Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Apologies to Seward Peninsula and Happy New Year!

Progress Continues!

It's a fine day at Arketer Labs, barring complications the last of the infected should have a clean bill of health verified by 8:00pm ALT (Arketer Labs Timezone, not officially recognized but it helps keep things synchronized and geographically vague).

Almost all of the property damage has been repaired and a very large fruit basket has been sent to the Eskimo community of Seward Peninsula by way of apology for several unfortunate messages that somehow got around our isolation protocols.

We're very sorry.

Moving on.

The New Year Approaches!

In addition to the annual New Year's Eve parties in everyone's respective facilities there will be a voluntary cross-facility exhibition demonstrating all that is safe to demonstrate regarding present ongoing projects as well as featuring an interactive digital model of Deep Seven.

Participants will be able to, using the Deep Seven model, choose their personal quarters well in advance of it's completion! Very well in advance, in fact. By about five years.

Live music will be provided (albeit via broadcast for those not working in the Subterranean Lab) by our own enthusiast- but no less quality- band, The Band Down Under. They will be accompanied by former, but no less capable, professional songstress Henchperson #720943511.

Finally, everyone will be recieving a bottle of the champagne of their choice, from your respective commissaries and cafeterias in addition to what will be served at the party. Please drink responsibly and be aware most hazardous labs will be in lockdown from 9:00pm ALT until 5:00pm ALT, 2015.

For a full list of labs that will be in lockdown, consult the intranet schedule.

Happy New Year, everyone! I'm quite confident 2015 will be an excellent year for Science and, to the hypothetical approval of my Mentor, Revenge.

Progress Continues!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Recovery Report and Inexplicable Dragon Age : Inquisition Review.

All is well!

Yes, your Director has returned. Tests have all confirmed that my brain is back to a pre-infection state.

First and foremost I would like to officially apologize to everyone I may have insulted or threatened with violence and death while under the influence of the infection.

Strawman Syndrome is a nasty beast, but thanks to our most noble scientists it is a beast we have put down like a rabid dog. Only without remorse at the necessity.

I hope all of you have had an excellent holiday celebration and would like to announce that, assuming we have the last of the infected staff is cured by New Year's Eve, we will be celebrating by providing the champagne gratis at your respective parties. Thank all of you for bearing with us during this latest trial.

As I recovered I was unable to attend to my usual duties and after a regrettable incident where I apparently attempted to recruit the other infected in a second bid to escape isolation and launch what would have been a tragic and rather embarrassing assault on an Inuit community, I was rightfully severed from access to Arketer Lab's Intranet.

Once again I have a deep gratitude for all those who managed my isolation.

Onwards to the trivial things I amused myself with while in isolation.

I was graciously provided with access to a modified copy of Dragon Age ; Inquisition (My own Christmas Present if you will) that did not require an internet connection to pass the time as the cure was applied and allowed to work. I must recommend this game. It is, without a doubt, the finest single-player MMORPG I have played yet.

Yes, despite the occasionally tedious resource gathering, the combat is entertaining and all fights except for the last more or less interesting. The story is not terribly dynamic, most characters respond in precisely the same way regardless of your dialogue options, but decisions can be made that do indeed greatly effect the epilogue at the end.

And for those of you who have not played Dragon Age 2, seemingly well regarded as the lazy scat-smelling nadir of the series, you will not suffer much for having missed out on it. In fact, by all accounts you would have suffered far more if you hadn't.

You will however, meet the protagonist of that series as part of the narrative here. You will even be able to make them look identical to the protagonist you didn't play.

This is my Champeen of Kirkall, for example. It looks just like the character I never played.
This game is indeed very entertaining allowing you to meet characters like...


Cassandra, easily the most understanding and accepting fantasy Christian (Andrastian) interrogator ever conceived of. She's very intelligent and idealistic when not angry, though when she is angry she is as principled and intelligent as a crazed hobo with a large knife. She is usually angry. Despite this she is extremely understanding if your character happens to be a gay elf in a relationship with a fantasy muslim (Qunari) spy. As are all the companions really.


Such scenes, regardless of their feasibility within the established lore, make the game truly remarkable. Also Freddie Prinze Jr. has done a brilliant job of imbuing The Iron Bull with charisma.

It really is spectacularly absurd though.

For my part I am playing as an excommunicated fantasy muslim Mage, romancing Cassandra. She's quite likeable a character- if functionally insane- and the fact it's an option is almost as funny as the Iron Bull romances.

Also she is apparently the only straight woman in the game so far as I can tell.

The game is a worthwhile addition to any library belonging to someone with sufficient time to expend on it.  Thank you to those who got it for me, it killed the time awaiting my sanity to return painlessly.

The ending battle of the game though is a bit of a disappointment. Almost as much of one as siding with the Mages in the storyline, whom are depicted as bitter idiots with the survival instincts of suicidal hamsters.


Progress continues.

Ah, and Henchperson #62- you're going to love the replacement arm. By all accounts it is as compared to a conventional prosthetic what a swiss army knife is to a cheese cutter.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Important Update. More From the Inbox and Merry Christmas or whatever the hell you want to call it.



The Strawman Syndrome crisis is resolved! More or less.

After a great deal of hard, hurried work by our resident geniuses we have managed to devise a cure for the infection that results in Strawman Syndrome.

Again, for security reasons, I cannot go into detail into how it works. Suffice it to say it can be manufactured in sufficient quantity in a rapid period of time in order to cure all afflicted parties.

Naturally, there has not been time for the usual necessary safety protocols in testing so I, and certain Henchpeople, have volunteered to be infected and have the cure tested upon us. At least three other wretchedly insipid smarmy bastards have been 'cured', which is excellent as I was THAT CLOSE to trying to get my authority reinstated for the purpose of having them thrown bodily out of Sky Lab.

As mentioned before, I am temporarily without authority as a practical security precaution while I deal with the infection. I don't mind, I fully understand and have rather enjoyed the challenge of trying to circumvent the symptoms intellectually.

Not that I expect to succeed where so many other brilliant minds have failed.

Still, as an exercise I have decided to answer some messages from the inbox. First up, we have this tedious bastard.

Director Arketer :

Godspeed, Sir. Your efforts to deal with this attack rapidly and efficiently are not unappreciated. Has there been any new news regarding what party is responsible for this?

There really is no call for that. I've done my best, we all have. That there were subsequent outbreaks at additional locations was the result of attacks being perpetrated at those locations rather than any failure to respond to the first outbreak adequately, there was no cross-traffic between infection sites.

In fact, this revealed that our attackers didn't know the location of several other sites, which is rather good news. All simulations suggest they would have struck all simultaneously if they could have. It's very easy to be critical from the sidelines, but I do not sincerely believe we could have been any more efficient.

Also, how dare you mock our uncertainty over the perpetrators of this attack. If this is the work of the Order, as implied, that we aren't certain is perhaps the most damning piece of circumstantial evidence. If YOU'VE learned anything more, by all means forward the information to your site's Sub-director.

I'm starting to get rather cross. Perhaps it's time for a comedy inoculation.


