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Are You Man or Mouse?

michael posted about 11 years ago | from the squeek-squeek dept.

Biotech 72

fygment writes "... according to recent studies. It seems were more closely related to rodents than the carnivores i.e. the primates didn't evolve from the noble jungle cats, wolves, etc. Were closer to rats. Of course this has long been suspected in lawyers and SCO execs ..."

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mouse are humans too.. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720148)

so watch your tounge when you are saying they are lawyers.. or even SCO execs.. you insensitive clod!

Re:mouse are humans too.. (4, Funny)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about 11 years ago | (#6720656)

I thought they had been using lawyers for laboratory experiments for some time. They're more plentiful than mice or rats. The only trouble they've had is reproducing the results in humans.

Lawyers for experiments (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6726201)

...yeah but the researchers don't get as attached to the lawyers as they do to the mice.

Re:mouse are humans too.. (1)

blancolioni (147353) | about 11 years ago | (#6731135)

And there's some things a rat just won't do.

What about chickens? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720829)

What about chickens?

these people just don't get it (1)

SHEENmaster (581283) | about 11 years ago | (#6727981)

according to the great guide, mice made the Earth. Humans such as ourselves evolved from the useless third of a lost civilization that was wiped out by a payphone-spread virus.

Biology I (4, Funny)

InsaneCreator (209742) | about 11 years ago | (#6720156)

Of course this has long been suspected in lawyers and SCO execs ...

I believe you are having trouble telling the difference between rodents and dung beetles.

Re:Biology I (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720249)

How dare you insult dung beetles!

They perform useful work by burying shit in the soil so it can nurture plants rather than just sitting on the surface attracting flies!

Unlike lawyers and SCO execs who just seem to wallow in shit and fling it at whoever is the enemy-de-jour of whoever's paying them...

Re:Biology I (2, Funny)

__seeker_h__ (689029) | about 11 years ago | (#6720355)

According to my Monstrous Manual, beetles and rodents are both vermin. So there can't be too much of a difference...

Re:Biology I (2, Interesting)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 11 years ago | (#6720791)

Is "vermin" a Family or Genus in the philogeny?

Inquiring minds want to know...

Recent? (4, Informative)

Henry V .009 (518000) | about 11 years ago | (#6720160)

I believe that this "news" has been known for nearly all of the 20th century. I'm not sure where the article gets off talking about:
recently proposed trees of mammalian evolution indicating that primates (human, chimpanzee, baboon) are more closely related to rodents (mouse, rat) than to carnivores (cat, dog) or artiodactyls (cow, pig).

Re:Recent? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720199)

You .sig is interesting. Thanks to some sort of fundie science, we can replace the act of destroying a non-thinking non-sentient bundle of cells with a non-stop baby factory, a steady stream of unwanted people being spat out of batteries of artificial wombs. And whereas there are deep moral issues that deter most women from using abortion as a standard contraceptive at present, this "replacement" has no such deterence.

I'm really not sure that this is an improvement. I wonder if the people cheering this on as a way of over turning Roe vs Wade have seriously considered the consequences.

Re:Recent? (0, Offtopic)

Henry V .009 (518000) | about 11 years ago | (#6720299)

If you'd like to discuss this, we can do it in the comments section of my site.

Re:Recent? (4, Informative)

kramer2718 (598033) | about 11 years ago | (#6720634)

According to the Tree of Life Web Project [] , all the animals mentioned (rodents, felines, humans) belong to the infraclass Eutheria [] (placental mammals).

If you look closely at the tree, you will see that the Tree of Life does indeed have order Rodentia closer to the order Primates. I recall learning this in high-school biology, also.

Yes this does seem to be a bit of old news.

No (4, Interesting)

axolotl_farmer (465996) | about 11 years ago | (#6721243)

Tha part of the tree you refer to is unresolved , a polytomy.

What is important in a phylogenetic tree is branching order. When the branching order is uncertain or ambiguous, a polytomy is put in place. The placement of the branches in a polytomy are usually arbitrary, or in alphabetical order.

