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UNITED DAILY NEWS (Taiwan)

Worldcrunch

BEIJING- There's a new iPhone app circulating in Beijing that breaks a new barrier in cool convenience, and it comes with a rather awesomely descriptive name: “Yaoyao-zhaoche,” which translates from Chinese as shake-shake cab-calling.

According to the United Daily News, after downloading the app and establishing a paypal minimum balance, a quick shake connects the GPS function on your iPhone to participating cab companies. Within 30 seconds, the client will receive a text message informing him of the nearest car’s model, number plate and driver’s name, phone number and the time it will take to arrive. If the client confirms the information, the deal is done.

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Beijing taxis (Herry Lawford)

Once the client gets in the cab, the fee is calculated automatically based on the time and the distance of the journey as tracked by your phone. The charge is then automatically deducted from the client’s Paypal account.

It is the latest attempt to disrupt the traditional system for calling, hailing and paying for cabs, joining the likes of US-based Uber cab.

Currently, this Chinese cab calling system is restricted to only iPhone holders, but the Yaoyao zhaoche company said that they are soon expecting to launch the same service for Android phones. Seeing the good response to this new service system, taxi firms in other Chinese cities such as Hangzhou and Qingdao are already following suit.

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Society

Colombia Celebrates Its Beloved Drug For The Ages, Coffee

This essential morning drink for millions worldwide was once considered an addictive menace, earning itself a ban on pain of death in the Islamic world.

Colombia's star product: coffee beans.

Julián López de Mesa Samudio

-Essay-

BOGOTÁ — October 1st is International Coffee Day. Recently it seems as if every day of the calendar year commemorates something — but for Colombia, coffee is indeed special.

For almost a century now we have largely tied our national destiny, culture and image abroad to this drink. Indeed it isn't just Colombia's star product, it became through the course of the 20th century the world's favorite beverage — and the most commonly used drug to boost work output.

Precisely for its stimulating qualities — and for being a mild drug — coffee was not always celebrated, and its history is peppered with the kinds of bans, restrictions and penalties imposed on the 'evil' drugs of today.

Keep reading...Show less

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