I've seen this one before and I have to say, this time it seemed almost a mockery of the way I walk. That I can recognize the absurdity of this thought tells me it has had the desired effect though, as did re-reading the previous inbox letter. Henchperson, while I am still clearheaded, your support is appreciated. I may be a vain moderate megalomaniac, but the well-being of my employees is as important to me as my own. I believe I answered your question otherwise, however not in the most appropriate tone.

Director,

I have to say I am not pleased with your failure to keep to a schedule with your blog. I understand you were facing something of a crisis, but when one comes to expect an update at a regular time and then goes without the better part of a week without seeing one, it's frustrating and discourages further attention.

I suspect the comedy has worn off with alarming rapidity. I keep rereading this and every time it seems like you are sincerely bothered by an infrequency of blog updates while a potential catastrophic infection threatened to destroy Arketer Labs and kill untold employees. Oh ho, yes, I get it, you no doubt are referring as well to other missed deadlines during which there presumably were no such crisis. Well, you self-assumed omnipotent asshat, how about YOU launch a clandestine organization devoted to uniting some of the finest minds in the world towards the purpose of furthering Humanity itself, to turn Science Fiction into Science Fact, and THEN keep up a meticulous update schedule for something no one sees as anything other than something akin to some angsty Teenager's bad poetry blog! I am signing violently at #0 for you to be fired immediately but they're just shaking their head at me from the other side of the observation window.

Smug bemasked daftard.

I am properly irked now. Taking some deep breaths... Going to close my eyes for a bit and then partake of some proven mediating humor...



Much better. I find this funnier than most as I understand it. Not quite hilarious, hah hah, but it sticks with you nicely. Impossible to take it the wrong way... Probably because it seems impossible to take the right way. If there is a right way.

Reviewing...

Ok. Well. Still a bit irked, but I will grudgingly, seethingly yield you have a point. I perhaps could have kept to schedule. Though in the present context it would hardly seem to be important to do so.

Jerk.

I am glad #0 isn't listening to me at the moment, or so help me I would probably have something done to you I would surely regret once the cure is applied.

Next and final.

Director Arketer,

This is my first year here and I am not sure I understand what the policy is so far as holidays are concerned. I know there is a party planned, but I have noticed that it hasn't been stated what we are celebrating. Is Christmas verboten?


Oh Wah Wah Wah. Why is it so damnably important the annual celebration be called what YOU call it. Do you have ANY idea how much hassle we've gotten over Christmas parties? Highly intelligent people, GENIUSES, who will wet their standard-issue underthings over the annual Christmas party being called the Christmas Party, because it's Christian and they're Athiest and it should be called the Solstice party. So FINE we call it a Solstice party, and next thing you know we've got a bunch of angry Christians asking why they can't call the Christmas Party the Christmas Party anymore. Strangely the Jewish employees are mostly tolerant either way though we have had the odd one demanding Hanukkah parties and one person demanded Kwanzaa parties and really that many parties was just so VERY excessive.

So yes, it's the Christmas Party, deal with it. It's also the Solstice Party, and the Kwanzaa Party and the Hanukkah party and the BLOODY PASTAFARIAN SAUCESTICE! Call it what you like, and everyone else will too. It just will NOT be written down and no matter what it is called NO ONE is allowed to 'correct' anyone else.

Just get over it and try not to trip over the various related religious icons and decorations. I admit it gets rather crowded with everyone trying to decorate even a rather large room with all of their respective holiday decorations. Kind of funny watching the Solstice advocates trying to come up with something to decorate with though. I don't think many people actually celebrate one of the coldest and darkest times of the year for it's sake alone.

I really don't want to keep at this, I don't like being angry. Being angry makes you objectively physically stupider, you know. Anger and fear, stupid. All these scum-sucking rage-a-holics out there would probably love this disease. Finally, they can make even LESS effort to learn ONLY AS MUCH as they have to to get REALLY ANGRY and then ignore any other details under the assumption they're filthy lies.

Just like that stupid stupid scandal over the Polish angsty video game on steam. "Hatred", I think it was called. Look it up, people all ranting that the game should be taken down because one of the developers hit 'like' on the wrong facebook page once and another one gave someone a tattoo of Mjolnir. What the hell is wrong with these people? Since when was that adequate evidence anyone was racist, much less a Neo-Nazi?!

You know what, I'm not doing any more reviewing. Have some Solstice Carols by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society.


The last one is particularly easy to sympathize with at present.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all of you. Wonder why the hell I bother. I CANNOT BE CURED FAST ENOUGH.

Progress continues, whinging jackasses.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Stay Calm

Apologies for the delays in 'updating'. Your complaints were received but not read until recently. Admittedly my priorities have been greatly rearranged as of late.

I would like you first to understand that everything will be quite fine.

To address some rumors going around:

1. Yes, there have been further outbreaks of Strawman Syndrome at ALLPs 2 and 4 as well as Sky Lab.

2. There have been injuries, but there have been no fatalities and only one lost limb. Latter incident occurred at Sky Lab where a conflict between an infected and uninfected employee escalated to the point the infected employee misappropriated a high-powered cutting laser. The injured henchperson will be eligible for our prosthetic replacement program once cured of their infection.

3. We have yet to discover a cure for the infection, but do have leads that are promising.

4. We do not yet know the perpetrator, but given recent events believe this to be a petulant act by the Order over discussing their latest 'project'.

5. All outbreaks are contained. All present infected individuals have been secured in their quarters and have been provided with intranet forum access. All communication is strictly between infected individuals via the intranet forum which is moderated in an effort keep all discussions suitably cyclical and away from resulting in unification against a common 'foe'.

6. There was indeed a close call before this where a group of infected had managed to find 'common ground' in disdain for the Inuit peoples over the killing of seals. A group of them began to plan out a means by which to dispatch a reprogrammed autonomy-capable exosuit to 'kill any blubber-eating bastards that even look at one of those cubs'. This was prevented well before the plan could be executed.

7. The means by which the infections were introduced HAS been discovered and dealt with. While we cannot yet cure the infected, there should be no further risk of outbreaks among us so long as established protocols are maintained.

8. There is a possibility a strain of this infection has been introduced to the general public according to the correlation between online posting habits of our infected and those found on other forums. This has not been confirmed however, it could just be there are that many naturally-occurring idiots out there.

9. While there is no cure, certain treatments that have been shown to temporarily alleviate symptoms and some methods have been discovered that circumvent them entirely. While I cannot go into detail on the latter for security reasons, in regards to the former I can tell you that exposure to comedic material devoid of political agenda has- in most cases- overwhelmed the afflicted's outrage responses to the point they eventually calm down for a period of time, during which they prove to be more rational. I have linked a particularly effective piece below.



Finally it remains vital that if you suspect you may infected, or suspect you may be seeing signs of infection in others, that you report it immediately.

Progress continues, stay calm and we will see this resolved.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Strawman Syndrome and Strange Coincidence

Progress continues.

Just... not where I would like it to be continuing.

We are under attack by someone who is being insanely reckless with a biological weapon. Auxiliary Lab and Listening Post 1 has been shut down, Containment and Zone Security Specialist Squad 2 (CZSSS 2: Crazy With a Vengeace) initiated lock-down procedures without opposition. Unfortunately all members who entered the facility did so before the source of our present problems was identified and thus have been exposed to the contagion.