From the tree, you can tell that primates are most closely related to tree shrews, and that the group (primates + tree shrews) in turn is most closely related to bats and colugos.

Zuh? (1)

Syncdata (596941) | about 11 years ago | (#6720774)

That same bit of text jumped out at me as well. This article is hyped as saying we're closer to rats then anything else, but really, it's still just saying that primates (human, chimpanzee, baboon) are closer to rats then we are to cats, dogs, cows, and pigs.
Thanks, I couldn't have figured that myself. I suppose the follow up article is that cats, dogs, cows and pigs are closer to rats then they are to fish.
What a non story.

Re:Recent? (2, Insightful)

RobotWisdom (25776) | about 11 years ago | (#6721034)

The interesting point is that junk DNA has some still-unknown function, so the disappointing figure of 30,000 genes isn't as bad as we feared.

Regarding mice-etc, primates began as shrews who climbed trees and developed their eyesight, mammalian carnivores like cats evolved much later from the shrews that stayed on the ground.

Prevalent beneficial mutation is evolution.. (3, Funny)

E_elven (600520) | about 11 years ago | (#6720175)

..but that doesn't explain why my tail is on the front side.

Legend of The Slashdot Overfiend: Now Casting (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6725885)

Is it prehensile? I've always had this dream of making a live action version of La Blue Girl, and you might have just what I've been looking for in a leading man.

the grammar-corrected article (-1, Troll)

Tuxinatorium (463682) | about 11 years ago | (#6720177)

fygment writes "...according to recent studies. It seems we're more closely related to rodents than to felines and canines. Primates did not evolve from carnivorous mammals such as noble jungle cats, wolves, etc. We're closer to rats. Of course, this has long been suspected of lawyers and SCO execs ..." Honestly, all it takes is a once-over at 250 WPM to catch 99% of all grammatical errors. The Slashdot editors are so incompetant they don't even take the necessary 30-60 seconds to fix an article before publishing it on the front page.

Re:the grammar-corrected article (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720207)

..says someone who either doesn't use the preview function or never has heard something about text formation.

This story writeup (3, Insightful)

skookum (598945) | about 11 years ago | (#6720185)

The blurb from "fygment" must have been written by a mouse, as there's hardly a complete sentence in that jumble of incoherent fragments. I find this situation has become all too common on slashdot recently. If you can't be bothered to write a cohesive paragraph with complete sentences, then stop submitting to slashdot. You may not think it's important, but when you write things that will be read by a number of people it is essential. Use whatever style you want in email or IM but if you're going to submit something for public consumption you should take the time to learn how to use English, otherwise you just come off looking like a rambling idiot.

Re:This story writeup (1, Offtopic)

Associate (317603) | about 11 years ago | (#6720267)

Could be worse. I work with people who can't conjugate verbs, use the wrong 'to' and just can't speak English. They send countless internal documents based on previous mail messages where they cut and paste the same piss-poor spelling and grammar.
Would you have someone from your team to look for part number XXXXXXX?

They make ol' fygments (sic) look like a Pulitzer.

Re:This story writeup (1)

RobertB-DC (622190) | about 11 years ago | (#6726832)

Would you have someone from your team to look for part number XXXXXXX?

Bad example. In defense of "effective-enough communications", I'd like to point out that the error you highlighted didn't detract from my understanding of the message.

I can understand how someone in a hurry (or without a college-level education) could add the "to" and put "look" in the infinitive. In fact, if I go to look at the sentence long enough, it looks just fine!

Re:This story writeup (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720735)

Seems we forgot the apostrophe's, thus confirming our mouse status. Should read: "... according to recent studies, it seems we're more closely related to rodents than the carnivores i.e. the primates didn't evolve from the noble jungle cats, wolves, etc. We're closer to rats. Of course this has long been suspected in lawyers and SCO execs ..."

Re:This story writeup (1)

RobertB-DC (622190) | about 11 years ago | (#6726579)

I don't play Grammarian very often, but you've got a valid (if offtopic) point. But you really don't go far enough:

Use whatever style you want in email or IM...

