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Brisbane strikes NBN out

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the Brisbane lord mayor, Campbell Newman. Photo: Glenn Hunt Unwilling to wait for his city’s turn …
The commercial venture, into which i3 Asia Pacific will invest $600 million, will use the city’s sewer and stormwater ducts as conduits for the cables. Saying Labor’s $43 billion national broadband network would take too long to arrive in Brisbane, the Liberal lord mayor, Campbell Newman, said yesterday that his network could be delivered without cost to ratepayers through a deal with a private company, i3 Asia Pacific. THE Brisbane City Council has announced its own breakaway broadband project, promising residents and businesses they will have their own high-speed fibre network within four years. It aims to deliver broadband to 463,000 homes.
i3 would act as a wholesaler, providing broadband capability to retailers such as Telstra and Optus. with Daniel Nancarrow

  As part of the deal to form minority government with the independents, Labor shifted the emphasis of the network roll-out to rural and regional Australia and Mr Newman said Brisbane was not prepared to wait. Mr Turnbull, the opposition communications spokesman, told a conference in Melbourne on Wednesday that ”the majority of Australians already have access to fast broadband”. Both sides sought to turn Mr Newman’s announcement to their advantage yesterday. The deal with i3 Asia Pacific would provide homes and businesses access to 100 megabits per second broadband, the same speeds Labor plans to offer. The federal government and the Coalition are at loggerheads over Labor’s $43 billion network, of which taxpayers will contribute about $27 billion. The Communications Minister, Stephen Conroy, noted the lack of detail surrounding the announcement but said it was ”recognition that fibre-to-the-home was the ultimate future proof technology for Australians”. “The mayor’s proposal clearly disputes Malcolm Turnbull’s claims that people living in cities already have adequate broadband,” Senator Conroy said. He also noted Mr Newman’s proposal had not undergone a cost-benefit analysis, a criticism the Coalition levels at Labor’s scheme, which will deliver broadband across the nation. NBN Co, the company charged with building Labor’s network, said it was business as usual and that it would continue its national roll-out. Yesterday Mr Turnbull said that Mr Newman’s proposal showed there was adequate private sector interest to build such networks. ”If this is feasible, why is the Commonwealth taxpayer picking up the tab?” he said. It would pay for the network and rent the infrastructure to internet service providers.

You’ll definitely want to watch this gameplay clip of inFamous 2. Not only does it show off Cole’s new look, it highlights the revamped graphics engine, improved “in your face” camera . .. and best of all, a new power.

Continue reading Video: inFamous 2 gameplay, now with more cyclones

JoystiqVideo: inFamous 2 gameplay, now with more cyclones originally appeared on Joystiq on Sat, 03 Jul 2010 13:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Assange granted bail

- December 15, 2010, 9:16AM
- December 15, 2010, 9:35AM
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- December 15, 2010, 9:39AM
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- December 15, 2010, 9:26AM
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It’s a clear breach of human rights. This is farcical. An absolutely, shameless disgrace IMO. It’s disappointing and confusing that the authorities can get away with holding him in jail, when he is innocent, and has not been proven guilty.
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Photo: AFP “I just want to thank everyone who’s turned up to show their support and who’s taken an interest,” she said. “I told him how people all over the world, in all sorts of countries, were standing up with placards and screaming out for his freedom and justice and he was very heartened by that,” she said. Ms Assange said that she had spoken to her son in prison. Click for more photos

