The Scent of Green Papaya

Scent of papaya cover

Vietnamese Peer Review of “The Scent of Green Papaya”-James Cote

The scent of green papaya is a great story of the life of a serving girl in central Vietnam.  Her masters are textile creators and have clearly done well for themselves as they have a very nice home in central Saigon.  Many aspects of life are incorporated in this film especially family values and loyalty. Since the story takes place over the course of the main characters life, a girl named Mui, it takes some time and characters undergo changes throughout. The start of the film includes the introduction of Mui’s masters and her day to day chores such as preparing meals and cleaning of all sorts of things. While she goes about her tasks she is either completely ignored as is more often the case or tormented by the youngest son of the family who enjoys playing tricks and making her life miserable by forcing her to re-do work she already has done by spilling buckets dropping things on the ground and more.  As the story progresses and Mui becomes more of a “member” of the family these incidents stop and the story focuses more on dialogue and interaction between Mui and the family she serves.  Music is a constant throughout the movie, often strings of the Mandolin can be heard and the father of the family is found to be playing it at the beginning of the film.  The mandolin adds an element of calm and serenity to the otherwise not so lavish life style of Mui  as the film progresses the mandolin is truly the only thing that remains constant, besides the green papayas growing in the central garden of the house. While all this is going on there is one almost haunting and foreboding aspect of the movie is the threat of the war with America, air sirens and other large aircraft can be heard throughout the film constantly reminding the viewer of the war. Time passes, the father of the household eventually dies, the mother takes to prayer, and the two eldest sons leave the household, which causes Mui to switch families when she is older.  She eventually catches the eye of a friend of her old household and he takes her as his own, ending his engagement with another woman. He teaches her how to be a lady and how to act in society and everyone lives happily ever after. Overall the story is one of family and family values, of who belongs and what belonging to a family means.

Official Review

The film is highly culture based and focuses on the lifestyles of the people in Vietnam. The imagery used focuses on the people and the scenery around them but mostly on expression which is very difficult to capture in Asian films. Many of the scenes involve small interactions between one or two people and the one thing extremely noticeable about the Vietnamese people is that they do not speak much. This is very good acting and shows the actors true understanding of their people.  The imagery at use in this movie is fantastic and a true representation of Saigon and Vietnam as a whole. The city is not very pretty but the homes are beautiful and try to show off the nature of the country.  The dialogue is accurate in both terms of language and mannerisms, the Vietnamese do not speak often but when they do it is normally for good reasons either instruction or meaningful conversation however they do not talk when they do not need to. This is a common aspect of Asian films and the Vietnamese display it perfectly especially early in the film where Mui is practically a mute not talking to any of the family except the elder servant and the mother of the family.  While the film did fall short on the lighting and vividness of the scenes being captured this may be due to lack of current technology which certainly explains why it is so hard to actually see the characters in dark scenes. They use these scenes to their advantage however holding a decent amount of conversations in the night time. Many of the most important scenes are at night enforcing the lifestyle of work during the day and have discussions over tea at night. All the cultural aspects of the film were accurate and overall the only thing that may have needed improvement was the lighting during these dark scenes. I enjoy being able to actually see a character in the dark not watching conversations between silhouettes.


Movie Poster:

