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77 #ITOps luminaries to follow on Twitter

Mitch Pronschinske Senior Editor and Content Manager, HashiCorp

Because companies constantly shift the way they manage IT infrastructure and operations, staying on top of all the new paradigms can be overwhelming. That's why it's important to keep up with the right people—IT operations management experts in tech areas such as DevOps, containers, orchestration, site reliability engineering (SRE), network engineering, security operations, IT service management (ITSM), data center operations, serverless, and cloud computing.

TechBeacon has gathered a helpful list of IT Ops knowledge-sharers in a variety of fields so that you can stay in the loop on the most interesting trends from around the industry.

Charity Majors

Founder, CEO, and engineer, Honeycomb

As one of the best-known operations engineers and founders in Silicon Valley, Majors has some of the best Twitter threads for SREs, DevOps engineers, developers, and various operations professionals to learn from. After building her renown at Parse and Facebook, she co-founded Honeycomb, a monitoring/observability service. Not only should you follow Majors on Twitter, but you should also read her engrossing articles at charity.wtf and honeycomb.io/blog.

Krish Subramanian

Founder and chief research advisor, Rishidot Research

"Future asteroid farmer" is the only phrase you need to read in Subramanian's Twitter bio to know that he's always thinking at the cutting edge. Once a director of strategy at Red Hat, Subramanian now leads his own consulting firm and shares his thoughts about enterprise IT, DevOps, machine learning and AI, cloud-native applications, and serverless. He's a must-follow for IT strategists who want to stay on top of the biggest trends.

Adrian Cockcroft

VP, cloud architecture strategy, AWS

As a frequent conference speaker, Cockcroft remains at the forefront of breaking technology. He has extensive knowledge of the cloud space, evidenced by his current place at AWS and former role as a cloud architect at Netflix. He was also a distinguished engineer at eBay and Sun Microsystems.

Kelsey Hightower

Staff developer advocate, Google Cloud Platform, Google

Hightower is an expert on containers, Google's Go programming language, and Kubernetes. An advocate for open source, he works at Google and frequently shares his knowledge in workshops and conferences. He's most notably an all-star on the Ops speaking circuit.

Nicole Forsgren

Founder, CEO, and chief scientist, DevOps Research and Assessments

As an expert in using metrics to make software better, Forsgren says she likes to "rub science on things." She's been named a Top 10 Thought Leader in DevOps, a Top 100 Leader, and a Top 20 Most Influential Woman in DevOps. An IT impacts expert, she sees her role as someone who can show leaders and tech professionals how to unlock the potential of technology change. When she feels strongly about a subject, she doesn't pull her punches, and her tweets reflect that attitude.

Jez Humble

Founder and CTO, DevOps Research and Assessment

Humble is a co-author of the Jolt Award-winning Continuous Delivery, Lean Enterprise, and the DevOps Handbook. He says he's spent his career tinkering with code, infrastructure, product development, and consulting in companies of varying sizes across three continents. Most recently, he worked for the US government at 18F and is currently researching how to build high-performing teams at his startup, DevOps Research and Assessment, as well as teaching at UC Berkeley.

Lara Hogan

Founder and engineering coach/consultant, Wherewithall

IT operations management ultimately comes down to leading and organizing engineers. After four years as the engineering director at Etsy and a short run as the vice president of engineering at Kickstarter, Hogan has become a popular emerging leader in the field of engineering leadership and coaching. She has since co-founded Wherewithall, a engineering coaching and leadership consultancy. Read some of the excellent articles on her blog when you have a minute.

Simon Wardley

Advisor, Leading Edge Forum

Wardley is an advisor to governments and global corporations; he has written an online book and video course on his topographical intelligence maps for business. He's got a knack for judging trends and is a C-level's best friend.

Werner Vogels

CTO, Amazon

While many C-level Twitter accounts often are too generic and high-level to offer any practical advice for IT operations managers, Vogels' account is well-populated with helpful, actionable content. And as the CTO of Amazon, he has a following that is massive and insights that are cutting-edge.

Andi Mann

Chief technology advocate, Splunk

After working as the vice president of products, strategy, and marketing at CA, Mann landed at Splunk, where he focuses on helping teams analyze their operational intelligence data. He also works as a business technology strategist for Sageable. He's a great person to follow for insights on the intersection of DevOps and machine learning.

