ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide


ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Conference Guide
May 26-30, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey
Table of Contents
Conference Venue .......................................................................................................... 1
Arrival in Istanbul ............................................................................................................... 2
Money ................................................................................................................................. 4
Accommodation .............................................................................................................. 5
Links on Istanbul ................................................................................................................. 9
Traveller’s Tips................................................................................................................... 10
Public Transportation ...................................................................................................... 10
Must See Places............................................................................................................... 18
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
ICRAT’2014, Istanbul
Conference Venue
ICRAT’14 will be held in Istanbul Technical University, Suleyman Demirel Kultur
Merkezi, Maslak, Istanbul. The conference building is near to main entrance of
ITU which can be easily reached by the metro (ITU-Ayazaga Station) from city
The location of the ITU SDKM can be found at the following url; Google Map
You can find a funny high-res Ayazaga Campus map from here. This map shows
major places of ITU Ayazaga Campus, (Building 27 shows conference building;
For a more formal grid map please check from here.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Arrival in Istanbul
From Atatürk Airport
Most planes arrive at Istanbul Atatürk Airport (IATA: IST), 20km west of the city
center. From the airport, there are various options for getting into Istanbul: you
can take a taxi (about 35-40 TL to Taksim. There is no night fare in Istanbul
anymore - the price would be the same at midnight or midday. About the same
to Sultanahmet), the express bus service run by the local airport service called
"Havatas" which departs half-hourly between 4AM-midnight and costs 10 TL to
Taksim and Aksaray, the public bus (line #96T-Ataturk Airport-Taksim) run
by IETT costing 5TL (3.50 TL with IstanbulKart), which has fewer departure times
now, due to Havatas, which is also a municipality engaged bus service.
Then, there is the M1 Metro (06:00-00:05) (signposted "light rail" in the airport,
when you get outside the baggage claim its about a 10 minute walk in the
airport to the metro line. Just follow the signs), which will take you directly to
numerous stops within Istanbul (Aksaray in the city center is the last stop. It takes
around 45 min).
From Aksaray, you can transfer to M2 Metro line (Yenikapı – Hacıosman) to
reach to the conference venue (Istanbul Technical University Campus) by
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
walking about 10 min. You should get off the ITU Ayazaga station. If you are in
Taksim, you can use the same metro line to go to the campus.
From Sabiha Gökçen Airport
Istanbul also has a second airport, Sabiha Gökçen
Airport (IATA: SAW), located in the Anatolian side of the city.
A Havatas bus connects this airport with Taksim in the city center for 13 TL and
takes about an hour (closer to two or more in heavy traffic). at 05:00 the first
Havatas bus will take you to town. The Havatas bus schedule is sometimes linked
to the arrival/departure times of planes. By using M2 Metro line from Taksim, you
can go to the conference venue by getting off ITU Ayazaga station.
Please click on here for larger metro map;
Airport Bus
There will be a bus service from the airport to the university on May 26th from
12:00 to 21:00 in 90 minute intervals. You will receive further information on this
via e-mail.
Taxi Fares
Just outside the airport exit you’ll see a continuous flow of yellow taxis ready to
take you into town. The fare to the conference venue; from Ataturk Airport will
probably be 70 Turkish Lira (TL) (around €25/$35), from Sabiha Gökçen Airport will
probably be 95 Turkish Lira (TL) (around €35/$50 including bridge toll), or slightly
less or more according to your hotel location.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Exchange Rates
The Turkish Lira (TL) is a stable currency, and so these (approximate) rates will
apply (for May 1):
1 Euro
2.9 TL
1 US Dollar
2.1 TL
1 Sterling
3.52 TL
Changing Money
All major cash point/ATM cards work in the cash machines, and all major credit
cards are accepted in medium range hotels and restaurants. If possible, avoid
buying Turkish Lira in your home country as the rates will almost certainly be
unfavorable. If you need to exchange cash, then use the exchange offices
(Doviz) that you’ll see all over town.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Please contact these venues directly to make your reservations; please do so as
soon as possible, if you plan to stay at one of these venues during the ICRAT
conference, because many of the hotels close to the conference are already
booking up during that week.
