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Comments

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UK Government To Demand Data On Every Call, Email, and Tweet

ilovegeorgebush EU too? (199 comments)

Is it related to this?

more than 2 years ago
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Google Punishing Chrome Results For 60 Days

ilovegeorgebush Re:Good for Google (173 comments)

Happy? I don't think we should be praising Google for doing what they should be doing.

more than 2 years ago
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Ford System Will Warn, Correct Lane-Drifting Drivers

ilovegeorgebush Bad idea! (469 comments)

Am I the only one that thinks this is a really fucking bad idea?!

more than 2 years ago
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Steam Success Holding Up Half-Life Development?

ilovegeorgebush Stupid? (235 comments)

Sounds stupid to me. A company of Valve's wealth and size could attract and support enough talent for doing both game dev and steam dev, surely?

more than 3 years ago
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US Students Suffering From Internet Addiction

ilovegeorgebush "phantom limb" (314 comments)

Bit like not wearing a watch - you feel somewhat naked?

meh.

more than 3 years ago
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Facebook Adds Friend Stalker Tool

ilovegeorgebush Blame? (357 comments)

Stop blaming facebook!

They're merely capitalising on the realities of the relationships that we give them. Blaming them each and every time a new feature is added that is simple common sense and intelligent programming/design/utilisation of the information we permit they use is childish; if we didn't use these tools then they wouldn't feel obliged to innovate and refresh their featureset.

more than 3 years ago
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In UK, Computer Science Graduates the Least Employable

ilovegeorgebush Stats (349 comments)

17% of them being unable to find a job within six months of graduation

So 83% are finding jobs within 6 months? That sounds suprisingly good if you ask me...Better than I would expect.

I hate statistics, they're so over and incorrectly used.

about 4 years ago
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Google Remotely Nukes Apps From Android Phones

ilovegeorgebush Draconian? (509 comments)

Why do they have to have or at least exercise this feature of the ToS?

Why couldn't they just get a list of those who have it installed (surely they know that?) and then email them? Beats this draconian/big brother approach in my opinion...

about 4 years ago
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Hackers Target Tsunami Search Results

ilovegeorgebush Sick? (57 comments)

Not only do I think this is a little sick on the part of the blackhats, but it does pose some other concerns.

Firstly, are the media going to pick up on this and if they do, will they spin it as an opportunity to bad-mouth the Web and its communities, as well as encourage talk of "tougher rules" and the like.

Since this is a JS vulnerability, I'd certainly like to see more discussion and thought around how seriously we take JS integration on the web and how we approach it as a core target for evil-doers to exploit. Could more be done?

Lastly, how are the web search engines going to react? Could more things like this call for censorship of Google, Yahoo etc; or at least more claims for 'responsibility of the search engines'?

more than 4 years ago
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Microsoft, Amazon Ink Kindle and Linux Patent Deal

ilovegeorgebush Erm (161 comments)

A Microsoft representative declined to say which of its products are covered by the deal."

Which is like doing the following:
"Hey dude, I did something really cool!"
"Oh yeah, what's that?"
"Not telling! Tee hee!"

more than 4 years ago
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Mozilla's VP of Engineering On H.264

ilovegeorgebush Obligatory (675 comments)

It really frustrates me that a technology created and owned by someone (MPEG) and otherwise unrelated to the software created and distributed by another (Firefox) is by proxy restricting success and future adoption.

It is so utterly archaic and unfair that this is allowed to continue; MPEG-LA have the industry by its consumers by their collective balls.

more than 4 years ago
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Why "Running IT As a Business" Is a Bad Idea

ilovegeorgebush Re:Nicely put (364 comments)

Profession? Rubbish. Some do it properly.

And I'm well aware of how common my situation is.

more than 4 years ago
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Why "Running IT As a Business" Is a Bad Idea

ilovegeorgebush Re:Nicely put (364 comments)

You're crazy. I didn't agree with it at all. Please re-read.

more than 4 years ago
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Why "Running IT As a Business" Is a Bad Idea

ilovegeorgebush Re:Nicely put (364 comments)

I write in Java, Python, Perl, SQL, Unix Bash, Javascript, (then the usual markup languages). Nowhere do I mention any languages nor the dreaded PHP.

