* Posts by captain veg

328 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

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Microsoft: We bought Skype. We make mobiles.. Oh, HANG ON!

captain veg
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Lync

"Nobody thought it was best solution, but it was lying around, so people started to use it."

Did any of them get it to work? It's pretty much unusable in this organisation.

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Then there were 3: Another UK mobile network borged ...

captain veg
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cool phone number

(01) 777-7777 (seven sevens) used to be a shop in West Wickham. Can't remember what it sold, but the number remains implanted in what's left of my brain.

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Your anonymous code contributions probably aren't: boffins

captain veg
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copy, paste

"“Programmers who are more advanced and are able to solve more difficult tasks have more distinct coding styles than programmers that are not as advanced."

Because the latter group simply copy and paste snippets of code written by the former?

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Boffins: It's EASY to make you GRASS YOURSELF UP for crimes you never did

captain veg
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Reality distortion field

"The other event was pure fiction, but a surprising number of test subjects came to believe it happened anyway"

So replacing Steve jobs wasn't so hard after all.

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CIOs: What jobs do you have to fill before you can get on with yours?

captain veg
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Re: What do CIO's do anyway?

So far as I can tell, the only requirement -- and it's a biggy -- is the ability to persuade finance to spunk unfeasible quantities of dosh on the latest technology fad.

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MAINFRAMES are SO NOT DEAD: IBM's launched a new one

captain veg
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Re: Why would anyone use VB

Latterly because of a large legacy codebase. But in the first place, because it was the only way to get a Windows app up and running in a sane amount of time. I'm talking about the Windows 3.0 timeframe. There was no Java. C++ was new and didn't offer any help in building graphical UIs.

Having previously made a living writing C and assembler for DOS I invested in a copy of Petzold. I counted 80-odd lines of code in his "Hello, world" program, just to put some text on screen. VB could do that with a few mouse clicks and no code at all. No contest.

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captain veg
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Re: Rubbish - Old IT Grey suits out!

I shall assume that you mean pre .NET (i.e. real) VB.

1. Recurssion isn't a word. Recursion, on the other hand, is trivial in VB. You will probably want to precede your parameter names with the ByVal keyword.

2. Use the AddressOf operator and a suitable declaration of CallWindowProc.

Next!

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Windows 7 MARKED for DEATH by Microsoft as of NOW

captain veg
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joystick instead of wheels

Actually manufacturers would quite like to replace the steering wheel with something like a joystick -- it would free up a lot of interior space and make left/right-hand-drive conversion much simpler -- but they are not allowed to. Current regulations require a solid physical connection between the steering control and the steered wheels.

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captain veg
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Re: WTF?

The drivers are not included on the installation media. For a new installation you either have to roll your own installer, or put the requisite files on a floppy disk. Your computer does have a floppy drive, right?

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NoSQL pioneer to inject your database with ACID

captain veg
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Re: Dick Pick

Item = value, Item-ID = key.

Item composed of zero or more Attributes, separated by Attribute Marks.

Attribute composed of zero or more Values, separated by Value Marks.

Value composed of zero or more Subvalues, separated by Subvalue Marks.

And the really prescient thing is that the codes used for AM, VM and SVM are all illegal characters in Utf8, and so can still work as separators in this post-ASCII world.

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captain veg
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Dick Pick

"[...] run on top of the company’s recently upgraded key-value store engine"

So Richard Pick was on the right track all along.

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Healthcare: Look anywhere you like for answers, just not the US

captain veg
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Re: France

They already have that one covered. All employees in France are obliged to undergo a medical examination every two years at the expense of their employer. This is a make-work scheme for a cohort of médecins du travail who do nothing else -- certainly not general practice -- and would be otherwise unemployable.

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captain veg
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Re: France

> Also here we pay to see the GP, and get it back later, which does mean that most people that go to see a doctor do, actually, have something wrong with them

By "here", do you mean France? If so then the "something wrong with them" that you mention is almost entirely hypochondria. Honestly, your average French person will go urgently to the doctor because of a sniffly nose in winter (which they will insist on calling "rhinitis"), and won't leave without a prescription.

