NL-1331 Sydney Q&A with +Andrew Krug

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There's an errata for question 28 from the Sydney Q&A session. The answer originally stated "No, NIA OPS is looking into it, I haven't had time". The more accurate answer is "No, NIA OPS is looking into it, I haven't had time yet because I've been travelling out here." Apologies for for any confusion or inconvenience caused.

Also, I've got to stress that these notes are not verbatim quotes, but my best record of the questions and answers during these sessions. That means you shouldn't quote them as authoritative, because I employ some discretion in the level of detail that I transcribe - you probably wouldn't want to hear every umm and aahhh in every question and answer, and I didn't want to waste time transcribing it.
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Brisbane Q&A: https://plus.google.com/+JamesSugrono/posts/SFUgWf7ACkE
Melbourne Q&A: https://plus.google.com/+JamesSugrono/posts/JwstJHt7Km4

1. Ingress Prime?
Soon. There is an internal date but I can’t tell you.

2. In the third column, is it a 1 or a 2 (the month in the date)?
Not sure I can answer that, I like my job.

3. Will it be built on protobuf?
Yes

4. What are the system requirements?
It’s not finished yet, so I can’t answer that.

5. Will you be opening up beta tests?
We will be opening up beta tests in the next month/s. The Camp Navarro and Vanguards will be the first and they’ll get notifications. This’ll be in the next couple of months.

6. Will it be running on the same backend?
At launch, yes. We will migrate to our new platform in late 2018. That will be phase 2, migrating it onto the pokemon go backend - phase 1 rolling it out.
If you do things in prime, will it affect things in the ingress real world?
RIght now, yes. If i were to pull out my alpha app it will affect things in the current ingress world - it will run simultaneously.

7. Will we get better at bot detection?
There will definitely be improvements with Ingress 2.0 and if you’ve been paying attention to our job board, we’ve been hiring for ML that will improve that. We work on algorithms every day to identify bots. One of the things with unrealistic times but in some cases, if people have a helicopter, it can be legitimate. Not everyone’s driving. With the advent of ML they’ll build up a DB to tell what normal times are and identify when someone’s doing that.

8. Will we get better at NIA OPS being available on the weekends?
The short answer is yes, we’ve told them that especially in NZ when there’s someone going around killing thousands of portals on the weekend… I’ve probably reset 300 in the last 24 hours. They’re definitely aware of it, nothing that’ll happen overnight but something will come in the future.

9. Are there plans to reset links as well as portals?
I have been asking for a tool that will allow us to reset portal ownership and links and mods. I think - I don’t know if my wish will be granted before Ingress 1 is sunsetted, but it is a thing I’ve asked for and a thing that I want to come about.

10. Who would want the guardian badge removed, kept, modified (to cumulative)?
We’re talking internally, it’s not a straightforward answer, we’ll do something but we’re definitely having those discussions.

11. So the guardian badge is definitely going to change?
No, we’re definitely talking about it but whatever we decide can’t affect the game too much.

12. But keeping it affects the game, those who want to play strategically and capture remote portals will be hunted
There’s merit to keeping the portal alive, we fully recognise it and that’s why the conversation has taken so long

13. Could you have an option to opt out?
We’ve discussed this as an option on the table

14. How does the tool to reset look? *
Isn’t perfect but it does more than it did before, when we didn’t have anything

"15. How do you feel about driving on the left and Australian beer?
As a passenger ron the left, it’s terrifying, I’m constantly reaching for the left. Your beer is fantastic, I’ve got a beer here that I’ll be sucking down shortly (that’s a cider).

16. What’s the stance on scraping?
It’s explicitly disallowed, and that's always been in the terms of service.

17. What about the reporting system?
It’s explicitly disallowed and that hasn’t changed. We don’t need you to investigate, we just want you to flag things. NIA OPS do review every ticket.
18. It doesn’t work
I don’t disagree. Auto closes won’t happen any more. The only exception is ban responses for the second or third time. The first time they’ll get a personal response. They’re going to fix the system.

19. When you submit a report, you get a link that says “review our support”. But we don’t know what they’ve done. How do we review that?
Good question. That’s a good question, I’m going to write it down.

