Homo Perfectus!
Friday, March 23, 2007

The Perfect World Tour: An Imperfect Guide to the Perfect World


By A.R. Teest



“The Perfect World Tour opens the portals of your imagination, presenting a vision of humanity that is in complete harmony with nature and ultimate reality. Through a sequence of stunning artworks, the book reveals what it may one day be like to have total fulfillment of our desires, to live in a state of perpetual bliss, with deep mental connections among individuals minds.”
– Dr. Cliff Pickover, author of A Beginner’s Guide to Immortality



The Perfect World Tour is a mythical story created as an attempt to express, explore and communicate through a series of visual art and writing, the desire and state of perfection.

Book Outline

I. Introduction
II. The Perfect World Tour

1. Tour Guide Welcome
-End of days
-Descendants, evolution, development
-Basic qualities of Homo perfectus

2. The birth of Homo perfectus
-The life orb
-Sexual experiences
-Explanation of S.E.L.F
-Cleansing process
-Programming, communication, connecting

3. Standard Reality
-Meeting mother, meeting child
-Basic qualities of standard reality

4. Controlled Stimulation Reality
-Basic qualities of Controlled Stimulation Reality
-Types of Controlled Stimulation Reality

5. Stimulated simulations

6. Stimulated time

7. Stimulated manipulations

8. Back to SELF
-Energy release
-Organizing the unified field
-Transcendence

Book is FREE for download at: www.homoperfectus.net

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Posted by posthumor on 03/23 at 08:12 PM
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A guide to hosting your own transhumanist arts center
Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A guide to hosting your own transhumanist arts center

You dream of turning a hot spot into the transhumanist arts and culture center of your city for a week or month, a space where digital imagery artists meet i-wear fashion designers, who meet experimental electronic musicians, all high on the postcyberpunk zeitgeist!

Through the concept of a temporary nomadic cultural center, you can set out to build this new art scene and bring people from disparate social circles together under one roof. Here’s a guide to setting up your own temporary transhumanist cultural center in six easy steps.

Solidify your concept. “Promoting the creation, dissemination and preservation of transhumanist arts and culture” sounds great but you have to figure out exactly how you want to go about it. Take your big dreams and fit them into one paragraph - careful planning at this stage will help you get sponsors later on. Be creative and be rebellious. Remember that everything is possible. But plan everything, make a budget and put everything on a timeline. Get a mentor to guide you. Ask questions and seek criticism.

Image is everything. Transhumanists should always strive to be seen as people of style and tech sophistication: the embodiment of the geek AND chic. So it’s time to go shopping!

Find the key players. With your newly solidified concept, hip wardrobe and confident attitude, connect with the artists and musicians that will help make your idea come to life. It’s also time to start spreading the word. Call all your friends and get them involved. Exchange skills with them.

Find a space. Securing a space first will help you snag sponsors. Take a walk or a bike ride in your neighbourhood. Look for places for rent by the landlord since it’s easier to deal directly with the owner. Ask for capacity, look for a fire exit, exit signs, multiple bathrooms, all the things you would find in any commerce. Once you’ve found the space and the landlord agrees to the terms in writing, call the municipality and outline your event. They’ll send over an inspector and he’ll tell you what you need to get it in working order - fire safety is their major concern. Be prepared to spend money on an occupation permit and temporary liquor licence from the municipality if necessary.

Find sponsors. With the space secure it’s time to alleviate some of the costs. Alcohol sponsors are key. They’ll exchange deals on products such as drinks, sound equipment, etc. for exposure through logos on flyers, posters and banners at the space. Don’t forget to approach small businesses that might share your aspirations and inspirations. Hustle. Be prepared to spend your own money.

Promote. Go outside your circles and target people you wouldn’t normally talk to - it’s the greatest opportunity to meet new friends. Use as many media outlets as possible to reach your public effectively, and do it in advance. Personally invite and call as many people as you can to create genuine connections inside and outside the communities and networks you live in.

Have fun. Be fuelled by passion, inspiration and emotion, then you’re sure to throw a great event. Don’t be afraid to try to make money. Don’t be modest, but be honest. Smile and, above all, enjoy!


Justice De Thezier is a social entrepreneur and creative professional. In 2003, he founded the Quebec Transhumanist Association, which he closed down in January 2008. From January 2006 to January 2008, De Thezier served on the board of directors of the World Transhumanist Association. And, from November 2005 to March 2007, he contributed to the Cyborg Democracy web portal and blog.

