Brilliant Ideas From Wonderful Women

15 incredible inventions from inspiring women!

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Pub Date 5 Mar 2019 | Archive Date 28 Mar 2019

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Discover the stories behind 15 of the twentieth century's key inventions in this fun and informative treasury of trailblazing women, who each made a unique contribution to the history of science and technology.

Car heaters…Monopoly…Disposable diapers…The dishwasher…Kevlar…Maritime flares… Anti-reflective glass…Wifi…Syringes…Submarine periscopes…Diagnostic tests…Lifeboats…Windshield wipers…Ebooks…What do each of these revolutionary inventions have in common? They were all pioneered by women!

Each brilliant idea is presented with biographical information about the brilliant woman who came up with it, including what inspired them. Learn how Martha Coston disguised herself as a man to contact pyrotechnicians and convince them to manufacture her idea for maritime flares, how a New York tram ride on a wet winter’s day led Mary Anderson to invent the windshield wiper, and why Letitia Mumford Geer’s one-hand operated syringe was a medical breakthrough, among other fascinating facts. Full-page illustrations show the inspiration for and use of these incredible inventions in humorous detail.

From lifeboat-inventor, Maria Beasley, to the grandmother of the ebook, Ángela Ruiz Robles, each of the inspiring women in this book achieved their goal of leaving the world a better place than they found it.
Discover the stories behind 15 of the twentieth century's key inventions in this fun and informative treasury of trailblazing women, who each made a unique contribution to the history of science...

Marketing Plan

Publishing in tandem with International Women’s Day

Promote in all STEAM campaigns

Pitch to media for stories honoring women inventors

Publishing in tandem with International Women’s Day

Promote in all STEAM campaigns

Pitch to media for stories honoring women inventors

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781786037053
PRICE US$16.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 38 members

Featured Reviews

This anthology has the same stunning and informative quality of Little People, Big Dreams. I was amazed to discover the number of ideas and invention that women were responsible for. This book would be perfect for children of all ages, gender and background; it inspires anyone who reads with an open mind and courage that they can achieve anything.

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Monopoly, the dishwasher, the car heater, Kevlar, windscreen wipers, the first eBook,...

All inventions by unconventionally thinking women. Wonderful illustrations and information on theses women.

One disadvantage, only women from the USA have been portrayed.

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I loved this book! I enjoyed learning about all of the different inventions that we have thanks to women. A great read for little aspiring inventors!

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This was absolutely delightful. The stories of women and their inventions are kept simple, but I found them very inspiring—I love how the cumulative effect for young minds is the feeling that anyone can get out there and create something life-changing. It'll be great for parents to read with their kids and dream up their own inventions. Bonus: the artwork is colourful and beautiful, with a lovely dash of humour.

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Brilliant Ideas indeed! A great book with some more unknown examples of Women's role in the history of invention and science. Very highly recommended for introducing women scientists.
Highly recommended.

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What an incredible and inspiring book.
Full of comical illustrations but nothing could detract from the clever ideas this women came up with.
A book of passion and determination with 15 roll models for inspiring scientists and inventors. That they are all female makes this a special book as the times they worked were so male dominated they hard to work harder for any recognition or support.
That I did not know a few of the names here or their life saving, life enhancing ideas Shos the need for such a book. That I did not know Kevlar was a woman is a disgrace as a father of two daughters who went to university and one who teaches science.
A book that is worth its place on anyone’s shelf or bedroom and 15 lives of women who made a real contribution to our society to help us all to never accept mediocrity. A must read book a real learning experience.

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Did you know that the material used to make firefighter helmets and bulletproof vests was invented by a woman?

This is a brilliant tribute to fifteen amazingly creative women whose inventions made our world a better and safer place to live in. Car heaters and windshield wipers, Wi-fi, Bluetooth and GPS, sea flares and life rafts, diagnostic tests and syringes -all of them were invented by women. Millions and millions of mothers can spend happy hours playing, interacting, raising their children instead of spending half of their life on mindless housework drudgery thanks to dishwashers, nappies and washing machines. I loved the way this book lets us discover the story behind the inventions and how hard these women had to fight to get their ideas accepted.
This book is a must for any school library. Children should grow up knowing these names: Margaret Wilcox, Marion Donovan, Stephanie Kwolek, Hedy Lamarr to name just a few.

