Pixel Scroll 9/6 With Six, You Get Egg Scroll

(1) A postcard from the Baen beachhead at Dragon Con.

(2) The Stanley Hotel in Colorado inspired Stephen King’s novel The Shining, a connection the hotel’s operators have used to market the resort for years.

But unlike King’s fictional Overlook it never had a hedge maze – until this summer when the owner had one built to placate his customers.

Missing from the experience, however, has been the hedge maze that Mr. Kubrick used as the setting for the film’s climax….

At a colleague’s suggestion, Mr. Cullen [the owner] opted to hold a contest for the design, a move that amplified the public-relations potential. A panel of judges received 329 entries from around the world, and the winner was a New York architect named Mairim Dallaryan Standing.

Mr. Cullen chose to form the maze from juniper trees that grow to just three feet high, making the Stanley’s maze far less imposing than the 13-foot labyrinth in the Kubrick film. Mr. Cullen said he was concerned about losing children in the maze.

This summer, that decision has caused some disappointment….

The owner of the real hotel builds a maze to please King fans, who then are not pleased because it doesn’t match the source. How fannish is that?

(3) John O’Halloran’s Sasquan photo album – mainly the Hugo ceremony.

(4) Lou Antonelli on Facebook

I’m going to write an alternate history set in a world where cloning was perfected in the 1920s and by the beginning of the television era in the 1950s entertainers are able to license copies of themselves for live performances.

The clones of bigger stars are more expensive than the clones of lesser ones. One man has to settle for a Teresa Brewer clone, but he bemoans the fact that he couldn’t afford a clone of the star he REALLY wanted.

The story will be called…

“If You Were a Dinah Shore, My Love.”

(5) The works of Karel Capek are being celebrated at a festival in Washington D.C. Celia Wren penned an overview in the Washington Post.

Prepare for rebellious automatons, a 300-year-old opera singer, and a pack of newts taking a page from Ira Glass. These and other inventions will unfold locally this fall courtesy of the Czech writer Karel Capek (1890-1938), with help from other artists.

Capek is the focus of the Mutual Inspirations Festival 2015, led by the Embassy of the Czech Republic and offering films, theater pieces, lectures, art exhibits, and — for children — a Lego Robotics Workshop. Now in its sixth year, the festival pays tribute to an influential Czech figure, such as Antonin Dvorak (2011), Vaclav Havel (2013) or Franz Kafka (2014).

The Mutual Inspirations website has complete details.

Running from September 3-November 21, 2015, the festival highlights events at select venues in the Washington area, such as the Kennedy Center, the Gonda Theatre in the Davis Performing Arts Center at Georgetown University, the Avalon Theatre, and Bistro Bohem. Highlights of this year’s festival include a jazz-age evening of music and dance, theatrical readings of the new work R.U.R.: A Retro-Futuristic Musical, the world premiere of War with the Newts adapted by Natsu Onoda Power, a robotics demonstration and lecture with Czech robotics expert Vladimir Ma?ík, a panel discussion on R.U.R. and the Rationalized World, and a Lego Robotics Workshop for children facilitated by the Great Adventure Lab. Additional noted speakers include Templeton Prize-winner Tomáš Halík, art historian Otto Urban, and theatre/ interactive media arts scholar Jana Horaková. The festival incorporates a variety of events, including theatrical performances, film screenings, a concert, lectures, and exhibitions. With over 30,000 people attending the festival over the last three years, the festival strives to reach a wide audience through its vibrant programming.

(6 George R.R. Martin, in “Awards, Awards, and More Awards”, encourages the Puppies who are talking about starting an award of their own.

He discusses how many different awards there are in the field and includes lots of pictures – which is easy because George has won most of them.

A great many of the awards discussed above were started precisely because the people behind them felt someone was being overlooked by the Hugos and/ or other existing awards, and wanted to give an “attaboy” to work they cherished.

There is no reason the Sad Puppies should not do the same. Give them at Dragoncon, give them at Libertycon… or, hell, give them at worldcon, if you want. Most worldcons will give you a hall for the presentation, I’m sure, just as they do for the Prometheus Awards and the Seiuns. Or you can rent your own venue off-site, as I did with the Alfies. Have a party. No booing, just cheers. Give handsome trophies to those you think deserve it. Spread joy.