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Posted by justicedt on 01/30 at 03:42 PM
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El Club de los Astronautas: a transhumanist space agency founded by artists and musicians
Monday, December 25, 2006

El Club de los Astronautas, “the worlds first space agency founded by artists and musicians”, is a cultural, musical and artistic collective in Barcelona that was founded to promote and communicate the idea of a manned, interstellar voyage. For it’s implementation the Club suggests the construction of a space ship called Mare Nostrum. Its major task is to find and debate strategies that could lead into this final goal. The Club’s work is a very interesting mix of scientific ideas, artistic and musical experimentation. Following inspirations taken from Transhumanism and Second Life, the Mare Nostrum space ship is crewed by uploaded human personalities inhabiting a virtual reality simulation. Don’t miss Chapters 5 and 6 of the radio play, covering Transhumanism, Second Life, uvvy island, mind uploading, the Omega Point, Nick Bostrom’s simulation arguments, artificial intelligence, neurotechnology, brain-computer interfacing, and the possibility to “move” via uploading to VR simulations running on future supercomputers.

Most of the people of the Club, including its founder David Apfel, come from an artistic background and were not trained as scientists and engineers. However, they have made an effort to understand and digest the complex scientific and technical concepts that may lead to transhumanity, as well as the philosophical and ethical foundations of transhumanism. Their artistic background will make it easier for them, I believe, communicating the transhumanist worldview in such a way as to appeal to artistic sensibilities beyond the geeky image, perhaps too cold and aseptic, that transhumanism still has. I would not go as far as saying that they *are* transhumanists, but certainly they take transhumanism seriously and can help us to communicate better.

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Posted by Giu1i0 Pri5c0 on 12/25 at 08:54 AM
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Neural Internet:Web Surfing with Brain Potentials
Monday, December 11, 2006

The full title of this Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair article is ”Neural Internet: Web Surfing with Brain Potentials for the Completely Paralyzed”, but it is clear this same technology, once fully developed, will be more generally applicable and permit operating the worldwide datasphere by thinking.

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Posted by Giu1i0 Pri5c0 on 12/11 at 11:25 AM
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Course/Blog in Transhumanism at Arizona State
Saturday, December 09, 2006
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Posted by MLR on 12/09 at 03:07 PM
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Simon Funk’s “After Life”
Thursday, November 30, 2006

“After Life” is a very good novel on mind uploading by a new author to watch. It is valiable for free (online and PDF) and from lulu.com on hardcopy printed on request and shipped. As I do when I like a free ebook, I paid the author by buying the printed book - I received a couple of days ago and it is solid and of good quality.

The novel is delicious - Alex Harris lives in an impossibly simple fairy tale world and does not know how he got there. He was in the team that developed mind uploading technology, and the first human to undertake an experimental mind uploading procedure. Is he living in a simulation? He has dreams of what happened, or may have happened, to one or another downloaded version of him after the upload. Did consciousness transfer technology trigger a Singularity?

Excerpt:

I - we, the people I work with, study the brain. Right now we are working on something pretty neat, but also scary. We want to map a brain, functionally, down to the individual neuron. The trouble is, until now there’s been no way to do this without killing the brain’s owner.
But we’ve been able to do it - with a rat, and a cat. We don’t really know if it worked with the cat, but we are currently running a simulation of the rat’s brain and it appears to be exhibiting strikingly rat-like behavior. I.e. fucking amazing. Top secret…
I’ve been having nightmares about this for days. Because...I am going to have it done to me. Or maybe I already have.

Read it.

Simon Funk is a writer, software developer and AI expert.

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Posted by Giu1i0 Pri5c0 on 11/30 at 01:53 AM
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Posting to Transhumanity
Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Remember that everyone who has an account on this website can post to the Transhumanity blog. Entries posted to Transhumanity are hidden by default, and become visible when an editor with sufficient privileges chenges their status to “open”.
Let’s hear from you!

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Posted by giulio on 11/21 at 04:54 AM
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Virtual Potential: Second Life As A Transhumanist Meetinghouse
Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Preliminary impressions on Second Life and its potential to further H+ interaction

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Posted by AnneC on 11/21 at 01:58 AM
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The Popularization of Transhumanism in School Education
Friday, October 27, 2006

SUMMARY

Children going to school nowadays are the transhumans of the future. The schools are superb areas for the popularization of transhumanism. This article gives some inspiration on how you can acquaint children at school with ideas of transhumanism. If you are a teacher, you can do a lot for the youth to help them believe in a more beautiful, fearless future.

