishaps of cross-cultural negotiation. And... it reveals how the Chinese plan for modern computer education was hidden in computer purchase.
Three Chinese engineers - Messer's Wu, Mu and Shu - and two American IBM'ers enabled that deception and bridged the cultural gap. IBM now has thousands of employees in its Greater China organization and billions in revenue. China has a thriving Information Management industry and connection to the world through the internet all starting with this seed.