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captain veg
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France

The quality of care in France may well be good (I haven't had much cause to find out), but the inefficiencies of a fragmented system are obvious. Every French family has at least one set of crutches in the loft because when someone breaks a leg -- and, since everyone goes skiing here, that's not uncommon -- they are obliged to buy their own set. The purchase is reimbursed, but the crutches remain the property of the breakee, who pretty soon has no further use for them. The total lack of any kind of connectedness between the various medical agencies also means that individuals are responsible for keeping their own medical records and carting them around with them when visiting the various practitioners. X-ray images are pretty unwieldy things to carry on a bus, I can tell you.

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European data law: UK.gov TRASHES 'unambiguous consent' plans

captain veg
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Re: Experian

Credit agencies don't (and are not allowed to) operate in France. Hasn't stopped me getting credit.

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World, face Palm: PDA brand to RISE FROM THE GRAVE

captain veg
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Herd of cows

Of course I've heard of Cowes. It's on the Isle of Wight.

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Iliad owner coughs €2.3bn for Orange Switzerland

captain veg
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Oi, Xavier

Where's my fibre optic internet connection, eh?

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France says "non" to UberPop

captain veg
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Re: Paris in a taxi - never again

Paris taxi drivers are a variable lot. Some are good, some are frighteningly, dangersously bad. For the wheelchair, best to order from a company that specifically caters for disabled passengers, such as G7.

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Is there ANOTHER UNIVERSE headed BACKWARDS IN TIME?

captain veg
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Re: Ah!

I used to say that there are two types of sysadm -- fascists and incompetents -- and that it was tricky to chose which kind to wish for.

However, following a reorganisation of corporate IT a while ago I now realise that there is a third variety: incompetent fascists.

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captain veg
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bigots, xenopobes and paranoid control freaks

Don't forget fruitcakes, loons and closet racists.

-A.

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Deprivation Britain: 1930s all over again? Codswallop!

captain veg
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How about "go to a food bank for your baked beans", does that qualify?

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captain veg
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Re: hay man

You might then have a legitimate complaint against the Graun. In one of the linked articles it is clearly stated "public spending as a percentage of GDP [will] fall to its lowest level since the 1930s", and that was written by proper journalists that often write on economic matters.

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/dec/03/autumn-statement-2014-george-osborne-spending-cuts

I'm not sure, though, how many people would make this distinction between spending and consumption. The fact that Osbourne is having to stump up an additional pile of cash for (largely in-work) benefits may well be unwelcome and unexpected (to him), but it is a consequence of the same set of policies.

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captain veg
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hay man

I think it worth mentioning that the article was not written by any Guardian staff member. This was an invitation piece.

And in an article of over 700 words, Tim concentrates entirely on just ten. Yes, I understand that they are not literally true, but it's still a bit of a straw man. What about the rest? Do you deny that "[t]he Office for Budget Responsibility just reported that the level of public spending will be at second world war levels once this government has finished with its cuts."?

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Microsoft: Hey, don’t forget Visual Basic! Open source and new features coming

captain veg
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Re: VB6 was the one of the best things MS made

Like most of the good stuff from Redmond, they bought it in.

http://www.cooper.com/alan/father_of_vb.html

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captain veg
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they should do the honorable thing...

... and open-source VB6.

OK, it's a bit late, but some of us still have a lot of (real) VB code to maintain, and no easy way to make it run well and look good on current versions of Windows. It is sobering to realise that when VB6 came out, Windows 98 was Microsoft's premier offering.

VB.NET and its successors are just C# with superficially VB-like syntax. Porting really is not that different from a total rewrite.

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Coming to Blackphone: An app store loaded with privacy tools

captain veg
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Re: bending or folding

Shirly that's the iPhone 6?