I chose the image for this based off of the best elements in Vietnamese media trends. After watching the film the decision for using the young version of Mui was necessary as it does take up a majority of the film and I felt was by far a better image than any of the adult scenes as they are a great deal darker than the earlier scenes.  As I have examined local preferences many of the more popular websites have landscape imagery incorporated in their site. This led to the use of a scene where the lead character is depicted in the internal garden of the home she serves in.  The green papayas growing there are one of the first things she interacts with in her new home.   Mui appears happy in this image, this is not always the case during the film however her face which shows a surprising lack of emotion sometimes does shift when expressing gratitude or content.  Images of People are not altogether normal in Vietnamese mass media however images accompanying text are. This led to the decent, some would say excessive amount of text I incorporated into my design. However I knew if I was to use text I would have to make sure focus is not drawn away from the characters face. In order to do this I took the title and put into the upper left corner, this being a popular area for logos and titles to appear is an ideal choice for this especially considering what else I had to think about. The Vietnamese are a text heavy people, so instead of just using the title of the movie I also incorporated the two actresses to play Mui along the right side.  To add even more text to the image I decided to add the director into the lower left corner to show respect and fill the poster even more.  The coloring was the most difficult part of the poster; I needed to use text which would pop to the Vietnamese and according to my research that would be either red or yellow. Neither of these colors are ideal for text, I attempted to use red however a vibrant red made the text impossible to read and the dark red wouldn’t work with the shadows from the foliage in the background also making them illegible. Yellow was the logical choice at that point, however it was not nearly as clear as I wish it was. In order to make it more legible I darkened it to a slightly orange-ish color and left it at that, other colors would not have been as effective and I do feel that the placement of the title and that of the director are more important than the actresses’ whose last name may not be as legible as hoped.  The picture does the film justice I think and honestly with its eye catching yellow title and the photo is that of the characters face and not on a vague reference such as the green papayas used in the film should be great at grabbing attention and inspiring interest.




Vietnam Greeting card

This assignment asks us to create a greeting card from our nation being researched and to highlight a holiday which is celebrated. Immediately when one thinks of Vietnam the words”Tet-offensive” spring to the front of the mind of most middle aged adults, this was the day we lost the Vietnam war. The holiday itself is known as Tet and is the celebration of the lunar new year. As a brief history lesson the Tet offensive was so named because in the days leading up to Tet hundreds of Vietnamese flock to what used to be Saigon, it is also a largely established tradition to bury loved ones in the city on the holiday. So in the days leading up to Tet in 1968 hundreds of Vietnamese flocked to the city with caskets to bury their dead and celebrate the new year, however the Vietcong hidden among the common people had brought caskets not full of bodies but full of weapons. A series of attacks occurred which soon led to the fall of the city and the loss of the war.  Tet however is still Tet, a celebration of new beginnings  and the promise of tomorrow. In order to create a greeting card I thought would be found in Vietnam I stuck to what I knew about the Vietnamese from the research I have gathered about their aesthetics. They like to keep things simple, beautifully simple in fact. I have seen several print ads advertising the holiday showing families and the symbol for Tet red coloring. However the assignment was also supposed to feature the country, and a simple photograph of a family with the Tet symbol would not suffice. Instead I highlighted what most Vietnamese focus on when it comes to beauty in their country and that is their countryside. In this case I chose a beach, partially because I’m biased more towards the water than the jungles of Vietnam and because the beaches are a massive tourist attraction. In the corner is a simple message in Vietnamese “Welcome to Vietnam, please join us for our new-year celebration!”. Going against my design instincts I used a red coloration on the text as that seems to be a running theme to use red text in almost every example of art I have seen. The photograph of this beach is a perfect representation for how beautiful this country is and I think it is the perfect pull for a greeting card. I could look at this landscape for several minutes without noticing the text and thinking “God I want to go there, it looks so nice, oh that beach and the water look perfect in comparison to the dreary weather we have here around January”. I wanted to keep the card elegantly simple, a sentence or two is all that is needed and since the Vietnamese people seem to approve of text based sites the use of the text is truly necessary as otherwise a key component to the Vietnamese aesthetic style would have been lost. Yes the text does draw away from the beauty of the photograph however after reviewing the websites I have seen from Vietnam it was necessary for text to be included and to be red.