What we know so far:

At some point over the past two weeks a henchperson at ALLP #1 was infected with a- presumed engineered- microbe. Said microbe, while not truly airborne, aerosolizes extremely easily. It appears to die and decay rapidly when it comes in contact with anything that cannot be a potential host.

Once infected, an individual seems to suffer gradually increased auditory and visual hallucinations where they, instead of hearing or seeing what others have said or typed, perceive instead offensive comments apparently designed to lead into argument and conflict. No violence between personnel has yet been observed, but threats of it abound and there has been considerable property damage.

The health of the infected thus far does not appear to be degrading, which is good, but absolutely no work has been pursued at the facility since the outbreak. Up until the shutdown was initiated, all employees had begun keeping to their quarters to argue angrily via our Intranet with themselves and others.

Bizarrely, as the infection progressed, the victims began to form a gang of sorts on said intranet. Hostile as they may have been to each other initially they had begun to coordinate with each other to shout down any other henchpeople working in other facilities who attempted to step in and call for calm or self-moderation. This further lead the afflicted to find common ground, proving strangely capable of perceiving each others comments accurately when they were both negative and directed at a third party.

Unification through collective disdain, if you will.

Unfortunately this further led to a trend of arguing that hostility to mentioned third parties was inevitably insufficient to 'deal' with them. It is suspected that unchecked, this would have progressed to extremism.

We were only made aware of this microbe thanks to the actions of three different henchpeople who in early stages must have suspected this was the work of a contaminant and ran samples of their own blood through an automated analyzer in the lab. Commendations will be made once a cure is found.

Until a more scientific name is decided upon, we have decided to call the result of infection "Strawman Syndrome" given that the afflicted are uniformly incapable of discussing anything without the use of these flawed persuasive tactics.

Our experts on all matters connected to infectious diseases have been reallocated from their projects (under complaint in some cases) to determine an effective treatment. On-site treatment teams and all CZSS squads have been issued advanced Level A hazmat suits and related equipment in order to deal with any further outbreaks as well as to safely attend to the present outbreak.

If you or anyone you know has become inexplicably surly, or appears to be responding to things you have not actually said or typed, it is of critical importance that you report it immediately. I know some of you will be tempted to ignore it to avoid losing progress on your given projects, but I can only assure you that much more progress will be lost when you find yourself driven to an irrational spite that leads to destruction of your own work or that of your peers.

I am happy to report that there has been no real physical harm to any of our people thus far.

In other news regarding the creatures that 'attacked' the Deep Seven nanite swarm, Researcher #83 has found music in asian media, of all things, that has some similarities to the 'song' the creatures apparently use to organize or communicate.


Progress continues.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Troubling Developments.

Progress continues.

However there seems to be a new development.

At ten AM yesterday contact was lost with Auxiliary Lab and Listening Post #1.

The reason for the loss of contact was willful destruction of the facility's communication equipment by, it would seem, the ALLP#1 communications specialist themselves. This was in direct response to the daily check-in conducted by the Central Lab.

Transcript as follows- the language is quite crude, be warned.



Central Lab : Good morning ALLP 1! Anything to report?

ALLP#1       : The fuck did you just say?

CL                : ... Good morning? I'm... not reading any interference on my end. Are you?

ALLP#1       : "I can't believe you're too stupid to pick up on my sarcasm." (said in a mocking tone) The fuck I am! Asshole, everyone around here is putting words in my mouth and then having the nerve to insist I'm doing it. I've had it up to here. So just calm the hell down and do your fucking job, radio jockey.

CL                :  Is there a problem ALLP 1?

ALLP#1       :  "Don't you know who I am? I'm going to get you fired for this, peasant." The HELL you will, I quit! I don't need to put up with this shit. I have no idea what crawled up all your asses and died but- No, you know what- I don't need to listen to this any more. *sounds of something being picked up*

CL                : ALLP 1? Come in ALLP 1.

ALLP#1       : *sounds indicating violent impact with a microphone, smashing noises and then silence.*

The Communications room of any given facility is almost a formality in our modern hyper-connected world, so the natural next step was to study the facility's security camera footage remotely. What we've seen is perplexing. At present all of my employees at ALLP#1 are basically confining themselves to quarters. Whenever they encounter each other arguments break out immediately, though before violence occurs they have thus far stormed away from each other instead.

It would seem our conflict resolution courses have not fallen entirely on deaf ears.

Meanwhile they are not out of communication even within their quarters. There has been a massive surge in unacceptable behavior on our secure intranet forum. Endless uncivil, cyclical arguments.

By all appearances no one is addressing what the other is actually saying but quoting their opponents as saying something else entirely- something usually both hostile and inane. All parties involved refuse to acknowledge the falsity of their own quotes while attacking or complaining about those used by others. If it sounds confusing, it is. Very.

All false quotes an individual makes are treated as valid by that individual no matter how divorced from the original meaning of their opponent's text.

In short, it's the text equivalent of what happened during the check-in. And if you saw the last update, #0 informs me that this is the same ALLP where the complaint about a hostile coworker came from.

Investigations are underway. Fortunately whatever is going on, be it a morale issue or infectious horrible argumentation, it is still confined.

All henchpeople reading this, please stay calm. I can promise you that every possible effort will be made to ensure the safety of our people in ALLP #1.

Finally, I am happy to report that all Finax products have been deemed safe and whatever it is going on it has absolutely nothing to do with Witch Sugar or- egh- Witch Saturated Fats.

All Finax products will be made available to facility cafeterias and commissaries again as soon as is practical.

Monday, December 8, 2014

More From the Inbox.

Progress continues!

Some peculiar messages from the inbox today.

Director Arketer

I am presently serving in one of our listening posts and am finding a peer increasingly difficult to deal with. Specifically, I will say something to them and they will go silent a moment before- for want of a better word- bristling with offense before replying in a hostile and unkind manner to things I have not said.

Now, when I say I am saying something- I do not mean I am calling them names and criticizing. Let me give you an abbreviated dialogue. M: Shall be Me, P: Shall be said Peer.

M: Good morning!

P: What makes you think your morning is so much better than mine?

M: I... didn't say that.

P: How dare you say I am too stupid to tell what you mean with your snide comments!

M: Is something wrong?

P: Accusing me of mental illness now? Ugh, go die in a fire.

That was the first and most memorable incident. Every interaction since has followed a similar pattern. This is not a personal grudge, they have been behaving the same to almost everyone except the sub-director thus far, but even then they seem to tremble with offense.

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. That is troubling behavior. Yours was not the only such complaint from your Listening Post and Auxiliary Lab and I intend to look into the issue. I would hypothesize that they are having some sort of personal crisis. I hope to have a discreet inquiry launched.

Director Arketer,

I must object to the removal of my favorite cereal from all cafeterias over what is very clearly a typo. Surely you do not seriously believe they are using 'witch sugars' and 'witch saturated fats' in their goods? How long will it take to correct this absurdity?

