* Posts by Adam T

642 posts • joined 23 Apr 2007

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Trump's plan: Tariffs on electronics, ban on skilled tech migrants, turn off the internet

Adam T

Disturbing

I moved here (to the U.S.) in Feb, and witnessing this election has been bizarre, disturbing and worrying on many levels. That it's resolved to Trump actually winning seems unreal. You know I think the Chinese are right: Democracy is broken. Conceptually it's right and it's proper, but in practice, all it takes is a good con man and a little manipulation of peoples' emotions to turn it into a farce.

I was struck by a panel on Fox News (which I didn't put on) where Varney (an english fella who you probably wouldn't like) was venting that only well-off people should go to college - the essence of the reasoning being not everyone needs an education. It was weird as hell, surely everyone deserves an education? Then it hit me. Uneducated voters are easier to manage. Keep them down and malleable. Makes sense after all.

This is the America I've seen so far. I really hope it gets better choices in 4 years time, because this is a dangerous time for progression. He even has a climate change skeptic as his science advisor... He may was we'll be a creationist for all that says. Not good.

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Microsoft goes back to the drawing board – literally, with 28" tablet and hockey puck knob

Adam T

Re: A Wacom pen is better

I've been using Wacom since the original white A2 back in the early 90's through to the latest 27HD.

Wacom are overpriced pieces of shit with some of the worst customer support imaginable.

I don't care who wins the touchscreen & pen wars: I'm just glad that at long last there are serious competitors pushing the fold and kicking the monopoly nest. Seriously RIP Wacom: You did it to yourself.

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Amazon launches Lumberyard beta, a free gaming engine, but there is a catch

Adam T

Odd

AWS gaming back-end: Awesome!

CryEngine toolset: PITA.

Great engine, but not fun to work in. Why didn't they just make back ends for UE4 & Unity (& CryEngine)? Far bigger reach without having to develop and support a branch of a super complex middleware ..which will be where if it doesn't gain traction? (Hello Stingray)

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Reminder: iPhones commit suicide if you repair them on the cheap

Adam T

Re: Good to know

Same with my Nexus 7.

I swear it's the best device I've owned for value and shelf life. Actually performs much better now than four years ago (laggy, unresponsive).

My iPhone 4S and iPad 2 running iOS 9 however, horrible - laggy, unresponsive. The 4S can barely unlock itself in time to answer incoming calls. How the tables have turned.

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RSA asks for plaintext Twitter passwords on conference reg page

Adam T

Re: The keyword in the article is ...

Looking through the Twitter feed, it did strike me that most of those who fell for it are marketing and recruitment. There's some relief that the 'real' security people may have (largely) shown more sense, and can laugh at those people who get paid more, but are now shown to actually know sod all.

Karma?

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Apple pays two seconds of quarterly profit for wiping pensioner's pics

Adam T

Re: A Ridiculous Decision.

>>Contacts oh I don't know maybe on his old phone that he no longer has?

The one he never backed up?

I guess I'd be pissed too if I had to manually re-enter 15 years of contacts every time I got a new phone.

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Are Samsung TVs doing a Volkswagen in energy tests? Koreans hit back

Adam T

Samsung, cheat??

Naahhh say it ain't so! They're as honest as the day is long.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/7187/looking-at-cpugpu-benchmark-optimizations-galaxy-s-4

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XcodeGhost attack tapped into dev distaste for Apple's Gatekeeper

Adam T

Re: *cough*

It's not for a certificate, it's the whole backend raft of services. it does't matter how much money Apple have - if they made it free there'd be someone complaining it's anti-competitive or some such nonsense. Can't please anyone these days. Now pardon me while I renew my MSDN membership.

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Adam T

*cough*

$99 is extortion? Don't make me laugh.

Compared the other software and services we have to pay for to support development, it's practically infinitesimal.

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Microsoft Edges bets on browser-only Skype

Adam T

Re: Normal Skype has gone TITSUP?

Hah yeah, everyone's emailing one another here over the loss of Skype. First they couldn't watch Netflix, now we can't Skype. It's the interweb apocalypse alright.

Now if only my email server would go too, I could have a nice peaceful, productive Monday. (our local mobile mast went last week too after a powercut...that'd be icing on the cake).

