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comic sans dyslexia

When you type in Comic Sans you get pages like “Fuck no Comic Sans”, which has racked up more than 11,000 likes. To wit, Comic Sans is recommended by the British Dyslexia Association and the Dyslexia Association of Ireland. Using Comic Sans has made it possible for Jessica to complete a rigorous program in marine zoology at Bangor University in Wales. “It seems that at least for some people with dyslexia, they are vulnerable to a phenomenon called ‘visual crowding’ when they read, this is likely not the "cause" of their dyslexia but an exacerbating factor and something that has developed over years of struggling to read,” says Thompson. This all makes, Not that she was ever all that forthcoming about it (the sentiment around Comic Sans is improving, but the ridicule around it is still strong enough that the font is hard to support publicly). The British Dyslexia Association recommends to use Arial, Comic Sans or, as alternatives to these, Verdana, Tahoma, Century Gothic, and Trebuchet. According to the BBC, Connare simply felt something less “harsh and schoolmasterly” than Times New Roman would be more welcoming for kids, and modeled the typeface after speech bubbles in comic books. This is a very popular sans-serif font that is legible for dyslexics. La dislexia es un trastorno de aprendizaje que afecta a la lectoescritura. “My understanding of the literature is that it is still hard to draw strong conclusions and that effects of font tend to be small,” says Marinus. Hosted by: Brit Garner ----- … “In general, I would stick to known fonts that children are familiar with. But what would they suggest teachers do when it comes to font choice based on the current research? It got Jessica through nursing school. Connare, a designer, has been lambasted by his own kin. “The kids I talked with had no problems with different forms of ‘a’ and ‘g’ (but teachers tend to think that single-storey a and g is better),” she says. The wide-set, uniquely-shaped letters may assist dyslexic people in reading. And he explains something the typographers also found: letter shape is far less important than between-letter and between-word spacing. Many pointed out they were now using fonts specifically designed for dyslexic students instead, such as Dyslexie. Comic Sans isn't the only font dyslexic readers claim help them manage their disability; some companies like Dyslexie and OpenDyslexic claim to make dyslexic-friendly fonts, created with specific input from dyslexic readers in mind. For the iansyst website we have chosen to use the FS Me font. Comic Sans is one of a few typefaces recommended by influential organizations like the British Dyslexia Association and the Dyslexia Association of Ireland. [And] it is possible to change overall spacing settings in MS Word. common learning difficulty that affects an estimated 17% of the world’s population It’s an angry place. “The short answer is that the only things that really help dyslexics are larger letters and wider letter and word spacing as we showed nearly 40 years ago and that has been confirmed time and time again. And that, by and large, font choice – if we refer to font as the shape and style of the letters – had a minimal impact statistically on how well most children in her study read. She cites evidence in her book, The songs the letters sing: typography and children’s reading, that found the same. Ever since, Comic Sans has largely existed as a punchline.Â, Tino, though, found it useful, not funny. And you get “Comic Sans must die”. The problem, she says, is that the two groups of researchers rarely work together. At what age do you hit your peak as a teacher? He tweets @jon_severs, * I have used 'font' in the modern sense in this article, but I am aware that, technically, it should be typeface, It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you, Jon Severs is the commissioning editor of Tes, Primary school head who manages Chorley FC hopes his team's FA cup wins will encourage pupils to 'never give up', If international schools worked from a global reading list, would we start to create a better global unity? “By [my sophomore year], I’d been diagnosed with dyslexia, so normally, the writing assignment would have been a pain,” he explains. 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Quinn Myers is a staff writer at MEL. According to the British Dyslexia Association, “sans serif fonts, such as Arial and Comic Sans,” are best for dyslexic workers. OpenDyslexic didn't do terribly across the board, the non-italic version actually performed very well in pure reading time. “It’s hard to explain the difference between my normal and your normal, but the best way I can describe it is that I have a hard time associating the combination of letters as words,” he says. The Comic Sans dyslexia font In 1994 Microsoft designer Vincent Conner, while working on a new product for the company, noticed something amiss. And over the years the justifications for its use have grown more serious. Our blog contributor April uses this font to type Microsoft Word documents because she thinks it is an easy font for those with dyslexia to read. and see what the consensus was,” says Thompson. Quite why the font attracts such ire is difficult to understand, but that it does is unquestionable. “The font got me through nursing school, though, and that’s all I care about.”