Thursday, 26 February 2015

School is hard.

**I am posting this currently in a Free Period so woohoo!!**

So we're sorry. Seriously, so sorry!
We severely underestimated the hard work and time it took to be in year 11! It has only been a few weeks and a half and we're already swamped with homework, classes and extracurriculars.

In the midst of that we forgot this beautiful platform, a chance to be creative, to have a release, to learn, research and share content with people all over the world.
We forgot to Ponder Parity.
And for that, we totally apologise.

We've had a chat and we realise that its going to be hard to juggle but we will aim to write 2 blog posts every month. That's pretty ambitious but a challenge is good to keep us on our toes!

That being said, we have a few blog posts in drafts that are all pretty much half done so yay for that!

BUT, we need your help! Pondering shared, is pondering doubled! The more we ponder the better, and friends we were hoping you could give us questions, topics and feedback! The easiest way to interact with us is tweeting at us (@karennelapati and @cheesyemmalee) with anything you want us to hear. Alternatively, leave your comments on this post and we will be sure to take a look.

So help us out by pondering parity with us so that we can aim to build on the exciting foundations we've laid and create more content, more often!


Friday, 9 January 2015


"We shouldn't judge people through the prism of our own stereotypes."Queen Rania of Jordan  
:This post can be seen as a sort of sequel to this one:

From our first minutes on this planet to our last, we are pressured into fulfilling and conforming to certain gender roles. Wether it may be the colour we are allowed to like to the toys that we are made to play with, this stereotyping can cause some collateral damage in the long run. 

When I was younger, I absolutely adored bob the builder and toy trucks. I would have to wear a bob the builder shirt or else I would cry! It was safe to say I didn't have very many girl friends. It was hopefully not because I was a horrible person but more because of the fact that I was being viewed as one of the boys; dirty, action seeking and violent. It was all because we were bought up to believe that a girl could never do such a thing.

Gender Stereotypes are thrust upon us even before our first breath is taken. As soon as our gender is found out, the madness and subtle stereotyping begins! 

If it is going to be a girl, we are immediately inclined to have a pink nursery filled with soft and frilly decor. We assume that our daughter is going to be very girly and we then fill the closet with fancy dresses and the toy boxes with tea sets, barbies and dolls. Unbeknownst to us, we are essentially setting up young girls to be the "perfect" lady and therefore have them wear dresses, be obedient, serve food and take care of the children. Even from a young age, we are playing in dolls houses where we have the husband go to work and the wife stay at home to cook, care and clean. This leaves a lasting impression on the easily-mouldable (like play-doh) young mind.

Conversely, boys are also bought up to have another certain outlook so that they can be seen as a "real" man; work to provide for the family, work in a more physically demanding job, must be in charge and show no weakness. Most parents admit that they teach their sons the more hands-on housework such as mowing the lawn. This allows them to see that the expectation is for women to do the laundry and dishwashing and that they are to do the bulk of the handy work.

Stereotyping can be harmful as it virtually limits the capacity to develop our own personal abilities, professional careers and general choices about life and it's plans. Whilst some stereotypes are benign like women being nurturing, others are simply hostile and negative; "go back to the kitchen where you belong" or "real men don't cry". These hostile stereotypes are the ones that can take a real blow on a person's confidence and choices in life. Being constantly faced with these, it makes doing something out-of-the-norm that much harder; discrimination and rudeness. 

It is not to say that we have to stick to these generalisations or that they aren't truthful, but it makes it a lot more difficult to be a non-conformist as we still come across criticism, expectations and pressure to do the normal thing. 

Us at Pondering Parity, however, think that striving to be different and persevering through all the doubt is extremely rewarding in itself as the adventure is all about the journey.

It hasn't always been pink for girls and blue for boys, in fact it was very much the opposite back in the early 1900's; for instance a June 1918 article stated that, "The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger colour, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl." This only really changed in the 1980's where advertising companies re-linked boys with blue and girls with pink.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Pondering Parity in 2015.

"The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals" -Melody Beattie

'Ello 'Ello! We hope that you had a very Merry Christmas and that your new year is filled with joy and family. In 2015 we begin year 11 (EEP!) and our lives become hectic! But this blog has started to become a passion for us, its brought us closer and really opened our eyes to the disparity in the world which we've begun to ponder.

