D. A. Wood

Joined: November 7, 2011

Number of comments posted: 258

Number of votes received: 35

No user description provided.

Questions Submitted

Latest vs. Newest

Molotov Cocktails

“Much More Ready”

Recent Comments

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 25, 2012, 12:07pm  •  0 vote

Furthermore, when we say something like, "Let elephants trample them underneath their feet," you really need to understand that this is just a colorful metaphor for it. Don't go off on tangents by tak

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 25, 2012, 12:02pm  •  0 vote

The notion that elephants are terrified by mice (or by any other such small creatures) has been shown, long ago, to be pure MYTHOLOGY. "Actually elephants are very careful not to do any such thing

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 25, 2012, 11:50am  •  0 vote

Correction: replace "not" with "nor".

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 25, 2012, 11:49am  •  0 vote

"goooofy says: "The idea that we should consider how things work in other languages when we are talking about how English works sounds very much like the etymological fallacy to me." D.A.W.replies

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 5:03pm  •  0 vote

Perfect Pedant, I agree completely: The whole expression "In regards to ...", with or without the comma, REEKS of both laziness and wordiness. It REEKS ! D.A.W.

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 24, 2012, 4:56pm  •  0 vote

Not so! Words that are both nouns and adjectives are really quite uncommon. Let's stamp them out. You want to use England rather than English; France rather than French; Germany rather than German;

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 4:47pm  •  0 vote

So, "English is full of exceptions."? Well, let's endeavor to stamp out as many of them as we can, just like elephants do with their feet. We will never get all of the exceptions, but: "Man's rea

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 4:42pm  •  0 vote

Jaspar, et al, When it comes to our language, this certainly applies; "Man's reach must exceed his grasp, else what's a heaven for?" quoted from Robert Browning. So many of you are definitel

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 24, 2012, 2:12pm  •  0 vote

There is no such thing as "US English". We always call it "American English". This fits right in with the terms "Australian English", "British English", "Canadian English", "Irish English", "South A

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 24, 2012, 2:07pm  •  0 vote

To: EnglishKnight1 If you click on my name (in the red letters above) it takes you to a place called my profile. I put my e-mail address in that, and I thought that the whole reason why was that peop

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 24, 2012, 2:02pm  •  0 vote

Jeremy Wheeler, you have no understanding of the notion of explaining things emphatically by exaggeration, metaphor. or analogy. You must be a very difficult person to deal with, but anyone who knows

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 24, 2012, 1:54pm  •  0 vote

It has become all too easy for journalists to simply MAKE COPIES of what they get from overseas without paying any attention to what they say or what they mean. It happens all the time now, too, becau

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 1:43pm  •  0 vote

Correction: no way to live a life

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 1:42pm  •  0 vote

I agree whole hearedtly with the following: "Popular? One day ..?" Is that not what I am railing against? That is exactly what I say we don't want! What is genderless about a person? A person is ma

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 1:28pm  •  1 vote

The word "one" is singular by definition, and so is any word that ends in "one", except for some spurious words. Here are the good ones: anyone, everyone, lone, none, one, tone T

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 1:08pm  •  1 vote

Fallacious thinking raises its ugly head again: "If the fact that good English writers do it doesn't make it correct, then what does make it correct?" The fallacy is that of thinking that Engli

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 24, 2012, 12:41pm  •  1 vote

Note: "Strict adherence to the rule of pronoun-antecedent agreement may lead to a construction so absurd that no one would use it: "Did everybody leave early because he wasn't enjoying himself?"

Re: Capitalizing After the Colon  •  July 21, 2012, 5:18pm  •  2 votes

To: Samir Hafza Oh, we will grant you some question marks and exclamation points, now and then With the Internet, we will give you as many @ signs as you want. . D.A.W.