Â, As for Tino, he hopes people continue hating on Comic Sans. Robin Nicholas and Patricia Saunders created the font for IBM in 1982. Comic Sans and dyslexia While Comic Sans has been poked fun of from every possibly angle, there’s one thing that cannot be denied. Connare thought a comic-book-style font would suit a comic-book-style dog, and designed Comic Sans. De hecho, hay tipografías específicamente diseñadas para facilitar la lectura (como Lexia Readable) que se basan en precisamente en la Comic Sans. And she says several other papers support her own findings, including one published last year by Kuster et al, which found Dyslexie did not improve reading speed or accuracy, nor did children with dyslexia prefer it. Dr Holly Joseph, associate professor of Language Education and Literacy Development at the Institute of Education, University of Reading, has looked at this issue very recently. “Without the hate, I probably wouldn’t have even noticed Comic Sans and its uniqueness, so yeah, keep hating this fucker even though it doesn’t deserve it,” he tells me.Â, Gavin Newsom and the Plight of ‘Hank Hill Ass’, The Definitive Oral History of Reddit GoneWild, ‘BEEF BROS’ Gives Us the Leftist Himbo Superheroes We Need, Alan Ball Is Still Trying to Make Sense of It All. For Tino, it made writing assignments a cinch. So why might between letter and between word spacing make a difference, whereas font choice may not? As readability for dyslexic students was the chief reason for teachers saying they used Comic Sans, this is handy.Professor Maggie Snowling, president of St John’s College at the University of Oxford, is to dyslexia research what Walker is to typography in children’s reading materials – everyone says to ask her first (you can hear her talk extensively about dyslexia and education in the Tes Podagogy podcast below). “But Comic Sans letters have a sort of definitive shape that have helped me ever since grade school.”Â, Not that she was ever all that forthcoming about it (the sentiment around Comic Sans is improving, but the ridicule around it is still strong enough that the font is hard to support publicly). “The research says, though, that what really works is doing the long-term, everyday grind work of a high-quality, systematic phonics programme. Zoë Crockford gives him a telling off, A one-stop shop for teachers who want to know what impact the ongoing pandemic will have on their working lives, Learning complex topics in lessons like physics is hard enough - but imagine doing it in a second language. I would do a little bit of a literature review on the effects of letter size and spacing. You can’t escape Comic Sans in schools: a Tes survey of more than 7,000 teachers found that 44 per cent were using it in their classrooms (both primary and secondary). OpenDyslexic was specifically designed for dyslexic readers and arguably shares a lot of the funky qualities that makes people claim that Comic Sans is a solid candidate in this area. ), now it is credited as having huge benefits for dyslexic readers, for handwriting, and for reading in general. As opposed to many other fonts chosen to cover our newspapers, websites and various interfaces, Comic Sans is a recommended font for dyslexic readers, as listed in several dyslexia organizations. “It’s a complicated subject,” he explains. This claim of teacher responsibility appears to be a valid one. first. “Without the hate, I probably wouldn’t have even noticed Comic Sans and its uniqueness, so yeah, keep hating this fucker even though it doesn’t deserve it,” he tells me.Â, After all, he adds, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.”. In response to our survey, some teachers said they had already worked out for themselves that Comic Sans was not a miracle cure for struggling readers and students with dyslexia. “If I was a teacher and I knew I had some struggling readers in my classroom, I'd probably do a quick user poll of a few more 'spacious' fonts - Arial, Comic Sans etc. I can promise you clarity but also, I can promise more: we may well also discover some of the secrets of the mechanics of reading that will benefit us all. What Are the Ingredients in McDonald’s McRib? But italic ‘dysfluent’ fonts slow down everyone, yet everyone, including dyslexics, tends to remember the content better because they’ve had to concentrate more.”, Pretty definitive. To find out, let’s take a typographic journey. “For example, sometimes I’ll write the same word with two different spellings without noticing, or after reading, I’ll recall the word automobile instead of car. The Google. “It’s hard to explain the difference between my normal and your normal, but the best way I can describe it is that I have a hard time associating the combination of letters as words,” he says. is brilliant.”, “sometimes I worry [MEL is] a psy-op meant just for me.”, This site is protected by reCAPTCHA. This all makes reading longer paragraphs quite exhausting.”