Brendan Gregg

Cloud computing performance analyst, Netflix

Gregg is currently a performance analyst at Netflix, and previously he was a performance specialist at Joyent. He does some incredible work with performance, monitoring, and visualization (pro tip: check out his work with flame graphs), and presents on his work regularly at conferences such as Velocity and USENIX LISA. He shares most of his cool performance findings at brendangregg.com.

John Allspaw

Co-founder, Adaptive Capacity Labs

Allspaw is best-known for his work as the CTO of Etsy and an engineering manager at Flickr. An expert on using heuristics for troubleshooting highly complex, scalable systems, Allspaw gave the seminal talk on DevOps, titled "10+ Deploys per Day: Dev and Ops Cooperation at Flickr," with Paul Hammond, at Velocity 2009. He's also the author of the books Web Operations (with Jesse Robbins) and Capacity Planning.

Jessie Frazelle

Software engineer, Microsoft

Frazelle worked as an engineer at Google and Docker before landing at Microsoft. She was a maintainer for Docker and has contributed code to Runc, Kubernetes, and the Go language. At Microsoft, she now works on Linux at a time when the company is releasing its own custom kernels for the first time. Make sure you read her blog if you're working in Linux or using containers.

Julia Evans

Software engineer, Stripe

While her title may be "software engineer," Evans' does it all: networking, site reliability/monitoring, database management, kernel hacking, and container orchestration. Fans of her Twitter account should also read her blog, which has great introductions to many operations topics that are considered difficult by newcomers.

Baron Schwartz

Founder and CEO, VividCortex

His path started with an interest in time-series databases and their potential to improve software monitoring, which led to the creation of VividCortex, Schwartz's tool for deep database monitoring. As a developer of monitoring and observability software, Schwartz knows a thing or two about best practices for reliability engineering.

Cindy Sridharan

Engineer, Apple

Sridharan is one of the best writers and speakers to emerge in the operations engineering community over the last few years. Her popular blog posts—Monitoring and Observability, Testing Microservices, the sane way, and Testing in Production, the safe way—were not touted as highly experienced advice. Nevertheless, the posts were widely praised by the operations community. Now the ideas from many of those posts are going into her new book, Scaling Microservices: Platform Engineering for Distributed Systems.

Randy Bias

VP, cloud technology and strategy, Jupiter Networks

Ever heard the advice, "Treat your servers like cattle, not pets"? That analogy was formulated by Randy Bias, an outspoken cloud expert who's been at the forefront of cloud computing's evolution. He founded an OpenStack startup called Cloudscaling, which was later acquired by EMC. He was also the inaugural director of the OpenStack Foundation. These days he works at Juniper Networks and talks about edge computing, virtual machines versus containers, and plenty of other infrastructure topics.

Tanya Reilly

Principal software engineer, Squarespace

Reilly built her reputation working at Google for 12 years as a sysadmin and SRE focused on distributed locking, load balancing, bootstrapping, and other things related to low-level infrastructure. You can get some great insights into the world of SREs by checking out her tweets and following her blog, noidea.dog.

Caskey Dickson

SRE, Microsoft

Dickson is an Azure SRE at Microsoft, and previously he was an SRE at Google. Known for SRE, operations, and monitoring expertise, he speaks at various conferences about operations and monitoring for large, complex infrastructures.

David Linthicum

Chief cloud strategy officer, Deloitte Consulting

Linthicum has been a cloud computing consultant for many years, first as a senior vice president for Cloud Technology Partners, and now as the chief cloud strategy officer at Deloitte. He has also been a prolific writer for InfoWorld and TechBeacon. Take a look at the steady stream of talks and articles he shares on Twitter, and be sure to check out some of his 50-plus TechBeacon articles.

Mark Thiele

CIO and CSO, Apcera

Thiele's expertise is in strategic management in IT operations, including data center and cloud. He describes himself as an IT staff and function turnaround expert. "During my career I've taken four different highly dysfunctional groups on the verge of replacement and turned them around to being high functioning, high retention teams," he posted in his LinkedIn profile. He's also the president and founder of the nonprofit data center industry organization Data Center Pulse, a board member of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, and standards committee chairman for the International Data Center Authority.