Assange in court
Protesters hold placards as they demonstrate in support of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, ahead of his hearing at the City of Westminster Magistrates Court, in London.
All of this is taking place in the pinpoint glare of headline news across the globe. The blatant bias shown by the authorities in this case is breathtaking. Are the powers that be so confident in their dominion over us that they believe they can pursue this abuse of power as if it was legitimate?? In the same week, a murder suspect is granted bail and allowed to walk out the door. Assange was going to have to be confined to a specific address and wear a GPS tracker.
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Photo: Getty Images Remaining in custody … Julian Assange gestures from inside a prison van as he leaves court.
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The quicker we divorce Oz from Big Brother across the Pacific the better off we’ll be. This has torn it all down in two weeks and I’m ashamed to ever having been associated with what appears to have become a “secret society” controlled by America. I lived in Stockhom (Solna) for a number of years completely taken in by the openness of Swedish society.
- December 15, 2010, 9:18AM
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- December 15, 2010, 9:34AM
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At least we now know for sure that these accusations are really an attempt to silence Assange. Swedish prosecutors are appealing the bail decision, which has strict tracking and reporting conditions (flight risk is minimised or eliminated).
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- December 15, 2010, 9:35AM
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  He will now be held there for another 48 hours while Swedish prosecutors, who want to extradite him to Sweden to face allegations of sex crimes, mount a High Court appeal against the decision.   Mr Assange’s legal team, led by Australian born QC, Geoffrey Robertson, offered a total of £240,000 ($380,000) in surety, and agreed he wear GPS satellite tracking tags, report to police every day and adhere to strict curfews while the extradition case, set down for next month, goes ahead.   This decision had to be made within two hours of the 3.20pm (British time) decision to grant bail – and now requires the appeal case to be heard in the British High Court within a 48-hour deadline.


Mr Assange’s lawyer Mark Stephens said his client’s relief at the bail decision had already evaporated, calling it “unfortunate” that “the Swedes won’t abide by the umpire’s decision”.   Mr Assange, 39, looked impassive as Mr Riddle made his decision, but raised an eyebrow and smiled almost imperceptibly when Gemma Lindfield, acting for the Swedish authorities, flagged the possibility of an appeal. “This is really turning into a show trial.” “They clearly will not spare any expense but to keep Mr Assange in jail,” Mr Stephens told journalists outside the City of Westminster Magistrates Court in London.   The magistrate, Howard Riddle, said he was satisfied that Mr Assange’s release to Captain Henry Vaughan Smith, owner of London’s Frontline Club, and his restriction to the 10-bedroom, 600-acre country estate in Suffolk would ensure he was not a flight risk. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been returned to London’s notorious Wandsworth prison despite winning bail from a British Court.
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- December 15, 2010, 9:19AM
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- December 15, 2010, 9:26AM
As I have written before Sweden will do everything it can to please the USA
Assange is a hero
  Mr Assange is accused of having unprotected sex with a woman, identified only as Miss A, when she insisted he use a condom. Mr Assange claims the charges are politically motivated and designed to discredit him and his site’s publication of thousands of diplomatic cables between the US and its embassies. During the  hearing, Mr Robertson said the man whose “face had launched a thousand quips” had been held in a virtual bubble, unable to use the internet, to receive telephone calls or to receive normal mail – even a copy of Time magazine with his picture on the cover, but being given by prison authorities only the envelope it was sent in. “As a mother, I’m asking the world to stand up for my brave son.”

There was some confusion last night about who was contributing the bail money – £200,000, with another two lots of £20,000. However, she retracted claims that he had entered Britain illegally, saying that this report to the court last week was not correct. – with wires