For the record, I do sympathize with your annoyance and yes I can see how that seems a bit absurd. However if you knew what Witch Sugars and Witch Saturated Fats were I think you might understand our caution a bit better. Even now some of our best chemical analysts are running tests to determine if said products are perfectly safe at which point your cafeteria will be resupplied. If anything we may be overconfident in not having launched an immediate health screening of all employees potentially exposed to the product.

I can only ask for everyone's patience as we do our best to ensure everyone's health and safety in as minimally intrusive manner as possible.

Director,

I for one really like this little blog of yours and would encourage you to keep up with it. Us on the ground here rarely get to hear what their boss-of-bosses thinks about any given thing. Betcha this is true of most organizations but especially ones of our more secretive nature.

Keep up the good work!

Thank you for your support, though I would like to discourage too many messages like these. They can be very hard to distinguish from brown-nosing and no one worthwhile should appreciate the latter.

Not that there have been many messages like these. In fact, yours is the first and only.

So. Thanks.

Progress continues.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Witch Sugars? In MY Mysli?

It's more likely than you think.



Thank you, unnamed Henchperson for reporting this. Until confirmation that this was in fact a typo is obtained, all Finax products will be removed from Arketer Labs facility cafeterias and commissaries.


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Deep Seven : #14 Followed by Unrelated Minutia.

Progress continues!

The basic framework of Deep Seven has been outlined by the nanite cloud. Now, this is of course the first and mildest of milestones as we are still years from completion, but it is nevertheless a milestone. I intend to inform the observation team of my continued appreciation shortly. Especially given that there have been no further problems with equipment misuse.

There has been indication that the site is being observed by the unusual creatures that attacked it. While no visual contact has been made, their 'song' has been picked up occasionally.

Now, if you are keeping tabs on this for updates- that is the whole of it. Otherwise the nanite cloud continues to work tirelessly and amorphously as ever.

In other news I would like to personally like to thank the Sociology Minors who have sent in their theories, particularly the one with an inside lead on the present 'Fear Miasma' project.

Your links were as fascinating as they were troubling. I can only hope whoever is in charge of this truly knows what they are doing and I suspect there will be a great deal more needless bloodshed in any case.

No good comes from allowing zealotry to grow. It hardly matters which group it is in.

Fortunately those who have taken part can come back wiser for the experience, as this individual demonstrates.

Once Deep Seven is operational we might perhaps look into promoting rationality in the wider world, but in the meantime all that really needed to be said about the unpleasant nature of extremism has been said already.


It's a bit of a shame really, human nature seems to be such that people only pay attention to problems when they're emotionally charged. Yet, once you are emotionally charged you are very unlikely to be in any condition to actually solve any manner of complex problem. Especially given that almost all the facts are being distorted by people on rage highs looking for their next hit. In this fashion, the people most afflicted with this feed off of each other and only ever get worse-

A problem greatly exacerbated with the ease in which echo chambers form on the internet.

Ah well.

Progress continues.


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Still Not a Project Update.

Though progress does nevertheless continue.

No, today I am giving in to an inclination that perhaps does further relegate this journal into being something of a terrible blog.

I have been reading up on a few places and the topic of #Gamergate has reared it's head again. Several times, actually. What jarred me however was seeing the author of an article which argued that #GamerGate stood for harassing women, followed by the author getting in touch with people in gamergate to say more or less 'I don't actually believe that, but I fear getting harassed for being labeled pro-GamerGate.'

This was followed by warnings that the powers which be aligned against GamerGate are slandering them most successfully and could be expected to continue doing so in the future. I felt compelled to send him a message privately- #0 may rest easy, it was done anonymously- and let him know I felt his message to be tragic as what he basically told the people of #GamerGate was 'I fear your enemies more than you, so I will serve them.'

The message I am seeing from the media is 'Harassment works, be very afraid.' Only they aren't actually afraid of harassment from #Gamergaters, they're afraid of it from their enemies.

I asked the journalist: "If journalists will, out of fear of harassment, slander the innocent- then what purpose do they serve?"

I am troubled about the health of modern journalistic integrity.

Gamergaters, for their part, live in fear as well. They seem to be certain that if they organize any further than to use a Twitter tag then they will be "instantly squashed like a grub under a Space Marine's Boot."

There is an extraordinary amount of fear floating around and it is being used to some end. I do not know what to make of it, but then social engineering is not one of my fields of expertise.

Whatever is going on, I do hope it will not prove a complication to our work. We have a great number of engineers in the employ of Arketer Labs but I am not sure we have a Social Engineer who can comment.

For those of you who do feel that Gamergate is for the harassment of women and not about troubling ethical standards, I can only say I believe many if not in fact the majority sincerely believe they stand against harassment and ethical decay in gaming journalism at the very least.

At Arketer Labs, our goals are largely divorced from politics of any sort. Our work is more important than that. Even so, I would like to believe we know the value of considering differing opinions from our peers even if we ultimately disagree with them. Harassment, we should all be able to agree, is unacceptable. Hopefully we could agree silencing discourse should be as well.

I would say 'civil discourse' but having witnessed several passionate 'debates' regarding competing scientific theories I am unsure if it would not be using the term 'civil' too loosely. 'nonviolent discourse ultimately resolved through responsible experimentation' is a bit wordy however.

Pictured : STILL UNACCEPTABLE. (Found here.)
In closing, should I be mistaken and we do happen to have an expert in social engineering and/or sociology with theories on what this cultivated fear miasma is all about, please do send them in.

Progress continues.



Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Not a Project Update.

Progress still continues, however.

Not on this whole 'getting organized' business, however. I run an organization employing advanced sciences to redefine what is possible and yet I find I am almost helpless in figuring out how to better organize a 'blog'. As I figure that out I might as well compromise insomuch as making posts not directly related to Deep Seven separate.

More from the inbox.

Director Arketer,

I have read your previous update. Such exotic deep sea wildlife is rarely found. I propose we launch a deep-sea expedition immediately in order to locate these creatures and obtain samples. Yes, I have already made this request to Sub-Director 34, but have been denied on the grounds that we are presently stationed an extraordinary distance inland among other things and must rely upon you to see the importance of this.

I sympathize with your impatience, but cannot grant your request at this time. Once Deep Seven is complete I will be relocating almost the entirety of the staff and their projects to it, at which point I can assure you such expeditions will be made. If you have been keeping up with all of my previous disorganized infantile texts you might note projects to assist in such explorations are underway.

There have been rumors that Google's ship-labs are indicative of an impending attempt by Google to take over the world. Can you confirm, deny or otherwise comment on this?

Ah, now this, Henchperson, is actually rather fascinating. Personally, I don't believe Google is about to take over the world in any further than they have already- though even if I did a measure of discretion might be called for as technically they own blogger.com. Were I to offend them I would have to set up my own website I am sure. Again, not that they need to take over the world. They are a supermassive company with access to more information than quite possibly any other organization save the Illuminati and possess more wealth than many countries. They no doubt can affect whatever change they particularly want to in most cases.

No, odds are their secret ship-based sea labs are for Calico Labs, Google's 'Immortality Project'.

