Ridges on virtual keyboards on tablets





  •  I am incredibly anxious to find out the rationale behind this result of recreational drug use.



  • So they put ridges there but won't redraw the keys when you change between lower and uppercase.

    Makes perfect sense.



  • Is it so it's properly supported on 80x2 braille terminals?



  • @mott555 said:

    So they put ridges there but won't redraw the keys when you change between lower and uppercase.

    Makes perfect sense.

    It's consistent. Real keyboards have finger-positioning-bumbs, so they are in the image. Real keyboards don't redraw the key captions when you press Shift, so the image doesn't either.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    It's consistent. Real keyboards have finger-positioning-bumbs, so they are in the image. Real keyboards don't redraw the key captions when you press Shift, so the image doesn't either.
    It's consistent, but is it rational? Real keyboard are that way for reasons that don't apply here.

     



  • @joelkatz said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    It's consistent. Real keyboards have finger-positioning-bumbs, so they are in the image. Real keyboards don't redraw the key captions when you press Shift, so the image doesn't either.
    It's consistent, but is it rational? Real keyboard are that way for reasons that don't apply here.

     

    Doesn't matter, skeumorphism trumps all logic and reason.



  • @Tacroy said:

    Doesn't matter, skeumorphism trumps all logic and reason.

    Yeah. This is why I stopped using Apple shit back in OS 10.3 or so. Apple used to be the champions of usability, for the last decade they've been champions of "bad ideas we as an industry already tried and rejected". They've been going down this path of retard since Quicktime 3.0.

    People have been hopeful that the new iOS they announced a week ago is finally saying, "fuck you" to skeumorphism. Only a dozen years too late.



  • A coworker was showing me some iOS 7 screenshots. We both agreed that it looked more like Windows Phone than iOS.



  • @Tacroy said:

    @joelkatz said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    It's consistent. Real keyboards have finger-positioning-bumbs, so they are in the image. Real keyboards don't redraw the key captions when you press Shift, so the image doesn't either.
    It's consistent, but is it rational? Real keyboard are that way for reasons that don't apply here.

     

    Doesn't matter, skeumorphism trumps all logic and reason.

    "skeumorphism" why I can't remember that word. And yes, iOS should've been called skeumorphOS



  • @mott555 said:

    A coworker was showing me some iOS 7 screenshots. We both agreed that it looked more like Windows Phone than iOS.

    Microsoft is ahead of Apple in GUI design. Apple market cap is about the same as the sum of JP Morgan, Deutsch Bank and Morgan Stanley. Priceline.com is worth more than John Deere. Lenovo is outsourcing servers manufacturing to American factories. Brave new world.



  • @joelkatz said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    It's consistent. Real keyboards have finger-positioning-bumbs, so they are in the image. Real keyboards don't redraw the key captions when you press Shift, so the image doesn't either.
    It's consistent, but is it rational? Real keyboard are that way for reasons that don't apply here.

     

    I think it's rational in that it's still a visual indication of the finger positions in the home row. Sure, you can't feel them, but you can at least look down and make sure your fingers are in roughly the correct position when typing two handed. I've seen physical keyboards that don't have ridges but instead have painted dots, lights or slightly different coloured keys as visual, rather than tactile indicators.



  • @Soviut said:

    you can at least look down and make sure your fingers are in roughly the correct position when typing two handed.
     

    The keys in question are already uniquely and clearly marked with an "F" and "J". If you've learned to do the whole homerow thing, then you really don't need indicators.

    @Soviut said:

    I've seen physical keyboards that don't have ridges but instead have painted dots, lights or slightly different coloured keys as visual, rather than tactile indicators.

    Wow, that's pretty bad.

     



  • The real question is, since it is apple, why didn't they put dots on the D and K keys instead?



  • @dhromed said:

    @Soviut said:

    you can at least look down and make sure your fingers are in roughly the correct position when typing two handed.
     

    The keys in question are already uniquely and clearly marked with an "F" and "J". If you've learned to do the whole homerow thing, then you really don't need indicators.

    When I took typing in high school, they gave us typewriters with no letters printed on the keys, so we wouldn't be tempted to look.  The raised bumps were the only indication that you had your fingers in the right place.  (And on this fershlugginer netbook with the slightly miniaturized keys, I'm still getting off-by-one errors every time I approach the keyboard.)