Movies in Vietnamese Culture

oh saigon 220px-The_Rebel_poster

Part of the research into the media which is developed in Vietnam is a study of the cinema which is produced there,  due to it being a small third-world country the amount of movies produced and view-able in today’s modern world is limited as Vietnam isn’t necessarily at the forefront of the cinema industry as much as Hollywood or Bollywood. Instead the films are often small and done by families who enlist family members to portray characters, there are several families which dominate the industry and have produced a few good films which have grabbed the attention of the world. More common are movies about Vietnam produced in America most notably among these are war movies such as Forrest Gump  or Deer Hunter.   However these movies do not accurately portray the countries as they are intentionally biased towards the American Audience and our perspective of the war, however i did find a movie directed by a Vietnamese director but produced in America. The movie is titled Oh Saigon (2007)and while it does focus on the war in Vietnam it tells the tale of a family which is struggling during the war, accosted by both sides of the conflict the family must struggle with the decision to stay or leave Saigon, the capital of Vietnam where they have lived their entire lives. The aesthetics of the movie are meant to appear old, displaying the lives of these Vietnamese people with accurate footage displaying Saigon and  well known Vietnam war images as well.  It is a deep and emotional movie, very slow in most cases documenting the events leading up the families evacuation from the city.  This film being produced by Americans is very well done and while it is made in america it still focuses heavily on the Vietnamese people and not on the soldiers of the United States. This film highlights how much family means to the Vietnamese people, this is a theme known throughout the indo-pacific, strong ties to family and loyalty to their country is a strong theme shown in their aesthetics. Many of the websites and advertisements i have viewed display this pride in their country by incorporating red and gold into the design somewhere, this point is later reitterated with the end of the movie displaying the proud symbol of vietnam.

In Contrast another movie filmed in 2007 called The Rebel  or ” Dong Mau Anh Hung” is completely filmed, produced, and written in Vietnam.  It is an action movie much to my delight and focuses on the time where France was attempting to colonize Vietnam back in the 1920s. Vietnam has been under constant threat from other countries during its entire existence, this is due to its location on the coast and the prospect of being a great trading area. The french attempted to subdue the people of Vietnam and as a result just as with the U.S invasion, many rebel groups began to appear in Vietnam. This movie follows not a Vietnamese rebel but rather a cultured french Vietnamese man who works with the colonists to extend their rule over the peninsula. During this however he meets a young rebel women who he soon develops feelings for and eventually becomes a fugitive rebel fighter as well after discovering she is in danger from a mole in her organisation. The movie is full of martial arts which is what drew me to it initially as  a martial artist myself i found myself smiling as the fights progressed and the origins of my own martial arts back then known as Te and now known as Karate. This movie was extremely well done being filmed in Vietnam villages on location no recreations the movie is very good at puting you in colonial Vietnam. The villages, clothing, images of agriculture combined with the all Vietnamese actors really allows a Vietnamese audience to identify with the characters. Especially the rebels in the films, the Vietnamese paint these as heroes  and reminds the audience of the fact that Vietnam has always been in conflict with foreign powers first with Japan in ancient times, then France in the 1920s and then America during the Vietnam War.  This streak of independence and willingness to fight is characteristic of the Vietnamese people, however their fear of what might happen if they are wrong is also clearly on display in the lead character of the film as he struggles within himself to obey the law of the occupants or to fight alongside his countrymen. This film truly defines the need for these people to be left alone, and how they will fight to defend their independence no matter the cost, it shows their intense sense of national pride and sense of self as Vietnamese people.The coloring of the film is surprisingly vibrant, but then most action movies are and there is definite evidence that the films of Vietnam draw inspiration from Hollywood enhancing action scenes vividly before withdrawing to make the scenes indoors seem dark and muted. This coloring and effects in this movie are wonderful combining beautiful nature scenes with great action sequences i highly recommend it.