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Posted by Cyhope on 10/27 at 08:54 AM
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Are transhumanists cranks?
Monday, July 24, 2006

Are transhumanists cranks?

July 24, 2006

A “crank” is a person who not only holds some belief which the vast majority of his contemporaries would consider counterfactual, but clings to this belief in the face of all counterarguments or evidence presented to him.

For those interested, Wikipedia does an impressive job of thoroughly defining what a crank is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crank_%28person%29

Every movement, whether it be social, political, philosophical or religious, has a few cranks amongst its leaders and many amongst its rank-and-file. The problem is when the majority of the leaders of a movement are cranks or are *perceived* as cranks by the rest of society.

So the question becomes: Are most transhumanists cranks, that is to say, do they cling to their beliefs in the face of all counterarguments or evidence presented to them?

When I am asked this question, I always answer No because most transhumanists I have talked to or whose works I’ve read are smart people.

However, as Skeptics Society founder Micheal Shermer explains, “smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for nonsmart reasons. Rarely do any of us sit down before a table of facts, weigh them pro and con, and choose the most logical and rational explanation, regardless of what we previously believed. Most of us, most of the time, come to our beliefs for a variety of reasons having little to do with empirical evidence and logical reasoning. Rather, such variables as genetic predisposition, parental predilection, sibling influence, peer pressure, educational experience and life impressions all shape the personality preferences that, in conjunction with numerous social and cultural influences, lead us to our beliefs. We then sort through the body of data and select those that most confirm what we already believe, and ignore or rationalize away those that do not. This phenomenon [is] called the confirmation bias...”

Cryonics is probably the best example of whether or not transhumanists have a confirmation bias.

Although no one should not place value on the view of uninformed journalists, do transhumanists place value on the consensus of views of scientists and engineers working in cryobiology, a field that many of them have invested with transcendental aspirations?

In his book Posthuman Utopias: Counter-culture, Cyberculture and Chaos Culture, Remi Sussan writes the following critique of cryonics:

“When taking all [the extreme technical obstacles] into account, it is clear that we are in the realm of utter science-fiction (which doesn’t mean it’s impossible only very difficult). But is it ethical to ask people large sums of money for such a random result? At Alcor, the body costs 180,000$ and the head only 80,000$. In the libertarian perspective in which cryonicists find themselves, the question is not even asked. In a free market, everyone is responsible for their choices: the person who decides to have himself frozen knows perfectly the random nature of the operation (we cannot in fact accuse cryonicists of lying about the difficulty of their project). But can we so easily neglect the suffering of old or sick people willing to jump at any solution? [In fact, there aren’t that many: about 130 bodies are actually frozen and just a little more than 1000 members subscribing to the two cryonics associations.] Furthermore, some moderately appreciate the way cryonicists have of behaving themselves as evangelists concerned with always convincing the world instead of thinking as researchers interested in solutions by experimentation. This attitude has certainly hastened their exclusion from the circles of traditional research, especially cryobiology. Thus, without access to the best labs and the resources of universities, it is hard to see how cryonics could one day progress.”

So would it be fair or unfair to argue that transhumanists who believe in cryonics are cranks?

I guess only reading the reaction of transhumanists to all these arguments can answer that question…

In the meantime, I strongly encourage everyone to try to transcend bias.

To reduce one’s bias, one can take various measures during the process of critical thinking.

Instead of asking “How does this contradict my beliefs?” ask: “What does this mean?”

In the earlier stages of gathering and evaluating information, one should first of all suspend judgement (as one does when reading a novel or watching a movie). Ways of doing this include adopting a perceptive rather than judgmental orientation; that is, avoiding moving from perception to judgment as one applies critical thinking to an issue.

One should become aware of one’s own fallibility by:

1. accepting that everyone has subconscious biases, and accordingly questioning any reflexive judgments;
2. adopting an egoless and, indeed, humble stance;
3. recalling previous beliefs that one once held strongly but now rejects;
4. realizing one still has numerous blind spots, despite the foregoing.

How does one ever eliminate biases without knowing what the ideal is? A possible answer: by referencing critical thinking against a “concept of man”. Thus we can see that critical thinking and the formation of secure ethical codes form an integral whole, but a whole which remains limited without the backing of a concept of humanity.

Finally, one might use the Socratic method to evaluate an argument, asking open questions, such as the following:

* What do you mean by _______________?
* How did you come to that conclusion?
* Why do you believe that you are right?
* What is the source of your information?
* What assumption has led you to that conclusion?
* What happens if you are wrong?
* Can you give me two sources who disagree with you and explain why?
* Why is this significant?
* What is an alternate explanation for this phenomenon?
* How do I know you are telling me the truth?


