* Posts by Sherrie Ludwig

228 posts • joined 10 Nov 2013


Made-up murder claims, threats to kill Twitter, rants about NSA spying – anything but mention 100,000 US virus deaths, right, Mr President?

Sherrie Ludwig

President Grump

It's the best I can do right now.

I've been using the one George Takei coined: Twitler.

Frontier: Yes, yes, we've filed for bankruptcy protection, but that's not stopping us giving key staff $38m in bonuses

Sherrie Ludwig

I had Frontier for landline and internet for my business in Wisconsin about fifteen years ago. Small town, very old building. For the first week, I had constant problems with the service, mostly internet but sometimes also phone. The technicians came out within a hour each time, and tried all sorts of fixes, they finally replaced the wiring out to the pole, and some kit on the pole to get me up and running, then no further problems. Would probably still have them, if the building were not demolished to run a new road through. In my experience, maybe they just provide great customer service, which is costly to run, instead of AT&T (regrettably the only choice for my home) where service is a dirty word? My current business location is in a town that has one of the last local, privately owned "telephone" companies left. They put in fiber broadband to the downtown area when it was first available, and are expanding it to the surrounding area as they get state grants and such to help finance it. The time from call to service (needed only twice in five years) has been fifteen minutes. I hope they never sell to the big guys.

Hooray! It's IT Day! Let's hear it for the lukewarm mugs of dirty water that everyone seems to like so much

Sherrie Ludwig

Coffee is too bitter, and cannot be consumed in the quantities required for refreshment. I like a coffee occasionally, a shot of espresso or even a lungo in the morning. But to sip that swill that is filter coffee all day long like the Americans? No thanks. Similarly, I'm fat enough without adding the filth that is a Starbucks venti latte. I've always found it strange that Starbucks, a coffee company, have so many drinks that are designed to hide the flavour of the coffee.

That is why Starbucks so-called coffee is so burnt, so it can be tasted at all through all the crud they put in it. Proper coffee from a medium roast doesn't need any of that, although I like mine with half-and-half no sugar. My better half amazed the Italians he worked with in Rome by taking his espresso black, while they dumped everything but the kitchen sink into theirs.

I don't understand putting anything into tea, though. My Scottish friend puts milk and sugar in hers, while she knows that when we have tea at her place, she pours for everyone, leaves the last of it steeping for quite a while, then pours for me, which I take plain, to her great amusement, but it's the only way tea tastes of anything.

A real loch mess: Navy larks sunk by a truculent torpedo

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Of course it was going to hit the boat!

Smeg knows; this was a while ago. Might have been rocket science, or it might have just been a sunny day and he wanted to play with a new toy...

Best kind of science teacher. Probably in the same mumble of years, I had Mr. Orloff, who gave extra points for the loudest bangs in lab experiments. We were generating hydrogen, capturing it in a small plastic bottle held in tongs, then testing how well we did by passing the mouth of the bottle over a lit bunsen burner (hence the tongs to hold the bottle). It should have just given a loud POP. My lab partner and I did this, and the bottle flew out of the tongs and through a windowpane. We got the highest extra credit.

US govt can talk about the end of lockdown, but Silicon Valley says 'as long as it takes' – and Twitter says 'WFH forever'

Sherrie Ludwig

What I miss most is the ability to talk directly to people. It's not only about social contacts, it's just easier to ask a quick question or discuss a situation for five minutes when you can walk over, rather than send a text, or ask for a VC.

Yeah, I know it's so last century, but phone calls are still allowed.

We beg, implore and beseech thee. Stop reusing the same damn password everywhere

Sherrie Ludwig

Depends on the site

For logging in to sites that are trivial and do not involve money, like a recipes site, or news site, I reuse a fairly simple one. For anything involving transfer of money like shopping or bill paying, it's a password generator and password keeper lodged on my computer only.

Looming ventilator shortage amid pandemic sparks rise of open-source DIY medical kit. Good thinking – but safe?

Sherrie Ludwig

Hospitals _will_ be overwhelmed.

And there is also likely to be a shortage of staff who know how to use the gear.