10 years in Fortran programming 30 years ago doesn't amount to anything when the platform and its consumers are so different. Concepts may transcend the barrier, as may approaches to the actual programming, but the rest does not translate or relate.

more than 4 years ago
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Why "Running IT As a Business" Is a Bad Idea

ilovegeorgebush Re:Requirements (364 comments)

By requirements I'm referring to the standard "requirements building phase" of the standard development lifecycle.

It rarely happens.

more than 4 years ago
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Why "Running IT As a Business" Is a Bad Idea

ilovegeorgebush Nicely put (364 comments)

Spot on.

I work for a large insurance company in the UK. I'm a 'senior developer' if you like. One of my biggest gripes? The notion that work on the website - for a purist such as myself (and web designers and editors that also work on the site) - is subject to zero requirements, the 'customers' want everything for nothing, time-based 'estimates' that are taken as the law of the land. Every approach the customer wants you to implement is never in the right frame of mind for how the web works (noone understands the medium in which they're presenting to the customer outside). Your work is governed, oriented and OK'd by people who have no interest in how to do things properly. Fat-cat bosses who think their 10 years experience in Fortran 30 years ago makes for true understanding of how a website should work. Their way, no matter how stupid it seems to you the unenlightened one, is the right way. Trust me, I'm a fat-cat!

What ends up giving way? Quality. And it pisses me off. I can't do my job properly. Code reviews, unit/mock/functional testing, analysis, UML *all* have to give way because of all the above and just to get it out on time. Maintenance costs increase, but as long as it's out of the door it's OK. Would you build a house without blueprints? Would you remove an accountant's calculator from their desk because *you* don't work that way? Nope. [Excuse the crude analogies, they still get the point across]

The following sums it up well:

Your ticket to the promised land begins with this: No one inside your company is your customer.[snip]

When IT is a business, selling to its internal customers, its principal product is software that "meets requirements." This all but ensures a less-than-optimal solution, lack of business ownership, and poor acceptance of the results.

I've always hated this is approach to web development and steering change on websites. It's backwards. Archaic. Frustrating.

more than 4 years ago
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Google Open Sources Etherpad, Piratepad Launches

ilovegeorgebush Re:Pretty awesome (126 comments)

I was just thinking about how this is Google's answer to "acquire and assimilate" business practices. When Oracle or Microsoft do it it's murder, but when Google do it they Open Source the product then abandon the original.

Is this better?

more than 4 years ago
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How Do I Keep My Privacy While Using Google?

ilovegeorgebush Ideas (533 comments)

TrackMeNot for Firefox is useful for masking your real search engine queries with randomised search terms. That's a start. Not sure if there's a Chrome equivalent. Is Chrome that much of a necessity? Firefox does the job (though it freezes far too often for me). Otherwise, why not exercise some self-constraint and try products from Yahoo, or even host your own? (First post? :P)

more than 4 years ago
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Google CEO Says Privacy Worries Are For Wrongdoers

ilovegeorgebush Right (671 comments)

Privacy isn't about hiding a wrong.


But whatever, by his logic he'd be happy to share his credit card details and the key-code to his security at home?

more than 4 years ago
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EU Paves the Way For Three-Strikes Cut-Off Policy

ilovegeorgebush Re:Human Rights? (272 comments)

Hence my quote of article 8 regarding privacy. IANAL though, and certainly no expert on the EU or ECHR (clearly).

more than 4 years ago

Submissions

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Microsoft promises never to sue over Mono

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  about 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "Miguel Di Icaza's blog holds some very interesting information regarding the announcement by Microsoft's Peter Galli stating that they'll never sue over mono, through the 'Community Promise' process (whatever that is):

It is important to note that, under the Community Promise, anyone can freely implement these specifications with their technology, code, and solutions.

You do not need to sign a license agreement, or otherwise communicate to Microsoft how you will implement the specifications.

