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* Posts by Greg J Preece

2317 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Apple uncloaks top 10 tools of iOS 5

Greg J Preece
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"We're living in a post-PC world"

See, it's when people say stuff like that, that I have trouble taking anything else they say seriously. For all the shiny gadgets you can sell to people, offices are still packed with PCs, as are homes. They're still needed for a lot of computing tasks - for example, activating a tablet that can only be managed via a bloated piece of media software...

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Mac OS X Lion debuts in July as $29.99 upgrade

Greg J Preece
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Some interesting stuff

I like the sound of LaunchPad, and as a developer new APIs are always welcome. Listing the App Store as a new feature is a bit rich though, given not only that it's in Snow Leopard, but that you use it to run the upgrade.

The touchscreen blah-blah was inevitable - it's one of the computing industry's current gimmicks, after all. In about 5-10 years Apple will bring out a device with amazing new tactile response technology, called iButtons, and everyone will go mental for them.

Overall, it's likely that I'll upgrade anyway for the new developer kit, but it sounds interesting enough to be worth £30. When it comes to software, you can pay a lot more for a lot less.

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Sandi Toksvig puts the 'n' into cuts - on the Beeb

Greg J Preece
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FAIL

It's a word, get a sense of perspective

A word on its own can't hurt you, you fool.

CUNT! Anyone's ears bleeding? Skies falling? Nope? OK then...

Words are given impact by context, not spelling. Restricting what someone can say, or even imply, based on some puritan notion of there being "special words" is ridiculous at best, and marks you out as being quite narrow-minded and fragile.

By the way, I take great offence at the usage of the word "respectful", in any context, when used in conversation with me. As a result, I demand you remove the above post from the forums. Wouldn't want to be disrespectful now, would you? Think of the children!

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Gamers celebrate full return of PlayStation network

Greg J Preece
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Uh...huh...

Not that I like the X-box much, but did you *see* the way El Reg laid into the RROD problem? You really do come across as a fanboy in your post. Someone had a go at PSN? Obviously they're X-box adoring shills.

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Greg J Preece
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It's not there yet

I read an article somewhere else - the PSN store is back but the Welcome Back package is yet to launch. Another couple of days to wait. PSN+ bonus membership time has been extended from 60 to 70 days.

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Greg J Preece
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Oh good, snobbery

Do only the poor, unfortunate proles play those silly video games, then?

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Biodegradable products are often worse for the planet

Greg J Preece
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Bollocks, you're talking it

Have a look at a modern landfill, before and after. California's got some good examples. Their horrible, unusable landfills are parks, housing estates, etc, and the methane is captured and used to power thousands of homes.

Not everything about landfill is evil, and what's the alternative? Incineration?

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Acer Iconia Tab A500 10in Android tablet

Greg J Preece
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D'awwwww

May I be the second person to ignore the point of the article and focus on the kitty being cute?

Looks like a good tablet though. Would love to see a review of the MeeGo one when it turns up.

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Acer tweaks tablet with MeeGo move

Greg J Preece
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Ooh, ooh, ooh!

A tablet I actually come close to giving two shits about! If the interface is like the demos we saw last year/earlier this year, I'd be tempted. Lack of a physical keyboard is still a bitch, but Linux without an abstraction layer will always get my attention. Say what you like about its predecessor Maemo - and I could - it's very capable for nerdier shut-ins like me.

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Greg J Preece
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Never heard of the Wii then?

Or the Pippin?

OK, scratch that second one.

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Android Marketplace starts cleaning house

Greg J Preece
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There needs to be a new Godwin's Law

For people mentioning Orwell in any context where they feel "oppressed."

Because an all-consuming totalitarian regime perpetuating a false war in order to maintain an iron grip on a deliberately undereducated populace is *exactly* like killing off emulators that illegally distribute Sega firmware (or rip-offs).

Perhaps we could call it Godwin's 2nd Law. Or the "Law of Get a Fucking Grip".