Â, But letters in Comic Sans have “almost invisible dents and indentations that give each one a unique form, which makes it easier to distinguish letters like P, B, D and Q,” he continues.Â, Jessica, a 30-year-old in Texas, has found that Comic Sans alleviates her struggles with dyslexia as well — but for different reasons. Secret Santa: the gifts no-one should buy or receive, Exclusive: £350m Covid tutoring promise broken by DfE, Fears Covid in schools will cancel teachers' Christmas. Por eso, organizaciones como la Asociación Británica de la Dislexia, la Asociación Disléxica de Irlanda o Madrid con la Dislexia recomiendan su uso y expertas como Katie Cummingham o Luz Rello lo confirman. But are those benefits actually real? It gets without fear (unless you are in school, of course). But the effects are small. It's worth musing on, says this teacher, Covid-19 has caused significant harm to the economy and jobs – and even with a vaccine, that won't go away, writes Nora Senior, Mastering non-verbal communication doesn't just save your voice, it has pedagogical benefits too, says Mark Roberts, Gavin Williamson has failed to turn in his homework – his plans for 2021 GCSEs and A levels – on time. Jon Severs is commissioning editor at Tes. 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Also, more research is needed on the effects of different groups (eg, beginning vs. more advanced readers, typical readers vs struggling readers)” There are a ton of commonly used fonts that are great for dyslexia, like Helvetica, Courier, Arial, and Verdana. “I would type up all my papers in Comic Sans, but then change them to be MLA-approved before handing them in,” Jessica says. And you get “Comic Sans ruins everything”. More recent work on the ‘spacing effect’ has been conducted by Dr Jenny Thomson, Reader in Language & Literacy in the Department of Human Communication Sciences at the University of Sheffield. Others find it too bold, too childish, or too informal.” Before it became the go-to font of the internet’s best memes (hello doge), Comic Sans was often used by people with dyslexia because it was, and still is, the best font for them to read.. Something about the shape, outline, and uniqueness of each letter has made it among the most recommended fonts for dyslexic people. Others find it too bold, too childish or too informal. Comic Sans. In a piece at The Establishment, Lauren Hudgins explains … "Sans serif, monospaced and Roman sans serif are probably best for dyslexics. Or not use most other fonts for that matter. A clear research picture is tricky because researchers look at the relationship between fonts and reading from two different starting points, says Dr Eva Marinus, senior research fellow in the department for cognitive science at Macquarie University, Australia. Yes, the tumblr haters may get on your back if you use Comic Sans, but who are they to judge? “We absolutely agree that more extensive research is needed to determine the benefits of Dyslexie font scientifically,” he continues. “This issue of letter spacing is something that I have carried out research on with Professor Matt Schneps at Harvard University. “However, it is less clear how other aspects of font design such as shape and weight might benefit readers.”. “By [my sophomore year], I’d been diagnosed with dyslexia, so normally, the writing assignment would have been a pain,” he explains. Do those academics have its back? “Smart and insightful reported features about modern masculinity.”, “@WeAreMel is phenomenal ... the best outlet covering digital culture today.”, “I just laughed out loud for a solid five minutes.”, “The rare men’s magazine that has taken upon itself to investigate masculinity, not enforce it. So with the word ‘because’, you would focus on the ‘c’ and the ‘e’ will be right on the edge of your vision. “More target experimental studies teasing out the effect of different aspects of font (eg, letter size, letter shape, different spacing settings) on reading outcomes (both accuracy and speed) are needed. Was there any proof of these benefits? The actual font itself, that’s got no “serious” – to use Snowling’s term – research backing it up as being dyslexia-friendly at all. Despite it being widely considered as a gift to dyslexic students in the classroom, people outside of schools don't like Comic Sans much. Ever since, Comic Sans has largely existed as a, Tino, though, found it useful, not funny. In this field, most studies focus on dyslexia. For though Comic Sans is widely cited as one of the most used fonts on the planet, it is also one of the most vilified. She argues you can use that app and free up your font choice, saving you some cash. “Crowding is an inability to distinguish closely packed visual information and so providing extra space between