Hotel Name
Single Room
Double Room
Sheraton Maslak #
117 Euro (VAT
137 Euro (VAT
Movenpick Otel ##
150 Euro +VAT
170 Euro +VAT
Renaissance Istanbul Bosphorus
172,80 Euro (VAT
194,40 Euro (VAT
Point Hotel
145 Euro + VAT
160 Euro + VAT
Vilayetlerevi (Luxury Guest House
on Seaside)
250 TL + VAT
300 TL + VAT
VAT is %8
# = Very close to the campus (just across the university)
## = Two metro stations away from the university
http://www.sheratonistanbulmaslak.com Group rate available until May 15,
2014. Subject to availability. Please use the below link to
reserve: https://www.starwoodmeeting.com/Book/icrat
http://www.moevenpick-hotels.com/en/europe/turkey/istanbul/hotelistanbul/overview/ Please fill out this form by May 1st to reserve. After that it is
subject to availability.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/istbo-renaissance-istanbul-bosphorushotel/ Please fill out this form by April 25th . After that it is subject to availability.
http://www.pointhotel.com/point-hotel-barbaros-home.aspx Please email the
hotel and note the ICRAT to get this rate.
http://www.istanbulvilayetlerevi.com/index.php/en/home Please email
to [email protected] to reserve and note ICRAT.
Single Room. 190 Euro + VAT
Double Room 210 Euro + VAT
Reserve your room via ITU-ICRAT CONGRESS 2014 (OR copy and paste the
following link into a web browser)
A258835 Group rate available until April 28, 2014. Subject to Availability.
Map of hotel locations:
For larger image click on; http://www.icrat.org/icrat/images/hotel_map.jpg
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
For students hosted on the ITU campus:
The location of the Yilmaz Akdoruk Student Guest House can be found at the
following url: click for map location
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
The rooms are double occupancy and every room has a private bathroom
including shower. The room has small working desk, telephone and internet (wi-fi
also) and there is always hot water and drinking water. The facilities have 24
hour security. The facilities also have laundry and ironing room.
Within the campus there is eduroam or ITU Misafir (guest access) wi-fi access
almost everywhere.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Links on Istanbul
Of course there’s an enormous amount of information on the Internet about
Istanbul, and you may well have your favorite sites or guidebooks, but here are
some possible starting points:
Travel Guides
Istanbul Municipality Site
Music and Other Entertainment
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Traveller’s Tips
Istanbul is on the whole a very safe city, and people are usually very
helpful if you have any problems. Still, take all the usual precautions of
keeping hold of your bags on public transport, and of course don’t walk
down backstreets on your own at night. If you’re in the Taksim part of
town, perhaps resist any intrepid instincts you may have to cross the busy
main road into Tarlabası, especially at night.
Especially in Sultanahmet, some of the shopkeepers and street sellers may
pester you so much that it becomes irritating. The best thing is simply to
ignore them, even if you feel that’s slightly rude. Otherwise, enjoy a good
In some of the more religiously conservative areas of the city such as Fatih,
famed for its magnificent mosque, it’s advisable to dress modestly to
avoid offending the locals or provoking any kind of negative reaction.
Outside the mosques in the main tourist areas, you may be asked to pay
an entrance fee by a self- appointed official. In fact, you are free to enter
a mosque at any time (apart usually from prayer time) without charge.
You can, however, make a contribution on exit if you wish.
The local currency, the Turkish Lira, has been created deliberately to look
like the Euro so that the transition to that currency, were Turkey ever
(misguided enough?) to adopt it, all the easier. It’s very easy to mix the
two currencies up, and if you do, you’ll be paying over double what you
For potential problems with taxi drivers, see Arrival in Istanbul above.
Public Transportation
Istanbul's public transit system can be difficult to figure out; maps are rare and
you often have to transfer, and pay another fare, to get where you are going.
