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Children make toy block constructions at an animation show in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province. Traditional construction toys remained the top sellers on Amazon China's 2013 toy sales list, accounting for 25 percent of last year's sales. Li Zhong / for China Daily

A toy story

Smarter toys for smarter girls and boys.Traditional playthings are perhaps becoming a thing of the past in China, as technology advances globally and incomes rise nationally. Shi Jing and Wei Tian in Shanghai report.

Experts blast Hagel over'destabilizing'accusations

Holiday Focus

Research divines the economics of play

China's toys and games industry boomed in pace with the economy from 2006 to 2012.

Auto Special: Volkswagen buckles up child safety

Holiday International and Comment

Abducted Chinese tourist freed

Two women, including a Chinese national, who were kidnapped on the Malaysian island of Borneo in early April have been freed with no ransom demanded by the abductors, Malaysian media reported.

Vietnam must take responsibility for escalating tensions in South China Sea

State Department says suicide bomber in Syria was US citizen

IN BRIEF (Page 4)

Holiday People

An honest living

For more than 2,000 years, traders in China have been using a type of scale known as a "steelyard" for weighing commodities of all kinds, including grain, livestock and vegetables. While more sophisticated weighing technologies have since been invented, many traders still use steelyards, particularly in small towns and villages, relying on their accurate measurements for their daily business.

The tale of the Peacock Princess

Holiday Image

Through the eyes of children

Poverty did not prevent children from taking good photographs that touched the hearts of audiences.

Holiday Read

More help awaits left-behind children

China trains social workers to meet demands of welfare expansion in nearly 50 cities

Depression hits teenagers, therapy uncommon: Survey

Housing gift this month

A friend to the lost

Holiday Trend

Theater screens filmed over with 3-D

Zhang Bing's most satisfying and exciting film-viewing experience this year has been the Hollywood blockbuster The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which hit the screens on May 4, right after the three-day Labor Day holiday. More surprising is its ticket price - just 20 yuan ($3.20). "It's that cheap because the theater (where it was released) opened recently," says Zhang who works as a clerk in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province. Zhang is among those Chinese moviegoers who make it a point to go to the cinema whenever a film they consider intriguing is released.

Holiday Business

Connectivity helping to drive up demand for new autos in China

Automobiles and the Internet are two revolutionary inventions to greatly change people's lives and promote society's development over the past century.

Taxi booking mobile apps taking off

Holiday Travel

Bridge still stands over troubled water

At the start of the Sui Dynasty (AD 581-618), when the country was unified after 300 years of chaos, the Zhaoxian county of Hebei province was a key route that linked the north and south. However the crossroad was often blocked by the Jiaohe River, especially during flood season. So the idea to build a bridge across the water was born. The Zhaozhou Bridge, locally nicknamed Dashiqiao, "big stone bridge", is built between AD 605 and 618, and is now one of the oldest and most renowned stone arch bridges in the world.

Lesser known Jinjiang delights with ancient touches

Qingdao Special

City looks to science to boost development

Authorities in Qingdao, a coastal city and economic hub in Shandong province, expect science and technology to play a more important role in driving local growth, according to the city's science and technology bureau.

Laoshan district nurtures technology innovation

Qingdao's industries on track for rapid growth

Entrepreneur Special

Shoppers in a strange land

When Sheila Zhang, who has lived in the United States for 20 years, returned to Beijing in 2011 she found shopping online to be problematic.

Entrepreneur Special

Paying it back

From a country boy to the leader of a multi-faceted company, Han Xuechen believes that a sense of commitment to society is crucial to success.