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New Mac scareware variant installs without password

Greg J Preece
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Deep, dude

Deep

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Greg J Preece
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The reality distortion field at work

Mac screws up, blame Google!

If I remember correctly from the original article, Safari will auto-open any file it recognises as being "safe", which is part of the problem. Wouldn't you call that a massive fail from Apple?

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Greg J Preece
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Oh don't say that!

"meaning they don't need to enter the administrator password to install software in the Applications folder."

When I pointed this out, a whole bunch of fanbois told me I was wrong.

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Modern Warfare 3 teaser trailer reveals terror on the tube

Greg J Preece
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@Miek - Sorry, but I call BS

1) Dual booting is normal. All of my machines dual boot, except for one that triple boots. Linux for work, Windows for play.

2) The Sony headset is nowhere near as good as the Speedlinks I have on my PC, nor is an equivalent headset available for less than silly money, nor would it be as easy to set up as: *plug*.

3) Fair enough, personal preference. My mouse and keyboard are pretty nice ones, and I prefer having more explicit control in game.

4) Sorry, no. This just doesn't apply any more. The race between graphics and their hardware has calmed down quite a bit. Aside from the fact that games are getting held back from being graphically stupendous by their inevitable console versions, I've had a midrange ATI card for years now, and it played MW2 with everything on max last night. Does the same with Crysis. Newer games require newer consoles, too. The fact that PCs allow for continual advancement is not a downside, and if you don't want to play the latest PC exclusive at max graphics settings...don't.

5) Again, newer PC components don't overheat nearly as badly as they used to. And what was that tiny, minor fault with the 360 down to again?

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Greg J Preece
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I'm the other way around

I rarely care about online play, so I'll be straight into the campaign. While the locations are a bit predictable (we're in England - it must be London!) it does look like fun.

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Greg J Preece
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PC or bust

Several reasons:

1) Online play is free, and I can use a high quality headset without it costing a fortune or being a pain to set up.

2) Mouse and keyboard > console controller, any day of the week.

3) PC version is already 10 quid cheaper (unless you're daft enough to order from Game).

4) PC version will look better (assuming your machine has the required beef)

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Greg J Preece
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Different developer

Black Ops == Treyarch

All the good CoD games == Infinity Ward

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Apple admits scareware problem, at last

Greg J Preece
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Much more like it

Pity they have to be bullied into favouring support over complete denial.

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Steve Ballmer window-dresses Windows 8

Greg J Preece
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Whut? No coat icon?

That was painful. Get your jacket, and get out!

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Greg J Preece
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W7 SP1

You know that's already out, right?

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Greg J Preece
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Nah, it'll be V7

You're forgetting, this is Windows, where on a 64 bit release, all the 64 bit DLLs sit in System32, and the 32 bit DLLs sit in a folder called WOW64...

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Judgment Day prophet resets doomsday clock

Greg J Preece
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What an absolute prick

Hopefully his followers won't be so deluded next time around.

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Google slips open source JPEG killer into Gmail, Picasa

Greg J Preece
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Suprisingly hostile reaction

I was thinking the same as the OP - GIMP's format support is pretty good. I imagine WebP will appear in time.

As for being "too complicated to use", I think GIMP's alright really. I'm not even a graphics guy, but I find it fairly straightforward to use when I'm doing the odd bit of editing. If the layout is too unlike Photoshop for you, try GimPhoto.

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Apple to support reps: Don't confirm Mac infections

Greg J Preece
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And I suggest you try it

As you could tell by reading my previous post, I generally use Linux. I do not like running as root.

I did a clean, fresh, completely by-the-book installation of Mac OS X Snow Leopard. All default, before later customisations. It logged me in automatically by default, and I could install apps without password by default.

You can tell me this didn't happen as often as you like, you can call me a "fucking idiot", but it won't change anything.

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Greg J Preece
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Bullshit!

The vast majority of installations on a Mac *do not* require a password. Some do, and these tend to be lower-level apps like file system/encryption drivers. Most just require you to drag an icon onto the Applications icon, and the rest is done for you. Very seamless installation, almost as good as DEB packages, but by default no password is required whatsoever.

