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* Posts by Old Handle

1004 posts • joined 4 Mar 2011

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Hello, Ello. Still no ads and no features to sell. What do? Bag $5.5m

Old Handle
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It's not that having ads is so terrible. I don't feel like a product when I visit The Register, for instance. The key words are "ad-driven". There's a difference between making a great site and displaying ads, and making a great site for displaying ads.

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Are there sounds on Mars? NASA launches audio athenaeum

Old Handle
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"You can hear the roar of a space shuttle launch or Neil Armstrong's 'one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind' every time you get a phone call," the agency said.

Did they really? I thought they still maintained he said the more logical "for a man", even if you can't hear it.

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NOT OK GOOGLE: Android images can conceal code

Old Handle
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Re: Could this be sent over email?

Yes it's possible to install a .apk sent through email (if you turn off the restriction to install only for Google). But it doesn't sound like just clicking on the image would do anything, although it wasn't totally clear. It sounds like you need a "helper" evil app already installed for the code embedded in the image to do anything.

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Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers

Old Handle
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While it's a legitimate problem, I'd really like to hear how they define it. It would be very easy to write this in a way that covers non-malicious actions. If someone sends you an explicit selfie and you share without permission, that's inconsiderate and uncouth, but it doesn't on its own mean you're trying to get revenge. You might just think it's a nice picture.

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MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less

Old Handle
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Go

Re: Looking the wrong way...

I do remember hearing it put forward that sending fat astronauts was actually the most logical choice. Basically what you do is put them on a diet after liftoff. The amount of food they're not eating during the mission more than makes up for their weight at the start because fat is a more efficient way to store energy than food.

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Whisper tracks its users. So we tracked down its LA office. This is what happened next

Old Handle
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Facepalm

Re: Honestly confused

Because Whisper pushes itself as a privacy app. Duh.

You won't hear people complaining that Whisper's search function is crappy (Is it? Does it even have one? I have no idea. It's just an example.) But if Google suddenly stopped being able to find relevant content it would be a pretty big deal.

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The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?

Old Handle
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Pirate

Compulsion

Others thought that compulsion would put people off. Others challenged this, saying that you could make that argument against teaching anything.

That doesn't prove it's wrong.

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Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt

Old Handle
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Re: Good idea, but how well does it hold up in practice?

You're making the assumption that the people who post passwords on pastebin are making any effort to hide them at all. I don't think that's generally the case. If they wanted it to stay secret they wouldn't put it on pastebin in the first place.

Rather they probably fall into one of two categories:

People who people who stole passwords for the lulz, dubious glory, or to give a certain company a black eye and wish to publicly display their trophy.

More serious cybercriminals who steal a bunch of passwords and post a fraction to prove they've got the goods before trying to sell the rest.

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

Old Handle
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Devil

Devil's Advocate

To some extent it's probably true the the FBI does go through the proper court channels when they want access to something, they are after all law enforcement, not a spy agency. But if their job has become harder it's only as a result of the misdeeds of their friends at the NSA. So here's an idea, FBI guys: Why don't you investigate the NSA? Get their unconstitutional bulk surveillance programs shut down and people will presumably relax about security again.

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US government fines Intel's Wind River over crypto exports

Old Handle
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Two thoughts

1. I thought this BS ended like a decade ago.

2. Open source your crypto. Sell your product with whatever weak encryption the government allows but design it to accept strong encryption as a plug-in

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€2 BILLION: Steelie Neelie wants US to pay for her Big Data splurge

Old Handle
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Facepalm

Wait, why does she want my country to... oh.

I was briefly confused until I realized that was a just shouty "us" not "U.S."

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Right, suits off: Windows 10 preview Internet Explorer is here

Old Handle
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Trollface

Uh-oh

Since they skipped Win9, won't that make this IE13?