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Adam T

So...

Will this be ActiveX all over again?

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Apple's iPad Pro: We're making a Surface Pro WITH A STYLUS over Steve Jobs' DEAD BODY

Adam T

Interesting

I come here for the jolly sarcasm, true, but sometimes I'm on the other side of the fence.

As an artist I'm actually keen to try one out. I've tried Surface and it sucks for illustration; I've got two Wacom Cintiqs (inc the latest 27" model) and a bunch of Intuos tablets from over the years, and - despite being the market leader - they suck, because Wacom don't need to compete, and their technology has barely been improved over the years while their drivers get worse with every passing year.

So, I'm looking forward to seeing if Apple can do stylus better than Wacom, if only to drill up some new imperative to innovate.

Heck I might even buy one if the wife lets me.

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Amazon, GoDaddy get sueball for hosting Ashley Madison data

Adam T

Intent

Someone doesn't know the meaning of the word. Lawyers do, but why speak up when Someone's waving money at you?

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Astroboffins EYEBALL 13 BEELLION-year-old galaxy far, far, farthest away from Earth

Adam T

Re: Confused of Rochdale

"So they universe is 13 billion years old (approx). We are seeing light that started 13 billion years ago. But surely 13b years ago we were all together (at the big bang). So, for the light/galaxy to be 13b years away now, 13b years ago we could not have been in the same place (or we would have seen it it then)."

13.7b years ago it was all together, as particle mush.

I've got no head for this level of science, but from what I've been trained to think by TV scientists is that the "bubble" had a very fast expansion phase early on - clearly enough for what must be a lot of galaxies to form within a half dozen billion years at least.

And I guess it's safe to say, what we think of as small is vast on a cosmic scale.

But who knows. Maybe what we think of as the birth of the Universe was just a localized event, and the actual (unobservable) universe is actually infinite. Ooo. Think I'll go make some breakfast now...

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FBI probed SciFi author Ray Bradbury for plot to glum-down America

Adam T

Philip K Dick

just wants to say "told you so"

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Windows 10 on Mobile under the scope: Flaws, confusion, and going nowhere fast

Adam T

Re: I'm depressed now

I'm frankly terrified nevermind depressed.

There was a point, many years ago when I was in 6th form, where I had a decision to make: get into writing (like my dad) or get into that "other" thing that my dad didn't understand, and didn't approve of - computer graphics.

I took the latter, and while it's been a great ride, recent years it's become less and less pleasurable. The hard work isn't the job, it's the tools, and each time the platform that the tools run on gets worse, it feels like another nail in my own coffin, or at least my enthusiasm.

Sometimes I wish I'd taken the path more trodden.

"I’m still puzzling why there are 16 action shortcuts, but not one serves as a one-click “Do Not Disturb” or “Silent Mode” function, let alone old school Profiles. I suppose PCs don’t really need a Silent Mode, so WM10 doesn't get one."

Actually, I quite often disable my network connection on my PC when I want some real head-down time. I'd like an Airplane mode on my desktop OS.

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Why are all the visual special effects studios going bust?

Adam T

Re: Animation

Speaking as an old-ish animator...

Animation was simple 30 years ago. It was getting complicated 15 years ago. It's bloody complicated today.

There are so many disciplines, and more are being added all the time as we (and pioneering clever people) discover new things to do and ways to do them. The things that used to be time consuming are made easier for sure, but this is an industry obsessed with doing more for the same price (just like the chip industry), and where you just needed artistry 20+ years ago to be among the best, today you need a degree in mathematics. Well you don't, but it helps a bunch depending on your chosen field.

There will always be work for those who invest themselves, but it won't always pay well. But apparently there won't be enough food to feed the whole world sometime in the future too...that's progress for you.

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Witcher 3: Wild Hunt – a true monster in the making

Adam T

Re: 7/10 at best.

@Bernard M. Orwell

You pretty much covered it.

The texture work on the characters is a nice plus, too many games are still painting details into the albedo channel (which you should never do with PBR), giving characters a horrible muddy look (see Assassins Creed).