Italy has already started quick training of other medical personnel, like dermatologists, to use and monitor respirators. Good use of lateral thinking in a crisis.

IBM puts 1,248 frontline techies at risk of redundo, warns of data centre closures

Sherrie Ludwig

The executions will not stop until morale (and profits, well, especially profits) improve.

Theranos vampire lives on: Owner of failed blood-testing biz's patents sues maker of actual COVID-19-testing kit

Sherrie Ludwig

I don't think you can go as low as $0 that would be counted as theft. $0.01 should be ok though.

Those kinds of deals usually specify $1.00 as the "thing of value" exchanged. Still, a bargain.

Facebook does the right thing for once: Joins Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube to clean out dodgy COVID-19 info

Sherrie Ludwig

Let's see... Without going looking for it, we have the Chinese press blaming the US military. With have some of the Arab press blaming the Jews.

Latest tweets from Twitler calling it "China Virus". I call it Trump flu.

Sherrie Ludwig

"Nice to see they draw the line at plain wrong health information, shame they didn't draw the line at plain wrong political stuff which put populist idiots in charge in the first place who are now unable to respond and do stupid stuff like wind down the pandemic office or say they want to "wait until it's the right time" as an excuse for doing nothing (hint: anyone with half a brain could see what was happening, if you want to see two weeks into the future, look at Italy and one week into the future, look at Spain)."

At this time, I see 8 up and 8 down, so apparently the populist idiot has convinced enough fools. I thought he would be an excrement tornado, did not realize he would endanger us to the point he has. BTW, ot five FB posts blocked yesterday, Thought it was an attack of the RW trolls, but FB is calling it an "AI malfunction".

BT CEO tests positive for coronavirus, goes into self-isolation after meeting fellow bosses from Vodafone UK, Three, O2 plus govt officials

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: It's getting the 1% as well

We are hearing of celebrity / sports people / politicians being infected because


In the states, if you feel unwell, you are supposed to call(not come in) to your Doctor, who decides if they need to call the local health department (state or county) who then ask a bunch of questions, the gist of which you can get a number for a test ONLY if they determine that you were traveling, or in "close contact" with a traveler. So, no tests, basically. And half the US thinks this is a hoax, anyway.

What's inside a tech freelancer's backpack? That's right, EVERYTHING

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: unpacking order...

If the first three things you take out are cable ties, duck tape and latex gloves, people tend to be more reticent about borrowing stuff

I am happy to lend out such things as mentioned, BUT I demand the borrower leave their driver's license as bail. I tell them if the item is not returned by the close of day, their DL can be retrieved from the shredder. It does tend to keep these items from going walkabout, and it's up to them to find me and return said item, not me chasing them down.

Sophos was gearing up for a private life – then someone remembered the bike scheme

Sherrie Ludwig

How much money are we talking here?

How many loans are still out, at what total cost? If it is the easiest and most convenient way to get this over, can't they just forgive the loans and clear them off the books? Yeah, that means those lucky employees would get a de facto pay bump, and have to report it as income, but that would cut this Gordian knot. Call it "stupid tax" on the acquiring company, and be done with it.

Google product boss cuffed on suspicion of murder after his Microsoft manager wife goes missing, woman's body found, during Hawaii trip

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Verbal signals?

You sent me down a rabbit hole of three great BBC programmes on verbal communication with that link. Thank you! Raising one to you, sir.

Microsoft to bravely defend US democracy for a slack handful of voters in Fulton, Wisconsin

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Paper ballots and markers

Being a Yank and a Virginian, those across the pond don't seem to recognize the volume of lines on a typical ballot. And the fact that poll workers are unpaid volunteers.

In Illinois, the poll workers are paid for their day (and a bit, they come in a day before to check the supplies and equipment are all on hand). It isn't much, works out to barely above minimum wage if all goes well, but if there is a snag in opening or closing the polls, they may be required to work until it is resolved, which can add a couple of hours to the day. I have been an Illinois "judge of election", as they are called here, and it is a post usually filled by retirees for the social entertainment and the few extra dollars. It is a very long and tiring day, and you have a great deal of responsibility. To do it as a volunteer is devotion past reason.