I disagree with this premise, because "practice makes perfect" only works if you're practicing perfectly (you can thank my daughter's piano teacher for that one). I don't care if it's email, IM, or a sticky-note on your monitor... what's it going to hurt to do it right?

Of course, my 12-year-old just rolls her eyes when I tell her to write her emails in complete sentences. I ph33r for the fate of the next generation.

were (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720208)

were rats are awesome!

Oh you meant we're rats...

I am amazed (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720252)

...At how quickly the Linux community comes to label anyone who disagrees with a majority a traitor. When SCO was selling Linux licenses and making money in the Linux world, where were you? Oh yeah, you praised SCO, you admired its good business models and potential profits to follow. SCO was the hero of the day, and Caldera fanatics could spend hours proving that their distro is better than RedHat, or let's say, SuSe.

And today, listening to you, one would imagine that there's no lowlier life form on Earth than SCO. That's the typical Linux way - try to make it selling free software, and when things don't work out, turn to lying. How are you better than SCO lawyers? If RedHat was running out of cash, don't you think something of similar extent might have happened?

Oh no, RedHat is good, SCO is bad, says Linux noob. We've always been at war with SCO and loved RedHat.

My impression of Linux users from reading this message board has not improved much. They will libel one of their own to excess as soon as a renegade refuses to follow the groupthink.

Re:I am amazed (-1, Offtopic)

magores (208594) | about 11 years ago | (#6720369)

Does it help your impression of "this message board" any if I am a member of this site, and am not a Linux user (at least, not primarily), and I agree with all these "Linux noobs" that SCO is acting like a bunch of nimrods?

Setting aside the arguement of whether SCO is right or not, you must admit that the way they are trying to prove their point is Just Plain Bad.

A $3,000,000,000 lawsuit (vs IBM no less) sounds like a company that realizes they have nothing to lose, so they figure they may as well try to take everyone else down with them.

It's bad form, indecent, violates the whole concept of decency, and is.... Just Plain Bad.

Re:I am amazed (0, Offtopic)

magores (208594) | about 11 years ago | (#6721758)

I noticed that I got modded as off-topic my posting above.

In my own defense, if you take a look at the post that I was replying to, it is actually on the topic of THAT post.

Of course, that post was probably off-topic, so by extension, mine is as well.

Oh well, I'll take my lashings in good humor.

Qickie? (1)

Associate (317603) | about 11 years ago | (#6720278)

Does this explain pack rats?

42 (4, Funny)

Hungus (585181) | about 11 years ago | (#6720279)

But we knew this all along after all the mice built this planet

"Mice are not, as is commonly assumed on Earth, small white squeaking animals who spend a lot of time being experimented on.

In fact, they are the protrusions into our dimension of hyper-intellegent pan-dimensional beings. These beings are in fact responsible for the creation of the Earth."

See the video here [] waning its real media

The best laid plans of mice... (4, Funny)

quinkin (601839) | about 11 years ago | (#6720671)

The best laid plans of mice...

And men.

What have men got to do with this?


Re:42 (1)

ratfynk (456467) | about 11 years ago | (#6723504)

We really are coming to the end of the epoc, there is a Vogon Constructor just outside the orbit of the Sun. Doe was right he just went to early, get the pills Doe here I come........

Uhh (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720307)

That is, of course, if you buy into the farce of evolution. I've never seen a generation so inclinced to believe a lie without proof. If you'd think for yourself, and not read the textbooks, you might realize that evolution isn't even an option.

Re:Uhh (2, Funny)

DeltaHat (645840) | about 11 years ago | (#6720332)

And what your proof against evolution?

Re:Uhh (0, Troll)

keesh (202812) | about 11 years ago | (#6720384)

What did trolls evolve from?

Re:Uhh (2, Funny)

DeltaSigma (583342) | about 11 years ago | (#6723441)

This is still the center of a heated debate. With modern genetic science we've determined that trolls lay somewhere between the rodent and the lawyer ( with SCO executives up next). Yet there's clearly still a large difference between rodents and trolls, and many scientists feel that the only way to settle the debate will be to find a half-rodent half-troll step. The deep jungles of Africa and Redmond, WA are focal points for this search currently.