Thank you to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group Wide Eyed Editions for the ARC provided in exchange for an honest opinion.

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*thank you to Netgalley and Quarto Publishing Group - Wide Eyed Editions for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*

4 stars.

An interesting collection of short stories about famous and well known equipment, games, appliances and all other kinds of everyday bits and pieces. It was fun to read that it was females who invented these things and how they came about doing so. It is told in a way that's ment for children but its easily a hit for adults aswell. I liked the illustrations and the cover page. I would have preferred a more diverse range of females who have invented amazing things but this collection is still great with the focus being on American ladies. Maybe that is just an opening for a part 2 of this? I know I'd enjoy another similar book. Definitely worth checking out, for all ages.

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I love books like this that highlight important moments in history created by women in all different time periods. Even before there was a women's rights movement, there have always been bold women paving the way. The women highlighted in Brilliant Ideas by Wonderful Women have all contributed by coming up with innovative ideas. These women's invention have made our lives easier to live, and a few have even made our lives safer. I love that this book introduces children to the women behind the thoughts that became ideas that have changed lives. I recommend this book to all kids, and adults as well. This is a great book to read together with your kids. You will definitely learn a new thing or two about some of history's greatest inventions and the women behind them.

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What a great book. It was very informative about women who invented everyday things. You always hear about men inventors but rarely women. It was easy to read with fascinating facts. The illustrations supported the book well. My daughter loved it. Thank you netgalley for another great find.

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What an incredibly inspiring book that pays tribute to fourteen trailblazing women, who each made a unique contribution to the history of science and technology!

Before this brilliant book by Aitziber Lopez I had no idea that some of the twentieth century's revolutionary and key inventions were pioneered by women. Think car heaters, lifeboats, wifi, disposable diapers and more, were all originated and inspired by some very creative and intelligent women.

An informative, inspiring and important book perfectly fitting in this 'Rebel Girls' ear. I just hope more comes from this author/illustrator duo focusing on other women and inventions from around the world, as this book solely focuses on women from America.

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This book is very important because it brings to light many female inventors who are not mentioned in school. I had not heard of most of the women mentioned because in school, it is more common for curriculum to focus on male inventors. This book is important and should be read by all.

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A surprisingly short book, but one that successfully shows the riches of females joining in with STEM research and creating modern inventions, from car windscreen wipers (albeit not automatic ones) to Kevlar, and from heated car seats to a more modern life raft. Clearly the publishers intend to tidy up all the unfinished sentences and date errors from the e-arc, but words like opaque and viscous could do with a tiny glossary for the target audience too. Others have commented how US-centric it is, well - that's history, folks! This should be suitable for many a school library. Great illustrations, too.

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*Thank you to Netgalley and Quarto Publishing Group - Wide Eyed Editions for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*

Brilliant Ideas for Wonderful Women by Aitziber Lopez's nonfiction picture book is brilliant and beautiful. It showcased some everyday as well as technical inventions created by women. Easy to read and informative text complimented by lovely illustrations catch a reader up on lesser know books. This would be an outstanding addition to your library.

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This was a great book championing women who invented something or greatly-enhanced something yet who have received little or no credit for it. The only one in the entire book I'd heard of was Hedy Lamar so shame on me! But now I know better!

This book is aimed at a young audience, but it's educational for anyone and everyone, and it's important to realize and properly understand that it wasn't white men who did everything in history. Nor was it all white women, so having someone of color in here would have been better, but for now, I'll take this. Maybe volume two will fix that other discrepancy.

This was an ARC, so there were some errors in it which I presume will be fixed before the final edition comes out. I list them here as (hopefully!) a help to the author and publisher. The section on Stephanie Kwolek, the inventor of Kevlar®, talks about nylon as being natural, like silk, but it isn't! It is organic in that it contains carbon, but that's not the same as saying it's natural. Nylon is very much artificial.

Page 23 ends the description in the middle of a sentence. It would be nice to have the rest of that sentence! This same thing happens on p30 where it seems to suggest that Mary Anderson invented the windshield rather than the windshield wiper! In this context, and from what I've read, the tram operator wasn't stopping repeatedly to clean off the windshield, but driving with the front windows open because of the sleet. This is how Mary came to the conclusion that a windshield wiper would be a good idea.