 As many of you may be aware, one thing we do not do is strive to achieve immortality in a literal sense. The reasons for this are many, starting with the sad fact that entropy generally increases with time. I do not mean simply in regards to the body, or health, but the mind itself. While curing illness and extending the human lifespan is admirable, immortality simply guarantees a violent death of accidental or intentional nature- and it would likely be a mercy even then. If not for the 'immortal' than for the people they interact with. The older they get, the more likely they are to become irredeemably corrupt.

Consider the saying 'Die a Hero, or live long enough to find yourself the Monster.' Consider how much harder it will be to avoid becoming the Monster with centuries for the corruptive elements of the world to work on you. 

Additionally the concept of immortality forces additional questions to which there are few, if any good answers. If everyone lives an indeterminate amount of time, it would be necessary to strictly limit the rate at which humans reproduce or else restrict the boon to the 'elite'. Otherwise dramatic overpopulation, starvation, environmental destruction are inevitable.

But then, who determines who is sufficiently elite? Is it going to be a matter of intellectual accomplishment or- more than likely- ultimately handed out to whoever pays enough for it?

Ultimately it is a very ugly business, however well intentioned it may be. As mentioned before any immortals are going to be badly prone to god complexes, and the wealthy are badly prone to that as it is. I can only hope Google is not planning on extending the human lifespan too far, or else fails entirely and in perpetuity.

In this, I can only hope progress will not continue. It would be better to simply find a way to copy our mortal knowledge into computers, perhaps even digitize the personalities. Immortals in that sense would hopefully prove less a drain on the world's resources and could be stored as necessary. 

Additionally being removed from biological temptations and brain chemical weirdness may lead to less moral and ethical decay.

I think I will see if we have the resources to start work on further refining digital storage media.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Deep Seven : #13

Progress continues.

Albeit not without complication.

A swarm of some as-of-yet identified and perhaps until now undiscovered wildlife attempted to, it is believed, 'attack' the nanite cloud. #0 is contemplating that it is the work of our enemies in some capacity but having seen the footage from the remote overseers I don't believe they would genetically engineer something as bizarre yet ineffectual as these.

They resembled something akin to giant kidney beans with small heads attached and propelled themselves by indeterminate means given they seem to have lacked all manner of appendage otherwise. The animals attempted to rush into the nanite cloud and disperse it via violent thrashing about.

This inflicted no harm on the cloud, but nanites were ingested by the creatures in the attempt and as per their programming they dug their way out to rejoin the cloud- causing considerable distress to the unfortunate beasts. Remote Observer #2, "Simon" was ordered to capture of one of the injured creatures using it's manipulator, but failed to succeed. The attempt, however, prompted the swarm to gather their wounded (Most unusual behavior for animals.) and retreat.

Perhaps strangest of all is that vibration sensors picked up that the creatures were generating what seems to be a sort of music 'sung' in perfect unison.

A fascinating development. There really is no telling what else we will discover once the facility is complete.

Thus far there is no indication they are soon to return.

More from the inbox!

Arketer,

I am writing in protest of my treatment. I have been the Cook of the Subterranean Lab for two years now and have been the recipient of endless harassment for my Vegan beliefs. My new cruelty-free menu using only dishes employing biologically grown ingredients has literally been spat on. This is a huge problem and I demand something be done about it. Meat is over and I refuse to perpetuate culinary animal creulty(sic).

Well, first and foremost I can safely assume they are not reading this log, so suffice it to say I will be responding to their protest but probably not in the manner they wish. I have to say I am skeptical their position can be salvaged.

Director Arketer,

I have been reading your Deep Seven Project log and while I would say it has been amusing at times- it really is a terrible mess. What does your role-playing in Guild Wars 2 have to do with the Deep Seven project at all? What does your inbox here have to do with it? Quite frankly it reads like some teenager's irregularly updated blog. How did you ever found this organization with such a lack of discipline and organization?


In spite of considerable handicaps, apparently. I'll... work on improving the way things are laid out.

Your blog reminds me of something reminds me of something else I saw only it was funnier and I thought I would pass it along. Maybe it will be good for your rp. http://boojum-snark.tumblr.com/

Thank you, Henchperson. That was interesting. They have seen worse than I have in the game, clearly. I wonder if that has any bearing on why it does not appear to have been updated in some time.

At the same time said 'blog' does however make me feel I have been overly lazy in applying a crude filter to my personal portrait. I believe my mood at this point is somewhat more redacted than usual.

Progress continues.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Deep Seven : #12

Progress continues!

There is a measure of the foundation framework now faintly visible, protruding for the time being out of a far edge of the autonomous squid fart that is the nanite cloud. It's not much, but then how much can you really see on Baby's First Sonogram anyway?

For what it represents, it is beautiful. Not very interesting, but beautiful.

Additionally the first questions and suggestions have arrived.

Drirector(sic) Arketer, 

Have you seen this?


Thank you, Henchperson. No I have not, but have found it fairly amusing. I have subscribed.

Bossman

Dude, you've got to get over yourself. I mean, I'm new here and all so I don't really want to step on toes but you've got like narcissism problems. That logo is on everything and the only thing it's cool that it's on is the toilet paper.

That monogram has been the stamp of Arketer Labs since I founded it. I believe that one should take pride in their work. I will yield that I am not perfect and as you certainly are not the first to accuse me of this might further grant that I have a slight issue with pride- but I am certainly no Narcissist. We do have a few of those however, the merits of whom outweigh their taxing company. As you come to know them better, perhaps I will compare more favorably.

Director,

The cafeteria here at the Subterranean Lab is becoming untenable. Our cook has become a born-again Vegan and refuses to serve anything they could "look in the eye". Offers have been made to provide lab-grown bovine muscle tissue to no avail. I believe they referred to them as "The quivering legacy of animal cruelty." I understand you have a strict policy against the summary execution of employees but would implore you to make an exception in this case.

I greatly appreciate you bringing this to my attention. While I respect your cook's decision to refine their diet as they see fit, humanity is naturally omnivorous- at the very least at this point in history and attempts to force one's fellow humans into an herbivorous role is unacceptable. I intend to have this looked into personally. However, lest you get your hopes up too high, I will not be having the Cook executed.

Progress continues.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Deep Seven : #11

The Big Gulp edition.

This will of course be lost entirely on non-Americans.

Moving on.

Progress continues. More wafting for the most part. Analysts report that we've caught up on around 32% of lost progress on other projects. Various Project Leads are still reasonably bitter over the lost work. Still, it has motivated the defense specialists considerably.

Meanwhile the first of the captured mercenaries has been released to embark on a somewhat less exciting new career in a charming Mexican Mall, La Plaza Grande. The more benevolent among us wish them well in their new lives.

They don't speak Spanish anymore, as it happens, so it may be a challenging work environment.

Anyhow, playing video games online and thus interacting with other people has led me to realize it is perhaps time for me to make an effort to reconnect with my henchpeople. I have, as such, arranged a modern equivalent to a comments, questions and suggestions box. Which is to say, an intranet e-mail inbox that specifically anonymizes incoming messages.

From my perspective, that is. #0 can determine who sent what of course, but I have made it clear I am not to be informed and that whatever is said in the messages the sender is not to be punished in any way.

Honesty is critical.