That’s what awards are supposed to be about, after all. Giving some joy back to the writers and editors and artists who have given you so much joy with their work. Celebration.

Since RAH is already taken by the Heinlein Foundation for its own award, maybe you should call them the Jims, to honor Jim Baen, an editor and publisher that I know many of you admire. If you launch a Kickstarter to have a bust of him sculpted for the trophy, I’ll be glad to contribute. (It may surprise you to know that while Jim Baen and I were very far apart politically, we shared many a meal together, and he published a half dozen of my books. Liberals and conservatives CAN get along, and usually did, in fandom of yore).

(7) Kevin Standlee philosophizes about the relationship between a stable, democratically-run society and good sportsmanship.

A prerequisite of a stable democratic society is being a good loser.

If your definition of “democracy” boils down to “I get what I personally want or else the entire process is wrong and corrupt,” then you have reduced yourself to the spoiled child who throws a tantrum and overturns the table when s/he loses at a board game.

Could it be that our society’s over-emphasis at “win at any cost” and “second place is the first loser,” and a complete de-emphasis on learning how to be graceful in defeat is undermining the entire democratic process? After all, if you’ve been conditioned to think that Winning Is The Only Thing and that losing gracefully is for suckers and wimps, how can you possibly live with yourself when your “side” loses a political election, even if the process was demonstratively fair? In such a situation, you almost naturally are doing to insist that the process itself is wrong, because you’ve built up a self-image that requires you to win.

I’m also worried that we’ve overly emphasized not hurting people’s feelings when they are young by pretending that they can never lose. When they reach the real world where not every corner is padded for them, they can’t handle anything other than “I showed up, so I need to win.” I admit that possibly I’m just being old and crotchety about Those Darn Kids.

As I’ve said elsewhere, I’m disappointed that Popular Ratification, into which I invested a lot of myself, lost at the ratification stage. But I can see that the process was fair, and I neither consider myself a moral failure because my cause lost nor do I consider the entire WSFS legislative process invalid because I got outvoted. I get the feeling, however, that a whole lot of people out there can’t live with the concept of losing.

(8) Didact doesn’t care.

I really can’t make it any clearer than that, unless the good people over at File770 want me to break out a pack of crayons and draw them a picture. And I don’t speak any dialect of dipsh*t, so even that probably won’t help.

Didact, Vile Faceless Minion #0309, repeats:

WE DON’T CARE whether or not our nominees won awards. Not this year, not next year, and not in any other year. It matters not the minutest quantum of a damn for us. As far as I, personally, am concerned, the Hugo Awards have lost their point and purpose and need to be torn down and replaced wholesale.

I don’t know why I have such a hard time getting it through my thick skull that they don’t care. Really. It’s just embarrassing. As many times they’ve been forced to repeat this. Think of all the time they could  spend on something they do care about if only I would just get it. All my fault. My bad. So sorry.

(9) And dammit, Jonathan M has uncovered another of this blog’s deepest secrets.

(9) Great photos from a vintage computer exhibit.

K9 robot dog COMP

(10) Megan Guess at Ars Technica – “I watched Star Trek: The Original Series in order; and so can you. Or, Filling the gaps in your cultural knowledge is equal parts boring and fun”

At the beginning, this is how I approached The Original Series. Despite how much everyone wants to talk about Star Trek‘s progressiveness in 1966, you can tell just by a quick glance at the costuming that womankind is not going to be treated as equal, with all the rights and responsibilities pertaining thereto.

But around the end of season one, I couldn’t help but become a little bit invested in the world of the Federation. I was always happy when Lieutenant Uhura was given real lines in an episode, because she was just what you’d want in a starship officer of the future—brave and serious, but with a human side, too. Nurse Chapel was also welcome—she had gravitas without being robotic and cold.

Of course, for every Uhura or Chapel there was the endless supply of one-off Kirk foils planted on every strange new world, waiting for a strong-jawed spaceman to rescue them. Sometimes they were decent characters, like Edith Keeler in “The City on the Edge of Forever,” one of The Original Series’ most famous episodes. In it, Kirk and Spock end up in the 1930s and a depression-era charity worker—Keeler, portrayed by Joan freaking Collins—preaches futurism to a group of unenlightened hobos. (And then Kirk falls in love with her. Because of course.) Other characters were worse—you need only search “Women Star Trek Original Series” to find the lists of the show’s hottest, most vacant babes.