However, if you put some effort into it, you can avoid taxis and not walk too
Each time you use a tram, metro, bus, or boat on the public transport system,
you will need to use a token. The small metal/plastic tokens cost 3 TL (September
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
2012) and can be bought at various ticket kiosks & machines at bus, railway and
metro stations. Ticket fares across buses, trams and metros are at a flat rate (i.e.
not dependent on how far you go). Only cash in Turkish lira is accepted at ticket
kiosks of public transport, no credit cards or foreign currency. Also be aware that
the Istanbul subway system does not offer transfer tickets and as such each new
line requires a new fare, unless you use an Istanbulkart or Akbil, see below.
Buying an Istanbulkart is a good idea if you
are in Istanbul for more than a day or two,
and intend to use public transport. This is a
plastic card that looks like a credit card. It
can be used as a ticket on buses, trams,
suburban trains, metro and even the crossBosphorus ferries. You touch the Istanbulkart
to a reader when you get on the bus or
enter the tram/metro platform. The great
part for groups of travellers is that you can
buy only one and touch it as many times as there are passengers (unlike
London's Oyster card, there is no need to touch out). You can buy or refill them
at designated booths located at any major bus, tram, to metro station, as well
as some other places such as newspaper stands close to bus stops. An
Istanbulkart provides a flat fare of 1.95TL for the first ride, which is a cheaper
option in comparison to tokens used in Metro and speed trams (jeton, 3TL), but
more expensive for buses. It is also 3,50TL to the Prince's Islands, instead of 5TL for
a token. Istanbulkart also allows discounts in transfers (when used multiple times
within a limited period, roughly an hour and a half since the last time you used
it). A deposit for the device itself is payable when you buy it (10 TL - or 7TL? confusion reigns!), which is not refundable, and neither is any credit left on the
Istanbulkart (when bought at the Ataturk airport metro terminus, 4TL deposit will
be already on the card when bought). Note that there are different booths for
buying the card and for charging it, and charging booths accept only 5, 10,
and 20 lira banknotes.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Once you have bought and
loaded the card, your first
journey costs 1.95TL (except
for Metrobus, which costs
around 3TL), then any change
within approximately 2 hours
costs progressively cheaper;
second journey is 1.25TL, third is
1.00TL and so on. Note that
changing metro line or travel
type, i.e. ferry to bus, or metro
to tram, requires you to go out
of the turnstiles then to check back in to the new line or travel type. Therefore
this is extremely more economic than buying individual jetton at 3TL per journey.
By bus
Recently installed Metrobüs, long hybrid buses running on their special lanes
separated from all other traffic and thus saving lots of time in Istanbul's usually
congested roads, connect western suburb of Avcılar with Kadıköy in Asian
Side via Bakırköy, Cevizlibağ which is just out of old city walls near Topkapı Gate,
and Mecidiyeköy.
Most bus lines operate between 6AM and around midnight, usually with a
reduced volume of services after 10PM. Some lines between major centres
operate 24 hr, though, as is the Metrobüs, with about an hour intervals. After
midnight, buses cost two tickets pp rather than the usual one.
24 hr Bus Lines:
73 Taksim Square-Ataturk International Airport
110 Taksim Square-Kadikoy
112 Taksim Square-Bostanci
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
25T Taksim Square-Sariyer
40 Taksim Square-Sariyer
89C Taksim Square-Basaksehir
E10 Kadikoy-Sabiha Gokcen International Airport
15F Kadikoy-Uskudar
130 Kadikoy-Tuzla
34A Sogutlucesme(Kadikoy)-Edirnekapi (Metrobus)
34 Avcilar-Zincirlikuyu (Metrobus)
By metro
Please click on here for larger metro map;
Istanbul's first underground system dates back to 19th century, when the
funicular subway "Tünel" was constructed to operate from Karaköy to Istiklal
Street in 1875. The distance travelled was 573 meters. Recommended option to
go up-hill from Galata Bridge (Beyoglu side) to the famous Istiklal Caddesi (main
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Istanbul's metro consists of two lines, the northern line is currently just a short stub
connecting Yenikapı to Hacıosman via Taksim Square, and Mecidiyeköy and
Levent in business district. There is a subway system “Marmaray” from Yenikapı to
go to the Anatolian Side under the sea. There is also a funicular system
connecting Taksim to Kabataş where you can get on ferries and cross to
the Anatolian side, and also transfer to trams bound for old city. The separate
southern line is most useful for visitors, connecting Aksaray (with its connections
to the tram line onwards to old city) to Atatürk Airport, via the main coach
station (Otogar). A connecting line between southern and northern lines,
crossing Golden Horn on a bridge is completed. This is connected through
Marmaray through an undersea tunnel to the Asian Side
By tram
A tram (line # T1) connects Zeytinburnu (connection to the metro line to the
airport) to Kabataş (connection to the underground funicular to Taksim). The line
is 14km long, has 24 stations and serves many popular tourist sites (e.g. in
Sultanahmet) and ferries (e.g. Eminönü). An entire trip takes 42 minutes.