Re: Capitalizing After the Colon  •  July 21, 2012, 5:14pm  •  2 votes

Ha - ha: "Capitalization is never used, under any circumstances whatsoever, after a colon or a semi-colon in British English" See: "2001: A Space Odyssey", "2010: Odyssey Two", "2061: Odyssey Thr

Re: Capitalizing After the Colon  •  July 21, 2012, 9:23am  •  1 vote

The gross overuse of semicolons in one of those strange artifiacts of British, Irish, and African English. Jack said it right: "Just use a period and get rid of the years of bickering and comments

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 9:10am  •  0 vote

There is a more significant difference between Chinese (and some other Oriental languages) and the Western ones. When it came to learning how to do the different verb tenses in German -- present, pres

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 2:46am  •  0 vote

Oh, Chinese vs. English. There are some HUGE differences between the spoken languages that make it very difficult for Chinese people in learning English. 1. About 95 percent of Chinese words have

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 1:56am  •  0 vote

A fab American singer (from California) named "Weird Al" Yankovic has specialized for decades in making "spoofs" of songs, especially the pop songs of the time. There was a song, orginally from the 1

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 1:30am  •  0 vote

To: English Knight 1 You ought to read about the Austrian mathematician Kurt Goedel and his works. There are good articles about these on the Internet. Goedel lived at the same time as Russell and W

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 1:01am  •  0 vote

The American author Isaac Asimov, who was a biochemist, visited a large gathering at which someone presented one verse of a song that he had written to be sung to the tune of the song "Home on the Ran

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 12:38am  •  0 vote

Oh, well, English Knght 1, I did leave one possibility open for you -- an unreal possibility, but I left it there in a humorously. Maybe I am my father's daughter, and he and my mother named me for

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 21, 2012, 12:20am  •  0 vote

Of course, since I have earned my M.A. in mathematics, I think of Bertrand Russell as being mostly a mathematician. (He moved into philosophy later on in his life.) Russell and another man named Alf

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 20, 2012, 11:47pm  •  0 vote

I will kind you about my first name. It is "Dale", and in the United States, Dale is mostly a man's name, but some women have it, too. When I was a graduate school in mathematics, I was invited to a C

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 20, 2012, 11:15pm  •  0 vote

Oh, I am sorry to hear. English Knight 1, that you have had a have had an injured hand / finger, and that has upset your typing & writing. Hence I am reckoning that you meant "meaningful". In my cas

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 20, 2012, 7:44am  •  0 vote

"But fighting for great precision of words is such a meaning thing." 1. Are you trying to say "meaningful", 2. or are you trying to be ironic and intend "demeaning" or "mean-spirited"? I dis

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 20, 2012, 7:40am  •  0 vote

To: English Knight 1 You clearly have no idea who any of these writers were: Carl Sagan, Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, Martin Gardner, and James White, and probably not Sir Winston Churchill or Ber

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 18, 2012, 8:55pm  •  0 vote

I recently heard a news report on a major TV network in the U.S. about a group of hoodlums here who had been committing arson with bottles of gasoline and burning wicks. The reporter called them "MOLO

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 18, 2012, 8:45pm  •  0 vote

This about the origin of the name "Molotov Cocktail" is not even something worth arguing about or discussing. There was a HUGE amount of blood spilled all the way from Finland on the north to Romania

Re: How did “trans-” become “x-”?  •  July 18, 2012, 7:07pm  •  1 vote

Note that for quite a long time, the three-letter symbol for the main airport in Los Angles has been "LAX". Symbols like these are international and well-known in the aviation business. LAX began as

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 18, 2012, 6:23pm  •  1 vote

To EnglishKnight: Wood, when you speak to a man " Hey, babe, what's the latest?", the expression would be ambiguity, nathless. Your're missing something again, and not asking questions when you s

Re: Difference between acronyms and initials?  •  July 18, 2012, 2:22pm  •  0 vote

Acronyms from G.I. (soldier's) slang of World War II: (and beyond) FUBAR = F***ed Up Beyond All Recognition. This one is heard many times in the film SAVING PRIVATE RYAN. FUBU = F***ed Up Bey

Re: Difference between acronyms and initials?  •  July 18, 2012, 1:49pm  •  0 vote

Hello. There are several good Web sites that are available that will give your the actual meanings (in words) of hundreds of different acronyms (pronounceaable) and initialisms. For example, you enter

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 18, 2012, 1:00pm  •  0 vote

There is also a lot of difference between the language of casual conversation and the more formal and precise language that should be used in government documents - incl. agency's newsletters; general

Re: Latest vs. Newest  •  July 18, 2012, 12:38pm  •  0 vote

"latest" means "the most recent" must be strictly British English, Australian, etc. -- because we never talk like that in North America. Why not use an unambiguous term that is understood everywhere

Re: “get in contact”  •  July 15, 2012, 6:02pm  •  0 vote

Some verbs with "contact", in alphabetical order: break contact, continue contact, establish contact, forsake contact, get in contact, keep in contact, make contact, permit contact, seek contact,

Re: “get in contact”  •  July 15, 2012, 5:43pm  •  0 vote

Alas, we need to go into the realm of science and technology again: "to get in contact with" is mostly a phase from telecommunications, and especially from radio communications. It probably spread fro

Re: “As per ....”?  •  July 15, 2012, 9:09am  •  0 vote

"As per" is also used by would-be chrome domes who do not know "according to" or "considering", such as in "according to our firm plans" and "considering our well-made plans". To people who use

Re: “As per ....”?  •  July 15, 2012, 8:54am  •  0 vote

I believe that I have heard Australians overusing "as per", also. In the case of "as per", overusing means using it at all! D.A.W.