letters, or fonts that reduce the visual clutter (eg, sans-serif), can help mitigate this issue.". Her reply was to the point: “I don’t know of any serious work on this issue.” The evidence for the benefits of Dyslexie is also problematic. found that slightly increased within-word letter spacing, research cited by the Dyslexie font designers, The headteacher inspiring pupils by wowing the FA cup, How a global reading list could unify the world, Vaccine news aside, we still need urgent action on jobs, 4 non-verbal communication strategies all teachers need, 5 ways to make life easier for EAL learners, WATCH: Teachers 'fire the dreams that change our world', DfE knew of Edenred ‘risks’ before FSM voucher 'chaos', GCSEs and A levels 2021: 9 options to counter Covid. The problem was, it was also sure to be a source of endless derision.Â, Tino, you see, had found beauty in Comic Sans, arguably the most-hated font on the internet.Â, “Our teacher wanted us to write an essay, and for the first time, we were allowed to do that on a computer, which I was happy to do,” he tells me. Microsoft seemingly disagreed (or did not have time to incorporate it into the product – depending on which narrative you read) and launched Bob without Comic Sans. There are a lot of different interpretation of what is a “dyslexic reader”. Be proud, if the kids like it, and you like it, then you should be allowed to shout "Fuck yeah, Comic Sans!" “For example, sometimes I’ll write the same word with two different spellings without noticing, or after reading, I’ll recall the word automobile instead of car. The typeface was created by Abelardo Gonzalez, who released it through an open-source license. That, finds Jon Severs, may be the wrong decision. What is it about the often ridiculed font that makes it surprisingly easy to read? Simon Garfield … Font choice, it seems, is the least of your worries. The entire point of Comic Sans is that each letter is totally distinct from the others. Download the Open Dyslexic font by Abelardo Gonzalez. “Adults’ fixations are generally 180-200ms, and typically developing children’s (depending on their age) are closer to 250ms. The British Dyslexia Association recommends "sans serif fonts, such as Arial and Comic Sans, as letters can appear less crowded." How the TikTok Aesthetic Is Changing the Face (And Body) of Porn, The ‘Stonks’ Meme Can Teach You a Lot About the Stock Market, A Dignified Simp Knows the Art of Looking Respectfully, Sorry, but ‘Requiem for a Dream’ Is a Terrible Movie. Mainly, as above, they believe it is better than any other font for dyslexic students. “But I realized with Comic Sans, I was having an easier time reading and writing.”Â, At first, Tino thought it was simple a matter of being more comfortable doing his work at home than at school, but the more he worked with Comic Sans at school as well, the better he seemed to process the letters.Â, Contrary to popular belief, Comic Sans wasn’t designed with the intention of being easier for kids or people with dyslexia to read. In addition, there have been plenty of other studies suggesting the effect of Dyslexie letter formations is minimal. An American Institute of Graphic Arts post from last summer said that it might be the best font for dyslexics, given its “character disambiguation” and “variation in letter heights.” But she also stresses that not only letter shape is important when it comes to reading. Walker has been researching typography in school and childhood reading materials for many years. What Is Ahegao, the Hentai Face That’s Suddenly Everywhere? Comic Sans is one of a few typefaces with characters that are easy for dyslexics to decipher — Arial is similarly helpful and typefaces like Lexie Readable, Open-dyslexic and Dyslexie are all designed specifically for people who suffer from the disorder. Conditions. Five years ago, when he was a 15-year-old sophomore in high school, Tino stumbled upon a revelation that would change his life forever. Yes, people with dyslexia might find it easier to read than what’s otherwise available, but, there’s no scientific evidence to suggest, None of that should discount Tino’s experience. But what about the other field of research? Her work with KS1 emerging readers suggests children can read sans-serif and serif fonts equally well. Right, I thought, I’ll find out. Aunque es un trastorno bastante común, lo cierto es que sabemos relativ… Comic Sans is one of a few typefaces recommended by influential organizations like the British Dyslexia Association and the Dyslexia Association of Ireland. Hurrah, again! I am under no illusion that such work is really hard to get right in a mainstream classroom under the time and budget constraints and with 30 children to teach.” “When considering the literature on fonts, I think it is important to bear in mind the background of who conducted the study,” she explains. And by plenty of others, too. Does Comic Sans really help dyslexic learners? We found that slightly increased within-word letter spacing was potentially helpful to some people with