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You can ring my #bellogate. EMAIL STORM hits 29,000 hapless UCL students

Old Handle
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Headmaster

A Beautiful War

I wondered what it was supposed to mean. It could just be a misspelling of bellow, but apparently it could also mean "beautiful" or "war", depending on what language they're speaking. All of the above seem strangely apt.

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Adobe spies on reading habits over unencrypted web because your 'privacy is important'

Old Handle
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Facepalm

I'm not at all convinced one vague paragraph in the EULA covers that level of spying. It only it says "communicate with Adobe", it doesn't say anything about the content of that communication. Or even hint that it collects or reports data on your reading habits. I think a reasonable person would understand that paragraph to mean it only sends as much information as needed for one of the purposes mentioned. So reporting individual pages or reading time is totally unexpected behavior except in the (highly unlikely) event the particular book you're reading had a license where that mattered. And it shouldn't report anything at all on DRM-free eBooks.

And that's without getting into the allegations that it sends data on books you're not even reading with it or fact that sending it unencrypted is inexcusable. You'd think even from an evil corporate perspective they'd want this encrypted in transit.

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Revenge smut bullies who send 'grossly offensive' messages WILL be prosecuted

Old Handle
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'Indecent'

That 1988 law actually sounds fairly suitable. Revenge porn is indecent and has intent to cause distress. But if anything, the 2003 law tends to undermine that by banning all 'indecent' messages. If Alice sends Bob a naked selfie, either that's a crime, or it's not a crime when Bob posts it online. It sounds like they're trying for some wiggle room by talkijg about considering the "whole message", but if the photo is simply passed on with minimal commentary, I don't see how that will help.

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Doctor Who becomes an illogical, unscientific, silly soap opera in Kill The Moon

Old Handle
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Boffin

1.3 billion tonnes

Sounds like alot, but the moon already weighs 50 billion times that much. I doubt we'd even notice. No one expects real science in typical sci-fi, but this is the kind of detail they could have so easily looked up, like I just did. It shows a total lack of caring.

Another way to put that figure in perspective (of some strange sort) is that Earth itself has lost more mass than that due to escaping hydrogen since dogs were domesticated.

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What’s the KEYBOARD SHORTCUT for Delete?! Look in a contextual menu, fool!

Old Handle
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Facepalm

Speaking of keyboard "shortcuts", it amazes me how many people pick up the mouse to click "Go", "Search" or whatever after typing a query instead of just pressing Enter. Even on URL bars where the button is tiny little thing the UI designers obviously weren't expecting to see much use.

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Vanished blog posts? Enterprise gaps? Welcome to Windows 10

Old Handle
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Devil

That does sound notably less horrible. Perhaps the biggest remaining problem is that if TIFKAM apps are supposed to be so great, there needs to be a way to install them without going through Microsoft or begging for their permission and still having to do a bunch of intentionally user-unfriendly fiddling.

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EFF: Cops' spyware for parents is insecure – and a fat waste of money

Old Handle
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Holmes

Didn't the FBI just arrest a a guy for selling something very similar?

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Take THAT, hated food! It's OVER, tedious chewing! Soylent strikes back with version 1.1

Old Handle
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Facepalm

Still got the fish oil, though? I'll pass.

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US Attorney Gen latest to roast Apple, Google mobe encryption

Old Handle
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Even if they could be trusted to obey the law, what he's saying is totally unreasonable. "law enforcement needs to be able to take every legally available step". In other words, if it's legal, we must also make it possible. Would it be legal to remotely disable a suspected kidnapper's car? I'm sure it would. Therefore every car must have a remote killswitch.

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Old Handle
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Big Brother

GACACSAO

What is this? I've never heard of it before. Nor can I find anything on the web to suggest it's a real organization. It sounds like something that was made up solely for the purpose of advancing the anti-privacy agenda.

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Atlas plugged: Facebook hooks ads to profiles, smears 'em over the web

Old Handle
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Trollface

Re: Separate Browsers

For even better protection, I don't use Facebook on a any browser or on any mobile device.