[Thanks to Martin Morse Wooster, Mark and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day James H. Burns.]

748 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/6 With Six, You Get Egg Scroll

  1. @Cubist

    There is of course the chance that Henley’s right; it’s just theirs enough of a sexist tinge to the Puppies that is hard to ignore some days.

    On the other hand, if the ugly hard edge leaves for the Rabids, the remaining Sads will have far better optics. Honestly, I’ve been a bit annoyed at times by all of the “we condemn Vox Day – just don’t look to closely at how our nominees need his votes!” If the ugly leaves for the Rabids, they could get even more entitled to that fiction. Without the out and out racists, sexists, and homophobes, they became harder to condemn.

    But perhaps easier to reach.


    Where we disagree is that I’d say that all of those examples are either nested in larger movements (Schlafley vis a vis the New Right) or are also out and out maniacs (Geller’s considered nutso even by a lot of movement conservatives, Palin departed for side show status quite quickly). In this simultude, Hoyt and the rest were already Geller, Malakin, Coulter. SP4 has them trying to be Trump, Walker, et al. I think they loose people when they try to be the headliner and not the undercard.

    As for where we agree, I too think Litany of Earth go robbed.

  2. Or, why I have an machine running Win98 – some of the software wouldn’t run on XP, and now than I’m using Win7, even less likely.

    Why aren’t you running Windows 98 on VMWare or one of Microsoft’s virtualization tools?

  3. While I think the SP4 leadership are a disaster waiting to happen, that’s not because of their gender.

  4. Operation Rescue harasses and threatens women seeking services as well as doctors and clinic staff. They support, and some of their officials have been involved in, clinic bombings. They publish hit lists, with clinic and home addresses, of doctors known to perform adoptions. Their official reaction to the murder of George Tiller was that he got what he deserved.

    They are a terrorist organization.

    The Catholic Church, OTOH, actually opposes killing. Even of people they disapprove of–something apparently beyond your comprehension.

  5. Why aren’t you running Windows 98 on VMWare or one of Microsoft’s virtualization tools?

    Because I don’t want to have to learn another software package.
    (Also, the Win98 machine is bookshelf-size, and that’s a size I like. Unfortunately, the two WinXP machines in the same format are not identical in hardware/BIOS version, so they can’t be merged into one working machine.)

    I reserve the right to be cranky. I’m older than OGH.

  6. Because Operation Rescue did not advocate shooting anyone and because the murderer was not acting under their direction.
    Some madman took up a cause for his own reasons. I have known OR people.

    They cultivated an environment of intense and frenzied hatred for Dr Tiller (they had a “Tiller Watch” section on their website). He and his staff wore bulletproof vests to work every day as a result of their frightening intimidation tactics. After his death, they certainly tried to distance themselves from the shooter – but then followed up by calling Tiller a mass murderer who “reaped what he sowed.”

    This whole conversation – from randomly bringing up “The Camp of the Saints” all the way through to defending Operation Rescue – is just utterly repulsive.

  7. Most people are incapable of utter precision, and worse, most people are incapable of accurate reading. Which leaves the textual analyst free to ascribe meanings according to his ability to invent and rationalize.

    Like claiming that “Dinosaur” had an anti-Southern working class white male agenda.

    I’m with Jim Henley on the subject of whether Sads will follow female leaders. There might be a few who don’t, but most anti-feminist men are perfectly happy to elevate anti-feminist women. After all, it helps them uphold a particular view of themselves: they’re not sexist, they’re just opposed to those nasty feminists who are messing everything up for Real Women™.

  8. @Mark

    I’ll clarify – I think they are a disaster waiting to happen, in general, due to their views. I think they will be a disaster waiting to happen for the Sads because of a certain chance of the Sads views.

  9. Paradoxical isn’t it ?
    Yet it is still necessary to assume that what one considers lies, or seems incoherent, isn’t. Otherwise you may miss something.
    Hate-reading isn’t a good way to learn. To bring this back to SF, consider Le Guins “Dispossed”. Personally I am not too sympathetic to Le Guins politics and world view. Still, I am happy to say that this is a masterpiece and has a great deal of truth in it.