By the by, I'm running with two Titan Blacks and can only get away with medium settings at 1440p (textures, draw distance set to max), and tbh it doesn't look all that different to Ultra. Testament to the quality of the base art in general.

Has anyone else seen Geralt's beard pop-in? :)

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Adam T

Additionally, some PC inputs are hard-coded.

So you can remap E, but it's still E to loot.

Personally I find the controls fucking awful, the movement dreadful (regardless of key/mouse or joypad - I spent 5 minutes just trying to turn on a torch sconce because they insist on making movement tied to animation rather than, you know, what you want to do), and the locked camera distance (and FoV) from Geralt is awful, and the fact that a 6 foot fall can kill you is ridiculous.

Also the voice and character acting is disappointing. But then I've been playing The Secret World the past few weeks.

But I agree that the visuals (and the music!) are a treat. It's just a shame they're marred by the experience of actually *playing*.

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Oh No, Lenovo! Lizard Squad on the attack, flashes swiped emails

Adam T
Facepalm

But what happens next?

Does that kid get his replacement a Yoga, or have the hackers ruined everything??

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Proxima and Ultima: AI, hard sci-fi and multiverse – ALL GOOD. Romans – not so much

Adam T

Read it, bored of Baxter.

I wouldn't say I'm particularly a Baxter fan, but I've read most of his books to date... Usually as fillers while waiting for something by someone else.

He goes on too much trying to explain the same things over and over, in case we missed it the first or second time around. And while his ideas have never been especially epic or original they're at least not off-putting. Unlike Ultima, which is conceptually indigestible and reads as if it was written by someone else; someone with no experience or instinct for science fiction.

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iPad AIR 2 and iPad MINI 3, 5K iMac: World feels different today – and it IS

Adam T

2GB GPU to drive a 5k display?

Oh dear.

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Sapphire glass maker's woes caused by Apple relationship 'breakdown'

Adam T

Re: The GT CEO

Indeed.

He's claiming that the sale of stock was according to a plan laid out in March, but that doesn't make things any less dodgy.

Put yourself in his shoes. It's March and you're well aware by now that your glass isn't going to be in the iPhone 6, while analysts and media pundits are bending over backwards spreading rumours that it is. What do you do? Sell...preferably discreetly, over the next 6 months.

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It's not you, it's Three. Mobe network goes titsup across UK

Adam T

Three's good

Recently ditched O2 for Three after giving up on ever getting decent network connections.

Now I get 4G practically everywhere I go, and surprisingly 3G when we go exploring the countryside (strictly No Service territory for O2).

I'd rather have one hiccup a year than 365 days of pissing in a pot.

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Google shows off new Chrome OS look

Adam T

Please bring back skeumorphism, all is forgiven.

I remember when buttons where buttons, and floating text was either a heading, a label or content.

All Jonny Ive's fault. From rock star designer to murderer.

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Google de-listing of BBC article 'broke UK and Euro public interest laws' - So WHY do it?

Adam T

sad really

The only thing I get from this, is how sad it is that we're basically confirming that Google IS the Internet. Our reliance on it has gone beyond monopoly and entered the realms of God Given Rights (even though it's Man Made and an advertising company to boot).

"Web Search Engine chooses not to list some stuff", would have been utterly trivial a decade ago. Today we can't function without it. That's pretty scary.

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REVEALED: GCHQ's BEYOND TOP SECRET Middle Eastern INTERNET SPY BASE

Adam T

Re: TRAITORS

I don't see what the problem is.

It's obviously not *that* secret - it even has a nice big X to stand out all the better from Google Maps.

And the rest...I can only second what everyone else has pointed out. It's hardly "hidden from view".

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Apple: We'll tailor Swift to be a fast new programming language

Adam T

Re: The name...

They did the same thing to Versions (the SVN client), when they implemented their fuck-me-where-is-Save As?? feature.. Nobody batted an eyelid.

Long shadows cover a lot of indiscretions.

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Shockwave shocker: Plugin includes un-patched version of Flash

Adam T

I haven't "actively" noticed any Shockwave usage either, yet I often get a "Shockwave plug-in has crashed" report in Chrome (usually when I have way too many tabs open). So I guess it's in use still...but for what? Ads?