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It's nearly 2015 – and your Windows PC can still be owned by a Visual Basic script

captain veg
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Portmanteau

Combination of "hole" and "whore"?

Dunno about "findling", though. The context would appear to require a verb.

-A,

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Man asks internet for $1k for pebbles. INTERNET SAYS YES

captain veg
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totally arse about face

Whisky should be served at room termperature and mixed with a little water. So this idea is a cluster-fail.

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Netflix: Sacre vache! French resistance from the vestibuleurs de consommation

captain veg
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Re: Google translate?

The author clearly subscribes to the strangely common belief that all foreigners secretly speak English fluently, and only insist on practising their mother tongues in order to annoy Americans and Brits. It is of a piece with the assertion that France is a socialist country (it is actually deeply conservative; the current president is only the third of that persuasion out of nine since the war) and that House of Cards was created by Netflix, rather than the BBC.

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captain veg
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blatant propaganda

Got shares in Netflix,by any chance?

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Brit mobile firms in FOURPLAY TUSSLE – how very French of them

captain veg
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Free facts

"Iliad’s Free offering cellular add-on purchases to customers for ridiculous prices, with deals going down to €2-a-month for cellular"

Nope. That's the price for the basic cellular package as a standalone product. If you are an ADSL/fibre subscriber, it is free gratis. The Free/Iliad model is to keep adding new services while keeping the price the same, rather than entering a price war.

"The device uses 802.11N WiFi, so it could follow down the precise same route as Free, offering Wi-Fi First handsets"

Again this strange assertion. I'm a customer, so I should know -- there is no WiFi access to the Free Mobile network. And they don't "offer" handsets at all. They will sell you one, if you like, but at retail price, and they are just bog standard unlocked devices.

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HALF A BILLION TERRORISTS: WhatsApp encrypts ALL its worldwide jabber

captain veg
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Re: when will they unchain WhatsApp?

Does it run on x86 Android? If so then spin up a virtual machine on the lappie.

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Influential scribe Charles Petzold: How I figured out the Windows API

captain veg
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Re: "a paragraph in my first chapter explaining why tiled windows were better"

> Apart from 'Microsoft don't know how to do the overlapping ones they promised two years earlier

They could and did do overlapping windows in Windows 1. That's what a drop-down menu is. What they chose not to do was overlapping top-level app windows, partly for fear of litigation from Cupertino and partly because they genuinely thought, backed by observation of novice user behaviour, that it was less confusing.

This belief later gave us the Metro UI. Someone hammer a stake through it, please.

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captain veg
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Re: I still have...

That book was single handedly responsible for my switching from C to VB in my day job!

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Secrets in Seattle: Apple opening base on Microsoft's doorstep

captain veg
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Birthplace of Microsoft^WBoeing

"Seattle is famous as the birthplace of Microsoft"

That would be Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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Improving JavaScript: Google throws AtScript into the mix

captain veg
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Re: Ooops

This is all true. What the author meant to says is "the absence of language features and classes make JavaScript projects hard to maintain for large teams of barely competent (but cheap) programmers who need protecting against themselves." We rockstar coders can continue writing framework-free uber-code using ed.

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New GCHQ spymaster: US tech giants are 'command and control networks for TERROR'

captain veg
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Straw man

Clearly everything he said is bollocks. The only people gaining additional privacy protection by turning on encryption in everyday internet services are their everyday users. Bad guys already know how to use secure channels. or can make them for themselves. Its hardly rocket science. So the real target must be everyday users. Us. Q.E.D.

Now fuck off and find some criminals.

-A.

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Apple spent just ONE DOLLAR beefing up the latest iPad Air 2

captain veg
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Re: What about the VAT?

> That's it. It's value added tax because it's added to the value of the goods, not it's a tax on the added value. Jesus wept.

I care not for your deity's tears, and they don't change the fact that the government only receives nett tax on the value added. Sure, the retailer simply collects 20% but at each stage of supply (except the last one to the consumer) the recipient claims back the VAT that they paid to *their* supplier. So the final cut to Apple is more than 80% and the final cut to government is less than 20%.

