* Posts by strum

525 posts • joined 17 Jun 2009

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Industrial Light & Magic: 40 years of Lucas's pioneering FX-wing

strum
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I'm going to make enemies here. I saw the original SW, first run - and wasn't impressed by its (what we've come to know as) SFX.

Thing is - before SW, 'special effects' were supposed to allow the viewer to suspend disbelief, quickly enough to get back to the story. The film-maker showed you a glimpse of a model/matte/whatever, in action. Then he showed it to you more slowly, meanwhile telling you "It's a gobblewhinger". So, the viewer told himself "OK, it's a gobblewhinger" and got on with the movie. It didn't really matter how 'accurate' it was.

But Lucas broke this, by making the SFX a star in its own right, displaying stuff long enough to show that it wasn't real, but that lots of money had been spent on it. Ever since, SFX has been lauded as if it deserves an Oscar of its own. But, if you're aware its a special effect, it isn't really effective, is it?

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Britain's on the brink of a small-scale nuclear reactor revolution

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Re: A complete non-starter

>due to the so called 'green' people who see the word "Nuclear" and go into a complete meltdown.

Bollocks. For several decades, there have been no restraints on building nuclear in this country. They haven't been built because they're an economic disaster - no-one was prepared to foot the bill (since government stopped doing that). You only need to look at the gyrations around getting Hinckley C started, to know that.

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Re: £875 per household per year!

>If I could just observe, when satellite measurements support the received official wisdom of climate change, they are breathlessly quoted as proof of the matter. Funnily enough, if they don't support that position, then they can be explained away.

Funnily enough, the people who interpret these data know what they're talking about. You don't. That's why we're ignoring you.

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Re: £875 per household per year!

>It has little to no effect on climate.

Lie #1. Really, this has been solid science for over a century

> Warm is good for civilisation, cold is disastrous

Lie #2. It's relatively easy to keep warm in a cold climate. It's pretty difficult to keep cool in a hot climate.

>Restricting CO2 will mean we are purposefully and expensively trying to reduce crop-yields.

Lie #3. No-one is suggesting removing CO2 below base levels.

>Cheap energy == modern civilisation

Just a half-truth. Yes, we've built modern civilisation on cheap energy - which is now destroying modern civilisation. Not very bright.

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EU security think tank ENISA looks for IoT security, can't find any

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Re: Oh no

>Please no.

Are you also going to roll back the thousands of existing regulations, which make your life a lot safer than you have any right to expect?

For every 'daft regulation' reported (or invented) by the Daily Mail or equivalents, there are thousands of well-considered, argued and agreed, sensible and proportionate regulations - which make our lives safer and more predictable, usually without us ever noticing.

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'Tabby's Star' intrigues astro-boffins with brief 'dimming event'

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Re: Wow ! BBC "Horizon" managed to inform ...

You do realise that TV science programmes aren't aimed at people who already know all that stuff? They're aimed at people who might like to know it, if their attention can be kept for long enough.

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London City airport swaps control tower for digital cameras

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>aircraft landing from, or departing to, the west of the airport actually fly between the area’s skyscrapers

No they don't. They fly (some distance) above them.

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Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

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>t send the needle skipping all over the place

Did no-one tell you? A ha'penny, balanced on the tone arm, fixed that.

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Self-driving car devs face 6-month backlog on vital $85,000 LIDAR kit

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Re: I wonder...

>interference

That was my thought, too.

It might be interesting if lidar-equipped vehicles were required to share data, making up a shared image of the street, and its occupants.

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Bloke charged under UK terror law for refusing to cough up passwords

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Re: "used only in extreme terrorism cases"

>Calling it paranoid racism

...is merely factual.

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Lib Dems pledge to end 'Orwellian' snooping powers in manifesto

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Re: shame for Ledswinger

>On the housing side, we need to basically terminate planning restrictions preventing houses from being built, and build on the green belt if we are to have enough space to build homes.

And what kind of homes will be built on the Green Belt? - 4-5-6 bed mansions, to be bought by oligarchs, that's what.

Don't believe the whinings of the building lobby about planning restrictions. There's plenty of building land - just no incentive to build enough to reduce the value of the stock.

