The first thing I forgot to mention was the fact Taiwan, is known as Chinese Taipei during the opening ceremony. They were not allowed to parade with their actual national flag, but they used a Chinese Taipei team flag. This apparently falls under the One China policy, were they do not recognize Taiwan as a entity by itself.
Lastly, the Chinese used rain dispersal rockets as my friend Jenny brought to my attention. Basically they load these rockets with special chemicals to induce raining before the clouds can reach downtown Beijing. The Chinese have also been experimenting with “cloud seeding”, which entails creating clouds and consequentially rain to clear the skies of smog. Beijing plans to keep many factories closed and take over half of the city’s cars off the road to reduce pollution.