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69 comments so far   It is understood to have been offered by several high-profile individuals including Ms Saunders, journalist John Pilger, socialite Jemima Khan, filmmakers Tariq Ali, Ken Loach and Michael Moore, journalist and writer Yvonne Ridley, gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell and Gavin Macfadyen of the Centre for Investigative Journalism in London. He is also accused of having unprotected sex with another woman, Miss W, while she was asleep. Ms Lindfield said that Mr Assange was a flight risk last week – and nothing had changed this week.
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I call upon Kevin Rudd to act now, regardless of what Gillard or Mclelland think about the situation, and to prevent a huge backlash and outcry against the Australian, Swedish and American government. Julian Assange hasn’t even been charged with anything, he is only wanted for questioning, so the behaviour by the Swedish prosecutor is totally disproportionate to the alleged crime, which does more to confirm the political motives rather than dispel them.If Assange were unknown, there probably wouldn’t even be an Interpol arrest warrant, let alone an appeal against his bail.By any standards this is a travesty of justice, and an abuse of human rights. This is a show trial indeed. We can only assume that the US has put so much pressure on Sweden to do their dirty work for them, that they don’t care about the repercussions. Unless this is done, Julian Assange cannot be assured a fair hearing by the Swedish, and can expect to be denied his legal and human rights by being jailed unfairly and/or being handed over the the US government. It is ironic that Sweden should have one of the highest ranking in terms of freedom of the press, but chooses to abuse its position with this persecution of Assange.It is time for the Australian government to take a stronger stand, and make a formal protest to Sweden & demand that it conduct Assange’s questioning in the UK under consulate supervision to ensure a fair hearing. The Australian people will not allow another Australian to be abused by the Americans and its allies.
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- December 15, 2010, 9:29AM
he has not even been charged, but they have issued an arrest warrant and applied for extradition. As someone said – they are conducting a fishing expedition and as a result the guy is deprived of his liberty.I cancelled my Visa card..People need to stand up and be counted on this – its not just about JA its about the rights and freedoms which we should all have, and how ‘democratic’ govts and mega corporations are eroding and abusing them. So much for everyone being equal before the law.Additionally the Swedes are abusing the EU extradition system …. Now they ‘withdraw’ that claim. ANYONE else would have got bail the first trime. So on the extradition application the prosecutor claimed he had entered the UK illegally?Presumably that was a factor taken into consideration when bail was denied him. Absolutely unbelievable. Clearly he is being pursued and dealt with in an exceptional manner.
| NSW
Just 40 people were allowed into the courtroom. Photo: AFP Julian Assange arrives in a police vehicle for his court appearance. Supporters who entered the court included Bianca Jagger, human rights lawyer and friend Baroness Helena Kennedy and London caterer and restaurant designer Sarah Saunders, who told the court she had staked “everything” she was worth to help find the minimum £200,000 in bail required by the court. Ms Saunders described Mr Assange, as “warm, sensitive and trustworthy”, things his lawyer said were not often written about him.


Mr Assange’s mother, Christine Assange, looked tired, but was in the public gallery throughout and her son, dressed in a black suit and white collared shirt without tie, shot glances over to her as if in reassurance.
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Standing on the dock City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court at LondonTrying to get to Holland or FranceThe Swedes Said, “You’ve gotta go back”You know, they didn’t even give us a chanceChrist, you know it ain’t easyYou know how hard it can beThe way things are goingThey’re gonna crucify meHopefully Julian doesn’t get knocked off, the world needs brave men, that are not just greedy primates
First Ammendment may talk the talk, but us Brtis walk the walk…Good luck wrestling this man off their protection USA and Sweden, as I think you’re about to learn what a Bulldog’s grip is like!
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The Prime Minister and the Attorney General gave the go ahead to deprive his human rights by the comments that they have made. Rudd, although blasted in the cables, and although by most accounts whats written in the cables are correct has come off much better looking than the PM and the AG in this farce. Mr. What else do you expect when your own country’s Chief legal officer and your own Prime Minister denounces you even before you are charged? The signals given were that legal authorities overseas could do whatever they liked to Julian Assange.What happened to fair go, Ned Kelly admiration etc and everything that what considered quintessentially Australian?
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Promethium Marketing Group’s Twitter-enabled tower defense title, Tweet Defense, will be very on sale tomorrow for just 24 hours. Like, as on sale as anything could possibly be. Both the iPhone version and recently launched iPad version of the game will be downloadable for free from FreeAppaDay.com on Sunday, July 11.

The game usually retails for $2.99 on iPhone and $7. 99 on iPad, so we’d suggest taking Promethium up on this temporary offer. Unless, of course, you’re one of those people who thinks that every time you Tweet, part of your soul gets siphoned away. You guys should probably go play something else.

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JoystiqTweet Defense free on iPad and iPhone this Sunday originally appeared on Joystiq on Sat, 10 Jul 2010 18:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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I spent a lot of this week wondering while playing (and enjoying) Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4, “What in the world am I gonna tell our readers about this that they don’t already know? “

Considering it’s the hojillionth Lego game to be released, what could I possibly impart about the latest iteration that isn’t a variation on the “This is a great game for kids of all ages and for parents with Harry Potter-loving children” descriptor? Thankfully, the answer was more obvious than I could have hoped: It’s just like Metroid with training wheels! … And, you know, with Harry Potter instead of a space bounty hunter.