Hence the next exciting thing- We've chosen a new name! Welcome to "Pondering Parity" by K & E.
Nothing else will particularly change except maybe the aesthetic of our blog. The posts will still be the same with our "Women in the Workplace" posts continuing and various other bits. We also hope to connect more this year, by reaching out to the coolest people doing the coolest things to disband disparity! So hopefully some interviews with wonderful people.

The last thing is our breakthrough into the world of social media! Yep, we got twitter! You can follow our twitters @karennelapati and @CheesyEmmaLee. You can also follow our Tumblrs (although these do not relate to this blog) phraise and ducklifores. I also have instagram, but that is completely unrelated! But here is is anyway. Sorry for all the shameless self promotion!

So a few goals for 2015. (Resolutions perhaps...)
1. To make this blog more professional and aesthetic!
2. To make connections with you guys and other amazing people.
3. To make a kind of difference.
4. To explore more disparity in the world and wrestle with some difficult topics.
5. To grow this blog and make it something we're incredibly proud of!

We're done now right so to recap, Year 11, Pondering Parity, Social Media and some exciting goals. Oh and Happy New Year! Bring on 2015!

Friday, 26 December 2014

Burqua Barriers.

My body is my business, and I shouldn't have to defend what I wear to anyone. The burqa is part of my religion, and the fact that I choose to wear it does not make me any less human. -Ms. Yasmin, 21

So something we've noticed that has become an issue for women in Australia and many other western countries is their right to wear a burqua ( or niqab or hijab) for religious reasons. A burqua is "an enveloping outer garment worn by women in some islamic traditions to cover their bodies when in public." The muslim faith says "O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters, as well as all believing women, that they should draw over themselves some of their outer garments [when in public]: this will be more conducive to their being recognised as decent women and not molested." This simple command has lead to an outrageous amount of controversy surrounding the right to wear this form of religious garment. Many countries have in fact banned the wearing of the burqua including Russia, Germany, France and Italy. Debates have sparked arguing the burqua's legality for reasons such as oppression, retrospect, intimidation, security and male empowerment. However we believe that the burqua can be both part of a woman's identity and empowering if worn in cohesion with her own values and beliefs.

Many muslim women in fact find burquas and niqab's as a form of empowerment. A 22 year old woman from America was quoted saying ""Niqab is a very liberating and empowering experience. It allows me to realise my goals by having a career and going to school without worrying about the prying eyes of men. It forces people not to judge me based on my appearance, but on my thoughts and character." Most muslim women also make a personal choice to wear a burqua when in public and thus it is their decision and should be respected. Thus the burqua is not really an oppression or male empowerment (UNLESS THE WOMAN IS FORCED TO WEAR A BURQUA WITHOUT HER VOICE BEING HEARD) 

The argument that the burqua is 'retrospect' is also incorrect, the burqua whilst being an ancient tradition is still a part of muslim faith and culture today. Although an old principle it is still relevant today, who are we to say that an age old tradition is outdated when we are not part of that tradition? 

The security issue is however a bit more of an ethical challenge. It is true that in parliamentary and banking facilities any type of facial covering is illegal for reasons of identification. However the burqua is no more dangerous that a motorcycle helmet or sunglasses. Both of these must be removed in these facilities and so too the burqua can be removed (in the presence of only women) for identification purposes. This is not a major issue in society and can be easily resolved. 

Hearing that in light of the recent Sydney Siege  women adorned in religious clothing have felt the need to remove it for fear of discrimination. Here in a pragmatic country like Australia, to have a minority scared to wear clothing in public is a disgrace. Extraordinarily Australia has banded together, creating the #illridewithyou campaign on social media, fighting the Islamaphobia that the Sydney Siege sparked. #illridewithyou was a campaign that aimed to show muslims that they were not alone and as they rode on public transport, everyday Australians would fight to ensure they felt safe.