NASA's Christina Koch returns to Earth as the longest-serving woman astronaut – after spending 328 days in space

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Brilliant job that Woman!

"Period of headaches and nausea guaranteed. For longer stretches muscle hypotropia sets in, and can prolong readjustment periods up to (in his experience) 6 months..."

So, a bit like pregnancy, but without the stretch marks. Includes the demineralization of bones and teeth, so very like pregnancy. Why send a man to do a woman's work?

I will be very happy when these "first women", first black", first trans" news stories go away...because they are common and unremarkable.

Hear, hear: The first to invent idiot-cancelling headphones gets my cash

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Not a lot of people know this ..

In Chicago, that other side of the road slowdown is called a "gaper's block". It happens so often that the nomenclature has standardized.

Is everything OK over there, Britain? Have you tried turning the UK off and on again? ISPs, financial orgs fall over in Freaky Friday of outages

Sherrie Ludwig

Knuckle-buster to the rescue

Just last year I was in queue to purchase at a chain bookstore when their cc processing went down. They fiddled, tried for a bit but no hope. The manager on duty unearthed a knuckle-buster and credit card slips from a store room, but had no idea how to use it, like a young person today with a rotary dial phone. I showed them how to employ it, warned that it was only for cards with raised numbers, to check the expiration date visually, and get a signature and the phone number in case of problems. Then said that to process the charges, they would probably have to manually key in all charges off the slips, but check with head office first. Since my card was properly charged, I can only assume it all worked.

You know the President is able to shut down all US comms, yeah? An FCC commish wants to stop him from doing that

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: It's legal

@Jason Derp

I hate that you're right. But, you are.

Beware the Friday afternoon 'Could you just..?' from the muppet who wants to come between you and your beer

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: My reply is no i do servers

im quite prepared to do labour swaps with other trades

I have heard it called "blood for blood", you do your trade for me doing mine. I am a jeweler, have swapped jewelry repair for WIFI setting up.

Beer necessities: US chap registers bevvy as emotional support animal so he can booze on public transport

Sherrie Ludwig

No no no, he should have registered his support yeast, which happens to be crated in a chilled can.

Then he'd be out of luck still, beer in cans is filtered to remove the yeast.

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: No beer on the train?

"Beer on trains: fine. You can drink a beer on an Amtrak and no one is gonna mind. Beer on the subway/commuter rail: not really. Dunno why it's that way, but it is. Same everywhere I've been, that I can think of..."

In Illinois, in the USA, there used to be a "bar car" on the longer commuter rail lines, and one could tipple on the way home from Chicago. Sad to see it go. https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-2008-08-27-0808270116-story.html

Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia accused of hacking Jeff Bezos' phone with malware-laden WhatsApp message

Sherrie Ludwig


If you carried separate SIM cards, and swapped them into the one phone, would it be enough? SIMs are so small they would not be a burden.

From Soviet to science fiction icon, the weird life of Isaac Asimov 100 years on

Sherrie Ludwig

@Big Boomer

I am a woman who can enjoy even old "boobs and blasters" SF if it is well-written, one of my favorite (now largely forgotten) writers is H. Beam Piper, as unreconstructed a sexist and racist as you will ever read, but he could write. Asimov, like many male writers, had a hard time writing women characters, the first male SF writer I read who could was John Varley (Titian, et. al.).

Sherrie Ludwig

My experience with Dr. Asimov

I am an avid reader of SF, and attended the 1980 WorldCon in Boston that year. At that time, I was, if I may say so myself, a very good-looking twenty-something. I was also new-married, and was standing in his autograph line with two books (the limit per person), one a copy of I, Robot to be autographed for my mother-in-law, and a copy of Murder at the ABA, Asimov's non-SF but highly entertaining murder mystery for myself. Directly in front of me was a sweet girl who was classic jailbait, about 15, buxom, and adorable. Dr. Asimov was autographing books and kissing any female willing to be bussed. He got to Ms. Jailbait, autographed her books, stood up, looked at her for a moment and said, "how old are you, my dear?" She, giggling, told him, "15". He solemnly shook her hand.

