Version Numbers Exist in the Film Universe – An Editorial

I hate to say this, but when people are looking at the aspect of the changes between the Velociraptors and Pteranodons between the films they want to state they “evolved” because of an advertisement in the trailer mentioning evolution. Further, if someone were to use the trailers as a point to make, I’d also like to point one promotional spot referred to JP3 as taking place on “a new island”, which it took place on Sorna. Some have stated that the change in Raptors was due to creator input. While true, the creators have given us no real direction other than the following: “subtle changes to Velociraptor.” – Jack Horner (Making of JP3 Featurette). Notice, nothing about evolution. “Velociraptor is back in a way we’ve never seen.” — Stan Winston (Making of JP3 Featurette), and from the man himself nothing here. I’d also like to point out, as per the film commentary on JP3, it was pointed out by Stan Winston and crew that they tried to correct the mistake of having a JP3 Raptor in Grant’s dream sequence by trying to grey the animal out. They intended it to be like the original Raptors in JP and TLW. Both Raptor species are considered consistent and co-habitating on Sorna in the films and the likewise holds true for Pteranodons. Further, this needs to be said in regards to the coloration changes between JP and TLW animals:

“We had to design new paint schemes not only for the new dinosaurs, but for some of the already-designed dinosaurs from the last movie,” Winston explained, “because now there were male dinosaurs, as well as females; and typically in nature the males of any species are far more brightly colored. We also wanted to make sure that the audience would be able to tell the males and females apart. It was a great of fun to run the gamut of color and come up with interesting designs. The colors on the females for the first film had been fairly subdued; but with male animals, there were may more possible colorations.” (Duncan, “The Making of The Lost World: Jurassic Park” 25)

The general idea for JP3 stated is that Velociraptor received subtle changes to the skull and changed it to fit what “they knew” about the animal now with the most “recent discoveries” and to include feathers per what Jack Horner said from the Making of JP3 documentary. To further press the point of version numbers, there is even a scene in the original novel, in the chapter ‘Version 4.4.,’ in which Henry Wu remarks that the animals need to be changed in order to conform to the public perception of dinosaurs:

“I really think you should consider my recommendations for phase two. We should go to Version 4.4”
“You want to replace all the current stock of animals?” Hammond said.
“Yes, I do.”
“Why? What’s wrong with them?”
“Nothing,” Wu said, “except that they’re real dinosaurs.”
“That’s what I asked for, Henry,” Hammond said, smiling. “And that’s what you gave me.”
“I know,” Wu said. “But you see…” He paused. How could he explain this to Hammond? Hammond hardly ever visited the island. And it was a peculiar situation that Wu was trying to convey. “Right now, as we stand here, almost no one in the world has ever seen an actual dinosaur. Nobody knows what they’re really like.”  (Crichton p. 122)

The idea is that InGen would alter their dinosaurs in order to suit the public opinion of the dinosaurs if they had to, at least in the universe of the novels. In the film universe logic would stand to reason that InGen‘s process was always under constant refinement as indicated by the dinosaur fetuses present in the third film. As evidenced in the films numerous times the dinosaurs were genetic manipulations that were the result of the public perception of dinosaurs at that point in time, thus theme-park monsters, as said by Dr. Alan Grant in the third film. We can tell this not only in the differences from the Velociraptors between the first, second and third films but in the differences between the Pteranodons seen in The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park ///. Jurassic Park’s dinosaurs clearly have some shortcomings when compared to their real life counterparts. For example, most modern theropods are considered feathered and assuredly all lack the rotated ulna and pronated hands present in the film series.

So how do we know there were version numbers? What evidence is there for this? Well first off let’s look at the in-film snap to your left. Notice where the red circle is, that’s your version number right there. For those who have trouble seeing it reads: “2.05″ for the Stegosaurus (incorrectly spelled Stegasaurus) embryo. Part of any process in anything is placing it under constant revision. These dinosaurs, being a science project themselves, indicated in the films were under constant revision by InGen. We can safely assume that some of the science from the novel canon obviously carries over in some capacity otherwise there would be no film/plot in this instance. So the question is how do we know for certain? We take a look at Jurassic Park /// next to see evidence of the revision process.

