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The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a

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The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.


(A) that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

(B) that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding

(C) that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded

(D) the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding

(E) the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

Originally posted by nookway on 09 Jun 2009, 11:21.
Last edited by Bunuel on 25 Jan 2019, 02:17, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 14 May 2011, 22:28
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vbr365 wrote

I agree that A is the right answer. The question remains in my mind is related to usage of the conjunction 'and', which joins two grammatically equal parts. In the question, the first part is in past tense and 2nd is in present perfect, is this acceptable? appreciate any help to clarity my doubt. Thanks.


Using two different tenses in two different clauses joined by a coordinate conjunction is perfectly grammatical. //ism of tense is decided by the timing of the event rather than by obedience to using the same tense.

For example: The U.S became independent on July 4, 1776 and continues to be so. Here will you use ‘continued to be so’ instead of ‘continues to be so’ to stick to past tense? We use present tense in the second arm because it is a fact even today and not a thing of the past.

A is indeed within norms and acceptable.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jun 2009, 11:54
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nookway wrote:
Source: GMATPrep Test 1
I would recommend not to attempt this if you have not taken the GMAT Prep Test 1 as familiarity with the questions may inflate your score when you actually take the test.

The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
A. that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding
B. that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding
C. that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded
D. the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding
E. the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

Please do not respond by just saying the answer is __. Please try to provide a reason why a given choice is correct or incorrect.


I choose A as my answer. We need to know our tenses really well in order to answer this question. We need to know the exact use of the present perfect, past perfect, and even simple past. Also, you need to know that "subject + to be verb + noun or adjective" is the correct usage.

a) correct ---> the universe began in the past, so using the simple past, "began" is perfectly fine. "has been expanding" means that the expanding started in the past and is still expanding today. That is what the present perfect progressive does to the logic of the sentence.

b) wrong ---> to use the past perfect tense correctly, you will need to use it once, but then the second verb must be simple past. You need to do so to show that the verb in past perfect tense started and was completed before the simple past verb. In this option, both the verbs are in past perfect, which is wrong.

c) it suggests that the beggining of the universe was an explosive instant....this is wrong. I'll explain why: All the linking verbs or "to be" verbs should be treated as an equal sign. For example:

1) The pen is a bargain because it is only ten cents ---> this is wrong because it suggests that "pen = ten cents." The corrected sentence would say:

2) The pen is a bragain because it worths only ten cents ---> this is more logical.

Another way to use the "to be" verb is to connect the noun to an adjective or to a noun. For example:

3) Tom is a student or Jessica is beautiful

So that's why opton C is wrong.

d) the big bang theory holds the beginning of the universe? How can only a theory hold such a serious mass as the universe??? Also, "10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding"??? how can 10 to 20 billion years ago expand?? it's illogical

e) Because we don't have "that" at the beginning of the sentence, it sounds as though the theory is currently holding the universe. I would respond with a "wow" to a statement like that! loool....

So answer A remains as our answer
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jan 2013, 05:04
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The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.

(A) that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding

(B) that the universe had begun in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and had been expanding

(C) that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago that has expanded

(D) the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years agothat is expanding

(E) the universe to have begun in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding

The above (Opt A) is correct. 2 of the wrong options used the relative pronoun "that":
"... that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10-20 billion years ago that has expanded"
"...the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding"
In the first wrong choice above, the OG says that describes "instant" (which is illogical) but in the second, the OG says "that" refers to "beginning". Why does "that" refer to different things and when how can we tell to what it is referring? (I have tons of problems with "that"!)

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jan 2013, 09:39
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The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.

(A) that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding
"That" is appropriate. "Began" and "has been" are the correct tense in parallelism. Contender

(B) that the universe had begun in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and had been expanding
"That" is appropriate. "had been expanding" changes meaning. It means to say that it is no longer expanding. Eliminate

(C) that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago that has expanded
"That the beginning" is OK. but the "was an explosive instant.." seems to modify universe and not the beginning. Eliminate.

(D) the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years agothat is expanding
"That" is missing for "the beginning". "Billion years ago that..." seems to be modified by "is expanding". Eliminate

(E) the universe to have begun in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding
"That" is missing for "the universe". Wrong parallelism. "to have begun" Vs "Has been expanding". Eliminate
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Sep 2013, 21:45
Hi, hope you're doing great

I agree that the best answer is the A because it express the intended meaning of the sentence.

But, the clause *and has been expanding ever since* is an independent clause, and hence we need a subject such as "it" in order to refer to the universe?

Thanks for your kind help

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Nov 2013, 04:53
Hi, This is an OG question-

The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.

My analysis:

The above sentence sounds correct, however I am trying to answer the parallelism requirement in my mind.

big bang theory holds that
the universe began in an explosive instant AND
(the universe) has been expanding ever since.
For idiom X and Y, X and Y need not be parallel to each other? If No, Can 2 parallel constructions be in 2 different tenses? (began & has been expanding, in this case)

What am I missing in this analysis? I look forward to your response.

