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    Sapiens
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    Thinking, Fast and Slow
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    Women in Science
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    Soonish
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    Irresistible


    1. Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
    by Yuval Noah Harari
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    US$21.00
    US$14 (40%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Harari, Yuval Noah
    (2015-02-10)
    Publisher: Harper
    ISBN: 0062316095
    Sales Rank: 52
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    New York Times Bestseller

    A Summer Reading Pick for President Barack Obama, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg

    From a renowned historian comes a groundbreaking narrative of humanity’s creation and evolution—a #1 international bestseller—that explores the ways in which biology and history have defined us and enhanced our understanding of what it means to be “human.”

    One hundred thousand years ago, at least six different species of humans inhabited Earth. Yet today there is only one—homo sapiens. What happened to the others? And what may happen to us?

    Most books about the history of humanity pursue either a historical or a biological approach, but Dr. Yuval Noah Harari breaks the mold with this highly original book that begins about 70,000 years ago with the appearance of modern cognition. From examining the role evolving humans have played in the global ecosystem to charting the rise of empires, Sapiens integrates history and science to reconsider accepted narratives, connect past developments with contemporary concerns, and examine specific events within the context of larger ideas.

    Dr. Harari also compels us to look ahead, because over the last few decades humans have begun to bend laws of natural selection that have governed life for the past four billion years. We are acquiring the ability to design not only the world around us, but also ourselves. Where is this leading us, and what do we want to become?

    Featuring 27 photographs, 6 maps, and 25 illustrations/diagrams, this provocative and insightful work is sure to spark debate and is essential reading for aficionados of Jared Diamond, James Gleick, Matt Ridley, Robert Wright, and Sharon Moalem.

    Amazon.com Review

    An Amazon Best Book of the Month for February 2015: Yuval Noah Harari has some questions. Among the biggest: How did Homo sapiens (or Homo sapiens sapiens , if you’re feeling especially wise today) evolve from an unexceptional savannah-dwelling primate to become the dominant force on the planet, emerging as the lone survivor out of six distinct, competing hominid species? He also has some answers, and they’re not what you’d expect. Tackling evolutionary concepts from a historian’s perspective, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, describes human development through a framework of three not-necessarily-orthodox “Revolutions”: the Cognitive, the Agricultural, and the Scientific. His ideas are interesting and often amusing: Why have humans managed to build astonishingly large populations when other primate groups top out at 150 individuals? Because our talent for gossip allows us to build networks in societies too large for personal relationships between everyone, and our universally accepted “imagined realities”--such as money, religion, and Limited Liability Corporations—keep us in line. Who cultivated whom, humans or wheat?. Wheat. Though the concepts are unusual and sometimes heavy (as is the book, literally) Harari’s deft prose and wry, subversive humor make quick work of material prone to academic tedium. He’s written a book of popular nonfiction (it was a bestseller overseas, no doubt in part because his conclusions draw controversy) landing somewhere in the middle of a Venn diagram of genetics, sociology, and history. Throughout, Harari returns frequently to another question: Does all this progress make us happier, our lives easier? The answer might disappoint you. --Jon Foro

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    1. Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow
    2. Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow
    3. Stealing Fire: How Silicon Valley, the Navy SEALs, and Maverick Scientists Are Revolutionizing the Way We Live and Work
    4. The Greatest Story Ever Told--So Far: Why Are We Here?
    5. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies
    6. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies
    7. How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking
    8. Heart of the Machine: Our Future in a World of Artificial Emotional Intelligence
    9. Key Takeaways, Analysis & Review of Yuval Noah Harari's Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
    10. The Gene: An Intimate History .


    2. The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit
    by Michael Finkel
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    US$15.49
    US$10.46 (40%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Harari, Yuval Noah
    (2017-03-07)
    Publisher: Knopf
    ISBN: 1101875682
    Sales Rank: 99
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    Many people dream of escaping modern life, but most will never act on it. This is the remarkable true story of a man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years, making this dream a reality—not out of anger at the world, but simply because he preferred to live on his own. 

    New York Times bestseller

    In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of his secluded life—why did he leave? what did he learn?—as well as the challenges he has faced since returning to the world. It is a gripping story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life, and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way, and succeeded.

    ... Read more

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    2. The Death and Life of the Great Lakes
    3. Winds of Skilak: A Tale of True Grit, True Love and Survival in the Alaskan Wilderness
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    10. Lost on a Mountain in Maine .