To your right you’re seeing the aborted fetus of two dinosaurs seen in the Embryonics Administration scene along with a prop used in the production. These are obviously failed attempts at the dinosaurs that InGen studied to learn more about their process, likely to refine/revise how they were producing dinosaurs. These would not likely exist if the process was either squeaky clean (which would be unrealistic) or not under constant revision to make the “perfect” theme park inhabitant. Thus variation and the carry over of version numbers do in fact translate over into the film end of the continuity.

I hope this proves the points for version numbers and it’s not a fan theory as there is sufficient evidence to back up this claim. Version numbers do exist in the films and they do exist in the franchise as a whole in the various iterations of Jurassic Park.


  • “Jurassic Park”. 1993. Directed by Steven Spielberg. Universal Pictures Studio.
  • “The Lost World: Jurassic Park”. 1997. Directed by Steven Spielberg. Universal Pictures Studio.
  • “Jurassic Park III”. 2001. Directed by Joe Johnston. Universal Pictures Studio.
  • “Jurassic Park Universal Studios Hollywood” Video Presentation. 1994. Directed by Steven Spielberg. Universal Pictures
  • “Beyond: Jurassic Park” Special Edition DVD. 2001. Various. Universal Pictures.
  • “Jurassic Park: The Game” Video Game. 2011. Various. TellTale Games.
  • Shay, Don; Duncan, Jody “Making of Jurassic Park” Copyright 1993. Published by Ballantine Books. New York
  • Duncan, Jody “Making of The Lost World: Jurassic Park” Copyright 1997. Published by Ballantine Books. New York
  • Crichton, Michael. “Jurassic Park”. Copyright 1990. Published by Ballentine Books.


26 thoughts on “Version Numbers Exist in the Film Universe – An Editorial

  1. “I hope this proves the points for version numbers and it’s not a fan theory as there is sufficient evidence to back up this claim.”

    A theory backed up by evidence is still a theory and in this case is still a fan theory cause you, fans, are interpreting the referred evidence as ‘version numbers’ but nothing official claim such. Actually that is THE major issue with all reasoning behind it – there are nor citations or references backing all this.

    An encyclopedia, as this one, should be referenced and use citations when claiming something which isn’t the case at all. Most is either written based on someone interpretation or just plain contradicts the OFFICIAL stance. That is fine, I guess, if you actually say that much in an introduction “The following work is based on fan interpretations and are not meant to be seen as official truth” but the way it’s build is deceptive, false, bogus, etc.

    I won’t lengthen further but regarding the raptor different look John Rosengrant in The Winston Effect book said “We explored the idea that the Raptors had evolved somewhat, which gave us a chance to infuse new life and energy into those old characters.”

    • I always thought the Raptor difference,was based on the fact that now they were breeding in the wild,so the dino’s would come to look more and more like they “should” over time.I do believe the version thing is correct though,i mean it is in the novel,and right there in plain text in the movie,as seen on the tubes Nedry stole(seen above).

  2. Ah, wonderful, “Dr.Dino” lovely pseudonym you have there. See, the evidence for version numbers stacks very neatly in favor of being there, considering the source material that the films are derived from in the end. So, Yeah, no it’s not completely based on fan interpretation, but I do state on the encyclopedia this: ” This encyclopedia’s goal is to maintain, through controlled access, impartiality and objectivity, free of what individuals want the Jurassic Park franchise to be rather than what it is. When a clear need to speculate arises in an effort to provoke thought about a subject discussed here (or a concept of “fanon” comes into play) we will, of course, denote it as such in our work.” If you took some time to read and maybe understand what that means, it would be in your benefit. Now, you’re equally in denial because of the interpretations of the “evolve” statement. That has multiple interpretations. You are simply afraid of being wrong, while I am not. The truth is what it is from the data and evidence shown. I have yet to read “The Winston Effect”, rest assured I will be validating that comment to see if it holds the meaning you think it does. You’re one of the whiners about this, maybe you should stop and take a look at the evidence as well and stop being afraid of being wrong about something as minor as this? The evidence stacks nicely in favor of, as said, after all. Still being as argumentative as ever, I see.

  3. It’s still a theory, a fan interpretation. You don’t cite a reference that say those numbers in the embryo storage are version numbers as in the novel. Those numbers could mean anything really – to the mine/location that the amber was dug to which embryos are for each species/storage/etc.