Thanks!

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 16 Nov 2013, 14:12
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In general you do not need both parts of the parallelism to be of the same tense. It is enough that both parts are actually conjugated verbs.

In this case, the universe is the subject to both conjugated verbs. You do not need to repeat the subject. You broke it down just fine.
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New post 18 Nov 2013, 09:01
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Hi Sreeram,

Thanks for posting your query here. :-)

It is absolutely okay for parallel verbs to be in different tenses. The only thing that matters is that the subject of both the verbs should be the same.

Remember that verb tenses show the time at which the action took place. It is possible that the same subject performs two actions that take place at different times. For example: Mary finished her finals yesterday and is graduating next week.

I hope this helps!

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 30 Nov 2013, 18:30
The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the
universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty
billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.


In the e- gmat application file -1, a similar question is asked. and it is told that if "since" is there in the sentence ,"past/present perfect" is correct choice. However, in the question above , the present perfect continuous tense is used. I do understand that meaning of sentence intends a continuous action, however, "ever since" also tells us that action is started in past and continues in present. this is perfect case for present perfect tense. then why presnt perfect is not correct answer choice.
Also clarify whether the present perfect as well as present perfect continious are both right forms of tense that should be used in sentence like the one above.

Originally posted by abhijitmoholakar on 29 Nov 2013, 22:50.
Last edited by abhijitmoholakar on 30 Nov 2013, 18:30, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Nov 2013, 13:39
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abhijitmoholakar wrote:
The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the
universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty
billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.


In the e- gmat application file -1, a similar question is asked. and it is told that if "since" is there in the sentence ,"past/present perfect" is correct choice. However, in the question above , the present perfect continuous tense is used. I do understand that meaning of sentence intends a continuous action, however, "ever since" also tells us that action is started in past and continues in present. this is perfect case for past perfect tense. then why past perfect is not in correct answer choice.
Also clarify whether the present perfect as well as present perfect continious are both right forms of tense that should be used in sentence like the one above.


When an action starts in the past and continues until now, it is definitely not a proper context to use the past perfect tense. The past perfect tense is used when an action happens before another action in the past. For example:
When I came to the station, me friends HAD already DEPARTED.
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New post 30 Nov 2013, 22:11
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From what I understand the present perfect tense cannot be used to refer to an action that started in the past and 'continues' into the present. We must use the present perfect continuous tense in such cases. The present perfect, AFAIK, refers to completed actions that were completed at an unspecific time in the past. If the time is specified then we need to go with the simple past tense.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 09 Dec 2013, 12:25
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abhijitmoholakar wrote:
The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the
universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty
billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.


In the e- gmat application file -1, a similar question is asked. and it is told that if "since" is there in the sentence ,"past/present perfect" is correct choice. However, in the question above , the present perfect continuous tense is used. I do understand that meaning of sentence intends a continuous action, however, "ever since" also tells us that action is started in past and continues in present. this is perfect case for present perfect tense. then why presnt perfect is not correct answer choice.
Also clarify whether the present perfect as well as present perfect continious are both right forms of tense that should be used in sentence like the one above.


Hi Abhijit,

Thanks for posting your query here. :-)

The present perfect tense is used to refer to an action that is complete, while the present perfect continuous tense is used to refer to an action that is not yet complete.

For example:

1. She has written a book.
2. She has been writing a book.


The first means that she has finished writing the book, and the second means that she is still writing the book.

In this question, the meaning is not that the universe has finished expanding, but that it is still expanding. So, we need the present perfect continuous tense.

Both forms of tense are correct and should be used in accordance with the intended meaning of the sentence.

I hope this helps to clarify your doubt!

Regards,
Meghna
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2014, 07:02
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nookway wrote:
The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
A. that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding
B. that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding
C. that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded
D. the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding
E. the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

Please do not respond by just saying the answer is __. Please try to provide a reason why a given choice is correct or incorrect.



Like most of my strategies for RC, I approach this SC question with "what is the intended meaning of the statement?" Clearly, the author is trying to explain what some theory says about something related to the universe. If you take a "meaning" approach, you need to make some assumptions, in this case about the subject at hand: properties of the universe.

A) began properly modifies "the universe" and "AND has been" properly modifies "the universe", if we understand the intended meaning, we know that the author wants to tell us that the universe is, in fact, STILL expanding. Thus, "the universe" is properly modified.

B) An initial assesment cannot rule out that "had begun" correctly modifies "the universe", but as we read further we notice that "AND had been expanding" inproperly modifies the universe such that the meaning now is "whatever happened THEN is not happening NOW". As we are using a "meanings" strategy, and we know that what this option implies is NOT the intended meaning of the sentence, we know that this option is wrong.