Snapshot p.247



For years now, ever since i was younger my family has been vacationing to Orlando, Florida. I am truly blessed to be able to do this with my family, most of the times we fly down, rent a car, and stay at a hotel for seven to ten days. We have a unique balance of just resting by the pool and exploring theme parks. The theme parks of Orlando including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, and Sea World are amazing places to go, each one offers its own unique style to tourists year round. My family however considers ourselves veterans of the whole affair and have our vacations almost down to a science. We tend to stay at Universal Studios Hotels, we find the food and entertainment available is higher quality than that of the Walt Disney World resorts. Another added bonus of these resorts is that all three of them are within walking distance of Universal City walk and the two theme parks.  I think however my favorite part about staying at these hotels is the early access to the parks and the fast passes which come with the room. This is a clever marketing scheme by universal actually as it allows people to get to the parks early, fly through all the rides multiple times and then go back to the hotel and spend money on food and drinks or go to City Walk and shop there at the stores.  Its the hour and a half early opening for those staying at the hotels which allows for an interesting look at the parks, this is especially true if there is a brand new attraction at the park. Everyone swarms to the new attraction because they know it will be jammed up later with a wait time of over an hour and a half which no one wants to stand in. So was the case last summer when we visited for ten days, the new Transformers 4D ride had opened up, my brother and I were interested so we made sure to wake up early, grab breakfast from the buffet i grabbed my coffee and we set off, we got into the park with the first twenty or so people and went on the ride which in my opinion wasn’t very special, admittedly the imagery and effects were great however it paled into comparison with the coasters that are offered. After this my brother and i decided to wander the park, it was empty. Every alleyway, every street,  every walk way and every line was completely empty. It was stunning and i had to take a picture of my brother, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity, on vacation in a park there are always other people about to draw attention away from the center of the image and the rest of the shot, this photo was taken outside the Terminator 2 experience, and is normally packed with tourists, its almost impossible to walk from one end to the other without at least one near collision it is that full. However at this particular time it was completely empty and i wanted to capture an image of the sheer emptiness which i have never seen before. I thought the movie style backdrop was perfect and my brothers stance is priceless, completely laid back, at ease and a bit annoyed I’m making him stand in the middle of an empty street for a photo. The shining sun shows how amazing the day was and it was a great early start which we thoroughly enjoyed. We don’t get to spend all day with each other like we used to and so when we do we like to make it memorable and do something special, a combination of waking up early without our parents and the knowledge of the park layout allowed us to do everything which we wanted to do including several rides multiple times as the lines were completely empty.  I love the atmosphere of Universal Studios, the entire movie media scene is all one big advertisement, one big fantasy world, a beautiful representation of what fun means to Americans. Colorful, loud, exciting, and busy are all words i use to describe an Americans version of fun and Universal Studios embodies every aspect of it.

Snapshot pg 168 Game Time!

pats game

In perhaps one of the greatest examples of people being photographed in a way to represent what they are celebrating in a massive event is a sports event. Sports are a perfect example of dressing up for an occasion and following strict guidelines for having an amazing time. If you want to be part of the masses then you have to be prepared and in New England that means Jerseys and multiple layers. Representing New England above are the Bruschi twins Tim Shaw and James Cote, as well as the rest of Tim’s family that does what hundreds of new Englanders do every football season Tailgating and enjoying a great game. Navy Blue and Silver and White and Grey are very common colors, the occasional red is represented too when people have the legacy jersey’s. In the cold of new England, fashionable winter gear is not necessarily needed however it doesn’t hurt to have a good  North face on hand, and under armor against cold is always a good idea to stay warm.  Sports fans everywhere represent their teams by wearing their various uniforms, the uniforms themselves are gorgeous in design and some very promising improvements are well on the way. Concepts for these new uniforms found here( and below show off a team’s colors in new fantastic ways which will allow for a greater spectacle of variation upon variation of some of the greatest color schemes in the world. Uniforms always have a great blend of color, there are no truly ugly uniforms in the professional sports around the world each uniform is carefully designed to not only have colors but a color scheme they can use in hundreds of ways.  Not only do sports teams have a color but normally an image associated with it, the New England Patriots have what we call “The Flying Elvis” a minuteman crouched over a ball is also a well associated image and helps to increase the ways to represent a team.  Other popular images used are intimidating animals which are fierce predators you probably won’t find a team called the rabbits ; these add an intimidation factor to each uniform and allow colors to behave not necessarily as person but as a force, red is very effective however any bright color when applied to a large crowd. This allows for a massive amount of advertisements as everybody wants to get a picture with their friends and family before a game, it shows a relationship between people as they cheer on their respective teams and become a part of an amazing atmosphere where what colors you wear decide how you will behave, this particular game was against the Pittsburgh Steelers and it was supposed to get blisteringly cold, but noonday sun and afternoon skies were bright and clear that day allowing for some great tailgating. Once the game began we soon realized a few seats away were some very enthusiastic Steelers fans, representing their team in bright yellow outfits they were fairly alone in a swarm of blues and grey of the surrounding New Englanders. They were not too happy as the Patriots proceeded to dominate the entire game, it seemed every time I sat down I would jump up again as the team scored again and again part of the mass of Blue which defines Gillette Stadium when the patriots are home where they belong.  afc-east