    Also clearly those aren’t fetus, they’re far large to be a newborn baby let alone fetus. Never mind this is an interpretation and that’s the whole point of my original comment.

    You don’t have to be so rude and claim gibberish about whoever without reason since I wasn’t personally attacking the work in question but stating a major fault in it – I cited a reference for this raptor subject, the encyclopedia doesn’t.

  4. So you claim. It’s a fair point, but what else could they really be? You’re assuming different based on little to no evidence aside from an off the cuff interview that has multiple interpretations. I’m drawing my conclusions from the source material because it was adapted from the novels and the science would match up for cloning an extinct animal. I feel that you’re ignoring the fact these animals would need to be “surveyed” and “versioned” for anomalies and have to go through multiple revisions based on this. Cloning is after all an imperfect science and would have to undergo revisions. InGen after all, Ludlow specifically, viewed these animals as “software” as per his comments in TLW. “The software is already developed” — Peter Ludlow, The Lost World. Further, Software needs to be refined before it can be released to the public. The fetuses, infants, what have you, are evidence of anomalies being present and InGen would ergo have to correct. This is again in favor of the version number argument if we’re going to go that route. Now, as for being rude? I merely responded to you with the same attitude you’ve responded to me in the past and at the start of this.

  5. “You’re assuming different […] I’m drawing my conclusions from…”

    I’m not assuming but using references and citing official material. To deflect entering in circles the encyclopedia is, as you said, draw from your conclusions and thus gives reason to what I was saying in my original comment (it’s my first ever comment and I wasn’t disrespectful to anyone).

    In a nutshell this ( is an interpretation, is not impartiality. But this ( on the contrary is.

  6. Once again, I feel you’re wanting your opinions and unwilling to accept evidence counter to what you believe when I have otherwise cited the sources. This conversation is over. I’ll be deleting your comments in accordance to being a troll if you continue.

  7. Sorry to jump in the discussion, but I believe that a valid point has been rised. What I gathered from the discussion is that Henry is questioning the evidence that Ty has used to support the dinosaur versions theory, and I do believe that he is right in that. In a classic analogy, is the same as pointing to a light in the sky and saying that it’s a falling star. It could be, but it could also be a plane, a meteo baloon, a satellite, etc. The evidence isn’t unique in a way that could support a theory without any doubt.

    The stegosaur number could indeed be something else other that a version. In fact, my first thought was that it probably wasn’t a version. Of course I may be wrong, but from what I usually see in computer software is that a version would be something like 2.0.5 instead of 2.05 A quick search on google found this – – that may support my point view. For me it makes more sense that 2.05 means something like a global_id.specific_id Like, mine 2, mosquito 05 or lab 2, freezer 05.

    Regarding the baby dinosaurs, I feel that once again it is inconclusive. There could be other explanations. They could have been sick or they could have been tested for the lysine dependecy or even been in the tube as a way to take care of those baby dinosaurs in an atmosphere so different from the one where they belong, among other possible explanations.

    In conclusion, although I also believe that dinosaurs versions make perfect sense in the movie universe, these evidences don’t seem strong enough to support this theory and we may have to look further. Just my two cents.

  8. Thank you for including and making a compelling counter-argument to this. It is definitely worthy of looking into, but again I need to point to the novel since the science was ripped from it. I admit there is sometimes where canon-mixing is otherwise not supposed to be encouraged. I want particular attention paid to the version numbers on the dinosaur tally though in favor of my arguments for. In addition, Ludlow’s comment about “software being fully developed” in the second film. Given Ludlow was the CFO of InGen (from what I think may be the cut scene if I remember correctly), but he would likely be privy to information of the sort.

  9. I believe that dinosaur versions exist in the movie universe; it’s a logical consequence of the scientific process InGen follows. My “problem” is to find an unique evidence to prove that theory.

    Regarding the 2.05, it’s an amazing find. I’ve seen the movie dozens of times, and yet I had never noticed it before. However, one can argue that that code means lab 2, freezer 05 or that it’s just a species code (when InGen finds some new dna, how do they know if it’s a stego? They don’t. They could give it a code name {project 2.05 for instance} and only after some development are they able to find out that it’s a stego {hence, project 2.05 becomes known as project stego}). The way I see it, these interpretations are as valid as the dinosaur version interpretation. Plus, another thing that I can’t work out it’s the 2.05 versus 2.0.5 I have never seen software versions in that format, but it could be my own inexperience.