Dana Gardner

President and principal analyst, Interarbor Solutions

Gardner shares several articles a day, staying on top of numerous topics such as hybrid cloud, software-defined infrastructure (SDI), the Internet of Things (IoT), cybersecurity, big data, and much more. As a creator of blog and podcast content himself, he has an eye for useful content and key stories.

Joe the IT Guy

"IT guy," SysAid Technologies

Joe is not only famous for his blog at joetheitguy.com; he's also a prolific tweeter. Joe is passionate about all topics within the ITSM space. Besides sharing his own blog posts on Twitter, he closely watches and retweets the best pieces from IT Ops professionals.

Julia Harrison

Senior product manager, eBay

Another popular pseudonym in the expert space, Harrison (a.k.a. Julia from IT) is well-versed in topics including ITSM, DevOps, and agile. For anyone who wants to learn more about operations-leaning product management and end-user infrastructure, Harrison is the one you need to follow.

Tom Limoncelli

SRE manager, Stack Overflow

Limoncelli wrote the book on system administration, literally. First, it was The Practice of System and Network Administration, then The Practice of Cloud Administration. He also wrote Time Management for System Administrators (among others). Currently an SRE manager at Stack Overflow, he previously worked at Google and Bell Labs. He's a regular speaker at national and international conferences. Limoncelli blogs at everythingsysadmin.com.

Lori MacVittie

Principal technical evangelist, F5 Networks

MacVittie is one of the best, most experienced people to follow on Twitter if you're looking for networking operations resources. She's a veteran of more than 10 years at F5 Networks and a board member of both CloudNOW and the DevOps Institute. Follow MacVittie to keep up to date on the latest NetOps and NetSec news and tutorials.

Greg Ferro

Co-founder and co-host/producer, Packet Pushers

Another excellent person to follow if you're looking for content on NetOps and software-defined networking (SDN) is Greg Ferro. In addition to his new-media startup, Packet Pushers, Ferro also works as a contract network engineer/architect. Be sure to check out his network engineering podcasts at Packet Pushers and read his blog at Etherealmind.com.

Akshay Anand

ITSM product manager and evangelist, AXELOS Global Best Practice

Anand is a diligent follower of the ITSM Twitter community. While he doesn't tweet as frequently as some of the others on this list, his Twitter feed is a distilled list of the best tweets and resources from around the IT operations community. He also live-tweets plenty of conferences throughout the year.

Stuart Miniman

Senior analyst, SiliconANGLE Media

Miniman is a co-host of theCUBE, a video interview show on enterprise tech, so he's well-connected in the IT industry. He's also a principal researcher for Wikibon, a popular community site for sharing technology and business resources. Miniman's topics of specialization include storage, networks, virtualization, hyperscale infrastructure, and cloud.

Ivor Macfarlane

ITSM trainer and consultant, MacfPartners

Macfarlane worked at IBM for many years before starting his own consultancy. Described as a "service management pontificator," Macfarlane has written several books on ITSM. Follow his tweets for great advice on the human side of IT management.

Sarbjeet Johal

Principal advisor (cloud, big data, SaaS, digital transformation), independent consultant

Johal's résumé includes some of the biggest enterprise IT companies on the planet, such as Oracle, VMware, EMC, Rackspace, and Visa. Now an independent consultant, Johal shares on his Twitter feed a bunch of research on cloud computing, venture capital, and several other IT topics.

Lawrence Hecht

Research director, The New Stack

For fresh research and insights on containers, cloud computing, security, and other IT operations topics, Hecht is an excellent person to follow on Twitter. Not only is he a research director for The New Stack, but he's also the director of content for Strategic Coin and an independent consultant.

Kiran Mova

VP, engineering, OpenEBS project

If you're more interested in the storage side of IT operations, Mova is a great person to follow. From there you can find others in the storage community through his replies and responses. In addition to being the vice president of engineering for the OpenEBS project, Mova is also the director of engineering at CloudByte.

Miha Kralj

Managing editor, cloud strategy and architecture science, Accenture

Having worked at Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, and IBM, Kralj is an expert in the cloud space. Follow his account if you want to keep up with container, serverless, and cloud vendor news, along with Kralj's thoughtful opinions and analysis on these trends.