Re: “As per ....”?  •  July 15, 2012, 8:52am  •  0 vote

I agree: "Sometimes used to make the statement sound more important, give it more gravitas. Usually indicates lack of proper thought to me!", but my sentence for it is that people who use "as per"

Re: Topography  •  July 15, 2012, 8:29am  •  1 vote

In statements like these about "topography", the writers are just trying to give the impression of being "chrome domes" and using polysyllabic (four syllables) scientific words instead of the common a

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 14, 2012, 3:48pm  •  0 vote

Some of you are having trouble with the word "always". "Language is NOT always evolving and changing." "Always" means every year, every week, every day, every hour, and every minute. If the

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 14, 2012, 3:29pm  •  0 vote

I stand corrected: NotAGrammarSnob is a woman. (I used "he" as the generic pronoun for a person of unknown sex.) In my case.my mother was a professional high school English teacher, and lots of that r

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 14, 2012, 9:43am  •  0 vote

You ought to read a lot about advances in the understanding of the relationships between language, mathematics, and science. A whale of a lot of progress was made during the 20th Century. Start with t

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 14, 2012, 9:28am  •  0 vote

goofy and no added salt. You are nuts if you think all of that junk. You must be uneducated in the basic foundations of logic that tie language, math, and science together. Where did you get your mas

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 13, 2012, 1:11pm  •  0 vote

Goofy, if you think this: " Again, math and physics are irrelevant," then you are really lost in the fog and in the forest, w/o a compass. Math and physics are relevant to everything in everyday l

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 13, 2012, 12:31pm  •  1 vote

Textbooks on Euclidean geometry are full of descriptions of things that are ideal (and there are no such things as "more ideal", "most ideal", or "less ideal"): ideal points, ideal lines, ideal lin

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 13, 2012, 12:24pm  •  1 vote

Well, that might be because you have been studying in the wrong country all along ?? Go to some good libraries and find some American junior-high-school or elementary school textbooks that describ

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 12, 2012, 8:28pm  •  0 vote

I think that I should put this on my list of "Things to Do", but it will have to be at the bottom of the page -- below many more. The Federal Government of the United States is something like the

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 12, 2012, 6:57pm  •  0 vote

I recently complained to the source of an article about the terrible airline crash in the equatorial Atlantic. The journalist mentioned "B.E.A." without any explantation of that at all, and his editor

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 12, 2012, 6:33pm  •  0 vote

By the way, I contributed the whole topic of Molotov cocktails, petrol bombs, and the necessity of fitting the statements that one makes (in the public media) fit the language of one's audience -- o

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 12, 2012, 6:23pm  •  0 vote

Perfect Pedant "Probably read from the back of a cereal box." PROVE IT, and where did you get your master's degrees in mathematics and engineering from from? Doubtless you continue to count on

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 12, 2012, 9:14am  •  0 vote

READY to do some basic algebra: Given three real numbers a, b, and c. Reflexive Law: a = a Symmetric Law: If a = b, then b = a Cancellation Law: If a + c = b + c, then a = b Transitive Law: If a

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 12, 2012, 9:01am  •  1 vote

To: NotAGrammarSnob CORRECT! Someone or something is either competent or not competent; ready or unready; ideal or not ideal; perfect or imperfect; parallel or not parallel; and to get q

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 12, 2012, 8:40am  •  0 vote

Perfect Pedant Unaware of the world outside of the U.S.A. ? Despite the fact that I specifically mentioned New Zealand, Labrador, and the Yukon Territory? Let me list some other good places

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 10:17pm  •  0 vote

Definition: Scotland: a remote and isolated place in the North Atlantic that has much in common with West Virginia, Kentucky, Arkansas, southern Missouri, the Yukon Territory, Labrador, and the Sout