Justice De Thezier is a social entrepreneur and creative professional. In 2003, he founded the Quebec Transhumanist Association, which he closed down in January 2008. From January 2006 to January 2008, De Thezier served on the board of directors of the World Transhumanist Association. And, from November 2005 to March 2007, he contributed to the Cyborg Democracy web portal and blog.

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Posted by justicedt on 07/24 at 07:55 PM
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Extreme Makeover Needed!
Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Extreme Makeover Needed: Why and how transhumanists must transcend their nerdy aura

Valentine’s Day, 2006

Before

In Transhumanism at the Crossroads, Russel Blackford wrote:

One good reason to feel slightly uncomfortable with transhumanism is its unmistakable nerdy aura, the sense that it appeals to a particular demographic, essentially young white males with computers. Its restricted demographic appeal is, indeed, part of the problem.

Really? I guess I’ve been so preoccupied with trying to bury transhumanism’s cyberselfish baggage in the ash heap of history to notice.

A nerd is defined as “an unstylish, unattractive, or socially inept person; especially if he is slavishly devoted to intellectual or academic pursuits.”

Although I’ve always thought of transhumanists as the geekerati of human enhancement tech (since for me a geek is simply a person often of an intellectual bent which is under-appreciated by others), are some or even most transhumanists nerds?

Let’s see…

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Posted by justicedt on 02/14 at 03:01 PM
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The Ubermensch, the Superman and the Posthuman
Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Ubermensch, the Superman and the Posthuman

January 24, 2006

In the most vicious yet thorough attack against transhumanism to date, Dr. Klaus-Gerd Giesen, a professor of political sciences at the University of Leipzig in Germany, wrote, among other things, in Transhumanism and Human Genetics (a widely-cited polemical article written in French for the Genetics Observatory, a project of the Centre for Bioethics of the Clinical Research Institute of Montreal):

Encasing the figure of the nietzchean superman - which, by the way, is a constant reference for transhumanists - in an absurd biological materialism that would no doubt amuse the German philosopher, transhumanists push their nihilism to the point of speculating about the members of the privileged stratum of society eventually enhancing themselves and their offspring to a point where the human species, for many practical purposes, splits into two or more species that have little in common except a shared evolutionary history.

Since it is a criticism that I often hear that may or may not have some validity, I decided to re-familiarize myself with the exact definition of these terms in contention.

In Thus spake Zarathustra, Nietzsche explains the steps through which man can become an Ubermensch ( the equivalent English translation would be ‘over-human’ ):

1. By his will to power, manifested destructively in the rejection of, and rebellion against, old ideals and moral codes;
2. By his will to power, manifested creatively in overcoming nihilism (any philosophy that, rejecting the real world around us and physical existence along with it, results in an apathy toward life and a poisoning of the human soul) and re-evaluating old ideals or creating new ones.
3. By a continual process of self-overcoming.

The most common misconception about the Ubermensch is that it is equivalent to the ideals of Nazism, and that it is related or equal to the concept of Herrenvolk ("master race"). The concept of racial supremacy or antisemitism is absent in Nietzsche. It is widely believed that Nietzsche’s sister, Elisabeth Forster-Nietzsche, contributed greatly to this misconception by deliberately misrepresenting his work, and the Nazis themselves reinterpreted and incorporated hodgepodge elements of many philosophical and religious texts, including Nietzsche’s.

The translation of Ubermensch as “superman” may compound the misconception. Uber can have a variety of meanings, as in Uberwindung ("overcoming"), uberstehen/durchstehen ("come through"/"get over"), ubersetzen ("translate"/"take across"). Some scholars therefore prefer the translation as Overman, since the point of the Ubermensch is that man needs to overcome himself.

The German adverb “ubermenschlich” is common and used in contexts such as “mit ubermenschlichen Kraften gelang es ihm…”: “with a force no human being is capable of he managed to…” or “with superhuman force…”, the connotation is that of leaving the human sphere. Parallel constructions can be found in ubernaturlich ("no longer natural”, “transcendental"), uberirdisch ("heavenly", literally “unearthly"). “Superman” lacks the German connotation of a sphere beyond human knowledge and power. In addition, Mensch is less specifically male than the English man, closer at times to the English human. Mensch is to be understood as a neuter form of a noun.