What I was trying to accomplish with this postcard was capturing the most beautiful part of all of Rhode Island. Beaver tail park is a place extremely close to my heart and the location that this picture that I found is one that I recognize as I have literally walked over those rocks thousands of times before, the image itself is a decent amount larger and is part of a series of pictures however I thought this was the most beautiful purely for my connection to it. I love this park, it is an amazing place where the sea meets the rocks and the waves pound in your ears. The rush of the wind as it comes off the sea, the pure clean air and the amazing view. Sunsets at theis park are truly a marvel to behold and every second is spent in complete and total relaxation and bliss. It is one of the most romantic places on earth as well as I have witnessed multiple marriages occur there on the bluffs of the vcliffs over looking the sea. The pools at the base of the cliffs have abundant wildlife, hundreds of crabs and other invertebrates call those pools home and you will often find children and adults alike chasing after an elusive crab as it buries itself under the rocks.  I am trying to draw the attention of people not from Rhode island or from central Rhode Island because this truly is a tranquil place, and only fifteen minutes away from Jamestown and a little bit farther from Newport there is good food and a good mood only a short trip away. There is a beach nearby as well called Mackerel Cove and you can literally see it from the bluffs, I spent a lot of time here and plan to spend even more in the future, going from the beach to the cliffs to the nearby amazing seafood restaurants is one of the fondest parts of my recent memories. Every one of those days was happy because near the ocean that is where I and many people are most relaxed, it’s like a miniature paradise, a little slice of heaven with nature all around. Everyone who has grown up in the nearby vicinity of the park has been there and savored its fantastic beauty, it is a valued fishing spot and even has a nice little aquarium showing off some of the local species and others that have been swept up the coast from Florida. It truly is a marvelous place and has a special place in many hearts around New England, it is however fairly remote and as it is on the edge of our coast overlooking the sea there are many places like it, but to me this one  spot on the coast is where I feel all the stress of the world melt away, its almost magical. Trying to capture something with that kind of power in a photograph is impossible, hopefully this is compelling enough to spark a few visits to this special place in my heart.

Print Ads!

HIV ad print ad 4 print ad 5 print ad Toyota vietnam

Observing print advertisements out of Vietnam two things immediately became apparent when comparing with the advertisements seen on websites. One is that Vietnamese advertisements are all extremely text based; most of the print ads have at least a few sentences in Vietnamese, and whole sentences not just brief slogans like American advertisements. These sentences may contain information about an upcoming event which is being advertised, that seems to be the most popular type of print ad I have found. At least two of the adverts I have found advertise New Year or Tet, which is the largest holiday in Vietnam.  Id classify these as high density advertisements as they have a decent amount of text with very little open white spaces, in fact only one advertisement has a great deal of white in it and what it lacks in images it makes up for in text with a descriptive paragraph which I cannot read.  However since it is a HIV testing advertisement, as the letters HIV stand out clearly on the page,it sends a clear message. The rest of the advertisements are not so clear and only after reading the description can I understand them. This is due to the language barrier which advertisements are supposed to be able to cross to be effective, however since these advertisements are print advertisements in papers and magazines I can understand how this is less relevant as they are specifically targeting the Vietnamese. The other pattern I picked up was the color scheme of the advertisements, this being almost all the time bright red coloration. The color red seems to have a special place in the Vietnamese people’s hearts. As the banner to rally behind to defeat the U.S.A in the war the red flag of Vietnam is a symbol of their pride and it translates all over their culture so that almost every advertisement or important message which needs to have attention drawn to it is in red.  The other part of the flag is the gold star of Vietnam, this gold or yellow is also reflected in the advertisements appearing as a backdrop for text or another image. These two colors are constants which I have remarked on before and it seems to continue to repeat itself in every advertisement I come across from that is out of Vietnam. Other advertisements in Vietnamese but not directly from Vietnam tend to use modern paint schemes many of these are from the U.S targeting the local Vietnamese populations and are easily identified by a logo in English probably from California as there is a substantial Veitnamese and Mongh presence. This allowed me to filter out the ones that are directly from Vietnam, the red and gold, and separate it from the American based blue and white advertisements. If one divides these ads into a thirds grid I noticed that the images tend to be center and slightly to the right or directly center with text either underneath or off to the left, this is again a consistency which extends across the advertisements.