Greg Sanker

CIO, Oregon Department of Administrative Services

In addition to his CIO position, Sanker is an author at ITSMtransition.com. His account is another good C-level resource for the ITSM space, with frequent, helpful pieces of advice.

Doug Tedder

Principal, Tedder Consulting

Tedder's Twitter account has a ton of insightful commentary for the numerous articles he shares. All of the content and commentary are tightly focused on ITSM and IT leadership.

Earl Begley

ITT compliance officer, San Francisco International Airport

Begley keeps followers informed about ITSM and a good number of topics adjacent to it. Before becoming a compliance officer at SFO, he worked for several years in IT at the University of Kentucky.

Stephen Mann

Principal analyst and content director, ITSM.Tools

As a writer and editor who has researched the ITSM space as an analyst at Forrester and then as a product marketer at SeviceNow, Mann keeps a thorough watch on the ITSM and service desk sector.

Abby Kearns

Executive director, Cloud Foundry Foundation

For keeping up with the open-source cloud community, especially Cloud Foundry news, be sure to follow Kearns. Kubernetes, cloud-native applications, and microservices are also in her wheelhouse.

James Watters

SVP, products, Pivotal

Watters comes from the Sun Microsystems and VMware lineage. His tweets focus on Kubernetes, Cloud Foundry, and Spring Boot for microservices.

Cornelia Davis

Senior director, technology, Pivotal

Davis helps customers develop and execute on Pivotal's cloud platform strategies. Responsible for guiding clients on the technical elements of broader transformation, she helps development teams, operations teams, and IT executives understand and adopt new systems, platforms, and processes.

Damon Edwards

Co-founder and chief product officer, Rundeck

Edwards says DevOps, IT operations, and improving how businesses operate are his things. He co-founded Rundeck, which makes an IT automation platform designed to bring simplicity, agility, visibility, and control to enterprise business processes. Prior to that, he was a founder and managing partner at DTO Solutions, a consulting group that helps root out bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and unreliability across the application lifecycle.

J. Wolfgang Goerlich

VP, strategic programs, Creative Breakthroughs

Goerlich uses his background in systems engineering, software development, and information security to act as a cultural change agent, drive security initiatives, and raise security postures. His specialties include secure development lifecycle management, continuity planning, and disaster recovery.

Mark Imbriaco

Global CTO for DevOps, Pivotal

Imbriaco has worked at numerous companies, including Operable, Digital Ocean, GitHub, LivingSocial, SalesForce, Heroku, 37 Signals, and AOL. He understands ops, architecture, resiliency, and even team-building, mentoring, and culture.

Patrick Cable

Senior infrastructure security engineer, Threat Stack

Cable formerly held a research role at Lincoln Secure Resilient Systems and the technologies group at MIT, with prior experience at MIT in network design, simulation, and management. He's still active in the USENIX LISA and Velocity communities, but these days he's pivoted toward secure infrastructure communities as well.

Kaimar Karu

President, itSMF Estonia

Karu has a diverse background in IT. He has worked in operations, software development, project and program management, and service management. He has a passion for helping people learn and improve, and has worked as a teacher, trainer, and coach in schools, universities, and professional training organizations across Europe.

Nigel Kersten

Chief technical strategist, Puppet

Kersten came to Puppet from Google, where he was responsible for the design and implementation of one of the largest Puppet deployments in the world. At Puppet, he's had a variety of roles, including head of product, CTO, CIO, and now chief technology strategist. He has been deeply involved in Puppet’s DevOps initiatives, and regularly speaks around the world about the adoption of DevOps in the enterprise and the transformation of IT organizations. He likes to pepper his Twitter feed with whimsy such as, "Scanning blank pages of passports feels like it should be a metaphor for something."

Jonah Kowall

VP, market development and insights, AppDynamics

Kowall's long history in computing extends back to the 1990s, when he co-founded one of the first content-filtering companies. He spent 15 years as a practitioner and manager focusing on infrastructure and operations in both startups and large enterprises. He worked at Gartner before joining AppDynamics, where he looks to innovate, design, and implement secure and best-of-breed systems and architectures.

Jochen Lillich

Founder and managing director, freistil IT

Lillich describes himself as an IT operations black belt and tech geek. He founded freistil IT, which hosts high-performance websites on WordPress and Drupal. He has extensive experience managing big IT infrastructures and business-critical applications. He's a former IT manager at the German Internet portal Web.de and 1&1, one of the world's biggest web hosting providers.

