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BEIJING -- Gunpowder was merely one of the four major inventions of ancient China.

Even an amateur director of the Olympic opening ceremony could have supplied the special effects for that one. Fireworks.

The organizers had to be a little more creative for the other three -- papermaking, movable type and the compass.


They pulled it off with some beautiful music, with eight minutes at the end by young Chinese pianist Lang Lang.

They later had a tribute to the kite, but they didn’t count it as one of the country’s great inventions.

-- Randy Harvey