Cure for GAS?

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strettara
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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by strettara » Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:05 pm

My patented cure for GAS: start making music.
“It must be abstract. It must change. It must give pleasure."

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by guitargyro » Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:34 pm

Empty bank account and maxed credit cards work for me.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by EPTC » Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:43 pm

strettara wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:05 pm
My patented cure for GAS: start making music.
Ha ha - True! And yes and no. Working on a lot of music can lead to improving an existing issue, like tone or signal, or fussing over something - "if i get this one compressor" etc. But you're completely right that transferring the feeling of "I received this (in the mail)" into "I made this (with what's here)" is absolutely an amazing shift of dopamine. I hear you, though, I'm also of the "make work" category. It's a constant issue, though.

My cure for compulsive need has been to look at what I have when something new is on the market. Last big feeling of GAS i had was years ago with the DFAM. This is before it was commercially available, only ones around were Moog fest engineer editions. It was a blessing that there were no DFAMS for sale! So, unable to buy one, I looked and thought about the DFAM for weeks, figuring out the noise and vco, then the sequencer, etc. Happily was able to recreate it in a much more robust way with things here.

Of course my self-made DFAM, if you add up the existing equipment, cost $2000 - but I'd already acquired that stuff. I think acquiring a code base of good modules that can reconfigure themselves into other things as needed is a responsible use of money. One part of GAS, I think, is poor planning. Make a shopping list BEFORE you go to the grocery store. Starting with utilities, envelopes, one great sequencer, and voices is a great way to begin modular for this reason.

Viewing this as a psychological issue is a useful discussion, too. It's funny what boils down into either depression or anxiety. They are both useful feelings, however, and your creative work might benefit immensely from a conversation with a professional about things that make you anxious, which GAS clearly is to many people. It's sort of a combination of depression (things aren't right, want something for mood) and anxiety (have to have this, want this or do i want this?, i can't miss this)

I talk to a therapist regularly, and over the computer now since the pandemic. It's the best hour of my week, every week. If you make a good connection with someone you can drive the session, in a way, too. "I'd like to talk about this today" feels great.
Last edited by EPTC on Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by everythingcontinues » Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:48 pm

tvparcable wrote:
Wed Feb 10, 2021 1:19 pm
Sometimes we tend to believe the illusion that just because it's "modular", we can modulate our way to the perfect system… and very conveniently, it happens to be a perfect excuse to pursue that dopamine kick. The reality is that non-perfect systems are the most enjoyable systems (in fact, they are the only systems you can get: "the best tool is the one you already have" etc.). Someone who starts playing acoustic guitar doesn't spend their time imagining extra features that their instruments is lacking. They're just happy with being limited to 6 voices, not being able to control the waveform of the strings, and having super limited and imperfect clock speed and tuning. That's because they find the fun in the practise itself, and in the musical output that results from it. When you look at electronic music artists that people enjoy because of their music, and not their association with modular, it's interesting to see how many of them have quite small systems, or systems tailored to quite specific needs. I think these people tend to see modular as one of many ways to create, and not as a goal in itself.
This is not strictly a scenario that modular users face. Emphasis added to the part about playing the acoustic guitar. I play the acoustic guitar--as does my father. He has quite a few of them and recently bought a new one. I have two and have absolutely lusted after other makers, models, styles. I've no doubt that I will buy at least one more in my lifetime. Just like modular, the sounds, feel and experience of playing a different instrument vary.

Musicians, hobbyists, consumers of all stripes face and deal with these issues. Scour acousticguitarforum.com for a few minutes, and you will see plenty of GAS-ing and gear talk.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by tdallas » Thu Feb 11, 2021 3:22 pm

7A953835-AC63-4110-AC5C-DB6D72DFD2D1.jpeg
:cookiemonster:

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by jingo » Thu Feb 11, 2021 4:31 pm

there is no cure

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Mr. Wiggles » Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:05 pm

skunk3 wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:02 pm
One good way of determining what you really *need* (if you don't know already) is to force yourself to release *finished* music frequently, on a schedule... and stick to it. Don't go out of your way to try to incorporate some bit of gear into a track just because you feel obligated to! They are inanimate objects and don't have feelings!
One thing that I think these discussions often miss is that not everyone has a goal of churning out finished tracks, and for those people, this may actually be counterproductive. Rather than forcing yourself, specifically, to release finished music, I think the better metric is that you should be using the gear productively, whatever that means for you. Whether your aim is to produce finished music, play live, experiment with new ideas, jam with friends (well, maybe not right now), or even have a little fun after work, all can be perfectly valid.