I am looking forward to seeing what comes in! We have a selection of some of the finest minds on the planet here. Not A-listers or celebrities of course, it pays to recruit people before they can become famous. Very few post-celebrity are inclined to vanish with minimal word to their friends or families, and there is absolutely no reason to invite that much public interest.

I hope to have something to share here later this week.

Going back to Guild Wars 2 though, our Director has not been making quite so many friends over the weekend.

I do believe he has received an art upgrade however.
A crossdressing detective deemed him to be a narcissist and a tinkerer, he's been indirectly shot at and increasing numbers of Sylvari seem to be taking exception to him asking if they're Nightmare or otherwise insane.

And it becomes ever clearer there are a number of players that generally treat role-play as a masturbatory aid.
Additionally I am skeptical Director Arketer will ever meet that CĂ„nach fellow who sold him the location for twisted clockwork scrap again. I hate leaving that unaddressed, but I suppose they may have stopped playing in the month or so I was playing dead.

It is time, perhaps, to move on.

Progress continues.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Deep Seven : #10

Progress continues.

Nothing much reporting in this particular log. The first milestone is approaching, but not quite here yet- the point by which all foundations have been outlined. However, in the meantime there simply continues to be a large autonomic cloud of nanites gently shifting and wafting in abyssopelagic or maybe even hadopelagic waters.

One of our auxiliary labs and  listening posts noticed a massive electromagnetic pulse was fired into the ocean late Thursday, by the way. This is why I will never be more specific.

I can't be sure if spite or absurd reactionary fear drives such efforts to thwart progress, but it is appalling all the same.

Speaking of appalling things I have done more role-playing lately. Not much, as it happens, as Director Arketer's efforts to speak with people are... not always effective. Meanwhile other role playing taking place I quite simply wanted nothing to do with.

All appropriate commentary was made for me.
This would not be the first incident of people going out of their way to play apparently underage characters. My first foray featured this as well, but I made an effort to overlook it. I do take some consolation from the fact that anyone playing such a character is almost certainly of age themselves.

I would note I did not see the underage character in question, I had a feeling I would not have felt any better about it had I done so.

I have resolved not to interact with presumably underage characters, the exception being the Sylvari whom only the oldest of which are 26.

Director Arketer will be wary of them all the same. One threatened to draw a gun on him for the crime of speaking to him.

Apparently it's because he views humans as "disgusting meatbags" which does raise the question of why on Earth, or Tyria rather, he would be standing around at a human pub in a human city,
The sharp eye will note our Director Arketer has made an addition to his wardrobe. Indeed, it seemed only appropriate that I should start a guild called Arketer Labs and wear their badge. I am quite pleased with how it turned out. Something of an inverse of the real-world logo with As and Ls worked into it.

I am, of course, the only member at present. I may recruit more however, provided they are human or if the Director were suitably convinced they would sincerely commit to raising humanity to parity with the other races- failing that I suspect I could have them pose as new watchknights. I have a idea for how that could be made possible.

No hacking required.
For any henchpeople who have gained access to this log (surely it's not only our enemies reading the damned thing), I would stress that for safety reasons it is important I not associate with anyone who is ACTUALLY an employee of Arketer Labs. I would rather not go into detail. Suffice it to say it creates security weaknesses. #0 was quite adamant.

That is all for now. Progress continues!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Deep Seven : #9

Progress continues.

Or resumes, rather. Faking my death on short notice meant I had to be less thorough than I would like, which posed some danger. What if, for example, they HAD somehow managed to retrieve the corpse? Even failing to do that had business for Arketer Labs simply continued as normal surely someone would have been suspicious. So it was very much necessary to have everyone go through the motions of a total closure.

Still, that necessity has passed. This has struck me as an apt moment to view as a renewal if not quite a rebirth. Much progress was lost on various studies, but I am confident any ground we retread will be mapped all the more thoroughly for it. Happily no real ground was lost on the Deep Seven project in this stage as, presently, all progress continues to be the autonomous work of the nanite cloud.

This is critical, as Deep Seven is the project that will make worlds of new projects possible.

In this moment of renewal, allow me to better describe what Deep Seven actually is.

Deep Seven will ultimately be a grand-scale research facility at the bottom of the sea, at a nigh unprecedented depth with access to geothermal energy. As far as location goes, this is as accurate as I dare to be for security reasons. However, once Deep Seven is complete I believe it can be rendered more or less immune to outside meddling. Housing the grand majority of Arketer Labs' work from the moment of activation, it will be equipped to pursue almost any project that can be conceived of within a framework that simultaneously protects the outside world from complications of said projects even as it protects said projects from the outside world.

In Deep Seven, I fully expect to launch new technologies where they can be studied, refined, and advanced without concern of co-option or theft by military, corporate or other clandestine interests until such time as they are ready to be released to the responsible parties of the world in a responsible fashion.

In the meantime we will be free to press firmly against the boundaries of known science almost recklessly in as much comfort as possible. Deep Seven will have parks, zoos (for multiple uses), multiple types of cafeteria, bowling alleys, movie theaters, even a few smoothie bars. I am particularly looking forward to those.

At present it would be inadvisable to put up some of the schematics, but one day I most certainly shall. In fact, one day I may be able to open Deep Seven up to the public even- not all of it of course, but partially.

Still, all of this is years from completion- but progress continues all the same and so long as progress continues, success is inevitable.




Anyhow, now that I need not feign death any further I have returned to 'Role Playing' in Guild Wars 2 and on the matter of death- my Mentor is dead.

Yes, Seiran of the Durmand Priory, has passed away in my personal story.

Pictured here in a typical state.

Yes, after a period of tutelage about which I can remember very little, the carefree Sylvari Scholar gave her life for reasons she herself did not seem to particularly understand. With a final piteous whine of 'There was so much left to see and do!' she bravely closed a large door with herself on the wrong side of it.

A deeply touching moment. It surely would have brought a tear to my eye.
I have learned from 82's notes that Sylvari cannot be 'Risen' undead so wherever the story goes next I can be sure I will not be seeing them again.

In the meantime since then I have achieved the vaunted Level 80. I have achieved this through consumables and taking advantage of aggressively playing within 'The Edge of the Mists', a metagame in itself that boils down to a rather violent Follow-The-Leader. A commander is designated by a special icon on the minimap, everyone follows them around and kills everything they come across- including the occasional group of players from an opposing 'team'. It's strangely relaxing.

Also occasionally rather funny.
In fact, even though I have achieved my goal I may return to it now and again- or perhaps consider other forms of Player-Versus-Player, though I anticipate I may not care for such.

In the meantime, people are now at liberty to behold Director Arketer of Tyria in his (rather ostentatious) work attire.


Friday, November 7, 2014

Special Report

We have been going through the procedures necessary to wind up all experiments and shut down over the past several weeks. The reasons for this will now be revealed in the following text.

At roughly 18:25 in the evening on Wednesday October 15th, a mercenary squad hired by unknown perssons seized control of Auxiliary Lab and Listening Post #5. As per established protocols no direct resistance was provided as staff instead attempted to initiate an emergency shutdown and evacuation.