Continue reading Review: Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4

JoystiqReview: Lego Harry Potter: Years 1-4 originally appeared on Joystiq on Fri, 02 Jul 2010 17:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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- December 16, 2010, 3:36PM
- December 16, 2010, 1:05PM
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- December 16, 2010, 1:54PM
- December 16, 2010, 4:14PM
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“The goal was really just to get rid of keys and to try to minimise the amount of clutter one would have in their pockets,” he said. Photo: Supplied Since the surgery in June, performed while he was still awake and posted on his website, Mr Wooller has endeavoured to uncover as many ways to use the chip as possible. “RFID, apart from it being technical, it was an interesting sort of project. So I had a look around; there were a number of people out there who had already put implants in their hands and I haven’t seen any real side effects yet,” he said. The chip going in.
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Poll: Would you ever consider getting an RFID implant?
Curious ot know how Joe’s experiment will extend the knowledge developed when Kevin Warwick (kevinwarwick.com/Cyborg1.htm) did moreorless the same thing back in the late 1990′s.
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- December 16, 2010, 2:43PM
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- December 16, 2010, 3:34PM
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- December 16, 2010, 1:34PM
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- December 16, 2010, 3:43PM
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Wouldn’t a rubber or metal bracelet be just as convenient and a lot less hassle???
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I’ve always wanted to go with prox cards on my house (like I have at work), but since I’m still renting the keys will have to do for now. While RFID tags under the skin looks like a promising step forward, it also creates a road for abuse, with people putting bluetooth memory cards or other devices under the skin and then using them to smuggle or leach content from sensitive areas. Interesting yes, but I think the step from physical key, to prox key is enough of a leap for me…
- December 16, 2010, 4:04PM
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Fed up with carrying his keys around, Joe Wooller, 28, decided it was time for an implant. This year, the father of two from Perth had a microchip, which uses radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology, implanted in his right hand. His passive RFID chip does not require batteries, can last for many years and communicates with receivers attached to doors, for instance, via a magnetic field.
bluey
Implanted? If he needed to have the chip removed, he could do so as it was not permanent, he said. Asked about the difference between having physical keys and an RFID implant, Mr Wooller said he had received a bit of criticism. You don’t really need it but it’s just another wanky little thing to do I guess.”

Asked if any of his family members had yet come around to the idea of getting themselves an implant, he said: “What? “I’ve only really allowed it to open the door and you still have to enter a code to disarm the alarm. “They’re still pretty keen but a lot of my friends rent still so they kind of can’t really do much to their houses,” he said. yet.”

As for what he’s wiring up next, he said he was getting into home brewing and was in the process of designing a fully automated rig for that. One of those people was former head of the Linux Australia community group Jonathon Oxer. This reporter is on Twitter: @bengrubb According to the RFID Journal, exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF) below the limits recommended in internationally adopted guidelines “has not revealed any known negative health effects”. This was one of the reasons, Mr Wooller said, that he was cautious not to scan his hand on RFID readers on the outside of buildings, as they could read his code. It’s more just an easability [sic] thing. “People aren’t very interested in it any more. Since he had the chip implanted, Mr Wooller said that it had lost its novelty. It was rather interesting watching,” he said. The process of getting the chip implanted was fairly simple once he had the equipment required, Mr Wooller said. So that’s been good.”

Although keen at first to emulate him, many of his colleagues are yet to follow in his footsteps. “There’s a little bit of a scar there and the chip has moved a little bit since I got it implanted and it moves around a little bit from time to time but it’s not really noticeable.”

He said it could be seen if he flexed his hand a certain way but if you were not looking for it you would not know it was there. So far, Mr Wooller can open two doors to his house, start his motorbike and open his car’s doors – all with just a swipe of his hand. “Perhaps I could use my RFID to turn that on and start a brewing process or something. “People said: ‘When someone’s stolen your keys you know about it and you can change locks [and] if someone reads your RFID tag they can then get in [and you don't know about it].’” He said the “tech is out there” for people to read his hand and steal the code embedded in the chip, “but not a lot of people would carry it around with them and the range is [so small] that it would be quite obvious if someone came up and tried to read it”. It’s saved me from locking myself outside a couple of times. As for his house, he still relies on an alarm to keep the place secure. Essentially when I take the dog for a walk I don’t have to take the keys with me.”

Asked if life had become easier with the chip implanted, he said there had been no “major impact”, “but it’s definitely something that, you know, you go out, say you water the garden, your door slams behind you or whatever and it’s locked. “You can rip it out if you want.”