Nietzsche’s writings are spiritual and philosophical in character, and do not state that the central ideas are biological, psychological, sociological, or sociobiological. His ideas have no firm connection to the claim of superiority of any particular race or ethnicity, and thus they are not racist in themselves.

On the other hand, a Superman, or more precisely, a superhuman is an entity with intelligence or abilities exceeding normal human standards. Superhuman can mean an “improved” human, for example, by genetic modification, or as what humans might evolve into, in the distant future. Occasionally, it could mean a “normal” human with unusual abilities, such as psychic abilities or exceptional proficiency at something. Superhuman can also mean something that isn’t human, but considered to be “superior” to humans in some ways. A robot that easily passed the Turing test, and could do some things humans can’t, could be considered superhuman. A very intelligent or strong alien could be considered superhuman. The concept of the superhuman is quite popular in science fiction, where superhumans are often mutants or genetically engineered.

And finally, according to the Transhumanist FAQ, a Posthuman is a hypothetical future being,

“whose basic capacities so radically exceed those of present humans as to be no longer human by our current standards ... Posthumans could be artificial intelligences, or they could be uploaded consciousnesses, or they could be the result of making many smaller but cumulatively profound augmentations to a biological human. The latter alternative would probably require either the redesign of the human organism using advanced nanotechnology or its radical enhancement using some combination of technologies such as genetic engineering, psychopharmacology, anti-aging therapies, neural interfaces, advanced information management tools, memory enhancing drugs, wearable computers, and cognitive techniques.”

In conclusion, whether or not Nietzche would have approved of the transhumanist goal of becoming a Posthuman is open to debate. However, there can no doubt that, if Nietzche was alive today, he would be deeply offended by the attempt of some transhumanists to equate his concept of the Ubermensch with their concept of the Posthuman. Although a small minority of transhumanists will strongly disagree due to confirmation bias, since Nietzche’s Ubermensch is obviously not related to the concept of the Superman of science-fiction nor the posthuman of transhumanist speculation, the Ubermensch should never be a reference for well-informed transhumanists or anti-transhumanists.


Justice De Thezier is a social entrepreneur and creative professional. In 2003, he founded the Quebec Transhumanist Association, which he closed down in January 2008. From January 2006 to January 2008, De Thezier served on the board of directors of the World Transhumanist Association. And, from November 2005 to March 2007, he contributed to the Cyborg Democracy web portal and blog.

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Posted by justicedt on 01/24 at 01:00 AM
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Deliver us from Rael
Friday, January 20, 2006

Deliver us from Rael

December 2005

It was in 1973, during his first close encounter of the Third Kind, that the Elohim supposedly gave Claude Vorilhon the name of Rael. “It literally means,” he details in The Book that tells the truth, “Light of God” or, for a more precise translation, “Light of the Elohim”. Curiously, three years earlier, French television aired an episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, in which one the characters was called… Rael.

Rael’s theories? Kooky but definitely not original. He recycles more than he invents. Among his acknowledged or secret influences…

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Posted by justicedt on 01/20 at 04:00 AM
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Transhumanist thought of the day by DiMartin
Thursday, January 12, 2006

Preparation for the next evolutionary step for humanity?

My son has Aspberger Syndrome (AS), a pervasive communication disability.  For many years, he was misdiagnosed as suffering from Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), a frequent culprit blamed for some of the symptoms AS sufferers exhibit.

Over the years, as I have learned more about my son and others who struggle with AS and other communications related disabilities, I have noticed that, though these individuals are often at a disadvantage in one or more areas of their lives, particularly socially, they often seem to be more able to withstand frenetic clamorous stimuli, particularly in the form of television, video games and music.  In fact, they often seem to prefer it.

This has led me to wonder if, due to the increasingly varied and easy exposure to information in its various forms, i.e., the internet, TV, Video games, innovations in sound and music, virtual reality, etc., the *sufferers* of AS and other communications disorders are really sufferers at all..or if they are the misunderstood vanguard of the next step of the evolution of man.

Are these the people, or the parents of the people who will take humanity to the stars?  Will my son and other, high functioning AS sufferers, be..or breed the first colonists and ambassadors able to face the rigors of the journey; to leave our world and be the next human pioneers?

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Posted by DiMartin on 01/12 at 09:25 PM
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Limerick
Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The correct thing to do, when you’re dead,
Is have someone take care of your head;
          There’s no chance of more drama
          Without Futurama -
Don’t say you weren’t warned - act, instead.

by Robin Helweg-Larsen

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Posted by mrinesi on 11/23 at 12:34 PM
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