One thing remains clear, your modern homosapien very clearly branches off from the modern SCO executive at the rodent.

Re:Uhh (0, Offtopic)

danny256 (560954) | about 11 years ago | (#6729774)

I'm a troll, and I'll tell you. The reason I troll is because I'm forced to read slashdot because its a good tech news website, but I also use windows and hate open source and linux and in general disagree with most of the agendas being pushed on slashdot. So I troll as an AC as a way to vent my rage. If you want to reduce the number of trolls of slashdot, fix the corrupt moderation system so that my pro MS comments have a chance of not being modded troll. I think the first step would be to remove unlimited mod points from the editors (Michael).

One more thing, the grandparent was not a troll, but a flamebait.

Re: Uhh (3, Insightful)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 11 years ago | (#6721550)

> That is, of course, if you buy into the farce of evolution. I've never seen a generation so inclinced to believe a lie without proof. If you'd think for yourself, and not read the textbooks, you might realize that evolution isn't even an option.

Not read the textbooks? Sounds like "stay ignorant" is the key to your plan for understanding the universe.

Re: Uhh (2, Insightful)

Copid (137416) | about 11 years ago | (#6729900)

Exactly. My favorite thing about this debate is people who think that the textbooks and established science are a bad way to go. "Use common sense," they say. If science were all just common sense, people wouldn't devote their lives to scientific study. Quantum mechanics isn't common sense. Relativity is not common sense. Lay people generally accept those ideas because they see generations of physicists who have spent their lives in intensive study of those subjects, and they see the results of the work. Suddenly, when it comes to biology, everybody is enough of an expert to laugh at those silly academics.

Why people think that the core ideas of biology should be something you can accept or reject after a few minutes of armchair quarterback thought without so much as a textbook is beyond me. The arrogance is astounding.

Re: Uhh (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6730105)

Black Parrot squawked:
Not read the textbooks? Sounds like "stay ignorant" is the key to your plan for understanding the universe.
Reading the textbooks is the best way to stay ignorant. They have lies in them like Haeckel's embryos, Miller-Urey as proving abiogenesis, and peppered moths as proof of evolution. Pick up any intro bio textbook and you'll see some of those in there.

Nah, the textbooks have too much junque in them. Get rid of the "must prove evolution even if we have to use arguments proven wrong 125 years ago" approach and maybe you'd get some respect.

Get rid of the "fossils date the rocks, but the rocks date the fossils more accurately" circular logic.

Deal with hard science, not speculation. Then textbooks and science would gain more respect.

Re: Uhh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6751622)

Yes, because the bible is the ultimate source for factual information. God is infallible, so it has to be true.

Re:Uhh (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6737420)

Well, at least evolution is a viewpoint supported by observable facts...however imperfect that our science may be. The opposing viewpoint can be summarized as following: "Life sprang into being on the whim of an invisible man up in the says the book written by some guy on behalf of said invisible man." Wow, now that I think about it..that's a hell of a compelling argument...I'm convinced. Creationism it is!

wha...? (2, Funny)

Tumbleweed (3706) | about 11 years ago | (#6720328)

> i.e. the primates didn't evolve from the noble jungle cats, wolves, etc.

And just who the hell ever thought they _had_? This is hardly news for anyone who went through public school in the U.S. in the last, oh, 25 years or so. This is analogous to saying, "It turns out the Moon isn't made of recycled condoms." Okay, I think we already knew that.

Re:wha...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720633)

It turns out the moon is actually made out of dickcheese collected from insides of recycled condoms.

common knowledge (1)

2057 (600541) | about 11 years ago | (#6720465)

wasnt this found out like years ago, i thought it was common knowledge..

MAll rats (1)

schnits0r (633893) | about 11 years ago | (#6720502)

Does this explain the Mallrats?