So in a conclusion type thing, the burqua is not a dangerous garment to wear nor does it affect women's rights or security in any sense. The only way it does affect women is when the opportunity to express their religion is taken away or discriminated against, that is when the real issues occur. We don't aim to sell a religion to you but we simply hope to give you a perspective of the inequality that women are facing currently over such a trivial issue. So hopefully countries who have banned the burqua may rethink the decision and those who are considering it will not enforce this cruel discrimination over an important islamic garment. In the end whether you wear a burqua or a bikini, you are still a human and deserve the respect that humanity commands.

You can support the fight against burqua's banned here or simply take to social media and advocate freedom of dress in your country.

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

What Lego says about Women

"Great minds think alike, small minds rarely differ" - Greek Proverb

So my mum was browsing Facebook the other day when she came across this really great picture:

I had actually seen this picture a few times before, but I finally felt inclined to write about it after being prompted by Trudy and This.

This was 40 years ago, and lego had it right. This letter is basically entailing not to limit children to gendered toys, but rather expand their creativity and playing.

It was spreading a really good message; it doesn't matter on gender, you can do whatever and achieve greatness nonetheless. I also love the fact that it had been addressed to the parents who can, unknowingly, oppress their children from wanting to do something that isn't the 'status quo'.

But what has happened? It seems in today's society we have gone backwards and reverted to just letting children playing with gender specific toys. What also is quite irksome is the fact that there are gender specific toys to begin with; why not just let toys be toys?

Studies show that by late primary age, children already have their own clear ideas about jobs that are suitable for men and women, something that it hard to get rid of later. Themes of beauty and glamour are bestowed upon young women very early on which emphasises a need to worry on outward appearance. Consequently, the packaging used for young boys makes them out to be rough, dirty, rowdy and violent. This therefore tells the calmer more sensitive ones that they are getting the whole 'boy', thing wrong.

Again, how toys are labelled and marketed affects the consumers; many feel uncomfortable buying a pink toy for a boy. Other consumers can simply be made unaware by the restriction of toys that are offered in each 'section'; science and construction toys missing from the girls aisle.

Because of these boundaries, young children are never fully given the opportunity to play with these toys and therefore form an attraction to them. Children are then taking in these messages and the social rule that there are certain things for boys and certain things for girls. 

This leads to them then forming their own idea of what a real girl should do and how a boy's toy is just simply taboo.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Amazing Advances.

Changes are products of intensive efforts.” ― Muhammad Yunus

So we talk a lot about the inequality issues in the world (and boy we could talk until the cows come home!) but we recently noticed some cool campaigns and people helping change the lives of women all over the world. This was so inspiring to us and so we thought we'd share them with you. If you have the time or the money the words will be hyperlinked to show you how YOU can support the cause!

So here are some Amazing Advances in women's rights and the push for equality!

This is one of our favourites! HeforShe is a United Nation solidarity movement which encourages men young and old to support gender equality and create equal opportunities for the benefit of all.
You can Donate to advance the UN movement and begin the push for gender equality all over the world, or simply spread the word about the efforts of HeforShe and the importance of gender equality.

MalalaYousafzai after being shot in the head in Pakistan by the Taliban for standing up for her right to education. Now Malala is a social rights activist campaigning for the rights of young women all over the world to have equal access to schooling and education.
You can Donate to the Malala Fund or simply join Malala and raise your voice for millions of others.

One Woman
One Woman is a youth lead organisation that aims to educate and advocate women's rights.
You can attend the Seminar Series or join the campaigns to help make a difference in womens rights all over the world.

Leaders in Heels
Leaders in Heels is a community based website which focuses on inspiring individuals through thoughts, posts and advice. Their community is accessable to all and invites women to stand up and take their places as leaders. You can join the community and show your support by reading their articles and ingesting their wisdom.

The Representation Project
This one is amazing! The Representation Project aims to expose injustices created by Gender Stereotypes. They have resources and information to educate people of the truly terrible stereotypes that exist. The Project has had many successes and has stopped many sexist campaigns from being aired. You can Donate to the cause or simply educate yourself via their Resources. Alternatively you can Take Action through the use of social media.

I don't think we need to say anymore! WE LOVE GOLDIEBLOX! Debbie Sterling has created a wonderful platform for young girls to start learning engineering principles. And its super fun to play with! You can buy the sets here.

