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Expo online goes live

VISITORS can now tour the World Expo Shanghai site from the comfort of their own homes and see almost all the pavilions and exhibits online.

The Expo organizer today launched the Expo Online Website at the seventh World Expo International Forum in Beijing. Users can preview the 2010 event at

Users can have a virtual tour of about 50 pavilions, including the five theme pavilions, where the organizer will elaborate on the "Better City, Better Life" Expo theme.

Other pavilions will be opened gradually on the Website according to the construction process at the Expo site, apart from those participants who want their exhibition plans to be a secret.

The English version will be launched at the beginning of next year.

All the pavilions of Expo Online participants will be open by May 1, the opening of the 2010 event.

So far, 217 participants have agreed to put their displays online, accounting for 90 percent of the total participants.

A highlight of the Expo Online is the "Future city" section, similar to the online role-playing games. Visitors can create a cartoon character and control it to tour around the Expo site.

Users can click on some exhibits to turn them around, as if they were holding them in their hands.

During the 184-day Expo, online visitors can also watch videos of performances being held at the site.

They can also ask mascot Haibao to be a tour guide on the virtual trip.

Visitors can also communicate with others in an online community.

They can share their experiences and provide tips for other Expo Online users as well as publicize their photos and videos. The organizer will retain the photos and videos on the Website.

The Expo Online is a "very good initiative" that can promote the Shanghai event worldwide, said Jean-Pierre Lafon, president of the International Expositions Bureau.

Expo Online can attract more visitors to Expo Shanghai and allow those who cannot visit the site to enjoy the science and technology showcase from their homes, said Vicente Loscertales, secretary general of the BIE.

The Website will be available after the 2010 event. The organizer aims to make the Expo Shanghai an "Expo that never dies."


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