There are two tram lines running on the same tracks, the line numbered as 38 in
front of tram cars runs along the entire T1 line between Kabataş and
Zeytinburnu, while significantly shorter line #47 runs between Eminönü and
Cevizlibağ stations (the latter of which is abbreviated as C.bağ-A.Ö.Y. on the
signage of tram cars). However, both lines call at stations that are of most
interest to travellers through the Old City. During morning and evening rush hours
every alternate tram runs as #47, while during the rest of the day, most run as
The tram was put in service in 1992 on standard gauge track with modern cars,
connecting Sirkeci with Topkapi. The line was extended on one end from
Topkapi to Zeytinburnu in March 1994 and, on the other end from Sirkeci to
Eminönü in April 1996. On January 30, 2005 it was extended from Sirkeci to
Kabataş crossing Golden Horn after 44 years again. 55 vehicles built by ABB run
on the line. The daily transport capacity is 155,000 passengers.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Between Taksim and Kabatas, there is a modern underground funicular to
connect this tram line to the Taksim metro. The tram is also connected to the
southern metro line (for the Otogar and Ataturk Airport) at Aksaray station,
though the metro and tram lines are a short walk from each other.
During morning and evening rush hours (roughly between 7AM-9AM and 5PM7:30PM respectively), tram cars run jam-packed so if you intend to take it for a
couple of stations down the way, don't even bother—walking instead is not only
less tiresome than standing in what is essentially more crowded than a sardine
can, it's also quicker as you will most likely be able to get in the second or even
third tram calling at the station due to the crowd.
There are also two other tram lines linking residential and industrial suburbs in the
northwest with the city center: T2, which heads for Bağcılar, and T4 (which is
more like metro-tram systems of northwestern Europe, as it lies underground for
part of its route), which heads for Sultançiftliği, connecting to the Zeytinburnu
and Topkapı stations of the T1 line respectively. However, these lines are of very
little, if any, use to the average traveller.
By boat
Unique Istanbul liners (large conventional ferry boats), sea-buses (high speed
catamarans), or mid-sized private ferries travel between the European and
Asian sides of the city. The crossing takes about 20 minutes and gives great
views of the Bosporus. Be aware that sometimes the ferry when arriving at a
dock can bounce off the pier accidentally, even on calm days. This can cause
people to fall over if they are standing up, so it is advisable to remain seated
until the ferry has come to an absolute stop.
In Istanbul, liners from any given quay generally take only a certain route, and
these quays are signposted ‘X Iskelesi’ (“X Landing stage/pier”). For
instance, Eminönü alone has more than 5 landing stages (including the ones
used by other ferries apart from liners), so if you should head for, say, Üsküdar,
you should take the ferry which departs from ‘Üsküdar Iskelesi’. Replace
‘Üsküdar’ with the destination of your choice.
Istanbul liners travel on the following routes:
Karaköy - Haydarpaşa - Kadıköy
Kadıköy - Eminönü
Üsküdar - Eminönü
Üsküdar - Karaköy - Eminönü - Eyüp (The Golden Horn Route)
Kadıköy - Besiktaş
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Kabatas - Uskudar - Harem
Istinye - Emirgan - Kanlıca - Anadolu Hisarı - Kandilli - Bebek - Arnavutköy Çengelköy (The Whole Bosphorus Route)
Anadolu Kavağı - Rumeli Kavağı - Sariyer
Eminönü - Kavaklar (Special Bosphorus Tour-Recommended For Tourists)
Sirkeci - Adalar - Yalova - Cınarcık (The Princes' Islands Route)
Furthermore, the sea-buses (deniz otobüsü) follow the same (or more) routes,
usually much faster than liners. Returning to Yenikapi from Kadikoy by sea-bus is
a fast and convenient way to cross the Bosphorus; at Yenikapi there is a railway
station with frequent trains to Sirkeci/Eminönü and the Yenikapi fish restaurant
area is close by (or one stop on the train).