College By Kids
Now this one is not really for equality specifically BUT we think that Trudy Graham's cause and her work promoting childrens blogs is fantastic and also we love her for giving us some wonderful oppertunities. Shout out to Trudy!

Developing Innovations
This innovative (wink) site was created by a 16 year old Canadian boy with a passion for STEM and developing the futures of other young innovators like himself! We've been delighted to connect with him! It's inspiring to see young people supporting one another and making changes in society! So this one is one of our favourites!

These are just a few of our favourite campaigns but there are so many people doing so many amazing things in the world! We've come a long way but there is still so much more to do! So its not all bad news! Get out there and help the causes guys! All of these campaigns are so inspiring to young bloggers like us! Tweet at us (@karennelapati) or comment below!

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Bye-Bye Goldieblox!

"We only part to meet again." -John Gay

So the inevitable time has come. Thats right, our IST project has ended and we must wave goodbye to the incredible initiative that begun this journey. So as we wave a sad farewell to both Goldieblox and IST in our schooling careers some things about this blog are going to change. Now don't go freaking out or anything, the blogging will continue! However as Em and I go into Year 11 (AAAHH!) we will have more school and extracurricular commitments. We do love writing this blog and we will try our hardest to post regularly.

But we will be ending the 'Goldieblox Series' on our blog. We are sad to say goodbye to this important part of our blog and thank Debbie Sterling and the creators for inspiring us to blog about the importance of equality. We admire them for the inspiration they provide for young girls and boys!
So bye bye Goldieblox!

Thank you for staying with us and we hope that even though our Goldieblox days are behind us our blog will still be enjoyable and informative and inspire others!

Also, we need something from you! As we've finished IST and Goldieblox, we're going to need a new URL and a new blog name! If you have any ideas feel free to comment them below this post OR tweet me at @karennelapati


Thursday, 4 December 2014

Women in the Workplace - Construction

"The road to success is always under construction." - Arnold Palmer
When you think of builders, you stereotypically think of a man wearing overalls and big dirty boots; a woman does not typically come to mind. Why is this?

Construction itself is one of Australia’s largest industries, employing nine per around 1 million people! Currently 12 per cent of these workers in the industry are women (represent!) , although still only a small proportion of these work in traditional trade type roles.

This isn't to say that women are not equipped enough to be a good tradie, in fact women are thought to match and if not exceed the men in the industry.Women with a good level of fitness are able to
match it with the boys in any of the construction trades. There are also key trades, such as tiling
and painting, where brute strength is not a requirement.

The reason for this gap could be one of nonconformity to typical female roles. It is historically unusual for a woman to be in a construction site and these historical norms make it difficult for women to overcome this stereotype and prejudice in today's society.

In fact, some men find it rather off putting to work with a woman in such an environment. Potential partners can also find it quite emasculating to be involved with a potentially more muscular and rougher person than him. This often stops women from pursuing a  career in construction for fear of being perceived as manly and not fit to be a good partner.

The media also engrains in young women that to be a 'proper young woman' building is a man's job. This can be seen in children's T.V. shows such as Bob the Builder where Wendy is just part of the 'crew'. The Bob the Builder Wiki says that Wendy 'runs the office and organises the tools' not actually building things as could be assumed.

So in a society where women are underrepresented in the construction industry, we need to say (BOB THE BUILDER) Can WOMEN fix it? (BOB THE BUILDER) YES THEY CAN!!!

Monday, 1 December 2014

Race CarsTM

"Every little kid has always wanted to be a race car driver. This gets some of that out." -David Alan Grier

ITS FINALLY HERE! WE DID IT! The tutorial you've all been waiting for, here you are, Race CarsTM. We won't blabber on for too long, a couple of thank you's and a link and there you are!

So first the thank yous, Manymanymany thanks to Mrs Ebbs for putting up with our crazy ideas and film sessions.
The SCAS IT crew for lending us Cameras and Goldiblox.
Thank you!!

Anyway, here she is lads, Race CarsTM.

Sunday, 30 November 2014

Goldiblox- The Beginning of the End.

"What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from." -T. S. Eliot

Alrightyyy! So we're almost there, Goldiblox and these IST Adventures of Epicness are come to a close! This makes us very sad! So we've created our video tutorial for Race Cars (TM) and will launch it as soon as we can! Finishing touches to make sure it is as amazing as possible! We thank you for being with us and bearing with our crazy ramblings and random writings! So as the end begins we would like to just describe our process a little bit! So here we go!