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 9:56pm  •  0 vote

The darned thing refused to do my table as I commanded it to. Walk the plank! The situation regarding such flammable substances is actually more complicated. I will make a small table with the equi

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 9:41pm  •  0 vote

Hi, AnWulf, I whole-heartedly agree with you: "Unless a person knows that the Brits note 'petrol' insted of gas(oline), the term 'petrol-bomb' wouldn't make much sense." This is also true. "A 'fire

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 9:06pm  •  0 vote

Scots who don't want to learn anything about, "If A, then B," about engineering, incl. chemical engineering and electronics, and about the history of Russians fighting the Nazis by using Molotov cockt

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 8:41pm  •  0 vote

Hairy Scot, When you gripe about someone's use of a large number of words, that is directly indicative of a lack of vocabulary of your own. Why isn't this obvious to you? When you gripe ab

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 6:53pm  •  0 vote

Hairy Scott, just because your vocabulary is not so large, and you don't want to learn any new words and phrases, e.g. "napalm", "kamikaze", "field-effect transistor", and "hydrodynamics" is no reaso

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 6:42pm  •  0 vote

Porsche, what makes you such an expert on the United States?? Where have you ever lived in this country? In my case, I was born in Tennessee, and I have also resided in Florida, Georgia, Virginia,

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 11, 2012, 12:25am  •  0 vote

Nobody here pays any attention to "petrol" unless they served in the U.S. Air Force in England or in neighboring countries, or MAYBE in Germany. Petrol might as well be something to gargle your t

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 10, 2012, 4:44pm  •  0 vote

Sorry, I mistyped. One of the trios was supposed to be few, less, least. There is also far, further, furthest, where "further" does NOT mean the same as "farther". D.A.W.

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 10, 2012, 4:39pm  •  1 vote

Good for the phrase to have died off, for practical purposes. Scientific education has made some progress, after all. Also, with our millions and millions of immigrants from the German-speaking

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 10, 2012, 10:10am  •  1 vote

Correction of a typo" For example, in a plane, any ideal pair of parallel lines never intersect each other. If they are not ideal parallel lines, then they intersect each other somewhere.

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 10, 2012, 9:59am  •  1 vote

I will mention that things are graver in the polonium section, and they are gravest in the plutonium section. Have a nice flight! D.A.W.

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 10, 2012, 9:57am  •  1 vote

goofy: You are not very scientific, are you? Mathematics & statistics must be difficult, too. For example, in a town that has no murders in a year, it is a murder-free town, for that year.

Re: Molotov Cocktails  •  July 9, 2012, 11:54pm  •  0 vote

Hello, I thought that I was being clear when I stated "American TV network" -- and then with no explantation whatever. The responsibility was clearly on the TV network because otherwise I wouldn't ha

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 9, 2012, 7:00pm  •  1 vote

So -- Accidence: chance, unforeseen or unexpected eventuality, mishap (OED) Some situation is either accidence-free, or it is NOT accidence-free. Similarly, your dinner is either polonium-free

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 9, 2012, 5:57pm  •  1 vote

In English, we need to either create a singular sexless pronoun, or to use the traditional ones for a person of unknown sex, which are {he, him, his}. There is no reason other than laziness for grab

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 9, 2012, 5:35pm  •  0 vote

Calling "Webster's Third International Dictionary" "Webster's dictionary" was definitely jumping to a conclusion. Like I said, "Webster's" is just a generic name that doesn't belond to anyone. You nee

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 9, 2012, 5:25pm  •  0 vote

"The dictionary therefore one of American English, not proper English." 1. English-speakers in North America have you FAR OUTNUMBERED. Therefore, anything about the common language of the British

Re: “Much More Ready”  •  July 9, 2012, 5:13pm  •  2 votes

1. "Times" - British 2. General purpose comment: Just because somone did it wrong a century or more ago does not make it right now. 3. What is "accidence"? Is that a mistyping of "accidents".

Re: Pronouncing “mandatory”  •  July 8, 2012, 5:28pm  •  0 vote

Oh, yes it is pretentious, and the point of view is that some many such people think that they should do things according to their whims, rather than bothering to find out the real way. Furthermore, y

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 8, 2012, 12:48pm  •  0 vote

I will just leave it up to you to look up when "Webster's" ceased to be a registered trademark of the name of any publishing company whatever. This information can be found on the Internet. I just rem

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 8, 2012, 12:42pm  •  0 vote

Repeating: There isn't any such thing as a "Webster's publication". That is just a generic name, just like a "King James Bible". On the other hand, there is such a thing as a "Doubleday" public

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 8, 2012, 11:56am  •  1 vote

"it does sound a bit strange." NO, not so. It sounds and looks extremely strange. Also, some of you deal in a little bit of the history of French or Middle English, but you are not going back nea

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 8, 2012, 11:29am  •  0 vote

Like it or not, several other companies publish Webster's dictionaries, too. The word "Webster's" is just as generic as "aspirin" is. D.A.W.