dyslexia,” she explains. Let’s find the truth about Comic Sans. Smell Brand-New, The Hunt for D.B. That spacing is not a particular feature unique to Comic Sans, and those spacing benefits can be easily replicated in other fonts, more of which you will hear about a little later. His response is a little more detailed, but again he does not offer any grand endorsements of Comic Sans being dyslexia-friendly. In our study, we found an advantage of 7 per cent, which is not much. What It’s Like to Pop Your Cherry on Reddit’s ‘Virginity Exchange’, The Sad, Strange Life and Death of Devonte Hart: The Crying Black Boy Who Famously Hugged a Cop, Hasan Piker Can Bro Down and Demolish Capitalism at the Same Time. “When we read our eyes move in a series of saccades (jumps) and fixations (pauses) and it is during fixations that we extract the visual information we need to start identifying words and understanding them,” she explains. OpenDyslexic is a free typeface / font designed to mitigate some of the common reading errors caused by dyslexia. You should also widen spaces between letters (kerning), spaces between words, and spaces between lines. Dyslexia is one of the most common learning challenges in schools and teachers often opt to use the Comic Sans typeface to support those individuals. The product, Microsoft Bob, designed for school children, gave the impression of being overly serious. This is why Comic Sans is a super helpful dyslexia font choice. Comic Sans, that unassuming jaunty typeface lurking inside millions of computers, has become the target of an online hate campaign. Sans Serif fonts are generally more readable, including Helvetica, Verdana, Arial, Myriad Pro, Century Gothic and Comic Sans (!). The design is based on DejaVu Sans, also an open-source font. “On the other hand, there are cognitive psychology/education researchers who tend to focus on the underlying processes that might explain why certain fonts are easier to read/better for beginning readers and children with reading difficulties.” “The spacing between the words is important as it provides information about where the next saccade ('jump') should be directed so it makes sense that fonts with extra space between words provide an additional clue to the oculomotor system about where to go next,” says Joseph. “I think teachers should mostly focus on appropriate teaching of reading, not too much on how the materials are presented. Some dyslexic people find that Comic Sans is one of the more readable of the commonly-available Windows fonts, and we have used it on this web site in the past. Designers, in particular, detest it. Comic Sans does have the advantage that the "b", "d", "p" and "q" characters are not flipped versions of each other. “On the one hand, there are typography researchers who have produced quite a body of research focusing on subjective font preferences and aesthetics of text presentation. For it is teachers, says the anti-Comic Sans narrative, who are muck-spraying Comic Sans on society, who are leading poor font-novices into a world of sin, and who are dismantling the beauty of the world one worksheet at a time (don’t even get the haters started on display boards...). However, all the researchers in this area stress more research is needed. In 1994, he was asked to design a font for a Microsoft product called Microsoft Bob, a cartoon dog that would guide you around the Windows operating system via speech bubbles. However, he then adds: “But they’re all small effects.”. Tes Global Ltd is Joseph agrees: “I think it is a concern if teachers and parents spend their own money on specialist fonts like Dyslexie when the studies are clear that it makes no difference – it does not hinder students but it does not help them, either. “The spacing settings of Dyslexie font seemed to give a slight advantage. Her analyses of her data on the Dyslexie fonts is ongoing but she can say that what matters is not font, but – and I am aware this may be becoming repetitive, and I am not going to apologise for it – spacing between letters and between words. “Bottom line, in my view, is that space between lines and words – and length of line – are more relevant than typeface,” she says. I know many of you think Comic Sans is unprofessional, but the variation in character heights make each character more recognizable. And that has brought Connare a lot of hassle. double points for managing to pull off that project with style and charm, not self-seriousness.”, “MEL f--kin rules they’re so consistently knocking it out of the park and everyone on the staff With increasing awareness of the visual differences associated with dyslexia and the high incidence of dyslexia in the general population (15-20%), the world seems poised to change how they present print to dyslexic readers. Let’s take the typographic set (geddit?) She has been conducting experiments with Dyslexie using eye tracking software and her findings are intriguing not just in terms of why she believes Comic Sans and Dyslexie are not ‘better’ fonts, but in terms of how we read, too. Most