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NASA nixes Trump's moonshot plan

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>The Space Launch System is intended to be the rocket that takes the United States to Mars.

What? All of it?

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10Mbps universal speeds? We'll give you 30Mbps, pleads Labour in leaked manifesto

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>It is probably worth reminding those with a selective memory

..of which you appear to be one. Can you remember the Tories demanding greater regulation of banks? Can you remember them saying that house prices were getting too high? Can you remember which party deregulated the City in the first place?

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Re: How very true

>Running a government is like running your own household

Is it bollocks. Since when did Mr&Mrs. Bloggs print their own money? SInce when did Mr&Mrs Bloggs have hundreds of years to pay of debt?

A national economy bears virtually no resemblance to a household budget.

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Re: Blah blah blah Labour debts

>there are deserving poor people, but there are a load of undeserving as well.

And you, of course, can tell the difference at 100 yards? Poppycock.

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Re: Blah blah blah Labour debts

>And that, boys and girls, journalists and government ministers, is how our tax system works.

And that, boys and girls, is the kind of crap economics that has dragged this country down, since we stopped trading with gunboats. Even in your crap analogy, it is the tax *cuts* for the rich that create disharmony. There's precious little evidence that tax raises push the rich abroad (they tend to hire more accountants).

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Re: Labour has pledged

> I'd like to see scroungers dealt with.

Shareholders, I assume you mean?

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Re: Completely scrapping ADSL then

>yes the great gordon broon came up with the idea

Actually, it was John Major.

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strum
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Re: Completely scrapping ADSL then

>yes the great gordon broon came up with the idea

Actually, it was John Major. Don't believe everything (anything) you read in the press.

And PFI isn't the unmitigated disaster it's portrayed as. Corporations have done leaseback schemes like these for decades, with good outcomes for both sides of the transaction.

The difference was that the corporations had armies of lawyers to ensure that the terms were equitable. Local Councils and NHS trusts didn't - and they were taken for a ride by the PFI companies.

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Re: Completely scrapping ADSL then

> I remember how the trains...were when run by the government, not sure I'd like to go back to that.

Doesn't need a particularly long memory. Between 14 November 2009 and 28 February 2015, the East Coast Main Line was run by a govt-owned company (and it returned £1Bn to the Treasury during that time).

The railways themselves are still nationalised. Would you trust that work to a private company? Even the Tories wouldn't.

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Re: Completely scrapping ADSL then

> the country went to the IMF with a begging bowl for a loan

I suggest you look at who was in power a year or so earlier. Tony Barber's 1972 budget flooded the economy with phoney money - most of which went on secondary banking and high-rise offices. Healey was fire-fighting a Tory shitstorm.

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Try not to scream: Ads are coming to Amazon's Alexa – and VR goggles

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Re: Why Do They Persist....

> i have never heard of anyone progressing a purchase through any advertising on a web site or other.

Largely, advertising isn't intended to make the viewer go and buy something. It's purpose is to put that brand (deep) in your head, so that, when you come to buy something of that ilk, that brand name is familiar (and comforting).

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Drugs, vodka, Volvo: The Scandinavian answer to Britain's future new border

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Re: Who is going to pay for all this?

>Demanding a border at which to apply something like their 30% tariff on Cocoa Powder is the E.U.'s problem, not that of the UK.

It's a bit of a problem for a UK Cocoa Powder seller - who is undercut by smuggled choccie goodness. It's also a problem if said seller has developed an all-Ireland trade, whose volume supports a UK choccie factory.

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Could US appeals court save us all from 10 years of net neutrality yelling?

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> The whole concept of relying on legislation that is old enough to drink or a law that was enacted about the time the eldest member of the Supreme Court was born is a bit of a stretch as it doesn't address the reality of today.

It may be that the law needs to specify some of the technology - but, if it does, it's likely to be out of date before the ink is dry.

Wouldn't it be better to lay out general principles, which would apply to any and every technology? After all "privacy" wasn't invented at the same time as the Internet.

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FCC: Take your spam and shove it, slacktivists!

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A word to the wise; "the Tragedy of the Commons" is a dead giveaway for a thoughtless kneejerker.

There never was a "the Tragedy of the Commons" - the notion was invented, without evidence, by the Victorian economist William Forster Lloyd. His only example was the English Common Field System - which worked very well for hundreds of years.