When my turn came, I told him the I Robot was for my mother-in-law, and that she underlined passages in books she particularly liked, and that the only other writer she underlined more was Camus. He looked through the book briefly to note the underlinings, and autographed it. I said that while I owned a lot of his books, I chose this one for its uniqueness, it being his only murder mystery. He autographed it, stood up and swept me into a full-on, lean-back movie kiss. Yes, sideburns DO tickle.

Later, I attended the lecture given by Dr. Robert L. Forward of JPL, scientist and author of some very good SF himself, on interstellar propulsion drives. I looked behind me, and there were Isaac Asimov and Frederick Pohl, sitting together and taking detailed notes. Great times.

Doogee Wowser: The S40's a terrible smartphone, but a passable projectile

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: There was a time....

They missed with unerring accuracy. Concussing a child was frowned upon even in the good old days

Back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth and my high school math class was just after lunch, my teacher had wicked aim - he could lob the eraser such that it would land on a nodding student's desk, releasing a cloud of chalk dust that woke the offender up, sneezing.

Absolutely smashing: Musk shows off Tesla's 'bulletproof' low-poly pickup, hilarity ensues

Sherrie Ludwig

Appears to be the unholy love child of a DeLorean and a Pontiac Aztek.

Weird flex but OK... Motorola's comeback is a $1,500 Razr flip-phone with folding 6.2" screen

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Aspect ratio very odd

What other purpose is there for a flagship £1000+ phone these days?

My $20 (yes that was the purchase price, not monthly) LG has been doing everything necessary for a couple of years, and I will be very sad when it reaches end-of-life, built like tank (I'm clumsy) and holds a charge for days.

50 years ago, someone decided it would be OK to fire Apollo 12 through a rain cloud. Awks, or just 'SCE to Aux'?

Sherrie Ludwig

Better than Disneyland

If you ever get to Florida, science nerds, don't faff around with Disney or Universal, go to Cape Canaveral, where the magic and adventure were REAL. They have the whole mission control center, and a show that demonstrates a bit of what it took to put people on the moon. They also have a Saturn V you can walk along side, which is quite a hike, and a "ride" experience of a Space Shuttle liftoff - don't know how that was done, but highly convincing. And more info and exhibits than one can absorb in a day.

Uber CEO compares pedestrian death to murder of Saudi journalist, saying all should be forgiven

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Everyone likes to hate on Uber

"If everyone who claimed to hate their ethics stopped using their services, Uber's shares would not be going up."

Never have, never will.

Are you as handy with privacy certs as you are with a screwdriver? Ikea has the perfect vacancy

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Remember the electric screwdriver

"The last things I assembled from IKEA - two identical corner desks for the grandkids - both had a component with half the holes drilled 180° out of alignment with the other half, presumably either a half turn missed in the programming or an extra one inserted. One duff desk might have been an accident, two suggests a whole batch were out. That's the thing about consistency based quality - you swap the occasional rogue error for a job-lot of junk."

I will say that my one experience with a bad IKEA kit was saved by excellent customer service. I drove the 70 miles each way to and from the closest IKEA (Schaumburg, IL, USA) and began assembly when I found that the base of this display cabinet had holes drilled that did not match up, and could not be assembled. I put the half-assembled kit in the back of my pickup truck and drove back down there. intending to unload my irritation on the first person available. Customer Service person came out to the truck, verified that the piece was incorrectly made, hauled it into the store, exchanged for a new kit, which we part assembled to verify that it was made correctly, AND gave me a gift certificate equal in price to a full tank of gas for the old truck, for my pains. Loaded the now mostly-assembled case into the truck, and took it back to my store in Wisconsin, where it held up very well for years, until I was moving store and sold it for what I had paid for it. Yes, I still buy from them.

Now the US DoJ has charged Apple's insider trading lawyer with, er... well, it's embarrassing

Sherrie Ludwig

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"As an employee I would always sell company stock at the earliest opportunity. If the company does well I don't need the stock - myjob will pay enough. If the company doesn't do well I surely don't want to be invested in them.

Many people at Xerox lost 90% of their retirement by not following this principle."

One word: Enron.

