You May Be Exempt From Wearing a Face Mask - LewRockwell

RIP HAL FINNEY "His last post on a BTC Forum"

I thought I'd write about the last four years, an eventful time for Bitcoin and me.
For those who don't know me, I'm Hal Finney. I got my start in crypto working on an early version of PGP, working closely with Phil Zimmermann. When Phil decided to start PGP Corporation, I was one of the first hires. I would work on PGP until my retirement. At the same time, I got involved with the Cypherpunks. I ran the first cryptographically based anonymous remailer, among other activities.
Fast forward to late 2008 and the announcement of Bitcoin. I've noticed that cryptographic graybeards (I was in my mid 50's) tend to get cynical. I was more idealistic; I have always loved crypto, the mystery and the paradox of it.
When Satoshi announced Bitcoin on the cryptography mailing list, he got a skeptical reception at best. Cryptographers have seen too many grand schemes by clueless noobs. They tend to have a knee jerk reaction.
I was more positive. I had long been interested in cryptographic payment schemes. Plus I was lucky enough to meet and extensively correspond with both Wei Dai and Nick Szabo, generally acknowledged to have created ideas that would be realized with Bitcoin. I had made an attempt to create my own proof of work based currency, called RPOW. So I found Bitcoin facinating.
When Satoshi announced the first release of the software, I grabbed it right away. I think I was the first person besides Satoshi to run bitcoin. I mined block 70-something, and I was the recipient of the first bitcoin transaction, when Satoshi sent ten coins to me as a test. I carried on an email conversation with Satoshi over the next few days, mostly me reporting bugs and him fixing them.
Today, Satoshi's true identity has become a mystery. But at the time, I thought I was dealing with a young man of Japanese ancestry who was very smart and sincere. I've had the good fortune to know many brilliant people over the course of my life, so I recognize the signs.
After a few days, bitcoin was running pretty stably, so I left it running. Those were the days when difficulty was 1, and you could find blocks with a CPU, not even a GPU. I mined several blocks over the next days. But I turned it off because it made my computer run hot, and the fan noise bothered me. In retrospect, I wish I had kept it up longer, but on the other hand I was extraordinarily lucky to be there at the beginning. It's one of those glass half full half empty things.
The next I heard of Bitcoin was late 2010, when I was surprised to find that it was not only still going, bitcoins actually had monetary value. I dusted off my old wallet, and was relieved to discover that my bitcoins were still there. As the price climbed up to real money, I transferred the coins into an offline wallet, where hopefully they'll be worth something to my heirs.
Speaking of heirs, I got a surprise in 2009, when I was suddenly diagnosed with a fatal disease. I was in the best shape of my life at the start of that year, I'd lost a lot of weight and taken up distance running. I'd run several half marathons, and I was starting to train for a full marathon. I worked my way up to 20+ mile runs, and I thought I was all set. That's when everything went wrong.
My body began to fail. I slurred my speech, lost strength in my hands, and my legs were slow to recover. In August, 2009, I was given the diagnosis of ALS, also called Lou Gehrig's disease, after the famous baseball player who got it.
ALS is a disease that kills moter neurons, which carry signals from the brain to the muscles. It causes first weakness, then gradually increasing paralysis. It is usually fatal in 2 to 5 years. My symptoms were mild at first and I continued to work, but fatigue and voice problems forced me to retire in early 2011. Since then the disease has continued its inexorable progression.
Today, I am essentially paralyzed. I am fed through a tube, and my breathing is assisted through another tube. I operate the computer using a commercial eyetracker system. It also has a speech synthesizer, so this is my voice now. I spend all day in my power wheelchair. I worked up an interface using an arduino so that I can adjust my wheelchair's position using my eyes.
It has been an adjustment, but my life is not too bad. I can still read, listen to music, and watch TV and movies. I recently discovered that I can even write code. It's very slow, probably 50 times slower than I was before. But I still love programming and it gives me goals. Currently I'm working on something Mike Hearn suggested, using the security features of modern processors, designed to support "Trusted Computing", to harden Bitcoin wallets. It's almost ready to release. I just have to do the documentation.
And of course the price gyrations of bitcoins are entertaining to me. I have skin in the game. But I came by my bitcoins through luck, with little credit to me. I lived through the crash of 2011. So I've seen it before. Easy come, easy go.
That's my story. I'm pretty lucky overall. Even with the ALS, my life is very satisfying. But my life expectancy is limited. Those discussions about inheriting your bitcoins are of more than academic interest. My bitcoins are stored in our safe deposit box, and my son and daughter are tech savvy. I think they're safe enough. I'm comfortable with my legacy.
submitted by Cxesar to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Hal Finney, while paralyzed by ALS, wrote code for a bitcoin wallet using only his eyes