The Promise applies to developers, distributors, and users of Covered Implementations without regard to the development model that created the implementations, the type of copyright licenses under which it is distributed, or the associated business model.

Under the Community Promise, Microsoft provides assurance that it will not assert its Necessary Claims against anyone who makes, uses, sells, offers for sale, imports, or distributes any Covered Implementation under any type of development or distribution model, including open-source licensing models such as the LGPL or GPL.

"

Link to Original Source
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iTunes Store Shutdown?

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "The BBC details Apple's threat over closing the iTunes store due to a possiblity that The Copyright Board will increase digital music sales:

The Copyright Royalty Board meets on Thursday to rule on a requested 66% increase for sales of digital music from 9 cents to 15 cents a track. A rise would have to be paid by either Apple, the record company or consumer. Apple opposed the rate hike and has said it is unwilling to raise its 99 cents a song price or absorb a rise.

"

Link to Original Source
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Ultrasound to give feel to games

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "Japanese researchers have devised a way of using ultrasound to produce 'virtual objects' in mid-air:

Takayuki Iwamoto and colleagues from the University of Tokyo have now demonstrated a simple haptic device that employs a number of ultrasonic transducers, which emit ultrasound.

The team's prototype system includes a camera which tracks the position of a user's hand and shifts the output from the transducers to move the focus around with the hand. The result is a feeling of tracing the edge or surface of the virtual object.

What sinister uses could this be used for, I wonder?"
Link to Original Source

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First Letter In Email Address May Depict Spam Load

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "A study by University of Cambridge scientist Dr Richard Clayton suggests the amount of spam you receive may depend on the first letter of your email address:

Dr Clayton took as his dataset the 550 million e-mail messages sent to customers of net service Demon between 1 February and 27 March 2008. Looking at the mix of messages landing in inboxes, Dr Clayton found a wide discrepancy in the amounts of junk that different addresses received which seemed to hinge on their initial letters. The most popular letters for spammers were "A", "M", "S", "R" and "P" many of which got more than 40% spam along with legitimate messages. Much less popular were "Q", "Z" and "Y". For these cases, spam was running at about 20% or less.

"

Link to Original Source
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Hollywood Goes For UK File-sharers. Gets it wrong

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "According to The Register, the file sharing hunt by the big Hollywood studios has crossed the pond, but (as usual) has gone sour:

Tiscali threatened to disconnect a customer for illegally downloading a TV show last week, after receiving a copyright infringement notice from a Hollywood studio. The only problem was the customer had quit the ISP months before the alleged transgression was made. Euan MacLay had been a customer of Freedom2Surf (F2S) for two years until it was taken over by Tiscali as part of the Pipex acquisition last year. His past experience of the Italian buyer's customer service was poor, so as soon as his Freedom2Surf line was due to be migrated to Tiscali's budget network he decided to switch.

"

Link to Original Source
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Save Forests By Searching Google

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "Apparently you can save 0.1m2 of rain forest from your chair:

Forestle.org is an independent, nonprofit site based out of Germany, and it was officially launched today after a period of beta testing. Results are delivered through Google, so they are as good as one might expect from a favorite search engine. So what's this pony's trick? According to the folks behind Forestle, all of the site's income (minus administrative costs, of course) from sponsored links is donated to The Nature Conservancy's adopt an acre program that helps to sustain the world's rainforests.

"

Link to Original Source
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Using Treadmills To Play WoW

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "Ever wondered how fit you'd have to be to run like an MMO avatar? Well, two guys did it by connecting treadmills to their PCs and racing eachother. (flash video @ Gizmodo)

We've always wondered what it would be like to run the same distance in the real world that we run every day in Warcraft. Finding out required duct tape, computers, custom scripts, sore legs, and elf ears. We had been wanting to connect a treadmill to Warcraft and calibrate the speed for a long time.

Apparently, WoW characters are on par with one-mile world record holders."
Link to Original Source

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US Agree To Withdraw From Iraq By 2011

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "The Iraqi PM has stated that an agreement has been made to withdraw all foreign troops from Iraq by the end of 2011.