    3. Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow
    by Yuval Noah Harari
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    US$21.00
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    Category: Hardcover Brand: Harari, Yuval Noah
    (2017-02-21)
    Publisher: Harper
    ISBN: 0062464310
    Sales Rank: 174
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    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    Yuval Noah Harari, author of the critically-acclaimed New York Times bestseller and international phenomenon Sapiens, returns with an equally original, compelling, and provocative book, turning his focus toward humanity’s future, and our quest to upgrade humans into gods.

    Over the past century humankind has managed to do the impossible and rein in famine, plague, and war. This may seem hard to accept, but, as Harari explains in his trademark style—thorough, yet riveting—famine, plague and war have been transformed from incomprehensible and uncontrollable forces of nature into manageable challenges. For the first time ever, more people die from eating too much than from eating too little; more people die from old age than from infectious diseases; and more people commit suicide than are killed by soldiers, terrorists and criminals put together. The average American is a thousand times more likely to die from binging at McDonalds than from being blown up by Al Qaeda.

    What then will replace famine, plague, and war at the top of the human agenda? As the self-made gods of planet earth, what destinies will we set ourselves, and which quests will we undertake? Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century—from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: Where do we go from here? And how will we protect this fragile world from our own destructive powers? This is the next stage of evolution. This is Homo Deus.

    With the same insight and clarity that made Sapiens an international hit and a New York Times bestseller, Harari maps out our future.

    Amazon.com Review

    An Amazon Best Book of February 2017: Those who read and loved Yuval Noah Harari’s Sapiens have been eagerly anticipating his new book Homo Deus. While Sapiens looked back at our evolutionary development, this new book examines where we might be headed (Homo Deus is subtitled “A Brief History of Tomorrow”). Predicting the future isn’t as easy as deconstructing the past, and Harari openly admits the challenge—but even if he’s completely wrong in his predictions, and most of us doubt he is, Homo Deus is the kind of provocative, food-for-thought read that drew so many of us to his work in the first place. According to Harari, our future could be very different from our present—dark, technocratic, and automated—but reading about our possible fates, presented in Harari’s clear-eyed and illuminating style, sure is fascinating. --Chris Schluep, The Amazon Book Review

    ... Read more

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    8. Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity
    9. Key Takeaways, Analysis & Review of Yuval Noah Harari's Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
    10. The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge .


    4. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
    by Neil deGrasse Tyson
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    US$12.14
    US$6.81 (36%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Harari, Yuval Noah
    (2017-05-02)
    Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
    ISBN: 0393609391
    Sales Rank: 217
    Lowest New Price: $12.14
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    The essential universe, from our most celebrated and beloved astrophysicist.

    What is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There’s no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson.

    But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.

    While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.

    ... Read more

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    6. Revolution for Dummies: Laughing Through the Arab Spring
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    10. Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation .


    5. Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race
    by Margot Lee Shetterly
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    US$15.99
    US$9.59
    US$6.4 (40%)
    Category: Paperback Brand: William Morrow Paperbacks
    (2016-12-06)
    Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
    ISBN: 0062363603
    Sales Rank: 121
    Lowest New Price: $6.35
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    The #1 New York Times bestseller

    The phenomenal true story of the black female mathematicians at NASA whose calculations helped fuel some of America’s greatest achievements in space. Soon to be a major motion picture starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner.

    Before John Glenn orbited the earth, or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space.

    Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation. Originally relegated to teaching math in the South’s segregated public schools, they were called into service during the labor shortages of World War II, when America’s aeronautics industry was in dire need of anyone who had the right stuff. Suddenly, these overlooked math whizzes had a shot at jobs worthy of their skills, and they answered Uncle Sam’s call, moving to Hampton, Virginia and the fascinating, high-energy world of the Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory.

    Even as Virginia’s Jim Crow laws required them to be segregated from their white counterparts, the women of Langley’s all-black “West Computing” group helped America achieve one of the things it desired most: a decisive victory over the Soviet Union in the Cold War, and complete domination of the heavens.

    Starting in World War II and moving through to the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement and the Space Race, Hidden Figures follows the interwoven accounts of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson and Christine Darden, four African American women who participated in some of NASA’s greatest successes. It chronicles their careers over nearly three decades they faced challenges, forged alliances and used their intellect to change their own lives, and their country’s future.

     

    ... Read more

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    • The #1 New York Times bestseller

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    10. A Man Called Ove: A Novel .