    Regarding the Ludlow quote, I’m sorry, but I forgot about it in the previous comment. What I can argue about it is that, for me, it cannot be taken literally. Ludlow being CFO (chief Financial officer), one might expect that he is not very familiar with the scientific biological names to be used. Besides that, he is talking with investors, and consequently he could be adapting his speech to make it clearer to them what’s going on (the some way that one may occasionally mention DNA as “recipes”). It that quote originated from a scientific meeting I would fully support it (as scientists in a meeting they would be using clear and specific technical terms), but as it is I would say it is arguable.

    Unless some new detail is spotted in the blu-ray editions, I guess that one might try to prove the existence of versions by following a different approach: is it possible that versions do not exist? Is it conceivable that, on a first try:

    – Dinosaur DNA was extracted from a mosquito and mixed with frog dna (how do they know which particular frog species is the best match to dino dna?) to create a perfect living dinosaur straightaway?

    – Ingen is able to immediately identify the Y gene and shut it down?

    – Ingen is able to create the lysine dependency only by analysing and working the dinosaur DNA?

    It’s almost impossible that this sophisticated process was done in just a first step. Logic suggests that a trial-error would have to be followed, hence creating different versions.

  10. Again, I’d like to point out in your example we are looking at the source material and due to the points made above in my post and Ludlow’s comment, even though he is the CFO. It seems we are left to believe from the evidence that version numbers apply if the science is the overall same as it is in the book to the film. He may not be privy to the actual science behind the cloning procedure, but he did know what they were doing. The science is, basically, a direct translation from novel to film save for big things like DX, but that’s even hinted to in TLW promotional material with “DX Tag and Release”. Then we add in the fact of how cloning is imperfect, the differences in the animals we see, etc. It adds up nicely. It has more credibility than the “evolution” comment that Dr.Dino sourced from “The Winston Effect”, which has multiple interpretations from “evolution of design” and might be the angle they were going for with that comment. That may apply only just to the out-of-universe context about Stan Winston Studios evolving the design of the animal. So in a sense, in an out-of-universe connotation they did evolve, but in universe there is ample evidence (while up for interpretation some of it) to support the version number hypothesis.

    Now, the other thing that brings us to the version number being a valid theory is that the novels only need separation on things like island structure/layout/formation, overall history (to an extent), characters, and the inhabitants on the island. It’s not a clean break completely as there’s still branches to the source, but they are different media and events and timelines happen differently. It’s like the difference between Apple Juice and Water. Both are fundamentally water when you boil it down, Apple Juice is still 75% water. JP Film and Novel are like that, it’s still JP when you boil it down, they still have the same elements and properties, but they are different enough to be their own thing (yet the same at the same time). It still has the base component of the novel, but it is different enough to be in it’s own canon per Crichton’s comment about the series both being different media in an interview.

  11. “We explored the idea that the Raptors had evolved somewhat, ” said John Rosengrant,”which gave us a chance to infuse new life into those old characters.” Chris Swift sculpted new Raptor maquettes that featured sleeker, meaner-looking facial characteristics. To distinguish the males of the species, Winston’s designers also added quills running along the back. suggesting that the Raptors are beginning to evolve into birds” (Duncan 277).

    From the way this reads it’s speaking from a design perspective specifically about evolution of the Raptor design since the first Jurassic Park. This is also coming from an effects designer, talking about design of the animals. In short, the film does counter what he is saying regardless and so does the source material even if this applied to an in-universe explanation, which it does not. To base line this: I’d be content with presenting this as an “out-of-universe” explanation, given the context of how the design evolved since 1993 to 2001.

    Also, “Flameboy” aka “Henry Jones” aka “Dr.Dino”. If you get anymore aliases I swear I’m going to IP ban you for being a troll. I know you keep trying to post to make it look like there’s a number that agree with you, stop that. You made your point. You’re wrong. Stop being a sore loser about this.

    Sources are group cited on this page here: and notes about our Dinosaur nomenclature can be found here: I suggest you read the pages, everything is cited in a group citation instead of the individual article as this was most efficient while rebuilding the entry system. As for the nomenclature, we did modify species names “Nublarensis/Sornaensis/Hippocratesi/etc.” to help differentiate between JP’s fictitious dinosaurs and real ones. We admit to that clearly on the page. We also do denote where speculation is, if it is there.