Thirds Grid

Thirds grid

Upon adding each of the thirds grid to my snapshots of 30 homepages on Vietnamese websites it became very clear to me the general pattern of the sites.  Most of these sites are news sites and retail sites for appliances as a result most of the site is taken up by empty white, creating a low density trend which is apparent in the snapshot above, upon closer inspection it also became obvious that root menus and directories were also a large part of the sites, this is also expected in news sites due to the different categories news falls under and the many news stories that appear daily. The next piece of note was how much space images took up, i found that unless it is an appliance store the images do not take up a high amount of space as many of the images also use a white backdrop creating more of this white space.  Large images were rare but when they appear there is normally text over it creating pockets of high density on certain sites. Even when images are present they might fall into the navigational tabs as clicking on these pictures of items will then direct you to the page to buy said item or back to the home page, in fact when you think about it everything that you click on in a website takes you somewhere else its all a directory to sell a product or a story. While true directives appear mostly on the edges that aren’t taken up by advertisements or at the top of the website. These directories are helpful in navigating pages but without a thorough understanding of the language it is difficult to understand where each directory is taking you.

A rather large amount of space i noticed was taken up by advertisements, along the sides and at the top of the page and in the upper right hand corner were popular places for boxes of advertisements to appear. Every single page has advertisements, its how sites make money and stay up. The more a page is viewed the more advertisements on a site and the more people will see whatever is being advertised. The next piece that was obvious was who the companies were, almost all of the sites had a logo or name in the upper right hand corner, nearly without exception this was the case .Each of these logos tended to have a direct tie to the color scheme of the entire site, nearly without fail the colors used in the logo repeat itself over the text, headings navigation tabs. The consistency which with these sites are designed is extremely interesting as they can almost be said to be exactly the same based off which product your looking for be it news, appliances, games and other desirable items.  I cant tell if this is purely because of a lack of imagination or if the sites use the same templates for each site or if web design simply hasn’t taken off in Vietnam, all i see are constant patterns which can be easily picked out if one takes the time to look.

Cultural Site Presentation

For Presentation Use these 10



My three local sites were taken from both Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi businesses, each of these has very vibrant colors and eye grabbing advertisements which does help with the analysis of the culture i find almost more than the businesses. Cause while Businesses have a specific theme they have in mind with a very strict color scheme advertisements are meant to grab the eye and this can only be done to a target audience if the colors are meaningful and an incentive in one form or another. In the case of vietnam the most common advertisements that i noticed were red with a yellow background or yellow with a red background this may be due to the countries flag, red with a gold star, this is a repetitive theme across all the sites i have visited. Otherwise the sites are very visual and highly dense in content, not a lot of open spaces at least not for the local businesses.


These sites are a collection of news sites, the vietnamese like other people in developing countries are hungry for news of the rest of the world. They spend a lot of time on news sites and thus there are many vietnamese online news sources. Each of these sites has one thing that ties them together, red text. A lot of white background to the sites, not many pictures and a lot of red text for the main news stories.  Again advertisements make their presence known with their red and yellow color schemes.  This red consistency really shines through in these sites.  Each of these sources lacks a lot of pictures which you normally associate with news sites, especially in todays modern world where we have amazing photographs which can grab a reader’s attention far easier than brightly colored text. However putting text into a web code is far easier than adding images with correct spacing and such, so it is not surprising that these are text dominated sites.