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Autodesk CEO: '3D printing has been way overhyped'

Adam T

MarkForged

Nice try, but Autodesk lost my interest in lining their pockets a long time ago.

The MarkForged is interesting. I've been shopping for a printer with a decent long axis and that's just moved to the top of the "ooooh!" list. I'd be tempted to cancel my next L-series lens purchase and pre-order, if only they had samples to show. Honestly, selling a $5k 200 micron printer and they have zero samples to show - just a video with a guy trying to bend a little printed bar. Why is nothing ever simple?

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Multiplayer Elite to debut on May 30th

Adam T

@Joerg

Lol seriously, you had to post the same thing twice?

Have you ever gone for a haircut and asked to see what it's going to look like before agreeing to pay?

No? Baah.

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Adam T

@joerg

I won't argue that there aren't scam artists; you get them in every walk of life. But you can't tar everyone with the same brush - kickstarter and early access programmes make me a little uncomfortable, but in all honesty I'm glad they exist - I'm enjoying games that might not have been able to exist without them.

There's no shortage of idiots in the world, and they'll always outnumber you. Hang you head lopsided, drool, make moaning sounds and walk with a limp... Blend in to survive.

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Adam T

Re: Also available...

Sorry but the Star Citizen forums are full of people who seem to be completely gullible and happy to believe anything that they're told. Read a Chris Roberts interview... It's always Me and I ... Never, ever We. He gives zero credit to his team. He even named the company after himself.

What a tosser.

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Adam T

Re: I'm Sorry

If you mean the Expansions Pass, that's no different to Season Passes sold for almost every major game now - and slightly better than kickstarter funding as you know by now that the game is actually real, and not just a pipe dream.

Even £30 on top to get into the Beta is reasonable if you consider it's probably going to be more fun than most finished games, and assuming you really love this sort of thing. 2 months sub worth of Eve Online.

If you want to choke over paying for things that don't exist, you should go have a laugh at Star Citizen, which is still peddling $15,000 'ship packs' (oh it says they're out of stock, but you can email them and they're happy to accommodate you). This for a game that so far has only has one hilariously wonky video shown at PAX as proof of goods.

Smoke and mirrors. That game is going to have a lot of shortcomings, with it's 300,000 poly ships. Try imagining you video card crumbling under the weight of a hundred players trying to squeeze into a small space with that lot. We invented normal mapping and cage baking for a good reason...

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ZeniMax lobs sueball at Oculus, says space cowboy Carmack rustled its code

Adam T

Well Carmack tweeted that he didn't write any code while under contract to Zenimin, which is easy to believe. He'll have told minions what to write instead. Bet they didn't see that coming when they drew up his contract.

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So you invent a wireless network using LEDs, what do you do next? Add solar panels. Boom

Adam T

Clacks

I'm sure it's a great piece of technology, but why put LEDs every ten meters when you can have a perfectly eco-friendly Clacks tower every ten hundred meters?

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Update your iThings NOW: Apple splats scary SSL snooping bug in iOS

Adam T

Utter f*cking idiots. Re. iOS 6.1.6

So you can only download 6.1.6 on devices that can't run iOS7 (i.e. 3GS).

Which is moronic for devs, as we can't download it from the dev portal nor via iTunes nor via device (you can only download iOS 7 via Settings).

We have to keep a range of devices with each OS installed so we can reproduce bugs reported by users, and you'd be amazed how many iPhone 4 and iPad 2 users are still on iOS 6 (even 5). Telling people to upgrade is all well and good, but it's a total cop-out of just letting people use what they want to (and I understand, because I loath iOS 7).

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Amazon fuses LoveFilm, subs service, calls it Prime Instant Video

Adam T

Re: Meh

I've had LoveFilm for years now, and get 4 disks at once. Also have Netflix - big bonus, you can watch U.S. netflix on your UK account (just drop in a chrome extension).

I don't order disks anymore simply because I don't have time to watch them - I may get through two or three a month, whereas streamed stuff I'll watch from wherever, sometimes in the background while I'm working.

When Netflix first came out over here I pooh-pooh'd it because of the thin catalogue. Since then they've grown enormously... I finally signed up when Orange Is The New Black came up, and loved the service for about a year. It's easy to get through what you want to watch quite quickly though... there's not a lot on there for me now.