     



  • @Ronald said:

    Microsoft is ahead of Apple in GUI design.

    I think M$ has been ahead of Apple for a long time.

    @Ronald said:

    Apple market cap is about the same as the sum of JP Morgan, Deutsch Bank and Morgan Stanley. Priceline.com is worth more than John Deere. Lenovo is outsourcing servers manufacturing to American factories. Brave new world.

    Anyone who thinks we're not living in the ruins of a free and functioning society clearly doesn't follow business news.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @Ronald said:
    Microsoft is ahead of Apple in GUI design.

    I think M$ has been ahead of Apple for a long time.

    Well, I guess you could classify "forever" as "a long time".



  • @Ben L. said:

    @morbiuswilters said:
    @Ronald said:
    Microsoft is ahead of Apple in GUI design.

    I think M$ has been ahead of Apple for a long time.

    Well, I guess you could classify "forever" as "a long time".

    After hearing Blakey explain some of the features of Mac OS Classic, I'd have to say it was probably a better GUI than Win9x.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    "bad ideas we as an industry already tried and rejected".

    Reading that makes me realize how lucky we are that M$ cut IBM loose when designing NT, and glad that IBM never got into a position again to design mainstream GUIs.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    After hearing Blakey explain some of the features of Mac OS Classic, I'd have to say it was probably a better GUI than Win9x.

    No doubt. I would say Apple didn't lose their lead until OS X-- and even then not until a couple versions into OS X where Mac fans saying, "well, ok, 10.2 didn't fix the issues, but its still new, surely 10.3 will..." were becoming more and more obviously delusional. (It didn't help that Apple teased us by implementing some good ideas from Classic-- like icon labels-- making us believe they'd implement the rest any... time... now.... Now I doubt any of the hipster coders working at Apple have even ever used Classic.)

    My attitude became, "well, if Apple no longer cares about providing a good UI, I might as well use Microsoft where I also have a mediocre UI but it's cheaper, there's more software and it runs shit older than 3 years."

    I left because for the first time I'd *actually used* XP and Windows 2000 for extended periods of times and got used to their quirks, so I was in a better position to make a well-educated position. (I've always tried every OS I could get my hands on, various Liinuxes, BeOS which had so much potential. Even back in my C-64 days I used GeOS until I found a horrible bug where you could set the mouse tracking to 0% and then literally never set it back, because it required a mouse movement to change the mouse tracking.) But that was the first time I had a job using Windows, so I was using it 40-ish hours a week and really learned the thing.

    I mean I would say it was arguable for all of 2000, XP. But Windows 7 and Office 2007 made it clear that Microsoft is now the company who gives a shit about usability and, more importantly, now they were the company willing to make huge changes in the name of improvement, while every other OS maker has been stagnant for decades. Love it or hate it, you have to admit that the Windows 8 start screen was taking a huge risk, one that no other OS maker would have taken. Maybe it works and it'll be in Windows 9. Maybe it won't and they'll backpedal a bit. BUT AT LEAST THEY FUCKING SHOOK THINGS UP!



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Reading that makes me realize how lucky we are that M$ cut IBM loose when designing NT, and glad that IBM never got into a position again to design mainstream GUIs.

    It sure removes some of the "why did OS/2 fail???" mystery, doesn't it? Hah.



  • @The Bytemaster said:

    The real question is, since it is apple, why didn't they put dots on the D and K keys instead?
     

    I'm pretty sure they stopped doing that with their first USB keyboards - my ADB 2 keyboard has them on D and K, but my old black 'Pro keyboard has them where they should be. Might have been around the time that they started using the ISO keyboard layout for EU keyboards (upright return key, versus ANSI flat return key) with € on the 2 and £ on the 3. 

    As for the OP, I agree. Adding the graphic of a tactile assistant to a purely flat image is silly and adds nothing to the usability of the keyboard. iOS keyboard are that damn fiddly to use that you HAVE to watch where your fingers go all the time, rendering even the concept useless.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Love it or hate it, you have to admit that the Windows 8 start screen was taking a huge risk, one that no other OS maker would have taken.