What's important is that you're actually getting something out of the gear. If it becomes a source of frustration or anxiety instead, it's easy enough to start down the path of rationalizing new purchases, because maybe that next piece of gear is the one that will turn everything around. Any treatment for GAS must, ultimately, address the source of that GAS, and it's going to be a little different in every case.
tdallas wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 3:22 pm
7A953835-AC63-4110-AC5C-DB6D72DFD2D1.jpeg
That's actually why it kind of annoys me when a company releases a product this way. I get it, but I'd much rather they just tell me what it is whenever they're ready, so I can decide whether it's interesting or just move on with things. Instead it's going to be bugging me until Monday. (I think Intellijel has a pretty great lineup these days, so I'm inclined to believe that whatever they're releasing is going to be pretty interesting.)

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by pieter » Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:21 pm

Over the past five years my GAS went from very strong to almost nonexistent now. I knew I wanted a 12U modular that has some sense of coherence for generative music and techno, and I feel I am nearly there. I still want a separate wavefolder, and I have not fully settled on my battleship sequencer yet. There are possibly other things I might want to tweak, and perhaps create a small breakout rack (no more than 3U 84 hp) with spill-over modules I don't want to sell. I expect that after that I won't be buying more than two or three modules each year. I'll still be following the latest gear announcements and discussions here, because I am interested in what's out there and I like the community. I suspect I am not alone in my evolution from lusting after the latest new thing to being pretty content with my unique instrument.

So maybe time is the best cure. (In the long run it cures absolutely everything, of course...)

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Domin » Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:42 pm

Ask yourself honestly why do you want the module and don't trust that lying bastard for a moment.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by tvparcable » Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:51 pm

everythingcontinues wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:48 pm
tvparcable wrote:
Wed Feb 10, 2021 1:19 pm
Sometimes we tend to believe the illusion that just because it's "modular", we can modulate our way to the perfect system… and very conveniently, it happens to be a perfect excuse to pursue that dopamine kick. The reality is that non-perfect systems are the most enjoyable systems (in fact, they are the only systems you can get: "the best tool is the one you already have" etc.). Someone who starts playing acoustic guitar doesn't spend their time imagining extra features that their instruments is lacking. They're just happy with being limited to 6 voices, not being able to control the waveform of the strings, and having super limited and imperfect clock speed and tuning. That's because they find the fun in the practise itself, and in the musical output that results from it. When you look at electronic music artists that people enjoy because of their music, and not their association with modular, it's interesting to see how many of them have quite small systems, or systems tailored to quite specific needs. I think these people tend to see modular as one of many ways to create, and not as a goal in itself.
This is not strictly a scenario that modular users face. Emphasis added to the part about playing the acoustic guitar. I play the acoustic guitar--as does my father. He has quite a few of them and recently bought a new one. I have two and have absolutely lusted after other makers, models, styles. I've no doubt that I will buy at least one more in my lifetime. Just like modular, the sounds, feel and experience of playing a different instrument vary.

Musicians, hobbyists, consumers of all stripes face and deal with these issues. Scour acousticguitarforum.com for a few minutes, and you will see plenty of GAS-ing and gear talk.
Haha, you're not wrong, GAS is indeed everywhere - I guess my point was more that sometimes it's easy to forget the reason we buy all of this stuff for at the end of the day :)

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by mg05 » Thu Feb 11, 2021 6:06 pm

You could channel your GAS energy and focus in collecting special type of
- delay rack units or pedals / BDD /
- or go for phasers
- ...
- type of module: oscillators, ...
- a brand or two (and eliminate = sell the other brands)

after a while you will have everything of this one type and GAS slows down?
If not you'll wait for the next music event for announcements of new oscillators you can buy
but the buying frequency has slowed down.

Do you put all your modules into cases? If not buy some :)
You could visualise your gear better by putting them into cases and may be your room is full and yourself feel full too
and you are cured because you don't need anymore and there is no space for it.

If nothing helps and GAS is completely out of control and ruining your life consider to get professional help (specialised in addiction).