So as a Prime member, I'm up for the Instant LoveFilm. Costs a bit less, and I'll pretty much save double by ditching Lovefilm By Post. Just enough, in fact, to keep Netflix on the go.

Post is good - you can't beat a proper BluRay. But life is changing, spurred on by the times.

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Apple in bid to turn MORE and MORE humans into iPhone-stroking fanbois

Adam T

These aren't for phones

They're for the next generation of snow-proof shop front glass. Just you watch and see.

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Pop OS X Mavericks on your Mac for FREE while you have LUNCH

Adam T

Re: @Philip Storry is @MyBackDoor

Pardon me, mistype.

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Adam T
Stop

@Philip Storry

"Truthfully, I'm shocked Apple doesn't allow their OS X to be downloaded for free and installed from a thumb drive."

They do, you can, I did.

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Netflix original TV shows gamble pays off... to the tune of 10m new viewers

Adam T

More efficient than the BBC then

And costs less per month too

Of course, we still have to pay Auntie to watch Netflix.

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Amateur image-wrangler reveals stitched snap of Saturn's splendour

Adam T

Re: Back-scatter?

Yeah I noticed that too - that's some pretty serious reflection going on there. Stunning.

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A $17.3bn fine, you say? Samsung begs for five-year patent war truce

Adam T

Re: Prediction

"what incentive is there for companies to put their patents into standards?"

Without wanting to sound idealistic, I'd say:

Plenty, if you're not greedy and honest.

Not as much if you're greedy and a bully.

Hmm, then again, what category do big public corps fall into?

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Adam T

Re: Why even consult?

$17 billion won't last two minutes in the hands of politicians and lawmakers. It's certainly unlikely to benefit "people", and it's unlikely to change patent abuse... at best this entire scenario will force companies to simply modify their tactics.

As much as it would be fun to see a company that lies pay, the 5 year deal is probably better for everyone: the industry and consumers alike.

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Adam T

Slightly confused. They're doing this to avoid a $17bn fine, yet if they break the rules again within the five years then they'll be hit with a $17bn fine? (or whatever 10% is at the time).

Doesn't that just mean this is a delay tactic? Surely if you commit then break, you should pay *more* than the original fine?

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Windows 8.1: Read this BEFORE updating - especially you, IT admins

Adam T

Re: Good grief, I thought the Mountain Lion upgrade was big

At least with OS X updates you can copy the installer before it updates. Such a little thing, yet what an innovation! (I know, I know).

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MS Word deserves DEATH says Brit SciFi author Charles Stross

Adam T

Re: Word is.....

Actually, the opposite can be dangerous too.

I have to work with a guy who is obsessed with learning everything about Word, and this means I'm constantly being handed Word docs with the most fucking awful abuse of layouts and styles imaginable. It's physically impossible to edit anything without destroying everything.

When I think of myself using Word, I'm not too fussed because I don't touch things I don't want to understand. But when I think of other people giving me Word docs they think are 'fancy', that I have to do something with, I want to curl up and die.

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Adam T

Re: A De-strossing Article!

@Gray

Thanks for the link (why was this not in the main article?). Quite a good read, and his argument is a lot more tangible when seen in the full context of his rant.

It's easy to sympathise with him, particularly when I think of the software I use day to day, which of course is also forced upon me, and I in turn must force it upon young minds who come to work for us - thus the cycle is guaranteed.

Standards are supposed to be a Good Thing. But sloppily constructed standards that lock you in, are Evil. Sadly, you can't run a monopoly with good intentions.

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Adam T

Re: Word is.....

"An excremental pile of unimaginable bloat with 100 times more "features" than anyone is ever going to use."

Unfortunately you can say the same for any mass-market productivity software out there, from Photoshop to 3D Studio Max.

They have to try to be all things to all people, in the hope that they hit that one unique selling point to each individual need.

The irony of course, is that they're so cluttered half the USPs go unnoticed because they're buried under a menu option that is only visible if you have the correct docking panel visible, which is only active if you're in the correct editing mode, where editing modes are to be found under Window->Advanced->Views->Modes.

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