My international and wildcard sites are interesting to say the least as they seem to rebel against the color schemes of the rest of the country. This is due to the fact that the international corporations stick to their own color schemes and styles, the only difference is the imagery and the text. Pepsico for instance only has a link to their job application site and while the american site is dominated by a Pepsico logo this logo plays a very small role in the vietnamese site. The Burger King site is interesting however, it definitely plays towards the vietnamese style with a bright pink background, obviously not red however still playing towards their style and the couple featured is most definitely asian. Baby love also diverges from Vietnamese styling instead it looks almost distinctly western european no red text or red and yellow together in a asian style. The water park is my wildcard and is located in central Ho Chi Minh city and is a leading tourist attraction as well as a local way to escape the heat of the city. While the color scheme is clearly water park in style there is still the red and yellow text on the right hand side as a directory, saying “look here and navigate”.

Homepage Montage

By densityby color

By Color                                                                                                  By Density

Multi national

Exploring a culture relies heavily on what the people are interested in in their free time.  Several articles have lead me to the conclusion that the Vietnamese spend much of their time on the internet exploring what is happening in the world around them through news sites. This thirst for knowledge is normal for a developing country and as a result the cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are full of technological stores offering all the comforts that are offered in the United States, these include plenty of stores dedicated to laptops, cell phones, televisions, cameras, and other luxury items. Among these sites, blue and white seems to be a very popular theme with normally a splash of gold somewhere on the page. Each site has a vast array of things to sell, the currency “the dog” seems to have a very low value in comparison to other currencies around the world.   These stores are everywhere in both cities and seem to make up the majority of businesses, it seems on every main road there are several technology stores or convenience stores selling modern day appliances for a lot of Dog. Prices are high because these items haven’t been in Vietnam long enough to become cheap, the same is true for Cars and most Vietnamese rely on bicycles, scooters, and small motor bikes.   Restaurants and Bakeries where the next websites I looked at, and not surprisingly these sites are covered in pictures of food with fairly easy to navigate pages to show where to order. Vietnamese style restaurants are covered in red and gold themes. This is probably due to the national flag of Vietnam, A gold star on a red background. The red is to represent the communist regime which took over Vietnam after the war with the United States.  For National Sites I chose a golf course and a bank as they are destinations for businessmen and women from around the world, the site is entirely in English but is only a little bit outside of Ho Chi Minh City, and it’s a gorgeous golf course. The bank of course has an easy translate option however has a fairly low density. Each of the sites is green and white themed with that tell-tale splash of gold which seems to be central to the Vietnamese style for websites. These gold splashes could be coming from their flag with that big gold star central to the idea it is what they are proud of, they don’t necessarily see the red of their flag, they see the single star as a symbol of their nations pride possibly as  the one country to stand against the United States and their Military.  The green of course is probably due to money for the bank and green grass for the golf course. We were also asked to look at international sites, sites which appear in different styles in different countries but are the same company. For this I chose PepsiCo, Burger King, and Baby Love as three sites which I knew would exist not only in Vietnam but also across the world. However what I was not prepared for was how different the sites were from the United States/European versions. Another observation about these sites was the amount of white that is present, in many of the sites shown above there is alot of empty spaces filled in with white, this is to be expected in a country whose websites are full of text as white is a good backdrop for text and doesn’t require any additional code as it is the default color.  High density pages are almost exclusive to sites with specific themes such as the golf, water park, bakery, and jewelry sites in the above snapshots these schemes are a way of promoting beauty and style instead of a bland white, its almost like an advertisement in and of itself saying “oh look at me, i have a color scheme, i’m fancy!” and it is a rarity in  Vietnam. Only a few sites have the money to afford the custom pages with a full color scheme instead many just go with the default white and empty boxes to fill in with pictures and text in different colors.