of the recommendations come from associations for people with dyslexia and they agree in using sans-serif fonts. One of those studies was by Eva Marinus. This website and its content is subject to our Terms and Robert Walder from Dyslexie responds that those behind the font welcome all research into its effectiveness, but he says the current literature is “inconclusive” because of both positive and negative findings. Nothing can undo the invention of Comic Sans, but that may not be a bad thing since it seems to be helping people with dyslexia. Comic Sans and Dyslexia. And she suggests that the reason Comic Sans may have earned a dyslexia-friendly reputation could be down to this, rather than anything to do with the font’s shape or style. Contrary to popular belief, Comic Sans wasn’t designed with the intention of being easier for kids or people with dyslexia to read. If you would like to apply the exact spacing settings of Dyslexie font, our free app can be used.” What fonts are best for dyslexic readers affects the overall readability of texts and there for speed, accuracy and potentially persistence […] Write the same line in Comic Sans and in another font in MS Word, she says, one above the other, and the line in Comic Sans will usually stretch furthest along the page. Pupils 'lost' to 'legacy of poor phonics teaching', We need an end to the toxic work-all-hours culture, 4 reasons to 'set teachers free' by changing assessment, School closures double amid calls to 'save Christmas', Long read: The million-dollar teacher gives London pupils a taste of open waters. Here comes a long but very interesting quote, get comfy. Previous research has shown that children with dyslexia make longer fixations (perhaps 300ms depending on age and severity of dyslexia) and shorter saccades as they read, and this reflects their greater difficulty translating letters into sounds The irregularity of the font is what makes each letterform unique and easier to distinguish. For children with reading difficulties, I would offer the opportunity to read texts with enlarged spacing.” Yes, people with dyslexia might find it easier to read than what’s otherwise available, but there’s no scientific evidence to suggest that it’s any better than other fonts in the sans-serif family.Â, None of that should discount Tino’s experience. Except in schools: nowhere is Comic Sans more eagerly embraced and defended than in education. registered in England (Company No 02017289) with its registered office at 26 Red Lion Italic is the worst . London WC1R 4HQ. She also says that the argument for using Comic Sans based on it having the rounded ‘a’ or ‘g’ is not backed by evidence. From the UK-based website dyslexic.com: “Some dyslexic people find that Comic Sans is one of the more readable of the commonly-available Windows fonts, and we have used it on this web site in the past. Several researchers also recommended speaking to Professor John Stein, emeritus professor of physiology at the University of Oxford, and a dyslexia researcher of global renown. “Using any font besides Times New Roman wasn’t allowed, but, , I couldn’t resist the temptation to do something else.”Â, invented the typeface in 1994 to be included in, , a series of applications for kids on Windows 95. So there is agreement, of a sort, between the typographers and the dyslexia researchers: spacing, not letter shape, is key. When COVID Makes Your B.O. In this field, everyone points you towards Professor Sue Walker, of the typography and graphic communication department at the University of Reading. That, finds Jon Severs, may be the wrong decision Natascha Frensch, a graphic designer at the Royal College of Art, produced a font known as Read Regular in 2003 and the British Dyslexia Association also recommends using Arial, Comic Sans … While Comic Sans is an obvious choice for young learners, recent arguments suggest that it might also have hidden benefits. “I think it would be good if researchers from both fields would combine their forces to get some more clarity about the impact of different aspects of font,” says Marinus. This, however, resulted in the font being, installed on the majority of computers worldwide, 1998, critics argued Comic Sans was being used far too often, — and for tasks that were far too formal for a typeface created with childish intentions. Comic Sans is one of a few typefaces with characters that are easy for dyslexics to decipher — Arial is similarly helpful and typefaces like Lexie Readable, Open-dyslexic and … Further, the oft-viral fact that Comic Sans is “the best font for people with dyslexia” is unfounded as well. Until then, we know that the font is making a huge difference for many people and invite everyone to try and see for themselves.". The research cited by the Dyslexie font designers does suggest some benefits of use in terms of reduced error rate (of some error types) and “more efficient” comprehension, and some benefits when compared directly with a second font, such as Ariel.

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