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Greg J Preece
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Flame

Better solution

Use a proper browser. Safari is on this machine somewhere, but I treat it like Internet Explorer under Windows - update it for when it's needed, then hide it away somewhere and use something better.

For all Microsoft's faults, at least they do try to help out with this kind of thing. Defender, Malware remover and the like. They can be ridiculously slow to respond to alerts, but at least they respond.

Apple are a marketing company. They are interested only in selling you the latest shiny thing. Something wrong with your old shiny? There's a new one - that'll fix everything, and you'll be better than your friends for having the new one.

In my experience trying to sort issues with iPhones, Time Machine and even monitors, Apple don't give a rat's ass about after-sales. The "Genius bar" is all well and good, but the closest one to here is 40 miles away, and yes they did tell me to go there for help when I rang them up. When Time Machine tried to backup the backup drive it was copying to, Apple told me "it's supposed to do that!" When one of my users took in a Mac desperately in need of a RAM upgrade, they sold him Snow Leopard! I've pretty much quit asking...

Written, surprisingly, on a MacBook...running Linux. ;-)

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Greg J Preece
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Missed a bit

...while continuing to deny the problem's existence.

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Microsoft replaces Xbox 360s after disc-format switch

Greg J Preece
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Sony break the network

Microsoft break your console. ;-)

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Sony restores PlayStation Network parts

Greg J Preece
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Playstation Plus

They said a while back that we'll all get a month's free PSN+.

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Greg J Preece
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I can finally buy Dead Nation!

Been wanting to buy it for weeks now.

Glad they took the time to fix it properly though, rather than leaving the system vulnerable and just bunging it back online. That for me is actually far more reassuring, though of course it should never have happened in the first place.

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Impatient punters trade PS3s for Xbox 360s

Greg J Preece
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Keeping mine

Sure, PSN is down, and that sucks ass, but the console still works, the online play will come back, and I didn't pay for PSN in the first place. Was thinking of trialling PSN+, and now I get a free trial when it comes back online.

The data loss was what really pissed me off, but how would trading in the hardware that I enjoy using solve anything? And given MS' previous track record, I've seen no evidence that X-box Live is any more secure. That it's not been broken yet doesn't mean it doesn't have holes.

This attitude is granting three things:

1) I don't play all that many online games. I have no desire to play shitty FPS games with a shitty controller, while teenage morons call me a n00b and take every opportunity to show me their testicles.

2) If I do play online games, I'm generally playing them on the PC, which I regard as a platform superior to all others. </fanboy_baiting>

3) I have other consoles, and failing that, other things to do in my life.

Aaaaand...FLAME ON! :-)

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Reg ed rattles the Red-Headed League

Greg J Preece
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Pint

My heartfelt sympathy to you

And all people who are still so weak they have to refer to it as "the N word."

And my greatest thanks to Ms Bee. Not for the sense, but for reminding me that it's Friday!

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NASA restores Pluto to league of planets

Greg J Preece
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The argument is done, Pluto is not a planet

Just because the Yanks have to be so obsessive about anything ever said, done or seen by a fellow Yank, doesn't make Pluto a planet. We have 4 terrestrials, 4 gas, and one...ball of half-rock, half-ice, whose "moon" isn't even a moon, as the orbital centre is outside Pluto's mass.

If they'd have discovered Ceres first, they'd be calling that a planet, but it isn't, and neither is Pluto. The IAU recategorised the solar system so that new discoveries made sense - science does that. It's a trans-Neptunian dwarf in the recently* mapped Kuiper-belt. Get over it.

*By astronomy's standards

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Microsoft poised to make biggest ever buy – Skype

Greg J Preece
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Linux already lags

The Linux client is already behind the Windows one by a long way, but that's a good thing! The Linux users still get a simple, unbloated client that sits there and does as it's told. The Windows client has become a monster, and the Mac client is no better. I can't think of any features I've ever needed to use that weren't in the Linux version, so I say let it stay that way, and leave the bloat out.