Four main private ferry routes for travelling between Asia and Europe sides are:
Besiktaş - Üsküdar
Kabataş - Üsküdar (close to tram and funicular system in Kabataş)
Eminönü - Üsküdar (close to tram in Eminönü)
Eminönü - Kadıköy (close to tram in Eminönü)
Very useful are the fast ferryboats (travelling at 55 kilometers) running from
several points, such as the Yenikapi - Yalova one, that allows you (with a
connecting bus in Yalova) to be in Bursa centre in less than three hours. Prices
are marginally higher and the gain in time is considerable, though the view is not
as nice.
All of the ferries, including private ones, can be paid for using the AKBIL system
or the new Smart RFID Card that is in the process of introduction.
A new metro line extension crossing the Bosphorus in a tunnel is under
construction. This will change the ferry provision and is perhaps a good reason to
visit Istanbul before it is completed.
By train
Suburban/commuter trains (banliyö treni) using somewhat dilapidated stock
and running on national rail network, connect suburbs along the European
and Asiancoast of the Sea of Marmara to main stations at Sirkeci and
Haydarpaşa, respectively. These trains are one of the fastest connections
between the old city and western suburbs, especially Bakırköy, although they,
especially the line on European Side, are best avoided late at night.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
By taxi
Taxis are an easy and cheap way to get around. One-way travel from Taksim to
Sultanahmet costs approximately 20-25 TL. Tipping is generally unnecessary.
Occasionally, drivers will refuse to start the meter and try to negotiate a fixed
price (but most drivers will start taximeters at all times). You should avoid these
cabs and simply take another one as you will almost certainly end paying too
much. To be sure, before getting in, just ask "how much to go to ...?" (most of the
drivers understand basic English) since the price they tell then is quite accurate.
Tell them then to put the taximeter on. Drivers do normally work with the
taximeter, so they will not be surprised at all when you ask them to put it on. The
price at the end will be quite close to the one they tell you at the beginning.
Taxis that wait near a bus station are usually a tourist trap. They start the meter
but charge you 20 TL at least. Emphasize to the driver that you will pay for the
meter price before getting in. Do not buy their quick-sell tricks. Always try to stop
a taxi that is passing by on the road or find a legitimate taxi stop.
Insist on going to the destination that you want because some drivers are payed
by commission for each time they have someone go to a certain site.
Beware riding a taxi other than the "yellow-colored" ones since the othercolored taxis are registered under different cities and have a different rating
Be careful on what notes you hand them for payment; some drivers have tried
to pretend that the 50 lira note that was handed was just a 5 lira note.
Occasionally taxi drivers may actually also rip notes you give them, and tell you
it is no good, in order to make you hand them a 50 lira note. So, make sure the
notes are not ripped, and is actually the right one before you hand them over.
Also, if you are not familiar with the city the taxi driver may drive a detour in
order to charge you more.
Traffic can be very bad, it can take an hour for a few km through the old city. You
might be better off taking the metro out of the old city and then a taxi from there.
Some important routes with distances are :
Ataturk Airport (IST) - Taxim Square ~ 21 km.
Ataturk Airport (IST) - Sultanahmet Square (Old City) ~ 18 km.
Taxim Square - Sultanahmet (Old City) ~ 5,5 km.
Sabiha Gokcen Airport (SAW) - Kadikoy (Chalcadonia) Ferry Terminal ~ 36
Esenler (Bus Terminal) - Topkapi Palace (Sultanahmet) ~ 10,5 km.