BAGHDAD (Reuters) — Iraqi Prime Minister Prime Nuri al-Maliki said on Monday that an agreement had been reached in negotiations on a security pact with the United States to end any foreign military presence in Iraq by the end of 2011. "There is an agreement actually reached, reached between the two parties on a fixed date which is the end of 2011 to end any foreign presence on Iraqi soil," Maliki said in a speech to tribal leaders in the Baghdad's heavily fortified Green Zone.

"

Link to Original Source
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Valve To Port Source To Linux?

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "Are valve porting the source engine to Linux? Phoronix has an article suggesting they are:

There have been rumors since last year that Valve may be serious about porting Source games to Linux after Valve Software began seeking a senior software engineer with the responsibility of porting Windows-based games to the Linux platform. Valve Software has yet to officially announce Linux clients for any of its software, but at Phoronix we have received information confirming that Valve is indeed porting its very popular Source engine to the Linux platform.

Native HL2 in time for Christmas anyone?"
Link to Original Source

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NASA Rocket Explodes On Liftoff

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

beplacid.net writes "As reported by various outlets, NASA's latest rocket holding two experiments exploded on liftoff..

A suborbital rocket carrying two experiments conducted by NASA was destroyed Friday morning by range safety officials shortly after launch on Wallops Island. NASA officials said in a Friday news conference that the rocket had strayed outside of set boundaries and the decision was made to destroy it. The rocket launched at 5:10 a.m. NASA said no property damage or injuries have occured, but there were conflicting reports as to whether debris had been sighted on land. NASA said it believes that most of the debris landed in the Atlantic Ocean.

"

Link to Original Source
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RIAA Pays Up $107, 951 In Anderson V Atlantic

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Placid writes "The torrentfreak.com is detailing yet another RIAA loss, this time in Anderson vs Atlantic. This is the second of two very large cases where the RIAA has had to pay-up and admit being wrong.

It is encouraging to finally hear that last night, the RIAA and the member companies that were involved in the case finally paid the fees (they refused first), putting an end to this protracted legal wrangling. The amount paid was not, however, $107,834 but a figure of $107,951 — a figure which takes into account interest accrued due to delay.

So, with Thomas looking to head to a mistrial, making the $222,000 judgment null and void, the two largest decisions in the RIAA's 'war on downloading' have been against them. In both cases the RIAA admitted it was wrong, and ordered to pay the fees.

"

Link to Original Source
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IBM VP Thinks Microsoft Will Back ODF

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Placid writes "Ars Technica has an interesting interview with IBM's VP in which he states that Microsoft are more likely to back the ODF as opposed to the much-criticised OOXML.

...the industry will regard OOXML as a dead end, and that will force Microsoft to accept ODF. We have already seen some evidence of this in Microsoft's recent decision to support ODF in Office — a change of heart that was precipitated by pressure from ODF adopters. Sutor suspects that this trend will continue and that Microsoft will eventually fully embrace ODF.

He also makes the claim that Microsoft will use their typical extend-and-extinguish approach to prevent ODF's success along the line:

If Microsoft isn't given the opportunity to participate in shaping the future of ODF or chooses not to, he says we will likely see the company embrace and extend the format with its own non-standard extensions. He hopes that the ODF community can collectively work with Microsoft to prevent the format from suffering that kind of fragmentation.

"

Link to Original Source
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EFF Releases Tool for Testing ISP Interference

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Placid writes "The EFF announces a tool for testing if your ISP is interfering with your BitTorrent transfers. From the article:

Developed by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Switzerland is an open source software tool for testing the integrity of data communications over networks, ISPs and firewalls. It will spot IP packets which are forged or modified between clients, inform you, and give you copies of the modified packe

Naturally, the tool is FOSS; you can contribute to it via its sourceforge project."
Link to Original Source

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UK Uni. Developing Surveillance That Can Hear You

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  about 6 years ago

Placid writes "According to an article on arstechnica, Portsmouth University in the UK is experimenting with surveillance cameras that can hear you.