Note that I don't merit a print copy for reviewing, so all I get is the ebook, and in that context, there is an issue on page 26. The ebook shows only one page at a time, not a double spread, so swiping to this page made it appear as though it was a continuation of something from a non-existent previous page. It was only when I swiped to the next page that I saw that the title section for this double spread was on the second of these two pages. This isn't obvious and is in fact confusing in the ebook. On p27, where the article actually begins, there is also a grammatical error where it begins, "Helen's initially wanted to study..." There's an apostrophe 's' too much there, it would seem!

On page 28, Maria Beasley's birthdate is completely wrong. She could hardly have invented an improved life raft used on the Titanic if she was born 35 years after it sank! Should the date be 1847 instead of 1947? I don't know since I couldn't find a birth date given for her, but 1847 would make sense. Finally, on page 32, there's a Spanish phrase at the end of the description, which appears to be a Spanish translation of the start of the previous sentence. I don't know what that's all about (given the author's name perhaps the original of this book was written in Spanish?), but it certainly doesn't belong there in an English edition!

Those issues aside (and believe me I understand how easy it is to make goofs like that - we authorial wannabes have all been there!), I commend this as a worthy read and an educational read too.

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Excellent book explaining some of the feats of female scientists! Beautiful illustrations, and some scientists that were unknown to me too - such as the woman that invented the disposable nappy.
Easy to read, which will engage my non-readers. A must for any classroom!

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Brilliant Ideas From Wonderful Women is a nice little book with the stories behind 15 of the twentieth century's key inventions, all invented by women. It covers the invention, the idea behind it and the woman who made the unique contribution to the history of science and technology.

From Car heaters to the game of Monopoly, From household items like Disposable diapers & dishwasher to Kevlar & Maritime flares, Even others like Anti-reflective glass, WiFi, Syringes, Submarine periscope and even Ebooks. The only thing common to all these inventions was that they were all invented by women!

The book itself is dedicated to unsung women inventors, rather than the many well known women scientists . The book also focuses more on inventions that are part of our everyday life and inventions which made the life of people easier. It is incredible that how little we knew about these women and the challenges they had to face. Like how Martha Coston, the inventor of maritime flares, has to disguise herself as a man to convince pyro-technicians to use her idea for maritime flares.

The book covers 15 inventions; each invention presented with a little biographical information about the woman who invented it along with the brief story on what inspired them to invent it. The highlight of the book is the beautifully detailed and colorful full-page illustrations of each of the inventions and the idea behind each invention. I wish the book was longer but hopefully, we will get to read a sequel to this book soon. Overall, this book is a great tribute of some of the great women inventors of their times. Hopefully, it will inspire people (especially the younger readers) to read more about them.

Many Thanks to Netgalley and Quarto Publishing Group - Wide Eyed Editions for the ARC

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Great book to showcase different inventions by women! I loved the cheerful and colorful retro illustrations.

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A list of things invented by women, featuring stylized and pretty impressive artwork.
Right from the start, with the invention of the car heater, it makes me laugh; you can really see the distress of the shivering woman. Same with the dog.
Some might say that inventing dental floss trumps disposable nappies, but I guess that’s only people who don’t have kids.
Coolest invention had to be Kevlar. Or the periscope.
Sea flares and life rafts invented by different women. Add the periscope, and it seems like women rule the seas.

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Delightful discoveries on every page. That was my first thought as I read this book. Other thoughts included – ‘Who knew?’, ‘Really!’, ‘So this is how this came about :)!’, and so on.

It is simply full of ‘proud-that-I-am-a-woman’ moments when I read this book. Women account for so many wonderful, useful, making-everyday-lives-easier-better-safer inventions that I did not know about earlier (and that is definitely one of the reasons we need books like these). And you will learn about them too in ‘Brilliant Ideas from Wonderful Women’.

I love that the sections for each woman includes more than just the brilliant idea. It also includes the inspiration behind the brilliant idea and the efforts the women had to take to bring their idea to reality (dress like a man – check; keep going at it in-spite of obstacles galore – check; and more).

In addition, little data ‘bubbles’ around the pages provide some more fun stuff; such as, other ideas these wonderful women are credited with and/or some additional interesting facts about them.

I love that this can lead to encouraging more girls towards STEM by showing them that if these women could do it in-spite of all the obstacles they faced, girls today can definitely #MakeWhatsNext with all the opportunities they have.