    I don't hate it, I just think Microsoft should have eased those features in a bit more naturally. Like, maybe Win8 should have introduced the start screen, but still made the desktop the default environment and eased people into using the new UI by making them want to use it--like have some software that is only available through the start screen, to get people using it. Tablets could start using the start screen right away, which would have provided more impetus to learn the new UI, while still not forcing people to abandon the desktop right away.

    The other thing is: I think M$ is adhering too strongly to an abstract principle--sort of like how the IBM team wanted their software to resemble real things, but with much less awful results--rather than focusing on usability. A desktop isn't a tablet and one of the nice things about a desktop is that it has things like windowing and a mouse. Why are there so many apps and screens in Win8 that take over the whole fucking screen? Why aren't these contained in windows? It's like "Oh, yeah, guess I might need to consult some online instructions or check out something else, but instead the Microsoft Store is taking up the whole screen.. and most of it is just empty space, which is even more irritating: this could easily fit into its own window and give me plenty of room to see my other windows, but it's not." To me, abandoning the window paradigm on the desktop just so they can emulate a tablet is a huge step back. There's no good reason for it, except for an absolutist view that "Ze tablet and ze desktop must look ze zame!"

    Finally, the Microsoft Account shit pisses me off. If this was a tablet or a phone--fine, I get it, Google and Apple get away with forcing me to have an account. But a desktop? The whole "Go online, download software, install" routine is pretty standard on Windows. Making me go through extra hoops for no purpose is asinine. Once again, Microsoft should have given incentives to use a Microsoft Account, but not made it mandatory to do things I could do much more simply in Win7. Give incentives to try a new feature, don't jam it down people's throats.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @morbiuswilters said:

    Finally, the Microsoft Account shit pisses me off.
    I've been experimenting with Win8 and that was the feature that irritated me most too (managing to beat out some moronic mouse "gesture" stuff that was also highly awkward in practice, though I don't know if that was due to MS or the hardware vendor). Luckily, I've found that you can make things better by scrapping all those stupid broken default apps and using the real applications that you acquire in the normal way instead; you've then just got a somewhat-obnoxiously large start menu. (Indeed, for the person for whom that laptop is actually intended, the much larger icons of the Win8 interface are actually better I suspect.)

    "Microsoft Account? No thanks."



  • @dkf said:

    "Microsoft Account? No thanks."

    And I get that they need it to make a for-pay app store work; but why for fucking Skype? Or any other free app? (And I know Google and Apple do it on their mobile platforms, but at least those are a new thing. Downloading free apps for Windows is something we used to be able to do without signing up for an account, so this is a new hurdle in a workflow I've done a thousand times before.)

    And why is the login box for the Microsoft Account a full fucking page? This isn't a tablet, smartphone or set-top box. Maybe I've got a password manager I'd like to open to retrieve my password from. Why the fuck are they abandoning the windowing paradigm which not only revolutionized computer interfaces, but made Microsoft very wealthy? It's like "Remember when computers could only do one thing at a time? That's our new plan."



  • For logging into Skype specifically, Microsoft bought Skype a while back. Messenger has been discontinued in favor of Skype, and the Skype account system is being folded into the Microsoft account system.



  • @electronerd said:

    For logging into Skype specifically, Microsoft bought Skype a while back. Messenger has been discontinued in favor of Skype, and the Skype account system is being folded into the Microsoft account system.

    I know all of this. What does this have to do with not permitting me to sign in with my normal Skype login?



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @electronerd said:
    For logging into Skype specifically, Microsoft bought Skype a while back. Messenger has been discontinued in favor of Skype, and the Skype account system is being folded into the Microsoft account system.

    I know all of this. What does this have to do with not permitting me to sign in with my normal Skype login?

    @electronerd said:

    the Skype account system is being folded into the Microsoft account system.

    The whole idea of the Passport/.NET Passport/Windows Live/Microsoft/whatever account system is that you have one Microsoft account for all services, not one Outlook.com account, one Xbox Live account, one MSDN account, one Skype account, one Windows account...



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Finally, the Microsoft Account shit pisses me off. If this was a tablet or a phone--fine, I get it, Google and Apple get away with forcing me to have an account. But a desktop?
     