  10. Is it just me, or do others find it amusing/ironic that an admitted immigrant brings up the anti-immigration screed of Camp of the Saints?

    Edit: I have to wonder what he thinks about the book.

  11. Re dinosaur –
    That reading was by far the most common one on the other side of the argument. I don’t think such unanimity is accidental. Swirsky hit buttons that it’s clear were meant to be hit. Even a sympathetic reading of “dinosaur” assumes a generic acceptance of rather specific sorts of villains though not “Southern” necessarily.

  12. buwaya (as quoted by SIW): All writing is lies…. The only honest way to argue is to take the text on its face

    So, he’s talking about face tattoos now, I guess? Maybe this is some next-level marketing strategy for Bob’s Tattoo Hut, located conveniently next to the Hammock District, down on Third.

  13. Also, the Win98 machine is bookshelf-size …

    What’s the make and model? I have a Linux box that small, but no old Windows ones.

  14. Yes actually. This is part of the reconciliation program.
    I aim to subvert echo chambers.
    I was on Vox Days the other day, inserting doubts about their game obsessions. I am a pan-ideological troll, if you will.

  15. Re dinosaur – That reading was by far the most common one on the other side of the argument. I don’t think such unanimity is accidental.

    Oh, neither do I. Neither do I.

  16. Re Camp of the Saints and me being an immigrant –
    Yes it is a paradox isn’t it ?
    And the book itself is paradoxical.
    It isn’t a bit clear where it comes down on the ethics of the problem.
    It does lay out the problem. How does one square the circle of plain ethical imperatives vs just as plain cultural destruction (for a certain view of culture and its destruction). This is a question of soul-torture.
    Also interesting is its prophetic nature. The Camp of the Saints foretold the future. Now its moral issues have to be resolved.
    The current flood of immigrants is just the beginning, the dam has burst.

  17. I posted in the previous thread, but am posting here, too, as the subject has been brought up in this one, as well – the book about Marlowe’s death is, indeed, The Reckoning. Thanks to everyone who helped and/or recommended related works.

  18. Face tattoos are easy.
    Don’t. It’s a very bad idea.
    Especially during a period of rapid cultural change.
    It’s all very well if one is a member of an isolated indigenous population which hasn’t changed in thousands of years, and can be confident that all your associates will likewise be tattooed.

  19. I bounced off Orphan Black, I just can’t believe in wide-ranging conspiracies as much as I could in my 20s. Likewise Continuum, which decided that everybody is bad was the way to go.

    On the gripping hand I did enjoy Adam Savage’s interview with Andy Weir, the whole thing was two nerds having fun about space. Weir comes off like the Tom Clancy of NASA… an outsider who read/viewed EVERYTHING publicly accessible and became a Subject Matter Expert without ever being in the agency or talking to folks from the agency (although he has since had more contact with astronauts and space scientists)..

    THAT ought to be nominated for a 2016 Hugo.

  20. “Success is nearly at hand”
    No, no, sadly not. It’s never that easy.
    See “The Dispossessed”. Anarchy isn’t all that, and one has to go to a bit of trouble.

  21. Alexandra Erin is using Twitter today to rail against an “inquisitorial mindset” that targets people who criticize Laura J. Mixon’s story on Requires Hate.

    Calling herself someone who supports people abused by RH and also thinks there’s something “hostile and racist” in the Mixon report, Erin tweets, “I have been interrogated and denounced because I refused to automatically dismiss everyone who has problems with Saint Laura’s holy writ.”

    There’s a lot more tweets, which presumably will find their way into a Storify here at some point.

    As someone with only a casual interest in this controversy — I read the Mixon report and have been appalled by RH allegations I’ve read elsewhere — I feel like there are groups on both sides of the subject who are so angry that it puts me off discussing it at all.

    But on the whole I’m surprised RH has defenders after the things she’s done.

  22. Troll B: Asserts that the only honest argument is to look at the text “on its face.” Then asserts that a fantastical reading of a certain story not supported by the actual text is true to this principle because it is held as doctrine among a certain sub-group.

    Wait, I know this one! It’s how evangelical fundamentalists define “literalism.” It goes like this:

    1. We interpret everything in the Bible literally.

    2. Therefore, every interpretation we hold is, in fact, the literal meaning.

    Carried to extremes, it results in perfect epistemic closure, but it doesn’t work well on tiny skeptics and future English majors.