Researchers from the University of Portsmouth in the UK are working on refining AI software that currently allows the cameras to identify visual patterns associated with law-breaking. The plan is to add an audio capability, so that the noise of breaking glass (for example) would cause the camera to take notice and alert an operator.
The article also links to a page on the BBC that describes the system further.

Please come to the UK, where civil liberties and the right to freedom are rapidly depleting!"

Link to Original Source
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Facebook Goes Open Source?

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Placid writes "According to an article on Techcrunch, Facebook is to upsize its developer offering by "four main sections: Facebook Markup Language (FMBL), Facebook Query Language (FQL), Facebook Javascript (FJS) and the Facebook API.". From the article:

Sometime soon, perhaps this week, Facebook will turn the year-old Facebook Platform into an open source project, multiple sources have told us. The immediate effect will be to allow any social network to become Facebook Platform compatible — meaning application developers can easily take their Facebook applications and have them run on those social networks, too.

Should we all be adding FMBL/FQL to our CVs?"
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Napster Opens World's Largest DRM-Free MP3 Store

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Placid writes "The BBC, is detailing Napster's latest download service. The 'new MP3 store', launched today in the US, Canada and the UK, will break away from its usual unlimited download plan to single-track based downloads without DRM. From the BBC article:

Napster has launched the world's largest online music store without digital rights management (DRM). More than six million tracks will be sold as MP3 files, from all of the major record labels and independents. Napster boss Chris Gorog said the service, which offers songs for 99 cents (79p), moved online music "from under the DRM cloud". The Napster store will compete directly with a similar service from Amazon, the only other online store with MP3s from all the major labels, and Apple's iTunes, which offers a limited number of DRM-free tracks.
"

Link to Original Source
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BBC iPlayer For Macs, Coming Soon

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Placid writes "As the BBC reports, "The BBC will launch a download version of its iPlayer online video service for Apple Mac users by the end of 2008". The BBC's Director General, Mark Thompson, stated in his blog that

I hope this good news is evidence of the hard work that the BBC is committing to supporting other platforms
He also gives a hint to the reasoning for releasing a Windows-only product when launching:

The first thing to say is that — contrary to what some believe — the BBC actually works hard to provide internet services on a "platform agnostic" basis. The BBC iPlayer has made programmes available to Mac users and users of other operating systems via streaming since December 2007 — a move which I'm told has gone down very well indeed. However, the issue of download of programmes to Mac and other platforms has always been a more complex issue for technical and rights reasons
"

Link to Original Source
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Microsoft Buys Multimap

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Placid writes "Various online news sources are covering Microsoft's purchase of Multimap.com. In a move to attempt to gain market share in the online search business, Microsoft said "the deal gives it location and mapping technology that complement its existing offerings such as Virtual Earth, Live Search, Windows Live services.".
From the BBC article:

Sharon Baylay, general manager of the Online Services Group at Microsoft, said that the deal with Multimap presented "a huge opportunity to expand our platform business beyond the UK and globally".
Multimap has offices in America, Australia, South Africa and Turkey, as well as in London, and has a presence in 48 countries.
The Register article claims that Microsoft have paid around £37 ($50) million for Multimap:

Microsoft didn't disclose the price it paid, but the Times reports that the deal is "understood to be worth about £50 million", which should put around £37m in the pocket of Sean Phelan, founder of Multimap. The company made profits of £0.9m in 2006 on revenues of £12m.
"

Link to Original Source
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Yahoo To Serve Adverts In PDFs

ilovegeorgebush ilovegeorgebush writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Placid writes "According to the BBC, Yahoo! has signed a deal to provide adverts within PDF documents. The article states:

The service will allow publishers to make money by including adverts linked to the content of a PDF document in a panel at the side of the page.
It is Yahoo's latest way of expanding the places it can advertise online following deals with the auction site Ebay and the cable TV group Comcast.
Dynamic adverts can be changed for particular audiences or rotated to make sure that a particular user never sees the same advertisement twice.
Unlike Web Browsers, the advertisements will not appear if the PDF document is printed."

Link to Original Source

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