    Win8 does not require a MS Account.



  • I always wondered why the iPhone interface was made of brushed aluminum, wood, and paper, but the device itself was black fucking plastic.



  • @dhromed said:

    Win8 does not require a MS Account.

    Yeah I'm confused about this too, although I only used it for a few weeks. When and for what were you required to create a MS account? I distinctly remember that my Windows 8 login was not a Microsoft account, because I remember having to dig through the control panel later to figure out how to link my Microsoft account (which has a different username/password) to it. I can't remember if I was successful or not.



  • For Windows 8/RT itself, you do not need a Microsoft account. To acquire or use any Windows Store apps (effectively including most of the in-box WS apps), you must have a Microsoft account connected to your machine account.

    EDIT: That said, if you try to use a Windows RT (as opposed to 8) device without a Microsoft account, you're gonna have a bad time.



  • @electronerd said:

    For Windows itself, you do not need a Microsoft account. To acquire or use any Windows Store apps (effectively including most of the in-box WS apps), you must have a Microsoft account connected to your machine account.

    ... but I downloaded and used Chrome as a Start screen app (whatever those are called) with no Microsoft account. So... I'm not sure that's true.

    (One thing nobody can defend about Windows 8: the whole Start screen thing is *confusing* and under-explained. Even the terminology I'm uncertain about... I know they can't be called "Metro" apps, but what are they then? I've heard "Start screen apps", "Windows Store apps", etc. But if "Windows Store apps" is the right term, what about apps that run on that screen but didn't come from the Windows Store? Aaaaa!!!)



  • @blakeyrat said:

    When and for what were you required to create a MS account?
     

    When you install from scratch (or presumedly when setting up the very first account), Win8 will shout at you to create a MS account with a big title and some form fields or something.

    In the corner of the screen, there's an unobtrusive link that goes something like

    oh no I'm good thanks, just use a windows account

    So I can forgive people from thinking you need an MS account. But when people state, or appear to state, it as fact, then I say, no, you are inattentive and mistaken, or a liar.



  • I think the accepted term is Windows Store apps. That's what VS/MSDN calls them.

    As for Chrome, browsers are treated a bit specially, and I think it's actually just faking it anyway, just running full-screen as a regular Desktop app. Windows Store apps can only be downloaded from the Windows Store, and must be signed by the proper Microsoft cert to even start executing, with limited exceptions for developers and Volume License customers.



  • Oh by the way, is there an intended way of managing application icons in the start screen when you have more than 6 programs installed? It inevitably becomes a fat grid of icons and I have such a hard time believing that MS hasn't foreseen this.



  • @electronerd said:

    I think the accepted term is Windows Store apps. That's what VS/MSDN calls them.

    As for Chrome,

    But that's exactly the confusion. What do you call Chrome when it's running in that environment? "Windows Store app but one not in the Windows Store?" What is the term?

    The terminology should have been the *first* thing Microsoft sorted out. Instead it's a year later, and we're all still confused, and there's extremely common cases their terminology doesn't appear to cover at all.

    ---

    BTW I uninstalled Windows 8 and put Windows 7 on my laptop because I foolishly believed Chrome's inability to scale its UI to 150% was a Windows 8 bug-- turns out no! It's a Chrome bug! It does the same broken shit in Windows 7! (Chrome can only scale to 100% or 200%. Which means it works fine in "Windows Store app mode", because if you click "magnify UI" in that environment it magnifies by 200%. But in the normal desktop environment, if you have zoom set to 125%, Chrome does NOTHING. If you have it set to 150%, Chrome does 200%. I guess it rounds up? Fucking idiot Google idiots. Windows UI zoom has existed longer than Chrome has, why the fuck didn't it support this on day one!? Why are all open source programs so shitty!? How it is even possible to have an app that supports advanced Windows 8 features while failing to support Windows 95 features? Aaaa!!!

    So I should put Windows 8 back on that laptop and apologize to Microsoft for not having enough faith in them.



  • @electronerd said:

    For Windows 8/RT itself, you do not need a Microsoft account. To acquire or use any Windows Store apps (effectively including most of the in-box WS apps), you must have a Microsoft account connected to your machine account.