Ever since, those who wished to grab common property for themselves have been citing it as "evidence".

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UK General Election 2017: How EU law will hit British politicians' Facebook fight

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Re: Appealing to the individual voter?

>And deeply unpopular with his own party.

That would be why his party elected him, twice, with an overwhelming majority.

Don't believe everything you read in the Mail/Express/Telegraph/Murdochnews.

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strum
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>After all, if this data science is really so flimsy, how come banks and supermarkets and mobile phone companies have invested so much in it over the years?

To misquote Lord Leverhulme, "half of my data science is wasted - but I don't know which half."

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Amazing new boffinry breakthrough: Robots are eating our brains

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I wonder what the reaction will be when someone invents the CEObot. Most exec roles could probably be AI-ed out of existence.

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Cabinet Office losing grip on UK government departments – report

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Re: Why senior Civil Servants are preoccupied with presentation

>Spin has been at the centre of ALL UK Governments' communications strategy since Blair's tenure (and Campbell's media management) in 1997

It goes back a lot further than that. Churchill did a bit of it, in his day.

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Oh dear, Prime Minister! Nearly 100 Beeb bosses make more than you

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£150,000

What's so magical about £150,000? That fact that we (vastly) underpay our politicians should have no bearing on the earning potential of Beeb execs.

How many Sky employees earn more than £150,000? How many ITV employees? Don't know? Don't care? Then why do you give a flying fuck how many Beeb employees do?

If they were being paid as much as FTSE CEOs - then we'd have a right to be angry.

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Jimbo announces Team Wikipedia: 'Global News Police'

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Setting aside Orlowski's kneejerk response to anything Wiki - I'd say, wait and see.

There can be little doubt that 'professional' journalism is approaching its lowest point (it was never a respectable profession at the best of times). Any efforts to to counteract this decline should be given a fair chance.

But there are two factors which need consideration; one is that the most egregious bias is shown in what is not reported at all, rather than the way in which the subjects which are reported are covered. 'Professional' outlets select their items according to the picture they wish to paint. I can't see anything in Wales' approach which will address this.

The second factor is the overwhelming laziness of most journalists. They hate writing a new story, when they can re-write an old one. Never write their own story if they can steal someone else's. Run away from stories where they can't rely on a pre-digested view of good v. bad.

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Would you believe it? The Museum of Failure contains quite a few pieces of technology

strum
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Re: Betamax - Betamax quality wasn't actually that much better.

>Really the success of VHS was down to more suppliers of VHS players

Precisely.

Sony wouldn't licence Betamax (it was far too complex to farm out) and Philips (the early leader in home tape tech) couldn't even manufacture them themselves, let alone licence it to other companies.

JVC's licencing meant that you would go into Rumblelows and find one (expensive) Betamax, one Philips VideoCassette (not currently working) and several VHS machines, with well-known local brands. The varieties of VHS also offered different form-factors - including front-feed (most of the original video machines were top-feed).

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Ofcom chisels away at BT Openreach's cold, dead hands

strum
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Re: BT's infrastructure?

>you will also need to account for the additional taxes BT paid since privatisation

BT were pretty damned profitable before privatisation (profitable enough to pay for the development and installation of System X - out of profits alone).

SInce privatisation (on the cheap), the Exchequer has been deprived of those profits.

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Why Firefox? Because not everybody is a web designer, silly

strum
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Re: Designers..

>"The web is never going to look the same everywhere,"

Indeed. And it isn't just down to the browser, or its engine.

Someone who views their websites full-screen, on a big, wide screen, is going to see something different from someone (like me) who tends to reduce the browser window to be just big enough to read the text I want (I never see Register ads, not because of an ad blocker, but because they're way over there, somewhere).

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Oh snap! UK Prime Minister Theresa May calls June election

strum
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Re: She should have sought this mandate months ago

>Now the timing could bite her on her leather trizers.

Not just the timing - the act itself is dumb. She's doing this to free herself from her own backbenchers - but the only thing keeping them in check now is their narrow majority.

If she's returned with a landslide, all those fractures in the Tory party (which have not been resolved by Brexit*), will explode on her. Her enemies aren't across the dispatch box; they're behind her.