Tree of life online (4, Informative)

njchick (611256) | about 11 years ago | (#6720683)

You can browse the tree of life [] starting from its root [] . If we descend to mammals [] , we'll see that lines that lead to rodents, primates and carnivors all start in the same point. Of course, it's unlikely that several branches start in the same point of evolution. It's more likely that the tree divides into two branches and then divides again.

Perhaps this research will allow to make some adjustments to the tree. However, there are already interesting facts in the current version. For example, bats are closer to primates than most other mammals. On the other hand, armadillos must have branched very early, although they did it after opossums.

Re:Tree of life online (1)

axolotl_farmer (465996) | about 11 years ago | (#6721252)

The multiple branches reflect an unresolved relationship or an uncertainty. See my other post [] for more info.

This has been a well known fact (4, Insightful)

mnmn (145599) | about 11 years ago | (#6720688)

The mammalian line forks into one group that goes on to split into felines and canines, and another that further splits into rodents and primates.

Next this poster will post an article that says Birds are closer to reptiles than to humans. I'm no biologist but I can tell when someone tries to pass an encyclopaedia fact for a breakthrough news.

Great now they think we evolved from rats! (0)

Eat Shit A-Hole (667854) | about 11 years ago | (#6720856)

This is just fucking great. Were all rats now jesus christ what will they think of next? we are really related to some dolphin beacuse they are so smart?

And if your a mouse... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6720855)

Do you only have one button?

summary (2, Informative)

gooru (592512) | about 11 years ago | (#6720909)

In case you have no idea what the submission actually says (I must've read it ten times over before giving up), this is the one from the top of the article:

Summary: A pioneering study comparing the genes of 13 species has uncovered clues to how the vertebrate family tree might have evolved. One intriguing result is that primates, including humans, are closer to rodents than carnivores or cows and pigs. Many pieces of DNA that don't even code for proteins in all these species however are conserved, suggesting that even so-called 'junk' DNA may have an important role in biology.

Steinbeck (5, Funny)

gooru (592512) | about 11 years ago | (#6720955)

So, I suppose this means the title of Steinbeck's book Of Mice and Men is redundant.

Explain why this was posted... (1)

jotaeleemeese (303437) | about 11 years ago | (#6720974)

... or do the decent thing and pull it off the site.

Editors need some basic depth in the fields discussed at least to ensure they don't make a mockery target of themselves and the site in general.

Re:Explain why this was posted... (1)

ratfynk (456467) | about 11 years ago | (#6723397)

Go play quake three and wonder why genetics stories make it to a post about science. This is a hell of a to the point scientific post. Grow TFU, or only use your computer to play games, and be another /. lame brain.

Re:Explain why this was posted... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6725954)

You uncomprimising defense of abject mediocrity has not gone unnoticed citizen. Great leader is pleased. When the revolotion comes, your efforts will be rewarded with additional nutra-packs for you and your spawn.

Re:Explain why this was posted... (1)

ratfynk (456467) | about 11 years ago | (#6726468)

I quake in the little mouse over there who actually started the story. Give Michel due credit for not being an anon poster. Further the ability to use the area on the genome (once thought to be fluff) to help understand the tree of life is something very contraversial and very much a good slashdot science topic. If you are involved in genetics at all you need to have your head read now, stop your research and go see a shrink before continuing!

Well Dah??? (1, Troll)

ratfynk (456467) | about 11 years ago | (#6721098)

We are closely related to creatures that climb trees to escape preditors, we have been known to do the same. I was once treed by a Grizzly myself. Humans have been on the carnivor diner list in the past and in some situations they still are. It should come as no suprise that we are closer in genetics to rats than cats. Rodents can be very preditory in the right situation. I am not at all suprised by these findings. Unfortunately the ignorant religous fundimentalists are going to have another reason to bash genetic science. I would not be suprised if these scientific result are not at all popular. You can bet some scientists will be hired to repute them the same way they did with Darwin.

I call troll. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6721370)

You are aware that bears can climb trees, aren't you?

You call troll, but you are a dumbass. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6721885)

Adult Grizzlies cannot climb trees. There is something about weighing a quarter to three quarters of a ton that precludes climbing.