Unfortunately, the Squad succeeded in preventing an emergency shutdown and secured almost the entire staff as hostages. Shortly after an ultimatum was issued requiring our Director General, Arcturus Zachary Arketer, to turn himself in to the mercenaries so as to secure the safety of the hostages. If the Director did not turn himself in as ordered the employees would be executed.

Negotiations failed rapidly, forcing the Director's hand. He ordered the Containment and Zone Security Specialists squad 8 (CZSS #8, AKA the Crazy Eights) to re-secure the Listening Post at the first sign of further complications via enacting the emergency shutdown the present staff failed to. This done, he made arrangements to deliver himself in a refit deepwater exploration suit.

After being airdropped to the designated location to turn himself in, the leader of the mercenaries demanded the Director vacate the suit, to which he replied he would as soon as the employees were released. The mercenary leader responded by ordering the execution of captive employee #76422143.

CZSS #8 moved into action, breaching the listening post and activating the facility's emergency shutdown. The result was the total incapacitation of all individuals within the facility, including one member of CZSS#8, via nonlethal means.

Director Arketer's suit then began making what has been described as "an ominous noise". On hearing of their loss of control of the Listening Post one Lieutenant Jimenez ordered that someone "Take the shot."

It was this point that one shot from a high-powered rifle was fired, precisely striking an amended fuel tank on the right-rear thigh of Director Arketer's suit. Director Arketer reportedly screamed, briefly. The suit stumbled out of the resulting fireball and then collapsed forward, the pilot compartment opening to eject a rapidly charring corpse.

There was a moment of confusion as the mercenaries had been under orders to retrieve the corpse, but no one was equipped to secure the burning remains. At this time the transport aircraft which had delivered Director Arketer could be heard to be returning. The mercenaries made the decision to depart, deeming the mission "complete" and made for concealed vehicles, abandoning the mercenaries within the listening post which were presumed dead.

As per the Director's orders, no effort to pursue was made.

On Wednesday, the 5th of November, the presumed surviving members of the mercenary team were paid the remainder of the money owed them. Recorded audio and imagery of the event were deemed sufficient proof of death by their employer.

And now a special message for the mercenary leader, one Lieutenant Jimenez, their employer and all surviving members of the unit.

Stand By







































For you all, though I did not deem you worth sullying my own hand with the gesture.




Yes, I, Director Arketer of Arketer Labs persist to exist. You have succeeded in incinerating one corpse originally slated for our internal human physiology education course and are indeed responsible for the murder of Henchperson #76 for which you have certainly earned my enmity.

Still, they shall be mourned and their family recompensed to the best of our ability whereas I can now assure you, you and yours shall not. A special mention of gratitude goes again to Lieutenant Jimenez who I so relied upon continuing to read this pet project of mine. I can only hope you check back in to see this before the link to it reaches all of your fellows via their various e-mails and, in one case, their online dating account inbox.

You can safely stop looking for a date, Murphy. You will not have the time for such things all too soon. Naturally my first act was to send proof of life to your employer and the Order he hoped to endear to him via my death, along with a brief summary of how I have made a fool of him and all of you. Your employer, I suspect, will want his money back. Unfortunately they cannot merely be content to get their money back to 'save face' with the Order. The only people from your squad of mercenaries I expect to survive the coming month are, in fact, those we captured!

After running a discreet poll among my henchpeople (How would YOU deal with the murderers of #76?) the winning option was something we call 'Irreversible Near Total Memory Erasure' in which via a method you would be hard pressed to understand, we have purged almost all memories of their past lives. They have been crudely re-educated in janitorial work and if you should improbably find yourselves with time to spare can probably find them mopping the floors of your lower-rent malls.

The sole exception is the one who actually pulled the trigger on the unfortunate #76, whom we have left with the memory of the murder and given no other care or education to. They have been left in the care of a certain monastery in which they may or may not find the further mercy we were unwilling to provide.

This has been a most unpleasant learning experience for myself and the rest of us here at Arketer Labs, but I believe it has ultimately only hardened our resolve. Your method of securing the listening post was most clever and swift and will not work again. Nor will the roughly 53 variations we've ruled out thus far.

If life as a mall janitor with nothing but the vaguest idea you once did something more exciting appeals to you more than death at the hands of the Order or other goons belonging to your former employer- no doubt under some stress himself- I encourage you to try it anyway. For you, Captain Hargrave, issuer of the execution order, be aware I have something less pleasant in mind. You would probably find a bullet preferable in any case. Perhaps your own.

And now, pictures from the Halloween Vacation I took while dead.






Thursday, October 16, 2014

Deep Seven : #8

Disaster.

#0 was, sadly, quite correct. They've moved quickly.

It has somehow been revealed that I care deeply about the well-being of my henchpeople and as such the Hit Squad- more of a small Mercenary Company really-  have captured and subdued the staff of Auxiliary Lab/Listening Post #5.

They have a female member, these mercenaries. I am not pleased with them as a whole, but it is good to see a woman getting into such a traditionally male-dominated field.

I have been issued an ultimatum. I am to surrender myself to their custody or they will kill every last of my employees, each execution broadcast over the communications network.

Oh, if only I could have somehow predicted that a team of people motivated purely by greed would be willing to stoop to such lows.

Obviously, my hands are tied. I have made arrangements to turn myself over at a neutral location, with a necessary caveat. I do not trust these people to release my henchpeople. I believe they will be tempted to kill them all simply to 'tie up all lose ends'.

As such I have ordered one of the engineering teams to render an exosuit prototype ready for immediate deployment.

They look not dissimilar to this artist, flyingdebris', work, albeit without the weaponry and with various means of aquatic locomotion.
If death wasn't assured, this would be insanely reckless. These suits were devised primarily for use in deploying personnel outside of Deep Seven for experiments, deep aquatic expeditions and so on. Simply to make it capable of carrying it's weight on land required nearly tripling it's power supply and that of various relevant servos.

There is another problem though. The power supply will be dangerously exposed in the form of a small barrel-like structure on the rear right thigh. It is... necessarily volatile. It would be a trick shot and the mercenaries would have to know it was there- so the odds of ignition are relatively small- but if they did find out about it somehow, a single armor-piercing round could turn the suit into a vaguely humanoid crematorium.

Still, highly unlikely- and the rest of the armor is well beyond the capability of the weaponry we've determined them to be carrying to pierce.

I am not a violent man by nature. I abhor it. I have ever stood against hatred. My aims have ever been to advance humanity, not reduce it's numbers. But if my employees are harmed, I will make an exception.

If they release my henchpeople, I will simply set a self destruct and vacate the suit to accept my fate. If they do NOT release my henchpeople or kill ANY of them, I will undertake a terminal field test of some very experimental weaponry from which my successors will gain valuable data and the mercenaries will learn YOU CAN'T ENJOY A PAYDAY WHEN YOU ARE SPREAD ACROSS THREE COUNTRIES AS A FINE MIST.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Deep Seven : #7

Progress continues.

Morale is high among the construction oversight crew, as anticipated. I've suggested to the Captain that it may be wise to slightly increase the scheduled exercise however. Henri's cooking is extraordinary but he does believe in both quality AND quantity.