Initially before picking a project we had a tinker with Leap Motion, the 3D printer, Makey-Makeys and many more exciting pieces of software but we really saw a potential in Goldiblox to encourage younger girls to pursue an intuitive path toward perhaps engineering. So Goldiblox it was!

We then decided (after having a few hours to play and create things out of the pieces) that we could create our own device and make a cool stop motion tutorial to teach people how to make the device!

So after lots (I MEAN LOTS) of procrastination and failed planning we decided on something exciting and not too difficult (for us or you!) and Race Cars (TM) was born! And so plans to film were decided.

So we filmed some stop motion-esq building of Race Cars (TM) and were immediately super excited to put it together!!!!

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Saucy Sources.

"We all need a fair shake of the Sauce Bottle" -Kevin Rudd.

Okay, so on this very large and majestic internet world there are so many wonderful sources for kids like us who are keen to know more about the world. As this blog begins to grow we thought it was only right to acknowledge the many websites and people who have enlightened us on this Goldieblox journey, so heres to you- the Sauciest of Sources!

Thanks go to,

For giving us the wonderful quotes at the beginning of each post. Also of course the cool people who said things!
For the statistics and easy to access data that helps us communicate the things we want to say.

For the inspiration to create the video and the excitement that playing with Goldieblox brings (even to 16 year olds like us!)

For the information used in the "Women in the Workplace- IT" blogpost.
Ever wondered how we make our banners? Fotor is so easy to use and adorable that we can't halp it!

Our lovely teacher Mrs Ebbs who gave us the inspiration and motivation to create this blog and her passion for the empowerment of women. Her knowledge is the sole source we used in '"A Moral Dilemma" and her drive to make us more deep and clever than we ever thought we could be!

There are so many more sites that deserve to be thanked but Emily and I, we're awful people and we cannot remember all of these sites. So thank you internet, its a pleasure to be a part of this internet community.

So thanks for being the sauciest sourcerers around! (Puns!!!!!)

Until next time!


“Gratitude is one of the least articulate of the emotions, especially when it is deep.” – Felix Frankfurter

Wow. We can not quite fathom how we could start with such a simple in-class assignment and gather so much attention in such a short time. We are seriously thankful and it is really quite amazing as we are just two run-of-the-mill 16year old girls!

We were fuelled, to write this blog, by our curiosity about women in the workplace as well as the amazing message Always and Goldieblox are trying to send.

Originally, this was just meant to be a blog that would continue only as long as the in class assessment, however, because of the amazing response we've received, we have been given an astounding medium to reach out and continue to write about this important issue.

After a long thought, we have decided to try and keep this blog going even though it marks the end of our assessment. While the posts may be fewer and further apart, we are definitely going to give it a good crack!

We are truly grateful for all the support and interest in our blog. It still feels rather surreal to have our own blog gather much intrigue and interest outside of our small IST class! 

Also, we never intend to offend men, but rather empower women to do things just as amazing.

So for the umpteenth time, Thankyou!

P.S We promise you the next post will be educational and exciting!

Monday, 24 November 2014

Women in the Workplace- Sport.

“I’m strong, I’m tough, I still wear my eyeliner.” – Lisa Leslie 

Right, so we are not the sportiest people ever but we have become aware of the inequality in another part of the workforce- the sports fields. Sports women (according to Forbes online) are payed an ridiculously lower sum to their male counterparts. This can be seen when comparing the highest paid female athlete Maria Sharapova who earns a total of $29 Million, this is pretty impressive right? Not when compared to Tiger Woods (highest paid athlete) who receives $78 Million in a year! Is Tiger Woods any more qualified for these earnings? The unequal pay is just the tip of the iceberg, the problem runs far deeper than this superficial statistic.

"You run like a girl", this childish insult promotes the idea that a girls run is worse than a boys. Although usually used pretty innocently, the idea behind this insult is corrupting young minds to believe that there is one sex that is better than the other at sport- which is not always true! Women sports people have been found to be determined and hardworking and thus no less to their male counterparts. 