Just a friendly reminder there were no at-the-time classified secrets on Clinton's email server. Yes, the one everyone lost their minds over

Sherrie Ludwig

Reply Icon

At least Trump is both a crook and incompetent, just think what might be happening if he was only the former.

Nixon. And, we are in for a long ride, over 500 days between first closed door meetings to decide to impeach Nixon and his resignation to avoid impeachment (and eventual removal from office - when Republicans had both balls and brains).

Deus ex hackina: It took just 10 minutes to find data-divulging demons corrupting Pope's Click to Pray eRosary app

Sherrie Ludwig

There is a prayer for everything.

Including the Internet, with intercession from St. Isidore.


Conspiracy loons claim victory in Brighton and Hove as council rejects plans to build 5G masts

Sherrie Ludwig

"Hopefully "Brighton and Hove 5G Radiation Free" are campaigning against radiation in the 380-740nm wavelengths too..."

well, TBH, anyone with pale skin knows some of that range from a nearby star can cause some very painful skin reddening and peeling.....

What the &*%* did you just $#*&!*# say about me, you little &%$#*? 'AI' to filter Xbox Live chat

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: For sooth....

A noble list, sir! >>>>>

Oh dear... AI models used to flag hate speech online are, er, racist against black people

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: The elephant in the room

"I am also permanently not okay with the term "cunt". EVERYONE knows it stems from a vulgar reference to women, and if you think it is okay to speak that way, I have a problem with your attitude towards women."

Do you think similar about their attitude to men if they call someone a dick? (genuine question

There seems to be a difference between British and American usage on that. The term in British English seems to be no worse that calling someone a "jerk" (another term that may have originally developed from a vulgar origin) and seems to be unisex. In American English, it is a very vile insult used only against women, and specifically demeaning their sex.

If I wished to specifically and vulgarly insult a male person, I would probably call him a prick, because it seems like a dick, only smaller. But I would use neither in a work environment, and certainly not in a job interview.

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Ha

Offence is not given but taken.

Offence certainly CAN be given, or at least attempted to be given. in the case of insulting or derogatory speech. The person hearing it can decide to take it at face value, and be offended, or to disregard it or to ridicule it, but the intent to give offence does exist.

The immovable object versus the unstoppable force: How the tech boys club remains exclusive

Sherrie Ludwig

I scrolled back

to my astonishment, the author of this is male. Thank you, sir, for getting it. I am at retirement age, but ran into this sort of thing, overt and covert, for the time I was in corporate life, and in financing and networking my own business later. I don't think that reverse discrimination is the correct answer, but calling out the common or garden variety discrimination and the mindset that underpins it will be an ongoing task for the next generation. #Me too does exist, and it spills over and colors every interaction in the business world.

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Misguided

"This is only my experience and I'd love to be wrong but young male dev teams seem to get very 'blokey' and end up creating a hostile environment for women."

In the 1980s I was a member of a city planning and development computer mapping group.the only woman out of about a dozen guys, A woman in a related department said, "how can you stand working there? It's like walking into a men's room." Being blessed with a gift for sarcastic repartee, I found that I got accepted only when I pushed back on the worst of the sexism, ignored most of it, and was more productive than most of the rest of the team. The pay was good, the guys individually decent, with one hostile exception, (he was a bit of dead weight that the other team members just tolerated) but the constant background sexism was like having a cold that won't go away, not completely hampering,but a drain on energy and an annoyance.

I wish that men who do not see the problem would get transferred to a 90% woman department, and deal with hearing complaints about other men, frank appraisals of their attributes, discussions of menstrual periods, and the like.

Reach out and touch fake: Hand tracking in VR? How about your own, personal, haptics?

Sherrie Ludwig

well, clunky now, but as proof-of-concept, a good start. Rather like the shoebox sized cell phone of yore, perhaps eventually sensors imprinted on something like a pair of "rubber" gloves.

BOFH: We must... have... beer! Only... cure... for... electromagnetic fields

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: solution

When I was a lot younger, there were some shops that used a (I think) security system that emitted a high frequency sound which most people could not hear. I could, and I had to avoid those because it was akin to nails on a chalkboard for me, but did not affect people I shopped with..