Re: Use of “their” as a genderless singular?  •  July 8, 2012, 10:53am  •  0 vote

Listen up! "Webster's" or "Webster's Dictionary" is NOT a company in the United States. "Webster's" is not even a trademark here. "Webster's" lost all such status a long time ago, and any company can

Re: Repeated  •  July 8, 2012, 8:56am  •  0 vote

In other kinds of situations, we would say that a diamond was cut seven times -- rather than saying that it was cut once and then recut six more times. A piece of metal or semiconductor was refine

Re: Repeated  •  July 8, 2012, 8:45am  •  1 vote

Yes, it is the idiomatic way of saying things in English.

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 7, 2012, 5:59pm  •  0 vote

We get the messsage, "Your comment is successfully posted. Thank you." Well, then, why cannot I look at it RIGHT NOW, and I mean INSTANTANEOUSLY. Why cannot we be told the truth, as in, "Your comm

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 7, 2012, 5:54pm  •  0 vote

Why is it that this Web site has such aggravating problems? When I have visited a page of it, and then I want to go look at a different Web page, and then go back to a page that I have visited befor

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 7, 2012, 5:41pm  •  0 vote

Living beings such as Andorrans can have living antennae, and that should be obvious. After all, these other creatures have antennae: lobsters, scorpions, most kinds of insects, some kinds of arac

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 7, 2012, 5:39pm  •  0 vote

Living beings such as Andorrans can have living antennae, and that should be obvious. After all, these other creatures have antennae: lobsters, scorpions, most kinds of insects, some kinds of arac

Re: Pronouncing “mandatory”  •  July 7, 2012, 11:55am  •  0 vote

Pronouncing "mandatory". Hairy Scott, I agree with you 100 percent! The pronunciation is MAN-di-TOR-ee. How does anyone get any other pronunciation of this word? Here in the United States, we

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 10:10pm  •  0 vote

LOL, double vowells! In North America, we have disposed of (altered) all cases of THREE vowels in a row, usually seen as three different vowels: "oea" as in "amoeaba" or is it "oae" as in "amoae

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 6:04pm  •  0 vote

When you are typing in German and you are lacking umlauts, etc., do this: "a umlaut" becomes ae "o umlaut" becomes oe "u umlaut" becomes ue The "ez-set" symbol becomes "ss". Hence, we can type th

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 5:27pm  •  0 vote

Oh, well, I was born in 1954, back when TV was still a new thing in much of the United States and Canada**, and by the time time I was three, I was crazy over TV. Later on, I became a telecommunicatio

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 4:28pm  •  0 vote

SCOTTISH ? I read an article recently concerning developments in nuclear physics, and I was puzzled to read that Peter Higgs was described as a SCOTTISH theoretical physicist. Hence I double-checke

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 4:02pm  •  0 vote

Hi, Katie, I agree: That one is astonishingly bad! Just this afternoon, I told someone in customer service on the Web that he / she must have been taking "too much LDS". This was no typ

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 3:59pm  •  0 vote

"Maybe that is why she is a customer service representative." LOL, correct! However, we should add, "she's just a customer service representative", instead of a schoolteacher, a technologist, a c

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 6, 2012, 3:56pm  •  0 vote

It is interesting that we see that "ge" prefix on the past participles of some verbs in Afrikaans (which is based on Dutch/Flemish). That "ge" prefix is still used in modern German, too, and it was in

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  July 4, 2012, 1:36pm  •  0 vote

"AP Stylebook says NEVER use the colloquial term pled." The so-called "AP Stylebook" and thus its editor(s) is frequently INSANE and not to be trusted. I do not trust it any farther than I could t

Re: Pled versus pleaded  •  June 22, 2012, 1:37pm  •  0 vote

Please look at this news headline carefully Italy are better than England, says Bonucci By Mark Meadows of Reuters MAKE THEM WALK THE PLANK into shark-infested waters. They should be

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