And if he ever decided to move house he would just need to take the RFID readers to his new home. The only problem is that he still needs a key to take the fuel cap off his motorbike. No, definitely not. It’s done now. “But just being able to jump on it and go for a ride [without keys] is pretty good,” he said. “I was lucky enough for my doctor to do it who gave me a local [anaesthetic] – so it was fine; it didn’t hurt at all. God no. So until I’ve actually nutted out the encryption side of things or the sort of [authentication] side of things, I’m trying to keep it separate,” he said. You go up, you swipe, you open. You’ve achieved something in that respect, albeit very little but it’s still kind of cool. My daughter still wants to do it, she thinks it’s pretty cool but yeah, no, not until she’s older.”

On the topic of health risks, he said he was not aware of any side effects. You can’t lock yourself out now. “A lot of them are looking at them for projects with the car and what not but I don’t think they’ve really delved in as much as I have …
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Its as stupid as the new RFID visa cards only this is more versatile as you can do lots more with it!!!! The poll questions is wrong … ;-) . it should be Would youl implant a RFID **reader into your hand?Off course than I would walk around shaking the hands of a lot of people …
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I think they should make it possible for a dog or cat to open the dog/cat flap with their microchip.
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hmmm i wonder if you could get close to him with a RFID reader and get the info and take his bike for a ride.
Seems a bit extreme, couldn’t you just get fingerprint scanners Joe?
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Isn’t this more or less the technology which we use to identify companion animals and livestock?
the Aussie dad who doesn’t like keys. Photo: Supplied Joe Wooller …
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RFID technology is old and out-of-date, so I think he’s wasted his time. He could have used biometrics like finger scanning – far more secure, and very hard to duplicate.
- December 16, 2010, 1:55PM
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North Carolina is going to provide some epic tax breaks to video game developers. According to the ESA, a bill signed by Governor Beverly Perdue will provide a 15 percent tax credit on “wages and compensation for employees involved in digital media production, or the creation of a platform or engine to run such media. ” Of course, the big winner here is North Carolina-based Epic Games, which swims in a lake of Unreal Engine money and develops games in its spare time. However, other benefactors of the tax breaks include Electronic Arts, Ubisoft and another dozen or so developers in the state. The incentives take effect January 1, 2011.

Publishers, developers and governments use tax breaks like Ezio wields the hidden blade. It’s a weapon, either for financial defense (which seems to be the case in North Carolina) or aggression. With Canada’s relentless siren call of tax incentives, if other countries and states don’t step up their game, The Great White North will continue its Tim Hortons-fueled march to eventually developing most of the world’s video games.

JoystiqNorth Carolina to provide tax breaks for game companies originally appeared on Joystiq on Fri, 23 Jul 2010 21:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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There are two ways in which your acquaintances will likely be impressed should you load up Zenitum’s Space InvadAR app on your Android-equipped device:

  1. Using a picture of the Earth, it creates a pretty neat augmented reality overlay which forces you to defend the planet from a neverending onslaught of circling extraterrestrials. Line up your shot using your mobile device’s camera, and drop your favorite Independence Day quote as you blast aliens from the sky.
  2. The app itself costs $25, so your friends should be wowed by your apparently vast amounts of expendable income.

Check out a video of the pricey application after the jump.

Continue reading Impress your friends with Space InvadAR Android app

JoystiqImpress your friends with Space InvadAR Android app originally appeared on Joystiq on Wed, 02 Jun 2010 00:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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The Rock Band Twitter account has been a real beehive of activity as of late. No wonder, considering Harmonix has slowly been teasing new artists coming to Rock Band 3. So far, Tears for Fears, Marilyn Manson, The B-52s and Def Leppard have been confirmed for the game.

Harmonix promises to slowly trickle out more artists as Comic-Con progresses this weekend, so we’ll be sure to relay the info as it’s made available. In the meanwhile, we suggest you grab your hot pants and celebrate!

[Thanks, Conor]

JoystiqRock Band 3 adds Tears for Fears, Marilyn Manson, The B-52s and Def Leppard originally appeared on Joystiq on Fri, 23 Jul 2010 19:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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