  12. 3.
    If version numbers do exist, then they are wrong. The Stegasaurus is at Version 3.9 in the novel.

    I do believe that Version numbers exist in the film; they are there, mentioned or not. However, 2.05 is an uncommon versioning number, and why not use 3.9 or 4.4? Anyways, they are there, but the film gets them wrong…unless something changed….

  13. Also I work with software, 2.05 is a commonly used software version. It is used for testing.

    For example:
    If your on version 2.4 but need to make either:
    1) a quick change, aka a “hotfix”
    2) changes to links or outdated info
    3) other things that can be changed in a small patch
    Then you will label it 2.4.1, BUT, if it is for beta testing, then it will be labeled 2.41 for simplicity.

    Some devs, the devs of Linux, Wikia, etc. use 2.05.16 or whatever, which is another way of using 2.05

    In summary, some devs use the 2.xx for the reasons above or because its just the way they version.

  14. Let me say this first off: I DO believe there are version numbers in the film universe. I find it to be a logical explanation for the different looks of the raptors/pteranodon in JP///.

    Now that I got that out of the way Ill say this: the version number theory is just as much “fan speculation” as the evolution theory. No where in any of the films is it stated that there are version numbers. Sure there are numbers by the vials in the first film, but as others have stated that could mean any number of things. Even with all the evidence youve presented its still not right to call it fact. Unless its specifically stated in JP4 that there were version numbers it will continue to remain a fan theory. Sometimes I feel like some fans on this site bully other fans into believing what they and I think that is wrong. You may run this site, but at the end of the day youre the same as everyone else: a fan of the JP series. If people want to think the dinos evolved then let them. One of the funnest parts of being a fan is filling in holes with what YOU personally believe. You may say that the evolution theory is wrong, but the same could be said for the version number theory. Untill we have concrete evidence either from universal or stated in a film both will remain speculation and theories. To put others down and say theyre wrong while building yourself and your beliefs up isnt fair. At least acknowledge that this is still just a theory instead of trying to play it off as a concrete fact, because not ONCE is it stated in any of the films that there were different versions.

  15. This isn’t what I personally believe or what I want. It never is. This is what the evidence suggests and while there’s a possibility it is something else, it’s a remote possibility. They’re version numbers present according to the evidence we do have. The infant dinosaurs being experimented on in the tanks for one, that you’re ignoring. Even if it is not explicitly said, we still have Ludlow’s comment about “the software being fully developed” and he was the CFO of InGen, ergo he would be privy about those details. This is also resulting in a circular argument though and I am not approving anymore comments for this for that reason. Also Coelophysis_Swarm, might I suggest not to hide behind anonymity, blast people, and jump to brash conclusions to express your points in the future? It’s very unbecoming and I’ve lost all respect for you as a result.

  16. Regarding the folks who say they have never seen software versioning following the X.YY format (or making similar statements) — really? Where have you been? —

    MS-DOS 6.22
    Windows 3.11
    Windows NT 3.51

  17. The novel quote you posted continues with Wu stating that he wants to improve the dinosaurs further, saying they are too real and wants to slow them down to make them more controlable and to suit the public’s idea of what a dinosaur should act like, so clearly there are versions and the chapter is even named Version 4.4, so I do not see why anyone would argue against this theory unless they mean that the films are not based on the books.

  18. One thing that contradicts the films following the books though is that the Stegosaurus in the book is of version 3.9 whilst it is just of version 2.05 in the film.

    Another interesting thing is that whilst most dinosaurs in the novel is around version 4 the raptors are just at version 3.0 which may explain why they are oversized in the first 2 films, so the raptors seen in Jurassic Park /// may very likely be closer to version 4 since they are more of the right size and more socialy developed.

  19. From a storytelling point of view it would be hugely surprising if version numbers didn’t play a part in variations, they just have to be more solidly established as part of the explanation by the films which in here is exactly what has been done though with a lot more subtlety than the more passionate fans of the story want.

    Here’s for the supposed new trilogy fleshing it out even better. *holds up both thumbs*

  20. Sorry for double posting(I hate to do that after having already posted once) but there’s something that hit me at the moment of seeing the quote from the Winston book(nothing in-universe, just to clarify).