It's important to remember Bitcoin's roots, and the amazing effort from brilliant people, like Hal, who contributed to this new technology. If you're feeling down, this is an absolute must read. I have it saved, and read it every once in awhile, enjoy.
"And of course the price gyrations of bitcoins are entertaining to me. I have skin in the game. But I came by my bitcoins through luck, with little credit to me. I lived through the crash of 2011. So I've seen it before. Easy come, easy go." - Hal Finney, March 19, 2013, 08:40:02 PM
Bitcoin and me (Hal Finney)
Copied from https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=155054.0
I thought I'd write about the last four years, an eventful time for Bitcoin and me.
For those who don't know me, I'm Hal Finney. I got my start in crypto working on an early version of PGP, working closely with Phil Zimmermann. When Phil decided to start PGP Corporation, I was one of the first hires. I would work on PGP until my retirement. At the same time, I got involved with the Cypherpunks. I ran the first cryptographically based anonymous remailer, among other activities.
Fast forward to late 2008 and the announcement of Bitcoin. I've noticed that cryptographic graybeards (I was in my mid 50's) tend to get cynical. I was more idealistic; I have always loved crypto, the mystery and the paradox of it.
When Satoshi announced Bitcoin on the cryptography mailing list, he got a skeptical reception at best. Cryptographers have seen too many grand schemes by clueless noobs. They tend to have a knee jerk reaction.
I was more positive. I had long been interested in cryptographic payment schemes. Plus I was lucky enough to meet and extensively correspond with both Wei Dai and Nick Szabo, generally acknowledged to have created ideas that would be realized with Bitcoin. I had made an attempt to create my own proof of work based currency, called RPOW. So I found Bitcoin facinating.
When Satoshi announced the first release of the software, I grabbed it right away. I think I was the first person besides Satoshi to run bitcoin. I mined block 70-something, and I was the recipient of the first bitcoin transaction, when Satoshi sent ten coins to me as a test. I carried on an email conversation with Satoshi over the next few days, mostly me reporting bugs and him fixing them.
Today, Satoshi's true identity has become a mystery. But at the time, I thought I was dealing with a young man of Japanese ancestry who was very smart and sincere. I've had the good fortune to know many brilliant people over the course of my life, so I recognize the signs.
After a few days, bitcoin was running pretty stably, so I left it running. Those were the days when difficulty was 1, and you could find blocks with a CPU, not even a GPU. I mined several blocks over the next days. But I turned it off because it made my computer run hot, and the fan noise bothered me. In retrospect, I wish I had kept it up longer, but on the other hand I was extraordinarily lucky to be there at the beginning. It's one of those glass half full half empty things.
The next I heard of Bitcoin was late 2010, when I was surprised to find that it was not only still going, bitcoins actually had monetary value. I dusted off my old wallet, and was relieved to discover that my bitcoins were still there. As the price climbed up to real money, I transferred the coins into an offline wallet, where hopefully they'll be worth something to my heirs.
Speaking of heirs, I got a surprise in 2009, when I was suddenly diagnosed with a fatal disease. I was in the best shape of my life at the start of that year, I'd lost a lot of weight and taken up distance running. I'd run several half marathons, and I was starting to train for a full marathon. I worked my way up to 20+ mile runs, and I thought I was all set. That's when everything went wrong.
My body began to fail. I slurred my speech, lost strength in my hands, and my legs were slow to recover. In August, 2009, I was given the diagnosis of ALS, also called Lou Gehrig's disease, after the famous baseball player who got it.
ALS is a disease that kills moter neurons, which carry signals from the brain to the muscles. It causes first weakness, then gradually increasing paralysis. It is usually fatal in 2 to 5 years. My symptoms were mild at first and I continued to work, but fatigue and voice problems forced me to retire in early 2011. Since then the disease has continued its inexorable progression.
Today, I am essentially paralyzed. I am fed through a tube, and my breathing is assisted through another tube. I operate the computer using a commercial eyetracker system. It also has a speech synthesizer, so this is my voice now. I spend all day in my power wheelchair. I worked up an interface using an arduino so that I can adjust my wheelchair's position using my eyes.
It has been an adjustment, but my life is not too bad. I can still read, listen to music, and watch TV and movies. I recently discovered that I can even write code. It's very slow, probably 50 times slower than I was before. But I still love programming and it gives me goals. Currently I'm working on something Mike Hearn suggested, using the security features of modern processors, designed to support "Trusted Computing", to harden Bitcoin wallets. It's almost ready to release. I just have to do the documentation.
And of course the price gyrations of bitcoins are entertaining to me. I have skin in the game. But I came by my bitcoins through luck, with little credit to me. I lived through the crash of 2011. So I've seen it before. Easy come, easy go.
That's my story. I'm pretty lucky overall. Even with the ALS, my life is very satisfying. But my life expectancy is limited. Those discussions about inheriting your bitcoins are of more than academic interest. My bitcoins are stored in our safe deposit box, and my son and daughter are tech savvy. I think they're safe enough. I'm comfortable with my legacy. [edited slightly] - Hal Finney
submitted by Sk33tshot to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