Last but not the least, the illustrations! They are bright, full of whimsical details, informative, and totally creative to fit perfectly with brilliant ideas and wonderful women, with just the right touch of humor too.

Additional Notes:

I do wonder why the book cover uses the word ‘by‘ (Brilliant Ideas By Wonderful Women), while everywhere else, the title has the word ‘from‘ (Brilliant Ideas From Wonderful Women) instead.
This book includes only women from the USA. Again, the pros of this book overpower this caveat and I hope the author and illustrator work together to create more books to include a diverse set of women around the world.
Since this book is aimed at really younger audiences, a helpful glossary of ‘big’ words used in the book would have made the book even better. Including an index of additional resources for the older reader to look into would be another wonderful plus for this book, if possible (maybe in a future edition or in the next book like this)
And a minor, minor caveat: the e-arc I used for review purposes had some issues – missing words mainly between pages – lost in …. whatever. But I am hoping and am sure the published edition will be without any such errors. Note that this does not detract from the wonders of the book!

In Summary:
This is one brilliant book where there is something for everyone to discover. And you might be inspired to come up with brilliant ideas of your own which will be used all over the world sometime in the future!

A great addition to any school library (and homes too). To encourage more girls towards and to stay in STEM programs, to inspire everyone to explore and to work to make their ideas a reality.

Rating: 5/5
Reading Level: 5 – 8 years (and above as well!)

Disclaimer: Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for the eARC of this book. The opinions expressed are my honest thoughts as I read the book.

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I received an electronic ARC from Quarto Publishing through NetGalley.
Information text on fifteen different inventions created or developed by women. A two-page spread for each provides facts and illustrations to introduce elementary level readers to these inventions.
Some of the text is disjointed but readers will be able to follow the concepts.
Use as a springboard to further study of these women.

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In today's world we are finally recognising women and their abilities, discoveries and awesomeness.
For a long time, women were deemed the weaker sex, less able to deal with work and stress and certainly not able to invent, discover or "do" anything worthwhile.
Now to celebrate women there are some amazing and inspiring stories coming to light- including the ones in this new book.
Inventions we take for granted or know little about the background of come to light in this book.

There are some wonderful illustrations to accompany the stories of women who have made a true impact on life as we know it today.

I would buy this for schools and for my own daughter so she can understand how important she is and how she could change the world if she wanted!

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This short book is about fifteen impressive inventions that were created by women. To name just a few...the windshield wiper, the car heater, kevlar, medical diagnostic tests, the syringe, the life raft and early wifi technology. A great book for women's history month. It hightlights women's creativity and will remind children that good ideas can lead to new products that we all use.

This book has the perfect team of writer and illustrator. The text is informative. The illustrations are bold, humorous and very appealing.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a fun and inspiring read. Perfect for grade schoolers.

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What a great book! A super idea to promote women in history, I was a little disappointed to find most of them were American, I’m not sure if that’s because there just were more American women with some great invention ideas or author bias. It was great to read through with my daughter

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“Brilliant Ideas From Wonderful Women” is a quick read about intelligent women who invented 15 things we use today, or items that were the basis for future inventions, still used today. Dishwashers, ebooks and the game Monopoly are just a few included examples.

As I read this book, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the book “Headstrong: 52 Women Who Changed Science and the World”. Though “Brilliant Ideas” does not include as much information or as much science, it reminded me of “Headstrong”, focusing on the numerous accomplishments of women from various backgrounds.

The book also includes illustrations. I enjoyed the book and the images, though there appear to be serious formatting and alignment issues with the ARC ebook version. Once these are fixed, “Brilliant Ideas” would make a great gift to inspire young women and reminds all of us of the endless possibilities when we have the right idea, think creatively, and remain determined.

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This is a bit like the little lives book series in that this just gives a taste of what these women inventors did, and how they did it. But it is a good starting point. And the choices that were made to highlight are of women that I was unware of, other then Hedy Lamarr.

And what do they say about necessity being the mother of invention. Most of these women came up with these inventions because of the need that they saw, that in some case, men, would not have noticed, such as the woman, Marion O'Brien Donovan, who invented disposable diapers or Josephine Garis Cochrane who invented the first dishwasher.

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Great introduction to women inventors. Hopefully kids will get inspired to find out more about these and other great women.

Thanks to NetGalley for making this book available for an honest review.