One of the reasons I do not mind having sent him for the remainder of their deployment is that I will no doubt be able to survive on frozen leftovers myself for the duration of it.

In other news my spymaster, #0, (Their choice, not mine. I would have deemed it overly dramatic if I had been asked.) has informed me that there is noise of an impending assassination attempt on me. The implications are that it is the plot of a third-rate would-be Illuminati member hoping that my death will gain them some favor with the Order.

This is good news, as when they fail odds are said Order will get rid of them for me as yet another object lesson on the costs of failure- with the punchline being said hopeful never really had a chance. They lack the pedigree.

Really, they make one really successful game a megacorp buys off of them for a cut-their-own-throat price and it apparently goes right to their head. Absurd.

Still, I don't want it thought I am being careless. I have canceled any further trips out of my hardened facility, over three different escape methods are prepared and all of my henchpeople have been informed to follow Flight-Then-Flight-Then-Fight protocols. I would rather no one take a bullet or bomb for me, even though I am sure many of them would be willing.

Excellent henchpeople, truly.

Anticipated method of attack is a mercenary hit squad. I look forward to seeing them on a monitor in the near future.

As for Guild Wars 2, I have not done much Role Playing since Director Arketer purchased the 'location' of Watch Knight salvage. Presumably I would take my time in securing such an extremely dangerous location. It is apparently loaded with evil minions of a dragon called Mordremoth.

So, while that is happening- on or offstage depending on my luck in encountering a mercenary Role Playing Guild- I have set about advancing 'myself', level-wise. I am not taking it terribly seriously, but am making an effort to shorten the time it takes as much as possible.

These people promise %100 Handwork Guaranteed! I don't believe that is possible though, so this is right out.
Besides, if I wanted to go that route I could have simply ordered 82 to do the leveling for me.

In the process I have inadvertently discovered the secret lair of this 'Scarlet Briar'. It was a sorry excuse for a secret lair, consisting of a chair, a SINGLE monitor, a few chests and tables, insane scribblings, etcetra. Strangely not so much as a hole in the ground or bucket though. Apparently this Scarlet ascended beyond biological functions. I did find something relevant however.

I am deeming this discovery 'In-Character'.

Those are Watch Knight schematics. No doubt something Director Arketer would find worth acquiring. I should perhaps note said lair which this was found in was directly under the base of the Durmand Priory- the 'Smartest' of the three orders in the game devoted to fighting dragons. That it would be there, much less uncleaned-out by said Priory by now, makes absolutely no sense.

But then not a great deal does. I feel I can work around this, though I do have to work harder to imagine details to the lore which would render this all sensible. In this case, for example, I have elected to assume that the Durmand Priory is arrogant and not very intelligent and that people have attempted to tell them that this lair exists, but have been dismissed because that would be 'ridiculous'.

Additionally they may all be suffering from some sort of magical brain damage.

Director Arketer still joined the Durmand Priory however. This is supposedly my 'Mentor', which is adorable. They and their superior fit into the above theory admirably.

I elected to have Director Arketer join the Priory anyway as presumably they have the largest library and I would presumably have wanted access to it.

All in all I would say this continues to go well. So long as I am not successfully assassinated in the near future.


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Deep Seven : #6

Progress continues.

Unfortunately said progress is not, in itself, especially interesting. The autonomous squid fart continues it's peculiar wafting and basic foundations for Deep Seven keep manifesting as the necessary materials are consumed by the cloud.

Do not misunderstand me, this remains miraculous, but all things considered it rather feels like the nanites themselves are having all of the fun. There have been no noted irregularities in construction and the oversight crew reports that so far everything has been proceeding exactly along projected lines. It is good to know that the odds of us needing to fire off electromagnetic pulses in an emergency shutdown are ever-decreasing, but the waiting is no less tedious.

So, I have had plenty of time to continue Role Playing.

I found this outfit in the account inventory and use it when not 'In Character', it strikes me as a reasonable indicator.
I have found it easier to imagine a version of myself within this imaginary world than anticipated as of late, which I believe I can thank the miserable state of humanity within the game for. I attempted to discuss it with a fellow human who simply took it as an insult.


Absolutely absurd. The Norn are giants who turn into giant were-beasts. The Charr? Massive cat lion/bull people with a warlike disposition and a military fortified with steel structures, turret cannons, advanced rifles and- again- tanks. The Asura? They are apparently tiny, obnoxious gentrificated goblins and are at a technology level that only raises the question of why they haven't killed all the Dragons themselves. Robots, death rays, teleporters- they have it all. They effectively rule the world accordingly, or could do so in short order. About the only race on comparably dismal footing as humanity are the plant people or Sylvari. However humans can't naturally regrow lost limbs and aren't quite literally growing off of a massive tree in the hundreds with orders implanted in their heads already nor can they grow military hardware out of the ground.

Humanity has... what? A corrupt government and massive crime? The most popular brothel/tavern in in the game world? A magical monarch? Yes, that's something to be proud of, it clearly worked out so very well for Ascalon. (For those reasonably unaware, that was another human kingdom in the game whose magical monarch incinerated his entire kingdom and damned his people to ghostly undead slavery just to spite the Charr.)

Humanity needs help in this world.

Thus I have found Director Arketer's purpose within the game, the re-creation and improvement of a type of mechanical soldier called a Watch Knight. Apparently they were made by the Queen of Kryta, or if anyone else made them they don't seem to have received any credit. Unfortunately, whoever DID make them was apparently horribly incompetent. Shortly after their unveiling they were hijacked and used as, according to 82's notes, 'yet another stupid army for the horrible plant Mary Sue'. (Personally I think 82 was overly fixated on this 'Scarlet'.)

I stated my intention to said fellow human, who was no less offended and was- in fact- horrified. 'But they did so much damage!' she said. Apparently some humans in the game feel that because they botched handling technology once, they should stop pursuing it. That they should leave it to the other, smarter races.

There are real-world parallels I could draw, you can surely imagine the countless doomsday scenarios people can imagine for nanotechnology. Had I listened to such people Deep Seven would not only not be underway, it would be decades from commencement- if it was ever rendered practical at all!

Going back to 82 a moment, I used 15 gold from his account for Director Arketer to 'buy' the location of a place that contained wreckage of Watch Knights or Clockwork Horrors, to explain where Director Arketer would get a lead on making his own. Hopefully he won't be bothered.

Upstanding and not at all suspicious. 
Apparently the seller of this information heard Director Arketer's speech on the importance of struggling for technological equality and was moved. I assumed I, Director Arketer, would be suspicious given my goals would be human advancement rather than Sylvari but as the location was as legitimate as any entirely imaginary place in an imaginary world I think I would have seen the risk/reward ratio as being acceptable.

Now, presumably, Director Arketer is assembling teams to secure the incredibly dangerous excavation site.

Perhaps I should try and make a Role Playing event of this... I know of at least one group of Mercenaries. I would be protective of my henchpeople, so hiring a more expendable unit of guards would probably be rational.

If time permits.

Again, in all other news there is nothing remarkable. This is pleasant, but probably will not last. No doubt eventually one of my rogue's gallery of rivals and antagonists will attempt to interfere for reasons either malicious, misguided or both.