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Greg J Preece
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I think it's your office

All the machines in my office have Skype installed and they never go down with malware. Ergo, it's your office.

Or it might be that almost all my machines have Linux installed. ;-)

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Important breakthrough in mole-cruiser technology

Greg J Preece
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The Underminer

He was only there to provide a villain for the tie-in video game - Rise of the Underminer.

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Sony’s sorry saga snowballs

Greg J Preece
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Wow

You're actually going to criticise Japanese corporations for the earthquake?

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Elite coder readies £15 programming gadget for schools

Greg J Preece
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Don't worry mate

I'm 25 and I have a complete edition of Elite for the C64, as well as a C128-D on which to play it.

Admittedly, I'm a sad bastard, ;-)

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Greg J Preece
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I love this!

Don't teach it as primary learning - the majority of plebs will still need those Excel skills - but keep it around the labs, and let people know it's there. The nerdy kids will attend to the rest.

We had Win98 machines at school, and it was still the old BBCs I loved to code on. If this had been sat in the corner of the lab, I'd have certainly had a play.

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Woz snubs Paul Allen, praises pea soup

Greg J Preece
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Alright then, forget Samsung

What about their "patent pool" with others to go after WebM?

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Arcam FMJ BDP100 Blu-ray Disc player

Greg J Preece
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A thousand quid??

There seems to be a lot missing for that amount of money. The reviewer seemed to be apologising for a lot of missing functionality, when I would certainly expect a player costing this much to be missing nothing.

OK, the ultimate output quality might not be as perfect, but you can get 4 or 5 PS3s for the price of this thing, and look at how much they do (state of PSN jokes aside).

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Is iPhone data collection legal?

Greg J Preece
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Oh man...

I'd love to uae that in court.

'No, your honour, that law doesn't count, you see, because it was written more than 5 years ago.'

A well researched and written law should be able to defend the rights of the public on an extended timescale, especially with regard to future developments.

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Natty Narwahl: Ubuntu marine mammal not fully evolved

Greg J Preece
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OpenSUSE

I am also considering OpenSUSE. I ran it for a very short period on one of my machines, as it got working official ATI support before Ubuntu, but I'm just so used to my Debian/Aptitude environments that I'm more productive on Kubuntu, so when that got support I installed Maverick.

Might be time to give SUSE another try. I'll be keeping Ubuntu Server on my development rig though. No matter how they try to cock up their desktop spins, their server release has never let me down.

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Greg J Preece
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Kubuntu's no better

Some nice tweaks in the UI, but it's the random X lockups that are bothering me. Tap the power button to shut down, instant lockup. Leave the machine in standby for 10 minutes, lockup. What the hell, guys.

And Plymouth is STILL broken, a year after release. It kinda-sorta works on shutdown now, but startup is just as broken as it ever was.

Might try a fresh install. But if it's still this bad, I might try Mint.

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Barnes & Noble answers Microsoft's anti-Android suit

Greg J Preece
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Barnes & Noble

Another company about to switch to Linux-only systems, I reckon. ;-)

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Acer Iconia Tab W500

Greg J Preece
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Linux

I like it!

That's more my idea of a portable machine - one that can actually DO stuff rather than just show stuff.

Now for the predictable cry....get Linux on it!

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Boffins pull plug on SETI alien-seeking antenna array

Greg J Preece
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Sphere?

I was wondering where you were going with that. The film you're thinking of is Contact. Sphere happens underwater, with lots of the scarybadthings happening.

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'Anti alpha' mirror-matter made from gold in atomsmasher

Greg J Preece
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Anti-science?

Much as I dislike the Republican party, I feel I may have to pull you up on that one, by proxy. Enter Mr deGrasse Tyson:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7Q8UvJ1wvk

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Computer glitch opens un-staffed supermarket to happy Kiwis

Greg J Preece
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CCTV will have been on

I mean, why would you ever turn it off?

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