We, whilst not sports people ourselves believe that women should have equal opportunity in the sports workplace, we dream of a time where men and women can run, swim, play and compete equally judged by performance not the gender they are. We dream of a time where "you play like a girl" is a compliment rather than an insult. Click Here!

A Moral Dilemma

Woman have to make a choice - their beloved children or their treasured career. In the past this choice had only one out come, quit working to raise a child. Modern women face the pressure of family, peers and society telling them that there is no choice. Women today have the morals of past societies thrust upon them and are not considered within the decision. Husbands, brothers, bosses and even mothers tell pregnant women that their baby and family must come before their job. A woman herself is aware of the responsibility to her family but she also sees the opportunities she may miss that will put her behind her colleagues. This poses a Moral Dilemma! Women unable to decide may find themselves feeling depressed at their indecisiveness and their partner upset at their decision.

Women must realise that it is not a black and white issue, this three dimensional dilemma cannot be solved through others opinions. Women need the time and the choice between the options. They must also have familial and work support. Education is vital in this choice, mothers must realise the options they have. Research into government support and funding can assist women who cannot afford time off to have their children.

We have no solid solution to this dilemma but we encourage women to talk to trusted friends and family and take time to make their decision. Regardless of their choice their position at work and their status of mother is unchanged, their worth is not measured by this decision and their choice should suit their goals aspirations and morals. Good luck!

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Goldiblox- Halfway.

"Woah-Oh we're halfway there; woah-oh- living on a prayer" -Bon Jovi

Alrighty! So after a bit of photo losing (and finding- thanks iPhoto!) drama, a tutorial for Goldiblox- Race Cars (TM) has been created. Whilst still in its early stages, chief media consultant Emily Hore has begun to create an easy to follow, stop motion video in hopes of inspiring young girls and boys to race their friends using innovation and basic engineering principles. There is potential for another tutorial however with the due date fast approaching it is unlikely that we will have time. 

Race Cars (TM) has been (mostly) a joy to create. The thought of younguns racing their favourite goldiblox characters around while learning engineering makes our hearts sing! Although the tutorial is not complete, we look forward to an innovative and exciting stop motion.

This blog is also being updated weekly with our Women in the Workplace initiative. We hope that you lovely readers are finding this interesting and informative and it is opening your eyes to potential change in the workplace and then the world! (Muhahaha) 

We hope you're enjoying our EPIC IST ADVENTURES and we look forward to showing you more exciting things!

Until next time!

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Women in the Workplace- Science

"Nobody . . . took me seriously. They wondered why in the world I wanted to be a chemist when no women were doing that. The world was not waiting for me."— Gertrude B. Elion

Science gives evidence that man and women are different but alike in the ability to complete activities. However the scientific proof, Women in science are still discriminated against because of men regarding them as 'inferior'. Strong Scientific progress has been achieved by women, examples include Marie Curie, Jane Goodall and many more. Women deserve equal opportunities within the scientific field but currently on 26% of the total scientific workforce is made up of women.  This is a field in which women are unable to break through. Mostly media and cultural factors influence women's participation in Science.

The Media's portrayal of scientifically career focused women displays an anaesthetic, unpopular scientist who cannot form relationships and is unbelievably nerdy. TV shows such as 'The Big Bang Theory' displays characters as unappealing and distasteful, deterring women from pursuing science. This is not primarily the TV shows fault as it simply reinforces a cultural view of women in science. Women have historically been uncommon in Scientific industries as in 1960 only 22 of the 55 women in the Marshal Space Centre of NASA were regarded 'certified scientists' the rest of the women were purely 'science workers'. This historic past has paved the way for an unequal future within the regards of science.

Science is a field that requires the intelligence that women can bring to the field. Men and women disregarding the equal rights that women deserve are leaving they're future generations with a culture of inequality and unfairness. These obstructors of justice are also hindering scientific advances by not providing brilliant minds equal opportunities.

A longitudinal study on children's beliefs about academic competency found that, beginning at an early age, girls rate their scientific ability lower than boys do, even when no actual difference in achievement exists. For this reason programmes to show girls their ability such as GERI are in place. Encouraging girls to pursue science is vital for a more successful society.

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