How To Reduce Energy Consumption In The Midst Of Crypto Popularity

How To Reduce Energy Consumption In The Midst Of Crypto Popularity
Electrical energy has become an integral part of everyday modern life. It’s used to power our bulbs and home appliances, trains, and even charge electric vehicles. Globally, its use is rising rapidly as different economies across the globe develop. Therefore, there is a growing need for energy which in turn continually drives the demand for electricity generation. For years now, most of the electricity consumed on a global scale has been generated from three energy sources: fossil fuel, nuclear, and hydro. Renewable energy sources such as photovoltaic (solar power), offer an alternative, albeit small, a share of the world’s electricity. However, our energy sources can have significant environmental impacts.


Cryptocurrency Mining, Then Versus Now
Back in the day, 2009 to be precise, Bitcoin mining was nothing more than a lucrative hobby for several crypto enthusiasts. Miners could leverage their CPUs to mine Bitcoin as they were enough. It was possible because the only hardware needed for mining was a simple computer and the number of miners was significantly low. In fact, in the early stages, Hal Finney and Satoshi were the only ones mining BTC through the use of several computers simultaneously. Satoshi mined 1,000,000 Bitcoins in the first week of the project, courtesy of several computers.
At that time, the difficulty of mining was extremely low. However, over time, the problem has shot up drastically courtesy of Bitcoin’s rules and a change in new and advanced mining hardware. At the start, individuals would use CPUs (Central Processing Units) to mine BTC. CPUs represent the electronic circuitry within a computer.

Back in 2009, a miner would generate bitcoins at a rate of 50 per block. Gradually, people made the shift to GPU mining which was comfortable and lucrative to use. Due to this, GPU mining became extremely popular, and in 2011, people started using them. Soon after, the mining difficulty increased, and by June 2011, people began using FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays). Shortly after that, in 2013, FPGAs gave way to ASICs (Application Specific Integrated Circuits) that have made BTC mining industrious.
Currently, the Bitcoin mining process requires about 73.04 TWh of computational power to solve complex mathematical equations per year. This equates to about 0.33% of the total global electricity consumption. One Bitcoin transaction on average consumes about 916 KWh of electricity that could power about 31 US households. Mining is no longer lucrative for individual miners as setting up needs specialized mining rigs that are expensive to buy and operate.

For instance, it would set a single Bitcoin miner back around $15,861 to mine one bitcoin in the Cook Islands near New Zealand. The cost rises to about $16,209 in the Solomon Islands located near Papua New Guinea. The prices of mining one Bitcoin further rise in Bahrain, Niue, and South Korea with amounts of $16,773, $17,566, and $26,170 respectively.

Mining creates enormous electricity bills through energy consumption and cooling (and that’s on top of the cost of mining equipment and, nowadays, a facility to house your rows and towers of machines). The current BTC network is estimated to be consuming about 2.55 gigawatts (GW) of electricity annually which is enough to power a whole country. For context, the entire state of Ireland consumes an average of 3.1 GW of electricity.