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Mine Bitcoins with PENCIL and PAPER

Old Handle
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That would be a total disaster for bitcoin. But people have good reason to think it won't happen. Even worse, and possibly more likely since it's newer technology would be someone finding a way to break the epileptic curve encryption used to prove ownership of each address.

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Payment security vastly improved when you DON'T ENTER your BANK DETAILS

Old Handle
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Re: My token of choice is bitcoin thanks.

I don't think Bitcoin is necessarily the answer, but it does offer something no other popular payment system has. It requires each transaction, including the amount and the payee to be digitally signed by the payer. It seems to me something similar is the ultimate goal we should be working towards for secure payment. There also needs to be a way to make sure a transaction signature can't be used twice. Bitcoins handles that with the blockchain, but it could also be done with either a random number that must be unique, or even a sequential number like checks (cheques) have. A time stamp or expiration date (again, like checks have) would also be a good idea. All of that should be cryptographically signed by the payer.

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Icahn and I DID: eBay volte-faces, spins PayPal into separate biz

Old Handle
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If eBay does away with the near obligation to use PayPal I will actually consider shopping there again.

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My TIGHT PANTS made my HUGE iPHONE go all BENDY!

Old Handle
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Devil

@cray74

You just want to see fanbois getting poisoned by their phones, don't you?

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Google+ GOING, GOING ... ? Newbie Gmailers no longer forced into mandatory ID slurp

Old Handle
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Devil

All I need to know:

If they have to coerce, trick or bribe people to use it, it must not be very tempting in its own right.

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Oh God the RUBBER on my SHAFT has gone wrong and is STICKING to things

Old Handle
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Re: Cheap rubber

Probably because it's actually expensive rubber. Cheap products are happy the leave the finish in ordinary plastic. But high end products use some kind of fancy rubber, which, I must admit, feels very nice to hold when it's new.

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Old Handle
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Re: Heat Shrink Tubinng

Or in keeping with the theme of this article, perhaps bondage tape would do the job.

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TOR users become FBI's No.1 hacking target after legal power grab

Old Handle
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Re: Damaged without authorization...

I was confused by that part as well. 18 U.S.C. § 1030(a)(5) relates leaks that could be "used to the injury of the United States, or to the advantage of any foreign nation", but what's this talk about damaged computers in five or more districts? They must have had something specific in mind when they wrote that, but I can't really make sense of it.

The only thing that comes to mind is perhaps they're talking about a botnet. But if so they're deliberately being very obscure about it.

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I saved Bitcoin and the PERFECT DRAFT OF HISTORY, says Assange

Old Handle
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Paris Hilton

I thought this was well known. I knew it anyway. I'm sure you could have simply got in touch with the Bitcoin Foundation to verify it rather than using this strange "allegation" phrasing.

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Comcast exec: No, we haven't banned Tor. I use it. You're probably using it

Old Handle
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Facepalm

Tor isn't a browser...

I'm guessing the source of the confusion is the difference between surfing through Tor and running a Tor exit node. Doing the latter on your home internet connection really isn't a great idea. I did it that for a while a long time ago, but thought better of it after getting my IP address banned on a whole bunch of sites.

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Let XKCD's Randall Munroe satisfy your curiosity in this excerpt from his book, What If

Old Handle
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That's what "temporarily allow all this page" is for. (Assuming you're using NoScript). Although it looks like you actually only need to allow one domain, albeit a big one: google.com

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T-Mobile US goes gaga for Wi-Fi calling, AT&T to launch in 2015

Old Handle
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Meh

Why?

I'm afraid I don't understand the purpose of this. Is it just for use when you have access to an 802.11 network but no cellular (which seems like an unusual situation) or does it save you minutes if you have a non-unlimited voice plan? Or what?

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Apple iCloud storage prices now ONLY double Dropbox, Google et al

Old Handle
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WTF?

Wait...