  23. Books:
    Finished Kim Newman’s Anno Dracula, which was an absolute hoot, the ending was a bit underwhelming but that’s not a huge problem as i bought all three in the series.
    Its interesting the way that vampires fit so well into the aristocracy class, as they are both obsessed with the purity of their lineage, and Newman also paints the warm upper classes as being deperate to join the undead, so they can enjoy their privilege forever.
    I think its fair to say that Newman is having a bit of a dig at class structure, good work comrade!

    Just started on Adrian Tchaikovsky’s. Empire in Black an& Gold, its been on my kindle for years, unread, so i thought I should tackle the backlog.
    I’m a few chapters in, and I’m liking it so far, the characters are sympathetic and well drawn, and that whole’ insect kinden’ conceit is fascinating.

    We watched It Follows at the weekend.
    Has to be one of the best spooky movies I’ve seen in years, such a simple idea (pass on the curse, ala Night of the Demon) but beautifully done, the lighting and photography are possibly the best Ive seen in the horror genre since The Shining.
    My partner is a photography teacher and she basically spent 90 minutes saying, “that’s a beautiful shot….look at the lighting on that!….” etc etc
    Add the excellent score, and the palpable sense of dread imbued in every scene, and you have the greatest John Carpenter film made by someone who isn’t John Carpenter.

  24. The discussion of Christopher Marlowe prompts me to recommend (again), Ink and Steel and Hell and Earth (jointly “The Stratford Man”), by Elizabeth Bear, the 3rd and 4th of her “Promethean Age” novels, with Marlowe and Shakespeare as the two main protagonists. Also the Queen of Faerie, and Mephistopheles (or perhaps it’s Beelzebub, or Lucifer, or Satan). In publication order, these follow the first two novels, Blood and Iron and Whiskey and Water, but I read them in the order 3,4,1,2, which is chronological relative to the events of the books. Ink and Steel has one of the great opening lines of fantasy literature: “Marlowe was dead, to begin with”.
    I love everything of Bear’s that I’ve read, but these are up near the top, along with Dust and its sequels. I really need to reread all of the Promethean Age novels, which may help me understand how One-Eyed Jack fits into the universe.

  25. My father was an early programmer for the Army, so I spent some time around the giant computers at Fort Meade. Wonder how my life would have been different if he’d actually convinced me that I might like to learn programming, too? Many years later I learned a little BASIC, but that was it.

    Russell’s mention of an IBM Selectric reminded me of my office’s secretary’s first computer and printer. She had a Selectric, and when she needed to print something from the computer she had a contraption she placed over the keyboard that pressed the keys.

    Seth, re the old floppy disks: One of the teacher I worked with yelled at someone for writing on the label with a ballpoint pen, because of course we were told to only use Flairs or other softpoint pens. Unfortunately for her credibility, the student was writing on a label still on the label sheet, and not yet attached to the disk, and when he pointed this out to her she insisted that he not put a label with ballpoint ink on the disk, that that was the problem.

  26. Aristocratic vampires are hardly new.
    My favorite vampire book is Pratchett’s, of course, with yet more aristocratic vampires.
    “Carpe Jugulum”, which I read to my daughter along with his other Witch books. She laughed herself silly with all of them.

  27. Re the RH controversy. I saw her once, maybe twice, operating in the wild before the expose. What I saw convinced me she is a complete jerk, whether she’s engaging in “performance rage” or is just a pseudo-leftist hate-spewing troll. It’s hard to believe anyone with an ounce of compassion ever supported her.

    ETA: first computer I owned – a TI99/4A. The next one was a P75 overclocked to 90MHz (overclocking a 75MHz to 90MHz made it faster than a P100, IIRC. Something to do with multipliers). Between those two computers I leached off friends.

  28. “I’ll try to be more confused”
    Good !
    If you want to be more paradoxical, we can pick up on Conrad, plus the origins, nature and ethics of colonialism.

  29. I look forward to your account of claw-clipping day.

    Cat sat in my lap, I lifted her front feet, I clipped her claws. What, that’s not how it usually goes?

  30. It’s not identical, but a somewhat similar concept shows up as “CinSims” in Carole Nelson Douglas’s “Delilah Street: Paranormal Investigator” series.