Esenler (Bus Terminal) - Ataturk Airport (IST) ~ 15 km.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Must See Places
By taking T1 tram line, you can see the most important historical places of
İstanbul. Look at the map below:
Grand Bazaar (Kapalı Çarşı) : Historical covered bazaar. beautiful
Turkish carpets, glazed tiles and pottery, copper and brassware,
apparel made of leather, cotton and wool, meerschaum pipes,
alabaster bookends and ashtrays, and all sorts of other things. By
taking T1 Tram line, on Bayazıt station.
Topkapı Palace: Home of the Ottoman sultans for nearly 400
years, Topkapı Sarayı("Palace of the Cannon Gate"—map) was
the seraglio,the heart of the vast Ottoman Empire, ruled by the
monarch who lived in Topkapı's hundreds of rooms with hundreds of
concubines, children, and white and black servants. By taking T1 Tram
Line, on Sultanahmet station.
Hagia Sophia : After visiting Topkapı Palace, you can also go to the
Hagia Sophia by walking. The Church of the Divine Wisdom (Hagia
Sophia in Greek) in Sultanahmet,Istanbul (map), is one of the most
impressive and important buildings ever constructed.
Blue Mosque : Istanbul's imperial Mosque of Sultan Ahmet I (Sultan
Ahmet Camii), facing the Hippodrome in the center of Old
Istanbul (map), is one of the top sights in this historic city. It is in the
same area with Topkapı Palace and Hagia Sophia.
Dolmabahce Palace : it is on the European shore of the
Bosphorus in Istanbul is
a fitting
magnificence and decadence of the 19th-century Ottoman Empire. It
is 5 min by walking to Kabataş Station of T1 Tram Line.
Bosphorous Tour : You'll get to see the domes and minarets of Old
Istanbul, Leander's
Tower (Kız
Kulesi), the
of Dolmabahçe Palace, the sprawling new districts of office towers,
and the sweep of the Bosphorus to the north and the Sea of
Marmara to the south. You can make a tour from Kabataş station. It
usually takes 1 hour and costs about 10 TL.
If you have a little more time, you might want to wander around some of the
city’s other districts, each with its own atmosphere and history. If so, here are
some suggestions, all of which are at most a 50-minute bus or taxi ride from the
conference venue.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
The Pierre Loti Café and Eyüp (view of the Golden Horn, imperial mosque in
Eyüp) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNEjo5fPRP4
Fener and Balat (the old Greek and Jewish quarter)
Ortaköy (market, mosque, and restaurants near the water)
Besiktas (the Maritime Museum, departure point for the Saturday night boat trip)
Nisantası (fashionable, modern part of town close to the conference venue,
good for shopping)
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide
Shop in Style
1. İstinye Park: The new shopping and entertainment complex İstinye Park is
currently the biggest hit in Istanbul. Hugo Boss, Max Mara, Louis Vuitton,
Zara, Boyner, Mango, M.A.C., Sephora, Sevil, Vakko, and Debenhams are
among the brands to have settled in the mall. You can go there by
walking 10-15 min from the Istanbul technical university campus.
2. Sapphire Mall: Istanbul Sapphire, or Sapphire, is a skyscraper, and as of
2011, the tallest building in Istanbul and Turkey, located in the central
business district of Levent. The building has a direct access to the M2
Metro line on the 4. Levent subway station. The building has an
observation deck.
3. Metro City: The MetroCity shopping mall in Levent, the city’s financial
district, has a convenient direct connection to Istanbul’s YenikapıHacıosman metro line (M2). There are lots of stores and a big food court.
4. Kanyon: this mall is in the same station like Metrocity, in Levent. Many
global brands are represented at Kanyon, including Harvey Nichols,
Banana Republic, Lacoste, Mango and Sony. It also boasts Continental
Europe’s first Apple store. There are many cafes and restaurants, from fast
food to a wide variety of Turkish and International options including
Starbucks, Gloria Jean’s, Wagamama and Haagen Dazs.
5. Zorlu Center:The 105,000 square meter Zorlu Center Mall artfully combines
indoor and outdoor space nestled in green areas flanked by sparkling
pools in a shopping emporium featuring 200 exclusive brands, some
coming to Turkey for the first time. It is on the Gayrettepe Station of M2
Metro Line.
ICRAT 2014 Conference Guide

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