Potential Consequence of High Non-Renewable Energy Usage
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
The most well-known impact of increased non-renewable sources usage is the production of greenhouse gases mainly CO2 that is believed by many to contribute to climate change (though much of this is politicized hype). Different types of non-renewable energies produce different levels of greenhouse gases. For example, coal provides the highest amount of CO2 emission. It’s important to note that CO2 is plant food (and plants produce oxygen), is what every breathing creature emits when exhaling, and climate change (formerly Global Cooling, formerly Global Warming) is not agreed upon by scientists to be caused by human activity, as there are a myriad of other, likely much more influential factors, such as solar cycles. It’s also worth noting that climate change has always happened, with warmer and colder periods, and what has been hyped up in the last decade is a tiny percentage of what humanity has witnessed, without industry. Predictions of the world ending disastrously in a few short years if we don’t do something politically have fallen flat.
It is worth noting that the above factor will also depend upon how efficient the engines using these fuels are, and filtering systems to reduce emissions. Modern technology can produce very efficient, low emission engines which use fossil fuels.

Token Creation (PoW/PoS/DPoS)
Proof-of-Work (PoW) is a term that’s usually used to denote the kind of concept that the Bitcoin network uses to validate and add transactions to the blockchain. It involves the use of ASICs in mining to solve complex mathematical algorithms otherwise known as PoW problems. Although PoW is excellent against cyber-attacks, it has a major limitation of high electricity consumption. Furthermore, mining rigs require top computing hardware that’s expensive to attain. Some of the projects using the PoW consensus algorithm include Bitcoin, Monero, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Bitcoin Cash, Zcash, Litecoin, and DogeCoin. Ethereum is intended to make the change from PoW to PoS via the Casper protocol.

Proof-of-Stake (PoS), on the other hand, is an alternative way of validating transactions or blocks. It was engineered as an alternative to the PoW process that consumes an immense amount of energy. Unlike Proof-of-Work, coins are no longer mined but are forged or minted. Block validation is done by a select group of individuals known as validators. They are chosen depending on the age and amount of stake they hold within the blockchain network. Some of the projects using the PoS algorithm include Dash, QTUM, NEO, NavCoin, Stellar Lumen, Zcoin, and Stratis.

Benefits of the PoS system include:
Less expensive hardware is required.

Transaction times are much faster.

It is energy efficient as it doesn’t consume a lot of energy.

Delegated Proof-of-Stake, otherwise known as DPoS, is a new and alternative protocol to both the PoW and PoS consensus algorithms. It’s mostly considered to be the most decentralized consensus model in existence today. This is mostly because every token holder has a degree of influence about what happens in the network. DPoS uses the power of stakeholder approval voting to promote consensus in a fair and democratic manner. Projects using DPoS include Lisk, Ark, Rise, Tezos, OxyCoin, Shift, Lightning BTC, and EOS, among others.

Conclusion
Blockchain projects around the world can help reduce energy consumption by taking alternative routes in the cryptocurrency mining process. First, blockchain projects can make the switch from the PoW system to the PoS system which is much cheaper and consumes less energy. Secondly, cryptocurrency miners can make the switch to cleaner and friendly renewable sources of energy such as solar energy. Lastly, blockchain networks can incentivize miners to use renewable energy resources by offering additional rewards for those that utilize them.
submitted by JustPowerIT to JustPowerIT [link] [comments]

Tezos Copycat Hurry up Tezos!!!