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by strettara » Fri Feb 12, 2021 1:43 am

EPTC wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:43 pm
strettara wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:05 pm
My patented cure for GAS: start making music.
Ha ha - True! And yes and no. Working on a lot of music can lead to improving an existing issue, like tone or signal, or fussing over something - "if i get this one compressor" etc. But you're completely right that transferring the feeling of "I received this (in the mail)" into "I made this (with what's here)" is absolutely an amazing shift of dopamine. I hear you, though, I'm also of the "make work" category. It's a constant issue, though.
I was being a bit snide as I all too often am, but actually it reflects my eperience. Since I've started composing in Musescore with well thought out (I hope...) criteria for the kind of music I want to make, I've found that my interest in making sounds for their own sake has simply died away. I am using the synths (all two of them) for orchestration rather than as a source of inspiration in themselves, although sometimes a particular sound I come across - usually a preset - may give me an idea for a new direction if I'm feeling a bit stuck. But overall my focus has changed entirely from a few years ago when I had a modular and some other devices and was just experimenting to see what I could come up with, and each new piece of gear promised to be the one that would suddenly change everything.

If you ever get involved in film making, you'll hear the phrase "sure, x would be great - if it's good for the film" ad nauseam. You don't buy gear or hire a helicopter just because you have the budget for it, but for a specific purpose in the film. That's pretty much where I am with music gear at the moment. It has to have a specific purpose for the music I'm working on.

Who knows, it may go the other way again and then I'll be all excited about the latest wavetable morphing granular vector monster from Arturia or something, but for the moment, gear is boring to me.
“It must be abstract. It must change. It must give pleasure."

New album: OZ

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by skunk3 » Fri Feb 12, 2021 4:47 am

Mr. Wiggles wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 5:05 pm
skunk3 wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:02 pm
One good way of determining what you really *need* (if you don't know already) is to force yourself to release *finished* music frequently, on a schedule... and stick to it. Don't go out of your way to try to incorporate some bit of gear into a track just because you feel obligated to! They are inanimate objects and don't have feelings!
One thing that I think these discussions often miss is that not everyone has a goal of churning out finished tracks, and for those people, this may actually be counterproductive. Rather than forcing yourself, specifically, to release finished music, I think the better metric is that you should be using the gear productively, whatever that means for you. Whether your aim is to produce finished music, play live, experiment with new ideas, jam with friends (well, maybe not right now), or even have a little fun after work, all can be perfectly valid.

What's important is that you're actually getting something out of the gear. If it becomes a source of frustration or anxiety instead, it's easy enough to start down the path of rationalizing new purchases, because maybe that next piece of gear is the one that will turn everything around. Any treatment for GAS must, ultimately, address the source of that GAS, and it's going to be a little different in every case.
I understand that but maybe the cure is to change the goal? To force one's self to churn out finished tracks? Personally, my goal has always been to create enough content to jam on for live sets... patches, sample chops, sequences, leads, moods/vibes, etc... Historically, I never cared too much about 'finishing' tracks because I've always been a live techno guy but I find that when I do force myself to completely finish tracks and stick to a schedule, it truly makes things clear in terms of what is necessary and what is not. I consider finishing tracks to be perhaps the most "productive" use of gear but that of course is debatable.

Regardless, by adopting that sort of a release schedule one has to focus on getting shit done rather than idly fucking around, and modular land is already bad enough as is when it comes to being a time sink. Ultimately, if someone cannot stop their self from making purchases, that's a legit disorder and they should seek treatment. For most people with GAS I'd say a disorder isn't at play, but rather a bad habit stemming from having money to burn... a habit that usually sorts itself out and isn't hard to break. "Retail therapy" as it were. (chasing after dopamine hits)

Like someone said above, I think that time is what solves GAS for most people. Eventually you will start to feel stupid/guilty for hoarding so much crap, especially when you notice that you barely use much of it. You will start to narrow down exactly what your goal is musically and what you need to make that happen. You will also eventually recognize that after a certain point, more gear just weighs you down much in the same way that working in a DAW doesn't suit some people because there's way too many options which leads to not getting shit done.