You mean you have to PAY for the privilege of having your nude selfies stolen? I'd assumed that feature came free with the phone.

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TorrentLocker unpicked: Crypto coding shocker defeats extortionists

Old Handle
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Re: I'm conflicted

I just looked at a list of file types it goes after, and mp3 doesn't seem to be on the list, but zip, rar and 7z are. So if you've happened to download something in one of those formats and left the packed file sitting around you could simply download it again to get your cleartext. Or maybe you emailed a big docx to someone recently. Chances are you can retrieve it from your mail server, or failing that ask the recipient to mail it back.

It does target a wide variety of files so I'd bet that the vast majority of people do have something on their disks in one of those formats which is duplicated elsewhere, even without making an intentional backup.

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Phishing miscreants THWART securo-sleuths with AES-256 crypto

Old Handle
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So as long as you disable JavaScript they can't get you.

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China is now 99.8% sure you're you, thanks to world's-best facial recognition wares

Old Handle
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Re: "...from 91 angles."

Plus, if it has to be at an exact angle, even one of 91, the odds of it working are infinitesimal.

Best guess what that was supposed to mean is -45° to 45°, i.e. a 90° arc in the front. But maybe they're considering more than one axis (i.e. pitch and/or roll as well as yaw), in witch case it becomes totally mysterious again.

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Apple promises iCloud security alerts, better 2FA after, er, NAKED Internet of Thingies flap

Old Handle
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Re: Mothers maiden name ?

Not to mention many women don't change their names when they marry anymore. Or heaven forbid, your mother might never have married at all.

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CNN 'tech analyst' on NAKED CELEBS: WHO IS this mystery '4chan' PERSON?

Old Handle
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Trollface

:Sigh: pa$$word, seriously?

That'll hold off the hackers for maybe 0.01 seconds, if you're lucky. What you need to do, for maximum security, is spell your password entirely with currency symbols:

₱؋₴$₩¤₹₫

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Hot Celebrity? Stash of SELFIES where you're wearing sweet FA? Get 2FA. Now

Old Handle
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I'm not impressed much by this response. Yeah technically Apple wasn't hacked, but allowing unlimited login attempts with no timeout is pretty indefensible for anything serious.

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iCloud fiasco: 100 FAMOUS WOMEN exposed NUDE online

Old Handle
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Trollface

Re: Assailant?

No, we call them burglarizationists.

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End of buttons? Apple looks to patent animating iPhone sidewalls

Old Handle
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Happy

Good. That's a horrible idea. Now I don't need to worry about encountering it on an Android phone.

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IT blokes: would you say that LEWD comment to a man? Then don't say it to a woman

Old Handle
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Stop

What about it?

How about "Don't do that either". Does any more really need to be said.

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Renegade NSA, GCHQ spies help fix Tor vulns, claims project boss

Old Handle
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Re: I see we're promoting the 'evil' bit

To be fair, it does mention use by human rights activists, which kind of says the same thing.

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Pedals and wheel in that Google robo-car or it's off the road – Cali DMV

Old Handle
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Meh

The manual control requirement is perfectly reasonable, but the insurance requirement is kind of ridiculous. Human-driven cars only need $35,000 worth of liability insurance. And you do have the option of putting up a bond for that amount instead (not that many people actually do). So I don't understand why the requirements need to be so much stricter. Surely it's already been proven that self-driving cars are not 143 times more dangerous!

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Time to ditch HTTP – govt malware injection kit thrust into spotlight

Old Handle
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Then we need a more democratic alternative to https certs. I just don't think it's reasonable to expect everyone to get https set under the current system.

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Password manager LastPass goes titsup: Users LOCKED OUT

Old Handle
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Linux

Re: Lastpass

Regular KeePass is open source too. As far as I can tell, KeePassX is just a fork that exists mainly for historical reasons.

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eBay bans CD sales of metal band Burzum, citing offensive material

Old Handle
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Trollface

So more bibles on eBay then?

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