C) "beginning of" modifies "the universe" in such a way that it focuses the sentence around the universe's specific point of inception. Have this in mind as you read the rest of the sentence. "that has expanded" wrongly omits AND, thus "that has expanded" modifies "an explosive instant" and NOT "the universe", and clearly this goes against the intended meaning of the sentence. Also, "that has expanded" uses past tense in the wrong way anyway, given the intent of the sentence. All in all, C) specifically focuses on the inception of the universe and explains an explosion that is related to the inception, this is not the intended meaning of the author.

D) The usage of "to have been" makes it seem as if the beginning of the universe actually was an explosive instant.. This is not the intended meaning of the author. The universe began in an explosive instant but the beginning in itself was NOT an explosive instant. Also, the option once again omits "AND", thus "is expanding" modifies instant and not universe.. This is wrong according to the intended meaning of the author.

E) "to have begun" is not the correct way to modify "the universe", since universe is singular and not plural. If we're going to use such an expression, we use "HAD begun". So this answer choice is faulty from a gramatical point of view and not necessarily a "meanings" POV.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jun 2014, 00:34
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The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
A. that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding
B. that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding
C. that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded
D. the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding
E. the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

Intended meaning:
Big bang started some time in distance past and universe expansion is still continue...
A. correctly demonstrates the meaning.
B.had been expanding...means expansion is over...Incorrect.
C.has expanded...means expansion is over...Incorrect.
D.illogically suggests that beginning is expanding, not the universe....Incorrect.
E.have begun and has been expanding are not parallel....Incorrect.

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Aug 2014, 03:04
I appreciate inputs on the below query.

The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
(D)the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago that is expanding
I have a question regarding the option D.

Can a "that" modifier modify the noun inside a prepositional phrase? Because, if that's is true then that modifies explosive instant.
As per my knowledge , i haven't come across any rule which says it cant.

According to OE "illogically suggests that beginning is expanding, not the universe". So as per OE , the modified entity here is "beginning.

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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Aug 2014, 15:58
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JarvisR wrote:
I appreciate inputs on the below query.

The widely accepted big bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
(D)the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant ten to twenty billion years ago that is expanding
I have a question regarding the option D.

Can a "that" modifier modify the noun inside a prepositional phrase? Because, if that's is true then that modifies explosive instant.
As per my knowledge , i haven't come across any rule which says it cant.

According to OE "illogically suggests that beginning is expanding, not the universe". So as per OE , the modified entity here is "beginning.

Regards.


Hi JarvisR,

Thanks for posting your doubt.

Yes, a relative pronoun modifier can very well modify a noun in a prepositional phrase, and this construction is way too common in official sentences.

Well, in choice D, "that" may refer to "an explosive instant" as well. But both the modifications lead to illogical meaning.

Hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
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New post 28 Jun 2016, 19:16
Lets draw the time line. at last ever since is given. means it is still going on. so ' has been expending' will be correct. B,C and D eliminate.


A. that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding - correct.
B. that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding - means expending stopped wrong
C. that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded - means one time expended, wrong
D. the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding wrong
E. the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding. very wrong sentence .holds the universe ??
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 25 Jul 2016, 23:03
nookway wrote:
The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding ever since.
A. that the universe began in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding
B. that the universe had begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and had been expanding
C. that the beginning of the universe was an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that has expanded
D. the beginning of the universe to have been an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago that is expanding
E. the universe to have begun in an explosive instant 10 to 20 billion years ago and has been expanding

Please do not respond by just saying the answer is __. Please try to provide a reason why a given choice is correct or incorrect.


The Universe is still expanding = YES

So the correct tense form will be "is/has" +"Expanding"

B,C, are out. Both uses wrong tense. had been expanding & has expanded

A,D,E remaining.

D is out because it says "explosive instant that is expanding"....wrong the universe is expanding. "That " is incorrectly modifying "explosive instant" rather than "universe". D also has passive voice. Not preferred when you can use a concise active voice.

E is out because of passive voice. Past participle "to have begun" can be avoided .
Option A remains which is perfect and error free
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Originally posted by LogicGuru1 on 30 Jun 2016, 01:40.
Last edited by LogicGuru1 on 25 Jul 2016, 23:03, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jul 2016, 16:07
velozjose wrote:
Hi, hope you're doing great

I agree that the best answer is the A because it express the intended meaning of the sentence.

But, the clause *and has been expanding ever since* is an independent clause, and hence we need a subject such as "it" in order to refer to the universe?

Thanks for your kind help

Bests


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Please note that "and" (without a comma before it) joins two verbs and coma + "and" joins two clauses. Consider the following examples:

I went home and slept... correct.
I went home, and slept.... wrong.
I went home, and I slept.... correct.
I went home and I slept.... wrong.

Now consider option A:
The Universe began and has been expanding.
There is no comma before "and"; hence two verbs (not two clauses) are joined. Hence we do not need another subject.
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Re: The widely accepted big-bang theory holds that the universe began in a   [#permalink] 25 Jul 2016, 16:07

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