Ross Mauri

General manager, z Systems, IBM

In his more than 30 years with IBM, Mauri has held technical and management roles in a variety of areas, including design development, quality assurance, and marketing. He has extensive experience in IBM's mainframe business, as well as its server and storage platforms. His Twitter feed is a good account to keep up with what's happening to mainframes at IBM.

Matt Oswalt

Product marketing manager, Jupiter Networks

Oswalt says he realized that a technology-oriented field was in his destiny when he wrote his first Windows batch script as a kid. He enjoys learning about and operating all types of networks, but lately his focus has been on the data center. He's usually at his happiest sitting in a room with a virtualization guy and a traditional networking guy and mediating a technical conversation to get stuff done.

Rhonda Ascierto

Research director for data centers and critical infrastructure at 451 Research

Drawing on her 15 years of experience in IT and business, Ascierto has been a speaker and served on panels at DCD Enterprise conferences, Uptime Institute symposiums, and the Data Center Summit. She writes about data center energy management, energy-efficient data center cooling, and modular data center designs.

Tim Crawford

CIO strategic advisor, AVOA

Crawford has an international reputation in the areas of IT transformation, cloud computing, data analytics, and the IoT and is among the 20 people most often retweeted by IT leaders. A recent popular tweet by Crawford was his take on why enterprises are moving away from the public cloud.

Davis Fisher

Global account manager, CentricsIT

At CentricsIT, Fisher specializes in optimizing costs and effort within the data center while maintaining innovation. He also helps IT departments with data center relocations and migrations. His company is not a VAR, a maintenance provider, or an MSP.

Joshua Feinberg

Chief thought leader, vice president, and co-founder, Home Run, Inc.

An old hand at Microsoft channel programs, Feinberg now focuses on differentiation, thought leadership, competitive positioning, sales cycle acceleration, and revenue growth. Tweet topics range from choosing cleaning companies for data centers to why data centers should use social media.

David Mainville

CEO and co-founder, Navvia

Mainville is a popular thought leader on Twitter, with ITSM and business process management being his main areas of focus. However, he follows all of the major trends in IT and shares great content about those topics in his feed.

John Heiderscheidt

Compliance/business development, MDI Access

Heiderscheidt is a Chicago-area attorney and real estate broker who focuses on all aspects of data centers. Recent tweets touch on security, outage issues, and machine learning in the data center.

Bill Kleyman

CTO, MTM Technologies

Kleyman is not only a cloud and virtualization architect and the CTO of MTM, but also a prolific freelance writer who has published over 800 articles and interactive pieces. Currently, he covers everything from data center design to virtualization and cloud best practices.

Bryan Loewen

Executive managing director, Newmark Knight Frank

Loewen is responsible for global acquisitions, sales, site selection, and development of data centers, colocation facilities, and hosting sites for the global corporate services division of the commercial real estate services firm Newmark Knight Frank. In addition to tweeting about data center real estate deals and openings, he also writes about breaking data center news.

Greg Schulz

Founder, Server StorageIO

In addition to his writing endeavors, Schulz is the founder of StorageIO, a provider of consulting services about data infrastructure topics to vendors, end users, and VARs. Many of his tweets touch on virtualization and storage subjects.

Kim Stevenson

Senior VP and GM, data center infrastructure, Lenovo

Stevenson is passionate about digital transformation. She believes every business decision today is shaped by technology. She maintains that technology is disrupting every business and only two choices are available: be a disrupter or be disrupted; standing still is not an option. In addition to her data center tweets, she also tweets about staffing issues and cloud computing.

Libby Clark

Editorial director, The New Stack

Clark is a thought leader and editorial director at The New Stack. She’s passionate about open-source communities and collaboration. Check out Clark’s tweets for an exploration of the intersection of tech with business.

Michael Hausenblas

Developer advocate, Red Hat

Hausenblas is an Apache Mesos, Docker, and Kubernetes guru. He says his experience with Docker, Kubernetes, and Mesos is based on both profit and fun. His tweets often cover data processing, microservices, and the IoT.