    6. Thinking, Fast and Slow
    by Daniel Kahneman
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    US$7.75
    US$8.25 (52%)
    Category: Paperback Brand: Farrar Straus Giroux
    (2013-04-02)
    Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
    ISBN: 0374533555
    Sales Rank: 54
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    Major New York Times bestseller
    Winner of the National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award in 2012
    Selected by the New York Times Book Review as one of the ten best books of 2011
    A Globe and Mail Best Books of the Year 2011 Title
    One of The Economist's 2011 Books of the Year
    One of The Wall Street Journal's Best Nonfiction Books of the Year 2011
    2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom Recipient
    Kahneman's work with Amos Tversky is the subject of Michael Lewis's The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds

    In the international bestseller, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, the renowned psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. The impact of overconfidence on corporate strategies, the difficulties of predicting what will make us happy in the future, the profound effect of cognitive biases on everything from playing the stock market to planning our next vacation―each of these can be understood only by knowing how the two systems shape our judgments and decisions.

    Engaging the reader in a lively conversation about how we think, Kahneman reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and our personal lives―and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble. Winner of the National Academy of Sciences Best Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and selected by The New York Times Book Review as one of the ten best books of 2011, Thinking, Fast and Slow is destined to be a classic.

    Amazon.com Review

    Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2011: Drawing on decades of research in psychology that resulted in a Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences, Daniel Kahneman takes readers on an exploration of what influences thought example by example, sometimes with unlikely word pairs like "vomit and banana." System 1 and System 2, the fast and slow types of thinking, become characters that illustrate the psychology behind things we think we understand but really don't, such as intuition. Kahneman's transparent and careful treatment of his subject has the potential to change how we think, not just about thinking, but about how we live our lives. Thinking, Fast and Slow gives deep--and sometimes frightening--insight about what goes on inside our heads: the psychological basis for reactions, judgments, recognition, choices, conclusions, and much more.  --JoVon Sotak

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    • Farrar Straus Giroux

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    7. Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World
    by Rachel Ignotofsky
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    US$9.24
    US$7.75 (46%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Ten Speed Press
    (2016-07-26)
    Publisher: Ten Speed Press
    ISBN: 1607749769
    Sales Rank: 143
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    It’s a scientific fact: Women rock!
     
    A charmingly illustrated and educational book, New York Times best seller Women in Science highlights the contributions of fifty notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world. Full of striking, singular art, this fascinating collection also contains infographics about relevant topics such as lab equipment, rates of women currently working in STEM fields, and an illustrated scientific glossary. The trailblazing women profiled include well-known figures like primatologist Jane Goodall, as well as lesser-known pioneers such as Katherine Johnson, the African-American physicist and mathematician who calculated the trajectory of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission to the moon.
     
    Women in Science celebrates the achievements of the intrepid women who have paved the way for the next generation of female engineers, biologists, mathematicians, doctors, astronauts, physicists, and more! 

    — BrainPickings - Best Science Books of the Year

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    8. Soonish: Ten Emerging Technologies That'll Improve and/or Ruin Everything
    by Zach Weinersmith, Kelly Weinersmith
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    US$30.00
    US$19.23
    US$10.77 (36%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Ten Speed Press
    (2017-10-17)
    Publisher: Penguin Press
    ISBN: 0399563822
    Sales Rank: 3199
    Lowest New Price: $19.23
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    From a top scientist and the creator of the hugely popular web comic Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, a hilariously illustrated investigation into future technologies -- from how to fling a ship into deep space on the cheap to 3D organ printing
     
    What will the world of tomorrow be like? How does progress happen? And why do we not have a lunar colony already? What is the hold-up?

    In this smart and funny book, celebrated cartoonist Zach Weinersmith and noted researcher Dr. Kelly Weinersmith give us a snapshot of what's coming next -- from robot swarms to nuclear fusion powered-toasters. By weaving their own research, interviews with the scientists who are making these advances happen, and Zach's trademark comics, the Weinersmiths investigate why these technologies are needed, how they would work, and what is standing in their way.

    New technologies are almost never the work of isolated geniuses with a neat idea. A given future technology may need any number of intermediate technologies to develop first, and many of these critical advances may appear to be irrelevant when they are first discovered. The journey to progress is full of strange detours and blind alleys that tell us so much about the human mind and the march of civilization.