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captain veg
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Re: What about the VAT?

Err, no indeed. The clue is in the name: VAT is a tax upon value added. Not retail price.

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Caterham Seven 160 review: The Raspberry Pi of motoring

captain veg
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Sold

"When I took my seatbelt off, the Caterham 160 didn’t beep at me. I didn’t get electronically reprimanded when I got out and left the headlights on "

You just sold it to me.

Cars should *never* beep at you except possibly to warn that you are about to reverse into something solid. I don't want it to turn the wipers on for me, nor the headlights, nor apply the parking brake. I can do all of those thing just fine for myself, thanks. Better, in fact. I don't even want self-cancelling indicators. I can do that better than the car too. I'm the driver, godammit!

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Kingston's aviation empire: From industry firsts to Airfix heroes

captain veg
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Small point

"Sopwith was liquidated in 1920 and Ham was sold to British car maker Leyland Motors"

Leyland was mostly a lorry and bus maker until it merged with BMC in the 1960s.

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Happy 2nd birthday, Windows 8 and Surface: Anatomy of a disaster

captain veg
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Sinofsky

First the Ribbon, then Metro.

What a guy!

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Want a more fuel efficient car? Then redesign it – here's how

captain veg
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torque

"Engine friction can be reduced simply by changing the gearing it to run slower to produce more torque at lower rpm."

That is.... illogical, Captain.

Upping the gearing will indeed allow you to exploit the reduced weight and improved aerodynamics, but it won't change the torque curve of the engine one jot.

For urban driving, you can get much the same effect anyway just by changing up earlier.

-A,

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FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones

captain veg
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Re: Pencils

> Also, we should outlaw talking without recording yourself for possible law enforcement use.

Especially talking furrin.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_talker

-A.

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Auntie hires API firm to manage new online BBC Store

captain veg
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Fact alert!

"In the world of inclined playing fields, little beats your TV licence fee going towards setting up an online store to compete with online stores that are not governmentally subsidised"

BBC Worldwide is a commercial organisation that is not supported by the licence fee. In fact it subsidises it.

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Intel, Asus charge sneak into US mobe market with ATOM-powered PadFone X mini

captain veg
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Re: Nice idea

> But I wouldn't want an x86 phone or tablet.

I would, if it meant that I could install my choice of OS on it.

-A.

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Kill off SSL 3.0 NOW: HTTPS savaged by vicious POODLE

captain veg
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triply safe

"while you are at Starbucks, some hacker next to you will be able to post tweets in your Twitter account and read all your Gmail messages."

Never been in Starbucks, never had a Twitter account, don't use Gmail. Next!

-A.

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Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First

captain veg
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Re: Nonsense.

> if you're (still) struggling with the ribbon interface there are free (as in beer) options at your disposal

Indeed. I use the Ubit add-in, without which my sanity would be in an even worse place.

http://www.ubit.ch/software/ubitmenu-languages/

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captain veg
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Re: Nonsense.

Bollocks!

> The Office toolbar / menu UI was broken

Yes, it was broken in a previous round of cheap UI gimmickry. Simply unbreaking it would have been the correct action, not wholesale replacement by something even more bizarrely inexplicable.

> It even supports the old menu shortcut keys.

No. It. Doesn't. I don't know how this myth ever gained traction. Almost none of the shortcuts I had ingrained into my fingers work post-2007.

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Mobile coverage on trains really is pants

captain veg
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Re: Almost every developed country seems to do much better

Not France, alas.

I quite regularly take the train from Paris to Toulouse. There is NO signal at all between the large towns, so you have about 5 minutes roughly every hour to get what communication you can done.

Free WiFi? No WiFi at all on the trains. Or in most of the stations.

On the other hand, a standard ticket costs 55 euros, and I have paid as little as 17 in advance.

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