Dumbass troll. If you're going to troll, at least don't be a dumbass. Why don't you do us all a favor and nick on outside, pop yourself in the head and remove yourself from the gene pool before humanity has the misfortune of the birth of your dumbass children? Leave the adults to continue on with their conversations, dumbass.

Re:I call troll. (1)

ratfynk (456467) | about 11 years ago | (#6723228)

Troll away but a 500-700lb grizz finds going up a thin branched skinny tree a little difficult and usually has trouble getting up trees in general. Claws can't quite hold the weight. A 400 lb black bear is a different story. You get out of the way of a snorting, barking Grizz and they will usually leave you be. Just kind of stamp off knowing they are boss, if they are just trying to tell you to fuck off. If the Grizzly is thinking you are food though you are toast. Blacks are a different story if they think you are dinner then you had better make them hesitate by whacking them hard with a stick. In my case the Grizzly hesitated to climb the tree and really was not sure if I was edible or not, I smelled funny too as insect repelant and a guy who is fishing and hasn't washed for a week gets a little high. Anyway the guys who I was with could hear me yellin' and came running with a bear banger. That put the bear off real quick. He dicided to go look for lunch somewhere else. I was happy with his choice and did not hold a grudge. Afterall we were both after fish him anything that swims me steelhead to shake hands with.

Not news (1)

ralphclark (11346) | about 11 years ago | (#6721172)

I believe it has already been the consensus for many years that primates and rodents had a common rodent-like ancestor. So all this really does is confirm what we already knew, in the face of some minor wacko fringe theory about cat ancestors that nobody paid any attention to anyway.

That's old news!! (0, Troll)

Gamasta (557555) | about 11 years ago | (#6721908)

These pictures will explain it all (the girl in red)

Pic #1 []
Pic #2 []

A very funny Brazilian comic.

42 (2, Funny)

Sleepindog (50956) | about 11 years ago | (#6722113)

Well, i guess you could argue that we are descended from mice, in that we are their creation (to find the ultimate question)

PS Unless I'm one of the inferior parts of this computer and didn't see it, I'm surprised there was no D.Adams reference before.

I, for one, (3, Funny)

QEDog (610238) | about 11 years ago | (#6722388)

I, for one, welcome our new rodent overlords!

This comes as no surprise to me (1)

tsa (15680) | about 11 years ago | (#6722403)

I often heard that rats are used so much as test animals in laboratories because they react similarly to humans when you expose them to chemicals, lack or abundance of food etc.

Species habits (2, Interesting)

phorm (591458) | about 11 years ago | (#6725836)

As an owner of pet rats, one thing I've noticed is their sometimes disturbing similarities to humans in habit.

At one point, my two female rats were constantly squeeking and making noise at night. No problem, nocturnal animals, they're just more active in the dark. However, I also noticed that oftimes when I turned on the lights, that the rodents were "cleaning each other" in a position often labelled as a number just shy of seventy.
Now, at first I dismissed this, thinking that I was imagining things. However, after talking to several rat owners and a few petshops, I have garnered that this can indeed be more than simply a hygienic practice.

Afterwards, I'd throw things at the cage when they made too much noise to shut them up. At least until one morning after I found they'd dragged in the shirt I'd thrown and perforated it for nesting material. I liked that shirt too.

Now, I've got two new rats. They don't often exhibit the same behavior as the old ones, but sometimes they will. I'm considering breeding one of them (baby rodents being quite cute 'n all), and I wonder if this will change their behavior towards each other after the babies have grown (and one rat has had an encounter of the opposite sex as opposed to the same). And of course, if I got enough rats perhaps I could make some of this []

No... (1)

The Lynxpro (657990) | about 11 years ago | (#6727291)

We are DEVO!

Obligatory furry reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 11 years ago | (#6728476)

Why, neither, of course.

I'm a fox, you insensitive clod!

not surprising... (1)

ravenousbugblatter (682061) | about 11 years ago | (#6743248)

There's a reason most reseachers use mice and rats, and it's not just because of size. Scientists have known for some time that we are most similar to mice in some respects, escpecially in how our immune systems function.
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