20. <Something about coffee.>
Every place I’ve been to has amazing coffee, don’t know what it is about Australia.

21. What sort of testing do you go through to make sure changes don’t affect the economy?
Internal QA groups will test it, we do predictive modelling to see what happens

22. Can you comment on how often you change the drop rates?
I don’t know but I don’t think it’s changed very often.

23. Any VRLA codes?
In the short term I think that shop is closed now.

24. With Ingress prime are we looking to upgrade the intel map or not?
At launch unfortunately no, I don’t think it’s going to change. We just had another internal conversation about that. We definitely recognise a need for it. In addition, things like IITC, we’re looking at a way to make things that don’t negatively impact the community, give them an endorsement or licence, so that may reduce the need to redo the intel map if that happens. Right now that’s in the exploratory phase, lawyers are involved.

25. What’s the likelihood of a public API?
Yes, there’s one coming, is what I’ve been told. John Hanke also told me that as a player five years ago. It won’t happen until prime is out and we’re on the new backend.

26. Does guardian hunting negatively impact the community?
Yes. It does.

27. Does manually collecting it and storing it in goldfish affect the community?
I’m not a lawyer so I can’t really interpret that.

28. You’ve seen the website?
No, NIA OPS is looking into it, I haven't had time yet because I've been travelling out here.

29. API - what features will it have?
We definitely know that something is coming with 2.0 but without being there I can’t say what it will do.

30. Will it negatively impact the community?
It depends on the information that is released, and without knowing what they’re working on, we don’t know what impact it’ll have.

31. Will you bring back portal capture dates in the new intel?
I don‘t know, we don’t have the requirements set, we’re not working on them, if that’s something you really want I'll write it down.

32. What’s your favourite part of the game?
Turning the volume all the way up and letting bursters off.

33. Great that you guys have made a game that maintain for great, thanks for coming out
The reason we come out is because it’s a game that’s all about facilitating great experiences and this has been one, I’m going to be double-fisting alcohol.

34. What’s the main issue with deciding about guardian badges?
I think the problem is that there’s not consensus. There are people for and against changing it. Until there’s that aha moment, there’s not been that major consensus. What’s best? The group that wants to keep it? Or the one that doesn’t? I think doing what’s best for the game means sitting down and doing just that, and we don’t have that answer right now. We’re not going to make a rash decision that will negatively impact people. We don’t want to put a timeline on the decision, because it might take longer. Doing due diligence is really in the interests of the game.

35. Do we have the ability to track who’s doing guardian hunting? Can you correlate reports to those guardian hunting?
Good question, I have to assume yes, I’m not in that team. We know who’s attacking portals and the portal age, so yes, it has to be there. That's a good idea, I’ll write that down.

36. Anomalies?
I think people will be really happy really soon, we recognise that you need long lead times, if what happens occurs, I’m excited for it, because you’re going to have a roadmap and you’ll know what’s going to happen.m Some people say that if we announce things too far in advance… you have to keep the energy up, etc.

37. Can you comment on resource split between Ingress/POGO/HP?
They’re separate teams, and that’s about all I can say. There are some people who cross over, especially in the back end. We definitely share knowledge across teams

38. Any way to get out of a poor rating on OPR?
In my experience, people are doing things too quickly, so take your time. Even if you make your decision in a few seconds, just take your time before you actually push that submit button, otherwise you’re probably going to flag something.

39. Any plans to increase the number of portal submissions?
There are internal discussions, there’s not a yes on that yes. We still approve portals where there’s no portals in the area. Coming soon will be the ability to review edits, that is very close to occurring.

<One or more questions and answers I didn’t hear>

40. How would you stamp out scraping before guardian hunting?
I don’t know.

<One or more questions that were missed>

41. Anything in 2.0 that will help you keep track of unique captures?
I think it would definitely come when we move onto the new backend because right now I don’t know if it would be possible, there’s got to be a reason why they haven’t implemented it like they have in pokemon go.

42. Will Ingress 1 and 2 run simultaneously?
Yes.

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There were a few questions towards the end that I missed because of a few distractions and because of the noise in the venue - I'm told that someone has taken video of it, so you might be able to view them there.
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