    Yeah, I’ve seen other stories that allow for copies of film stars of one sort or another (usually from an era that encompasses Marilyn Monroe), but something about the specifics of Antonelli’s setup struck me as interesting in a world-set-up way.


    And yes, thanks, I knew it was a Feghoot. Most Feghoots do not involve a setup more interesting than the payoff, though, and it’s entirely possible to comment on such things beyond merely identifying them.


    And yes, thanks, I know Best Novel is about the best of the year rather than the best of the career, and still don’t think THE SHEPHERD’S CROWN is Hugo-worthy, for the reasons given. If we ever have a year in which the top 5 books of the year include books that first-draft-y, I won’t be nominating 5 books.

  31. She had a Selectric, and when she needed to print something from the computer she had a contraption she placed over the keyboard that pressed the keys.

    Probably a Dynatyper. The market for them almost entirely vanished when the first cheap dot-matrix printers arrived.

  32. I’ve figured it out!

    The pups don’t care about the Hugo Awards.

    No, really, they don’t.

    They DO care about the fantasy land version they’ve created though.

  33. I just read Anno Dracula as well – after I got past my ‘am i really going to read a book with vampires’ period of mulling it. I enjoyed it a great deal – the metatext of all the various real and fictional appropriations, the was in which you are boggled that victorian society is strangely complacent to this insane change, and the dawning of interpretations of this. Fun read.

  34. She had a Selectric, and when she needed to print something from the computer she had a contraption she placed over the keyboard that pressed the keys.

    I, on the other hand, briefly used IBM terminals that were Selectrics with RS232 connectors and associated electronics. And APL type balls.

  35. First computer?

    It was either a PDP-8 or a PDP-10. My dad worked at Digital Equipment, and brought it home. I had to toggle in a bootstrap program every time I turned it on, then load the system file via a paper tape reader. Then I could program in BASIC or dial up the DEC mainframe to play Space War.

  36. RE Requires Hate – I had never heard of her before a friend sent me a link to the Mixon report last year, asking if I knew anything about this. (I did not.) I had also never heard of any of her other handles. Not “Winterfox,” not “Benjanun Sriduangkaew,” none of it.

    I’d heard of Laura Mixon and have occasionally encountered her online over the years, but I don’t know her, either.

    I read the report, and the I followed the links in the report, and the links in those linked sites, and after several evenings, I had read a lot about that whole mess, words posted by people directly involved in it. The anecdotes related by people directly/negatively affected by RH were appalling, but it’s was RH’s own words–in her own posts and blogs and Tweets and comments–that I found jaw-droppingly disgusting. And still do.

    The person who wrote the things RH previously wrote, and who writes the things that BS currently Tweets, is not a person whose comments or opinions have any credibility or value whatsoever, IMO. That she has -allies- absolutely baffles me.

  37. buwaya said:

    I am a pan-ideological troll, if you will.


    Where’s that ‘fade out specific posters’ comments’ thing again?


    As for my first computer, it was some form of second-hand IBM-compatible MSDOS 2 box. The only game I had on it was the command line, and it lasted the better part of a month before I wound up ‘DEL’ing something system critical.

  38. For folk who remember the wonderfulness that was Absolutely, home of the Stonybridge Town Council, it’s back as a radio show:

    IT’S TWUE! IT IS!!

  39. Yeah, that whole “We don’t CARE about the Hugo! Why won’t you fools understand that we don’t care about the Hugos??” thing would be a lot more convincing if the Sads weren’t engaged in their fourth year of trying to get a Hugo and the Rabids weren’t engaged in their second year of same, along with both groups perpetually blogging and talking about the Hugos, and many of them (as well as some of their nominees) raging noisily in vengeful anguish for weeks now because they did NOT get a 2015 Hugo.

    Giving up ALL of the above activities would be the very best way to convince everyone else that they don’t care about the Hugos. In fact, I don’t believe there is any way OTHER than giving up all those activities to convince people of this.

    So…. we’re WAITING, Puppies. Cancel SP4, cancel RP2, stop whining about the 2015 Hugo loss, stop discussing the Hugos… and then I, for one, will completely believe you when you say you don’t care about the Hugos.

    Until/unless you do that, I’m sticking with my overwhelming impression that you’re utterly obsessed with the Hugos. GO FIGURE.

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