[*There's a myth that the divisions in the Tory party were all about the EU - but the EU was just a proxy, for a much deeper divide, going much further back.]

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strum
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Re: This goes to show one thing

>It's about the brexit mandate.

Nah. Nothing to do with it. TM never had any realistic opposition to her Brexit plan (such as it was).

This is intended to enable TM to ignore her own back-benchers, like she ignores the rest of us.

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Printer blown to bits by compressed air

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Re: Dangerous

>I can't help thinking just how easy it would be to get too near my eyes, or even more scary, my ears.

Even using it on bare skin can be dangerous - injecting air into the bloodstream.

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Democrats draft laws in futile attempt to protect US internet privacy

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Re: The usual

>Remind me again why they lost the election.

Crooked electoral system?

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Outsourcers blamed for cocking up programmes at one in three big firms

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>Deloitte estimates that most large organisations take between two to three years to develop a framework for better managing risk

...by which time, the trained staff take jobs with the consultancies.

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Force employees to take DNA tests for bosses? We've got a new law to make that happen, beam House Republicans

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unemployable because he has a genetic defect

Thing is - most 'genetic defects' are only _potential_ diseases. Someone with a genetic 'defect' may live out a full & healthy life. It usually requires some other epi-genetic arrangement (or environmental circumstance) to turn that genetic code into an illness.

Not only is this measure immeasurably evil, it's also futile.

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Anti-TV Licensing petition gets May date for Parliament debate

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Re: Good going cobber

> Which leads to ordinary sensible people perceiving the speed limits as being set too low.

<Guffaw>

You do know that traffic has other effects, apart from impact-at-speed? Poluttion, yes - but also noise and inaccessible neighbourhoods (at the other side of fast, busy roads)

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strum
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Re: Good going cobber

>Yeah, they throw the money into the sea don't they.

How else are they going to pay for scraping your victims off the road?

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RadioShack bankruptcy savior to file for, you guessed it, bankruptcy

strum
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Re: Solder Repellant

I used to go to Edgware Road, just to drool at the projects I _could_ undertake.

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MP brands 1,600 CSC layoffs as the 'worst excesses of capitalism'

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Re: The 'worst excesses of capitalism'

>government fondness for exorbitant PFI contacts

More to do with Public Sector Borrowing Requirement figures - regarded, by the money markets, as the signal for down-rating the pound. Even though borrowing would be much cheaper than PFI.

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YouTube TV will be huge. Apple must respond

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Re: UK based so not affecting us yet but....

>Or, the individual teams themselves.

Fine for hardened fans - but some of us aren't wedded to any one club - we want to see a title race/relegation fight unfold, regardless of the participants.

And most hardened fans also have a second or third fave.

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America halts fast processing of H-1B skilled worker visas

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Re: why was this called 'discrimination'

>No, a good policy is to say "We will treat your citizens exactly the same way you treat ours - if you are nice and play fair, we will be nice and play fair. If you screw ours over, we will screw yours over".

No. This ignores the central point; the UK is leaving the EU, the EU isn't leaving the UK. The first move is ours.

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Re: why was this called 'discrimination'

> But fundamentally, citizens of other EU countries are as much Visitors as UK citizens in the EU are.

Yes. Both are legally entitled to remain where they are (until some demagogue wants to make a name for him/herself).

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Pence v Clinton: Both used private email for work, one hacked, one accused of hypocrisy

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Re: Veti Fail on El Reg's part.

>Son, you need to dig a bit deeper because the whole Clinton thing has been going on for over a year.

A year!?!?!

FFS, Republicans have been gunning for Hillary for decades.

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Google, what the hell? Search giant wrongly said shop closed down, refused to list the truth

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Kafka

When we apply the term 'kafkaesque', we usually assume we're talking about some faceless state organ. But this shows that the impersonal mega-corporation can be ten times worse than any government.

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Two-thirds of TV Licensing prosecutions at one London court targeted women

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Re: Big opportunity missed

>Freeview was deliberately designed so as to not support smartcards,

Twaddle. 'Freeview' wasn't designed by the Beeb. They took over an already-existing system (OnDigital), which expressly _did_ support smart cards. My first Humax had a card slot.

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