    “We explored the idea that the Raptors had evolved somewhat, ” said John Rosengrant,”which gave us a chance to infuse new life into those old characters.” Chris Swift sculpted new Raptor maquettes that featured sleeker, meaner-looking facial characteristics. To distinguish the males of the species, Winston’s designers also added quills running along the back. suggesting that the Raptors are beginning to evolve into birds” (Duncan 277).

    I still remember the “evolved” titles from the television commercial. Could it be that this is where what could be called popular gossip actually went far beyond than had been actually thought story wise? Like it or not, the idea of evolution does stimulate audience minds and film-making companies like Universal obviously want to increase their sales with attractive and mysterious punch lines. They were basically defining the script as they shot the movie so how is “evolution” even a plausible plot device if it seems to originate from mere greedy imagination that has no in-universe backing whatsoever(the look of the animals doesn’t count)?

    Again, not truly in-film universe related nor does it close nor disclose what actual evidence we might be able to find or be given. For all anyone truly knows such an evolution could write itself in with JPIV to become more canon(while it’s inconclusively unsubstantial in film-canon not many have thought of the animal’s growth speed and the possible use of growth hormones as something that could exist in the film universe). Same with the use of version numbers which the people working on the script should definitely add as it is a useful piece to the puzzle let alone way less sloppy than the usually popular “monster morphing”.

    Just my neutral two cents.

  21. The problem isn’t even the original research but twisting the meaning of different dinosaur versions. In none Jurassic Park media they meant that “InGen would alter their dinosaurs in order to suit the public opinion of the dinosaurs”. That’s just fabrication. Yes, there’s that exchange in the novel between Hammond and Wu but it never happens and it’s an idea Hammond is obviously against. It’s then a statement that invalidates itself and actually reinforces that the dinosaurs created by InGen are the real animals. The version numbers are revisions of incomplete dinosaur DNA not an explanation of the different dinosaur designs from each film.

  22. Even with how well the fans research the subject we must never forget that despite the small in-film details and possible indications we are dealing with insufficient reference at best. When they made the movie(s) I doubt the crew meant for their blockbuster story to be delved to with such passion for it’s main purpose is obviously to entertain everyone. What might make sense to die hard fans is the exact opposite to dumbed down mainstream audiences, something that might not truly change. From that standpoint we only have what the movies show us, literally nothing more and nothing less. As long as it remains unexplained in future films there is nothing really happening outside the screen, only in our dreams.

    As fun as it is to use our imagination that is exactly what has made the JP brand the unorganized mess that it is. When Universal sold the license to different merchandising parties they did so knowing full well that said toy, video game, etc makers would take their own spin at what never shows up on screen. That is how other canons get born, their connection to the reference material is superficial at best and the only way to make it interesting to customers is to add content that in most cases doesn’t really play a real part in the future of the film canon itself. I like to call it independent self-staging.

    It’s a little sad but it’s also fact that our beloved movies could have a lot more going to them story wise, the reason for why I really like the novels for what they are, relatively smart stories that successfully do their job where the two sequels so far go the lazy padding route for the sake of entertainment(I do like the sequels as standalones, to be clear). Only time shows what JPIV and it’s possible followups will do but I suspect that they might detach themselves from the original InGen timeline altogether.

    Again, just my two cents.

  23. “Yes, there’s that exchange in the novel between Hammond and Wu but it never happens and it’s an idea Hammond is obviously against. It’s then a statement that invalidates itself and actually reinforces that the dinosaurs created by InGen are the real animals. The version numbers are revisions of incomplete dinosaur DNA not an explanation of the different dinosaur designs from each film.”

    Might want to tread carefully there, buddy. While it’s true that we only have so much to deduce about the cloning process there is also no need to overshoot the target of focus by assuming that the animals were exact replications of their ancient selves as that fabricates an equal amount of “evidence” about their valid genuineness as the assumptions about genetic mutation. We know just about as much about original dinosaurs as these fictional characters do.

    The creatures that we see in films one and two are obviously theme park monsters that reflect the public perception of the 90s, again unintended but sensible for a franchise that itself uses real scientific thinking as one of it’s main selling points. Even today the inaccuracies make sense if we take granted the flaws of science.

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