The Crypto industry is going to keep stealing Tezos ideas until they get it right. What if they are able to implement the new Velvet protocol? What if any company can implement this and no Crypto ever hard forks? All the things that make Tezos unique are being stolen. And we don't even have first mover advantage! Read this article and comment if this worries you
Velvet has always been a sign of nobility, but in the crypto space, it's now the name adorning a new and promising way for upgrading blockchain software.
At least that's the hype behind "velvet forks," a mechanism for upgrading cryptocurrency code that has some high-profile crypto enthusiasts intrigued.
"We think the most interesting part is the idea that you can introduce some new concepts to permissionless blockchains without necessarily having a majority of consensus participants agree to do so," said Imperial College London research assistant Alexei Zamyatin.
And that complex statement cuts to the core of why Zamyatin and others believe velvet forks might be beneficial.
In short, in the cryptocurrency space, there have long been two types of forks that people generally discuss - soft forks and hard forks.
While soft forks are seen as less disruptive in that they're backwards-compatible, they can still be controversial when used to initiate changes not all cryptocurrency users agree with. Further, hard forks are generally seen in a dubious light since they can split a blockchain in two if not all users decide to update to the new rules.
With velvet forks, however, some researchers think the cryptocurrency world can get around some of the disruptive politics that generally bog down major code changes.
First coined by computer scientists working on building proofs that can potentially be used to improve sidechains, a layer-two cryptocurrency technology for pushing transactions off-chain, a velvet fork allows developers to add new rules to a blockchain without full support from the entire ecosystem.
According to Zamyatin, "It's not rocket science. It's a pretty simple concept."
As such, Zamyatin and several other researchers co-authored a new paper that dives deeper into where the mechanism can be applied, which he presented during the Financial Crypto 2018 conference in Curacao at the beginning of the month.
The new paper states:
"The velvet fork [...] does not require support of a majority of participants and can potentially avoid rule disagreement forks from happening altogether."
In the wild Simply, a fork is a way to upgrade a cryptocurrency system to support important new rules, and throughout the history of multiple cryptocurrency protocols, forks have been used often.
From the hard fork that split ethereum into a competing cryptocurrency ethereum classic to less controversial forks like the one used to move bitcoin to a new signature scheme to the ever-growing number of forks designed to not only create new cryptocurrencies with new features, but also make entrepreneurs (or scammers) substantial amounts of money, forks have become a part of life in the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
But these mechanisms come with a fair amount of controversy much of the time, which is partly why Zamyatin and other academics are so interested in the velvet fork approach.
In the December 2017 paper where velvet forks were first mentioned, the mechanism is described as one that allows for "gradual deployment" without harming the miners that haven't upgraded to the new rules. In this way, it acts similar to a soft fork in that clients that upgrade to new rules are still compatible with those that don't.
Further, the paper states that velvet forks require "no rule modifications to the consensus layer," what some see as advantageous since these are the rules everyone in the system needs to agree with, or everything will break.
While it hasn't become widely-used as a way of upgrading, velvet forks exist in the wild today in various forms (although researchers argue there wasn't an official name for the mechanism before this recent wave of research).
For example, the decentralized mining pool P2pool regularly uses a velvet fork of sorts.
Since there is no one entity (replacing that with code instead) that controls the payments dispersed to the miners of the pool for their work, the pool created a second blockchain with an easier difficulty that only miners part of the pool can contribute to. This blockchain is used to gauge how much computing power each miner is contributing, so the protocol can pay them out proportionally.
Even though the blocks generated by P2pool use these extra rules, miners that don't play by these same rules still accept P2pool's blocks.
As such, P2pool is an example of a "velvet fork" because the blocks (from both their proprietary blockchain and the bitcoin blockchain) live side-by-side in harmony, without causing a split.
Bias and bribery Still, velvet forks are a potential vulnerability.
Namely, the paper describes possible ways that velvet forks could be abused by bad actors for their own gain.
For instance, say a velvet is deployed. Zamyatin's paper describes a scenario where some miners, called "velvet miners," upgrade to new rules while others ignore the new rules. If the blocks that the velvet miners create are somehow more lucrative than regular blocks, the paper argues other miners could be "biased towards accepting upgraded over legacy blocks."
"This, in turn, can have an unclear impact on the security assumptions of such systems, as current attack models mostly do not assume a variable utility of blocks," the paper continues.
And Zamyatin himself described another attack vector, which involves "selfish mining."
Selfish mining is a process whereby miners hide the fact that they've found a block, keeping other miners searching for that block while they move on to searching for the next block. This gives them a head start of sorts in also winning the next block. And according to Zamyatin, velvet forks could enable new opportunities here.
He told CoinDesk:
"I can bribe people to work on my chain. There's no guarantee that I'll win, but it could potentially offer an incentive to deviate from the protocol rules."
Still, more research is needed, as Zamyatin admits he isn't sure how serious these problems are in practice.
Opening the door But both these vulnerabilities and the thought of the changes velvet forks might enable are reasons Zamyatin wants researchers to spend more time looking into velvet forks.
Although, Zamyatin acknowledges that velvet forks aren't a silver bullet.
"This doesn't work for something like Segregated Witness (SegWit) of course," he said, referring to a bitcoin code change that fueled a two-year debate in the community over the technical direction of the protocol.
That said, it's still potentially useful for other types of changes.
Zamyatin noted that he's looking into how it might be possible to use a velvet fork for bringing GHOST, the protocol that ethereum was originally modeled after, to bitcoin. Because it completely restructures the system to try to speed things up, it likely wouldn't get enough support for a soft or hard fork, and as such a velvet fork where some get to opt in while staying in consensus with those that don't could be the only way.
And velvet forks might also help breath new life into older proposed innovations.
Cornell associate professor Emin Gün Sirer, for instance, said he "very much" likes the idea of using a velvet fork for adding the long-stalled Bitcoin-NG (standing for "next-generation") protocol, an idea he pioneered which looks to improve throughput by rearranging the bitcoin blockchain, to the cryptocurrency.
"While [the paper is] short on the details, the overall idea of adding new functionality without incurring the risks and complication of either a soft or a hard fork is quite compelling," Sirer told CoinDesk.
And perhaps most far-fetched but interesting of all, Zamyatin believes an even bigger vision could be realized with velvet forks.
He told CoinDesk:
"You could even have multiple versions running in parallel, perhaps even compatible to each other, and all this without necessitating often controversial soft or hard forks."
submitted by TezosMaster to tezos [link] [comments]