    EDIT: That said, if you try to use a Windows RT (as opposed to 8) device without a Microsoft account, you're gonna have a bad time.

    Also, I should point out that every other major commercial consumer OS does this; OSX and iOS with Apple accounts and the App Store, Android with Google accounts and Google Play, and Chrome OS with Google accounts and the Web Store.

    Heck, fucking Ubuntu* might even do this; I swore I'd never use it again, but it's got a commercial app store and an integrated dropbox-alike and I wouldn't be surprised if your Ubuntu One/Ubuntu Software Center login was linked to the OS. (Although I also wouldn't be surprised if all of Canonical's services used separate, non-linkable accounts.)

     

    * Interesting side note: Canonical seems to have completely stopped referring to their OS as Linux, merely calling it Ubuntu. I think all distros should do this.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    What do you call Chrome when it's running in that environment?

    I think you call it a Desktop app that's pretending to be a Windows Store app but actually isn't one, because if you didn't get it from the Windows Store, and you didn't get it shoved onto your machine from the Windows Store when you plugged a device in, and you didn't get it sideloaded with a Windows Store sideloading key from your sysadmin at work, and you didn't use a Windows Store developer license to deploy it, it's not a Windows Store app. Those are not just the only supported scenarios, they are the only scenarios (barring something akin to jailbreaking).

    @blakeyrat said:

    How it is even possible to have an app that supports advanced Windows 8 features while failing to support Windows 95 features? Aaaa!!!

    Because you don't have to implement features in the same order your system vendor implemented support for them?



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Also, I should point out that every other major commercial consumer OS does this; OSX and iOS with Apple accounts and the App Store, Android with Google accounts and Google Play, and Chrome OS with Google accounts and the Web Store.

    I would argue that, despite some security advantage it grants, that is a Bad Thing, for several reasons.

    A non-exhaustive list:

    1. System vendors become arbiters of what computers are allowed to be used for, including what content users are allowed to see (e.g. "no porn" rules)
    2. It prevents the sharing of "hey this was useful to me, maybe it could be useful to you too"-type apps, where it wouldn't be worth it to the developer to continue on to a complete, marketable, certification-compliant app and pay the fee for certification and distribution
    3. The above goes double for non-gui tools


  • @electronerd said:

    @MiffTheFox said:

    Also, I should point out that every other major commercial consumer OS does this; OSX and iOS with Apple accounts and the App Store, Android with Google accounts and Google Play, and Chrome OS with Google accounts and the Web Store.

    I would argue that, despite some security advantage it grants, that is a Bad Thing, for several reasons.

    A non-exhaustive list:

    1. System vendors become arbiters of what computers are allowed to be used for, including what content users are allowed to see (e.g. "no porn" rules)
    2. It prevents the sharing of "hey this was useful to me, maybe it could be useful to you too"-type apps, where it wouldn't be worth it to the developer to continue on to a complete, marketable, certification-compliant app and pay the fee for certification and distribution
    3. The above goes double for non-gui tools

    Nobody does that shit except Apple and makers of some first-party Android roms. Windows 8 still lets you install arbitrary MSIs, true Android still lets you install arbitrary APKs, Ubuntu still lets you install arbitrary debs, etc.

    EDIT: That shit being locking out non-app store software.



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Nobody does that shit except Apple and makers of some first-party Android roms. Windows 8 still lets you install arbitrary MSIs, true Android still lets you install arbitrary APKs

    For now. Windows 8 already blocks "not-commonly-downloaded" executables by default, and buries the option to run the program anyway under two layers of scary system-modal banner messages.



  • @electronerd said:

    @MiffTheFox said:

    Nobody does that shit except Apple and makers of some first-party Android roms. Windows 8 still lets you install arbitrary MSIs, true Android still lets you install arbitrary APKs

    For now. Windows 8 already blocks "not-commonly-downloaded" executables by default, and buries the option to run the program anyway under two layers of scary system-modal banner messages.

    That didn't stop self signed SSL certs.



  • @electronerd said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    What do you call Chrome when it's running in that environment?