Solomon Hykes

Board member, Docker

Who better to follow in the container community than Hykes, the founder of Docker? While he has stepped down from the company's management and joined the board of directors, the self-professed entrepreneur and hacker regularly engages in discourse with fellow thought leaders.

Vincent Batts

Principal software engineer, Office of the CTO, Red Hat

Red Hat principal software engineer Batts focuses on Linux, Linux containers, and polyglot programming. An open-source enthusiast, Batts is an open container proponent. Tech tweets aside, Batts often shares meditative thoughts and humorous quips.

Joseph Jacks

Founder, KubeCon

Jacks founded KubeCon and was one of the Kismatic founders, a Kubernetes company that was acquired by Apprenda. He's also very active in the Cloud Native Foundation and tweets about all things Kubernetes. Check out Jacks’ Twitter feed for thoughts on startups and open-source tech.

Alex Polvi

CEO, CoreOS (acquired by Red Hat)

In 2008 Polvi founded Cloudkick, and he had stints at Mozilla and Rackspace before becoming CEO of CoreOS. He also serves as a board member with the Internet Security Research Group. Polvi concentrates on CoreOS and Kubernetes, advocating regularly for open containers. Follow him for excellent performance and security coverage.

Sebastian Goasguen

Senior director, cloud technologies, Bitnami

Goasguen is an avowed lover of open source, Docker, the Apache Software Foundation, and Kubernetes. He has had stints as the founder of Skippbox, an open-source cloud architect at Citrix, and vice president of Apache CloudStack. Goasguen shares his wealth of technical expertise in the Docker Cookbook and the Kubernetes Cookboook.

Craig McLuckie

Founder and CEO, Heptio

McLuckie was formerly a group product manager at Google, and he co-founded the Kubernetes project. Heptio, his new company, is a Kubernetes support and distribution-maintaining company. He is a native-cloud advocate whose passions include clusters and containers. Within the container space, McLuckie notably covers container standards.

Bryan Cantrill

CTO, Joyent

Joyent CTO Cantrill is a system software master. His in-depth knowledge of kernels, code, and Unix in particular permeate his Twitter feed. Follow Cantrill for technical talk that’s often quite hilarious.

Brandon Philips

CTO, CoreOS (acquired by Red Hat)

Philips serves as the CTO of CoreOS and has an abundance of Linux kernel and systems knowledge. He focuses on Kubernetes and remains heavily involved in open-source communities. He’s a go-to for the latest info on Tectonic, Quay, Go, and the rkt container runtime.

Ben Hall

Creator of Katacoda.com

A self-described developer, product hacker, tester, and trainer, Hall runs Katacoda, a platform for technology education straight from a browser. Its hands-on approach features labs for learning Docker and containers, Kubernetes, running .NET in Docker, and loads more. Hall spreads his knowledge through his blog and social media. Follow his thoughts about Docker, .NET, and Kubernetes.

Patrick Chanezon

Technical staff member, Docker

A technical staff member at Docker, Chanezon works on building the widely used open platform. He’s an excellent resource for all things Docker. With a bevy of expertise in the tech field, he stays active as an evangelist spreading his knowledge of REST APIs and Docker orchestration.

Andrew Vest

VP, commercial sales, Polyverse

Vest lends a unique perspective on the DevOps space and areas where business meets tech. Formerly the director of business development at Redapt, Vest now focuses on topics around automating secure cloud deployments.

Chanwit Kaewkasi

Co-founder, Aiyara Cluster Research Lab

A scholar and Docker captain, Kaewkasi is an assistant professor of computer engineering at the Suranaree University of Technology and a Docker contributor. As a maintainer for Docker swarm mode, Kaewkasi reviews pull-requests and writes patches. He is a must-follow for Docker swarm mode users.

Paul Bakker

Senior software engineer, Netflix

Bakker is a leading authority on Docker, Go, Kubernetes, and TypeScript. The author of Building Modular Cloud Apps with OSGi and Java 9 Modularity, Bakker enjoys chatting about Kubernetes, Java, and Docker. You have to read his retrospective about his first year with Kubernetes.

Brendan Burns

Distinguished engineer, Azure Container Services, Microsoft

As the former lead engineer on Kubernetes, Burns is a seasoned authority in the container space. He's a good person to follow if your cloud applications are in the Azure ecosystem, since that's the space he primarily tweets about.

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