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Brilliant Ideas From Wonderful Women: 15 Incredible Inventions from Inspiring Women! by Aitziber Lopez is a children's non fiction book that shares the stories behind 15 of the twentieth century's key inventions by trailblazing women, who each made a unique contribution to the history of science and technology. Car heaters, Monopoly, Disposable diapers, the dishwasher, Kevlar, Maritime flares, Anti-reflective glass, Wifi, Syringes, Submarine periscopes, Diagnostic tests, Lifeboats, Windshield wipers and Ebooks were all pioneered by women! Each invention is presented with biographical information about the brilliant woman who came up with it, including what inspired them. Learn how Martha Coston disguised herself as a man to contact pyrotechnicians and convince them to manufacture her idea for maritime flares, how a New York tram ride on a wet winter’s day led Mary Anderson to invent the windshield wiper, and why Letitia Mumford Geer’s one-hand operated syringe was a medical breakthrough, among other fascinating facts. Full-page illustrations show the inspiration for and use of these incredible inventions in humorous detail.

Brilliant Ideas is a wonderful primer about some of the women inventors that have changed the world with their ideas. I think that the combination of information about the actual science and engineering of each invention is lightly covered, but the struggles these women faced to be taken seriously or just get their work done is very well detailed. I have heard the basics of some of these stories before, but not all of them. I was glad to have more details on the lives of some of these women, and to learn about the others. For instance, I knew Hedy Lamarr's work was the basis for Wifi and bluetooth, but I did not know about the treatment she endured in her marriage. This was and informative and engaging read with a nice balance of illustrations to keep the attention of distracted readers.

I think this book would be a great read in homes and classrooms. It can be used to inspire inventors, and to show perseverance to readers. It can also help show how far rights and perceptions of women have come, how long it has taken, and how much further we really need to go for everyone to be treated equally and respected.

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Part of the current trend of books about women (which I love, btw), this book features 15 cool inventions and a little bit of biography on the women that came up with the ideas. Did you know Monopoly started from a women's invention? I had no idea!

The book also features lovely illustrations which makes it that much more fun to read. This book was also a brilliant idea!

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Did you know the idea for the Monopoly board game came from a woman? Neither did I. Elizabeth Magie Phillips is just on woman in the pages of this book. How about protecting our “boys in blue”, yep thinks to a female scientist and her invention of Kevlar. Overall, i love this book and can not wait to add it to the collection. However my copy was a galely and has quite a few mistakes and dropped lines. If that is fixed this is a 5 star book. If it’s not it’s 2 star.

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A fabulous book for your kids! This book is full of information, and it is presented in a way that makes it easy to absorb and share with younger minds.
My kids absolutely loved reading this book with me!

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Who knew? I always thought Monopoly was created by a man fro PA during the Depression. NOPE ! it was a woman! Women also invented disposable diapers and dish washers! Best of all? WIFI! not only a woman, but an ACTRESS! Seriously, who would guess! This was a fun and informative read that belongs in every classroom and in every library that has a women's inventor collection.

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I love this book. You'll get information on female inventors who have shaped history. Even though it's designed as a children's book, I greatly enjoyed it myself. I learned about the lives, accomplishments and inventions of women throughout history. This book has beautiful and whimsical drawings which will keep children's attention and invites the reader to discover the creator of Monopoly, ebooks, tech inventions, and more. This would be a fantastic addition to anyone's home shelf- especially creator and explorer kids!

Thanks to NetGalley for the chance to review this book & share my honest opinion with you.

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This book is a wealth of information on the many contributions made by women, many of them unsung heroes. This a great resource to use in the classroom, especially during Women’s History month in March. We tend to read about the more famous historical figures like Amelia Earhart and many others, but it’s the more unknown women I want my students to learn about, the ones they can readily identify with. I will definitely be using this book in my classroom.

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Definitely a book that we need to see in primary schools. We focus a lot on inventions (through Science curriculum) and how 'girls can do anything' (in general for same-sex schools) separately, but this is a great mixture of the two. Great for generating discussion about both history and the future.

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A wonderful book that is filled with beautiful illustrations and interesting information. As titled, this is a picture book with simple text about important inventions created by women. Their brilliance has changed human history for the better. This book is inspiring to show women are as capable as men to make differences in our world. These inventors whose exposure to different aspects of daily lives and their attention to details inspired them to be pioneers in their own time. Both educational and entertaining, I highly recommend this surprising gem to readers of all ages.

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