Living in Chicago at the time and taking public transportation, I had to block my ears at certain places riding the "el" because the sound emitted at certain turns was excruciating. I am much older and deafer (too many rock concerts) so not bothered. I wonder if something like that could be operating here?

One friend's child is autism spectrum, and fluorescent tube lighting really bothers him, could it be 60 cycle hum/flicker?

Not discounting hypochondria, but just because I can't hear it/feel it doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

Congratulations! You finally have the 10Mbps you're legally entitled to. Too bad that's obsolete

Sherrie Ludwig


I live in rural USA. I pay $79 per month for a landline (have to have it - lousy cell coverage) and a supposed 1.75Mbps, usually tests at about 1.25 actually. The "competitor" (everyone is supposed to pick from at least two providers, "competing") would offer internet and cable tv, at blistering speeds, but only if I PAY TO LAY THE CABLE, about $3,000, and pay over $100 per month after that. And that is after a complaint made to the FCC.

Stallman's final interview as FSF president: Last week we quizzed him over Microsoft visit. Now he quits top roles amid rape remarks outcry

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: He should have stuck to what he knows

Thank you, AC, for posting the link to Selam G.'s article. it was thought-provoking, and something I can point to when someone asks what women 's concerns are in the worlds of academia, tech, and business.

Right-click opens up terrifying vistas of reality and Windows 95 user's frightful position therein

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: The 1990s haven't gone away yet...

"I find several users who when logging on press Caps Lock then the first letter of their first name (Me, silently "use Shift, use Shift"),"

I am a hasty and inaccurate typist, so I hit the Caps Lock often when I intend to hit just Shift. I removed the Caps Lock button on one keyboard (unfortunately my current one doesn't have that option). Why is there such an unhelpful button right near one that is often needed? Yes, I am not a techie, why do you ask?

Lab grown stem cells emit brain waves like newborns – and boffins build robot worm to slither through heads

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Careful now

If you send that to Mississippi, or some other Right Wing Nutjob Stronghold, they'll track down the donor of the cells and force them to carry it to term.

Because.... Actually I don't know why. Maybe I can ask the audience, or call my lifeline?

Please, no. A heartless bit of brain cells will become another RWNJ. The US has enough of them, thanks.

Talk about unintended consequences: GDPR is an identity thief's dream ticket to Europeans' data

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Over caution

First of all, tapemonkey, Sincere condolences on the death of your wife. Secondly, I have had the same sort of trouble when dealing with US companies over my mother's estate, which did not go to probate (she had assets that transferred to beneficiary upon death). Oddly, Social Security Administration was the worst, as I tried to get them to STOP her check.

Thunderbolts and lightning very, very frightening as loo shatters, embedding porcelain shards in wall

Sherrie Ludwig

Re: Cloud Processing

"I was under the impression that there is something organic in the tank which digests and breaks down what you put into it. Do you need to be careful about what cleaning products and other chemicals go down your drain, or are the little beasties quite hardy?"

Living on septic system for almost twenty years, no problems. First off, it needs to be a well built one, with venting and a large leach field that you treat like the fragile thing it is, no driving large heavy machinery over it, no digging in that area deeper than planting a few flowering bulbs. Secondly use the toilet paper that disintegrates quickly, not the swans' down extra floofy that turns into a wad of cotton batting, and use biodegradable cleaning products wherever possible. There are packets of the bacteria that you can use to repopulate your system if you have to mess it up (the well needed to have chlorine run through it when we dug the pump up to replace) but I don't usually have to use them. We get the tank pumped about once every two years, couple hundred bucks in my area. Oh, and "flushable" products aren't, not even for city sewer systems, but you knew that, didn't you?

Fantastic Mr Fox? Not when he sh*ts on your lawn, kids' trampoline and your soul

Sherrie Ludwig

"First, deal with the neighbor. Report him/her/it to whatever local authority would deal with someone creating a habitat for vermin. May take several complaints to be effective.

Second, Chain link. With the bottom of the fence a couple inches below ground level and set in concrete. Expensive but the foxes will have to poop on your idiot neighbor's lawn."

Agree with the first, the second is ineffectual. Foxes have been known to climb chain link.



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