    To this end, SOONISH investigates ten different emerging fields, from programmable matter to augmented reality, from space elevators to robotic construction, to show us the amazing world we will have, you know, soonish.

    ... Read more

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    9. The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds
    by Michael Lewis
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    Category: Hardcover Brand: Ten Speed Press
    (2016-12-06)
    Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
    ISBN: 0393254593
    Sales Rank: 181
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    How a Nobel Prize–winning theory of the mind altered our perception of reality.

    Forty years ago, Israeli psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky wrote a series of breathtakingly original studies undoing our assumptions about the decision-making process. Their papers showed the ways in which the human mind erred, systematically, when forced to make judgments in uncertain situations. Their work created the field of behavioral economics, revolutionized Big Data studies, advanced evidence-based medicine, led to a new approach to government regulation, and made much of Michael Lewis’s own work possible. Kahneman and Tversky are more responsible than anybody for the powerful trend to mistrust human intuition and defer to algorithms.

    The Undoing Project is about a compelling collaboration between two men who have the dimensions of great literary figures. They became heroes in the university and on the battlefield―both had important careers in the Israeli military―and their research was deeply linked to their extraordinary life experiences. Amos Tversky was a brilliant, self-confident warrior and extrovert, the center of rapt attention in any room; Kahneman, a fugitive from the Nazis in his childhood, was an introvert whose questing self-doubt was the seedbed of his ideas. They became one of the greatest partnerships in the history of science, working together so closely that they couldn’t remember whose brain originated which ideas, or who should claim credit. They flipped a coin to decide the lead authorship on the first paper they wrote, and simply alternated thereafter.

    This story about the workings of the human mind is explored through the personalities of two fascinating individuals so fundamentally different from each other that they seem unlikely friends or colleagues. In the process they may well have changed, for good, mankind’s view of its own mind.

    ... Read more

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    10. The Paranoid Style in American Politics .


    10. Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked
    by Adam Alter
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    US$27.00
    US$16.20
    US$10.8 (40%)
    Category: Hardcover Brand: Ten Speed Press
    (2017-03-07)
    Publisher: Penguin Press
    ISBN: 1594206643
    Sales Rank: 439
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    “One of the most mesmerizing and important books I’ve read in quite some time. Alter brilliantly illuminates the new obsessions that are controlling our lives and offers the tools we need to rescue our businesses, our families, and our sanity.” Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take

    Welcome to the age of behavioral addiction—an age in which half of the American population is addicted to at least one behavior. We obsess over our emails, Instagram likes, and Facebook feeds; we binge on TV episodes and YouTube videos; we work longer hours each year; and we spend an average of three hours each day using our smartphones. Half of us would rather suffer a broken bone than a broken phone, and Millennial kids spend so much time in front of screens that they struggle to interact with real, live humans.
     
    In this revolutionary book, Adam Alter, a professor of psychology and marketing at NYU, tracks the rise of behavioral addiction, and explains why so many of today's products are irresistible. Though these miraculous products melt the miles that separate people across the globe, their extraordinary and sometimes damaging magnetism is no accident. The companies that design these products tweak them over time until they become almost impossible to resist.
     
    By reverse engineering behavioral addiction, Alter explains how we can harness addictive products for the good—to improve how we communicate with each other, spend and save our money, and set boundaries between work and play—and how we can mitigate their most damaging effects on our well-being, and the health and happiness of our children.

    Adam Alter's previous book, Drunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces that Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave is available in paperback from Penguin.

    Amazon.com Review

    An Amazon Best Book of March 2017: In his fascinating new book, associate professor of marketing and best-selling author Adam Alter examines the rise of behavioral addiction in our current times and offers some suggestions for alleviating your own addictive behavior. Here’s a question: where is your phone right now? Chances are it’s within arm’s reach—and as Alter writes, a device that travels with you is always a better vehicle for addiction. Convenience weaponizes temptation, and with the ubiquity and convenience of technology these days, you can see why behavioral addiction to video games, Facebook, checking your email on your phone, even your Fitbit, is on the rise. Irresistible is a deep and wide-ranging study of addiction, and there is much food for thought here. Alter seems especially concerned about how children and teens interact with technology, citing that they are the most vulnerable of us all. But as adults we are much more susceptible than most of us imagine—we may think we’re just interacting with a screen, but it’s important to remember that there are dozens of highly-paid people behind that screen whose only job is to make sure that we don’t stop. --Chris Schluep, The Amazon Book Review

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