Why Bitcoin needs miners and Proof-of-Work BITCOIN GENERATOR IN 2020 PROOF WORK AND PAYMENT Deriving More Robust Proof-of-Work Difficulty Adjustments What is Proof of Work ? BITCOIN MINING DIFFICULTY EXPLAINED IN 10 MINUTES!

The answer lies in the fact that the associated weight of Bitcoin equipment reflects the proof-of-work embodied in Bitcoin, which is itself a reflection of the historic metabolic energy that went into its initial creation. The same is true for the weight of Gold, which represents the historic proof of work that went into the mining of the Gold. Face masks are being turned to as a largely superstitious solution to the concerns about coronavirus, as opposed to a solution driven by data. The data also indicates that their use comes with drawbacks. That being the case, local orders requiring a face mask are likely to make clear that there are exemptions to the order. San Francisco Department of Public Health has played a leading role in A protocol which the Ethereum has opted to go along with is what commonly known as Casper. A POS(Proof-of-Stake) protocol which is designed for mining Ethereum, commonly associated with bitcoin. ethereum Vs ethereum Casper. Though the whole group was engaged in designing the same, Vlad Zamfir is often termed to be the ‘Face of Casper’. Because the cumulative work wasn’t measured (as it is with Bitcoin’s “difficulty”), it wouldn’t be readily obvious that “total work” = “total expected value of the blockreward”. In PoW there was sometimes disagreement over which NYTimes issue (of 1000’s) we should run tomorrow, in PoS there was disagreement on which stack of For a comprehensive investigation into the qualities of Bitcoin’s Proof of Work, BSV for instance without too much difficulty. system plenty of breathing room — and also gives us an

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Why Bitcoin needs miners and Proof-of-Work

If multiple governments collaborated, could they launch a 51% attack on Bitcoin? If all it takes to attack a proof-of-work (PoW) network is enough electricity, wouldn't you want the game theory of ... BITCOIN MINING DIFFICULTY EXPLAINED IN 10 MINUTES! ... Proof-of-Work & Hashrate - Duration: ... How does cryptocurrency mining difficulty work and why should you care as a miner? In this episode of The Blockchain Journal Club, we discuss a recent paper which proposes an alternate way to adjust the difficulty in blockchain mining to guarantee more reliable block times. The ... Proof of work, often abbreviated as PoW, is a system for preventing double spends. It is a consensus algorithm for blockchain, which is the underlying consensus model for bitcoin. Proof of work ... An explanation of cryptographic proof-of-work protocols, which are used in various cryptographic applications and in bitcoin mining. More free lessons at: ht...

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