Like I hinted at before, modular isn't for everyone. It also lends itself to GAS far more than hardwired, standalone synths because of the dizzying array of options and possibilities. I find modular to be grossly expensive for what it delivers, time-consuming, anti-productive, and GASsy.
"vocoders are shameful in publics"

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by unexpectedbowtie » Fri Feb 12, 2021 10:16 am

starthief wrote:
Wed Feb 10, 2021 11:19 am
bgribble wrote:
Wed Feb 10, 2021 8:57 am
Everyone always thinks that you can get relief from GAS by Finally Acquiring the Right Things...
I was going to point out that there are two kinds of GAS:

1. I want more stuff
2. I want different stuff
This is really helpful to think about. I am definitely in camp number 2.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Pelsea » Fri Feb 12, 2021 5:54 pm

justchillingggg wrote:
Tue Feb 09, 2021 2:07 pm
Does anyone here have also uncontrollable GAS? I’m not talking lightly here. I used to joke about this and laugh when someone mentioned it but now it is becoming quite serious and I don’t know what to do about it. I have a decent amount of gear already but every time I satisfy myself with new modules, the next day there is another module, then I buy to satisfy, then comes ANOTHER. It will never stop. Please help or I’ll become a poor man extremely quickly.
I have GAS, not for modules, but for tools. Whenever I face a household job, I run to the hardware store and buy tools that promise to make the job easier. Or alternatively, Once a job is done, I buy tools that would have made it easier. I also buy tools that make a marginal effect on my productivity, or are just neat to have. Since I work in electronics, woodwind repair (years ago, but I still have the tools) and model railroading, I have an impressive accumulation.
Tool wall 18-1.jpg
Approximately 30% of my tool collection.

My latest excuse is buying tools to overcome my growing tremors. I've always been a bit shaky but it's now at a point where I have to give up on SMDs. Luckily this GAS can be satisfied with a $3 pair of tweezers. Good thing, because I doubt it will go away.

Any GAS for modules is well controlled by these factors:
  • My system is nearly complete and most of the empty space is spoken for. Current plan is to build the remaining modules from scratch. (But see tremors, above.) When I designed the instrument (in stages as I have documented elsewhere) I specified generic modules. When it comes time to fill a function, I look at the options that are currently available, buy what looks best and close the catalogs.
  • I've been in the business long enough to know how modules work, and what extra features are worth pursuing. A few added LEDs mean nothing to me, but the distinct architecture of a BIA does.
  • My spouse keeps the books, and I run all major purchases past her first. She is supportive of my hobbies, but occasionally asks me to wait for the next financial cycle.This and the building thing keeps system growth fairly slow.
  • I don't look at youTube demos, or anywhere else that hypes the new and shiny. I don't think I've bought anything that hadn't been out at least a year.
  • When I am shopping, I don't look at things that are out of stock, much less preorder.
  • I play the instrument daily (well almost). This generally means writing a Max patch, and the problems I encounter doing that will not be solved by new modules.
Books and tutorials on modular synthesis at http://peterelsea.com
Patch responsibly.
pqe

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by ProgRocket » Fri Feb 12, 2021 7:08 pm

Helped me: i have set myself a space limit. 4 rows, no larger. That rule is untouchable. I came to realize more modules would not improve my fun. More modules will slow down my progression. If i want a module i will have to sacrifice another one. Some modules would do a better job, say i lust for a SINFONION for instance, but i don't have the space for it, i would have to sacrifice beloved modules. THAT in effect blocks me from GAS

Also i have one rack in modulargrid as a buffer dedicated to store modules that i lust for. I try for each new one if i find a sacrifial way in my current rack to enter the new module – most of the time it's simply perfect, and there is NO WAY to replace any beloved module unless its totally outclassed by the newer one. So the lusted for module stays buffered in the GAS-rack. This distancing via the step inbetween helped a lot too. Today i see modules come and go in my GAS rack - but not in my real life.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by studio460 » Fri Feb 12, 2021 11:10 pm

strettara wrote:
Thu Feb 11, 2021 2:05 pm
My patented cure for GAS: start making music.
Haha! My "cure" had been trying to learn music theory better. Boy, does that one stop you cold in your tracks (no pun intended!). I bought a couple of cheap laminated cheat-sheets on Amazon. Keeps me busy for hours (and off of Detroit Modular's site for a few minutes more).

Seriously, my "last two modules" will be an ECR-1 (still haven't pulled the trigger on that), and the coming Hexinverter Mindphaser. And that's it, I swear!