    I think you call it a Desktop app that's pretending to be a Windows Store app but actually isn't one, because if you didn't get it from the Windows Store, and you didn't get it shoved onto your machine from the Windows Store when you plugged a device in, and you didn't get it sideloaded with a Windows Store sideloading key from your sysadmin at work, and you didn't use a Windows Store developer license to deploy it, it's not a Windows Store app. Those are not just the only supported scenarios, they are the only scenarios (barring something akin to jailbreaking).

    Catchy name.

    @electronerd said:

    Because you don't have to implement features in the same order your system vendor implemented support for them?

    I expect them to have 100% OS feature support, regardless of when the feature was added to the OS. I make some allowances for OS features that came about after the software was first published, but that is not the case here.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @dhromed said:

    Oh by the way, is there an intended way of managing application icons in the start screen when you have more than 6 programs installed?
    IIRC, right click on an icon lets you control what size it is (if it supports that) and delete if you want, and you can click and hold to get the option to move the app/icon around.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Catchy name.

    Got a better one?

    @blakeyrat said:

    I expect them to have 100% OS feature support, regardless of when the feature was added to the OS. I make some allowances for OS features that came about after the software was first published, but that is not the case here.

    That doesn't even make any sense. Should Chrome be operable through the text console? How about Desktop Gadgets (which were removed in 8)? Even the specific feature of UI scaling has been implemented in Windows in at least two different and mutually-incompatible ways. (Three, if you count Windows Store apps).



  • @electronerd said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    I expect them to have 100% OS feature support, regardless of when the feature was added to the OS. I make some allowances for OS features that came about after the software was first published, but that is not the case here.

    That doesn't even make any sense.

    Stupid me, expecting quality software! I should just learn to accept shit and love it. Thanks!



  • @dhromed said:

    @morbiuswilters said:

    Finally, the Microsoft Account shit pisses me off. If this was a tablet or a phone--fine, I get it, Google and Apple get away with forcing me to have an account. But a desktop?
     

    Win8 does not require a MS Account.

    No, it doesn't. And if you'd read what I wrote, I never said it did. I said I wanted to install Skype a program free program which previously I had been able to simply download and install. For other OSes, I still can do that, but for Win8 it forces me to the Windows Store, where I have to login with a Microsoft Account.

    Then, once I did that and Skype was downloaded and installed, it wanted me to login with a Microsoft Account. Apparently this is a new "feature", which pushes SSO. Once logged-in you can link your Skype account with your M$ account, but I don't want to do this. I can still login just fine with my Skype account on Linux--why is Win8 trying to cram this M$ account thing down my throat. And I'm not the only person pissed by this, if you read the Skype forums there are a lot of users who are angry to be forced to sign up for a Microsoft account and then have to link it to their Skype account.

    Apparently on Win8 you can still download the old "desktop" version of Skype and it doesn't have all the Microsoft Account shit. I'll have to see if that works.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    I expect them to have 100% OS feature support, regardless of when the feature was added to the OS. I make some allowances for OS features that came about after the software was first published, but that is not the case here.

    Yeah, especially one as basic as fucking zooming.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    "bad ideas we as an industry already tried and rejected".

    Reading
    that makes me realize how lucky we are that M$ cut IBM loose when
    designing NT, and glad that IBM never got into a position again to
    design mainstream GUIs.

    I'm going to defend IBM and Lotus Notes
    for a second (I do feel dirty for this).

    The Lotus Notes Workspace
    is an option for the Home Page of Lotus Notes consisting of a grid of
    tiles. Each tile has a Title, Icon, and Notification Count, and there
    can be multiple pages of icons (Sorted by tabs). This might sound a bit
    familiar to anyone who owns a phone made in the last 15 years.

    It
    can get cluttered, and it's not a perfect implementation, but it came
    out around '95. So they can at least get one thing right, even if the
    rest of the UI is rubbish.

    An argument can certainly be made that
    this style of UI is not the most efficient for Lotus Notes, but I think
    it actually works quite well in context, since the link to your mail
    can sit on the same page as a HR database, meeting room bookings and
    even various games within Lotus Notes.

    Ofcourse, now that the UI
    is finally relevant and familiar to anyone with a phone, they're
    labelling it as a "Legacy" feature and trying to remove support for it.
    So Yay.


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