Goals:

Someone mentioned "goals." And thankfully, I do have a fairly specific set of goals: To assemble a fairly capable sound-design studio for effects and soundtracks (I also have a shit-ton of fixed-architecture synths). I have a fair amount of field-recording gear, plus an entire filmmaking set-up, so all of these hobbies will eventually coalesce into more intra-related multimedia projects someday. Anyway, it's just pure fun. And how many things in life can you say that about?

In place of like, a brand-new BMW M4, I can have all of this instead. Plus, all of this stuff we buy, "Does 'other' stuff." They're not end-goals (like a fancy car), they're means to other goals, and are tools which can produce other things. That value I think puts these types of obsessions in a whole different category than the things people collect that don't "do" anything (e.g., jewelry, fine art, etc.).
Pelsea wrote:
Fri Feb 12, 2021 5:54 pm
I have GAS, not for modules, but for tools. Whenever I face a household job, I run to the hardware store and buy tools that promise to make the job easier. Or alternatively, Once a job is done, I buy tools that would have made it easier. I also buy tools that make a marginal effect on my productivity, or are just neat to have . . .
That's a totally complementary and honorable side-hobby. These are things which do other things. Enjoy!
Image

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by pieter » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:43 pm

So boys and girls, how's that GAS cure coming along? Anybody caved for Metropolix/Beads yet? :hihi:

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by wrngtrls » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:50 pm

pieter wrote:
Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:43 pm
So boys and girls, how's that GAS cure coming along? Anybody caved for Metropolix/Beads yet? :hihi:
Metropolix, never. Beads, almost. But there is this new ACL VC MIXER/VCA combo that has me all aflutter.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by ritec » Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:53 pm

Best Cure for gas in my opinion is running out of space :D to install new equipment.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by WarpHead » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:01 pm

pieter wrote:
Tue Feb 16, 2021 4:43 pm
So boys and girls, how's that GAS cure coming along? Anybody caved for Metropolix/Beads yet? :hihi:
Luckily neither interest me all that much, but the GAS for others is real and being satisfied by money flying out the window. :waah:
Don't believe the hype.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by taotetek » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:11 pm

Having an actual theme for my modular system is what helps me. I have two voices - a Furthrrrr Generator complex oscillator, and a "complex oscillator" made from individual modules (Dixie 2+, Generate 3, Fold 6). That really helped me focus. I have a 15U rack where everything else in the rack is for either modulating, sequencing, mixing, or adding effects to those voices.

I admit I have a drawer with a bunch of digital voices from my GAS days when I was first moving from semi modular to modular and I fell a bit into the trap of "ooh a new shiny voice module I want it!". I'd sell them, but one day I know I'd want to dig them out and play with them again.

Having modules I *really* love the sound of helps. As an example, there's a lot of complex oscillators out now, and the newer ones have more complex feature sets than my Furthrrrr... but I just love the tones in that voice so much, they fit what I like doing, and I'm never tempted to replace it.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Rabban » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:18 pm

Cure GAS by buying iPad music apps instead. They are only a few dollars, $10 or $20 max, so you can really go crazy and won't break the bank.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Faastwalker » Tue Feb 16, 2021 5:58 pm

"Cure for GAS?"

Death?! :despair:

Beyond that there is no known cure.

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Re: Cure for GAS?

Post by Carrousel » Tue Feb 16, 2021 6:46 pm

Global events over the last 12 months have made for terribly painful buildups of GAS for me. Having nothing to look forward to socially or in terms of vacations has made me order an embarrassing amount of gear, mainly just to have some joy in an otherwise miserable year. I trust I’ll reign it in again when life gets more back to normal but I do worry I’ve developed a compulsive tendency. After buying my first proper poly synth and once it became fruitless to buy any more eurorack modules (except for Beads today, obviously....) I started buying needlessly expensive outboard gear. I’ve then gone on to buy new expensive needles for my decks and a ton of replacement parts to renovate them. Now I’ve had to order lots of lovely new records to properly enjoy my ‘new’ decks. One thing leads to another it seems. I’ve been off work with back problems for the last 2 weeks and now I need root canal treatment so I’m really just buying stuff to stay buoyant at this stage. This is evidently a toothpain-related, codeine-infused waffle at this stage. I’d better wrap it up and order some more gear...
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