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Update: a new IITC release is available that makes these COMM changes and fixes the excessive requests:
https://plus.google.com/105383756361375410867/posts/DpjnGJ6q7M3
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Warning: Excessive use of IITC's "public" COMM tab may lead to intel bans

tl;dr In short, it's not recommended to leave the "public" COMM tab open when there's no active cross-faction conversation being viewed. Switch to "full" or "faction" - these are safe. The "compact" tab may be risky too.

Details: IITC has always, since the beginning (and before I took over development), split the "all" COMM channel of the standard intel site into three separate tabs - "full", "compact" and "public".

The issue here is that the server does not support these separate COMM tabs - it has to download the "all" COMM data, then filter it in your browser. Imagine using the standard intel site, viewing "all" COMM, and scrolling up until you've found enough public chat entries - that's what IITC is doing automatically for you.

Over time, as the number of portals increases, the number of players increase, and since the introduction of attack notifications, there are fewer and fewer public chat COMM entries in the data. This, and the fact that Niantic are cracking down on excessive use/data scraping, has increased the risk having split COMM tabs to unacceptable levels.

This isn't a total "don't use public COMM tab in IITC" - once IITC has enough recent messages to fill the window it stops downloading more. However, leaving 'public' active when there's no messages, and repeatedly panning/zooming around the map - risky.

What is happening to fix this: IITC will be removing these filtered COMM tabs - instead having the same set as the standard intel site. Yes, I know lots of people will miss having 'public' - it was essential to make cross-faction chat useable in many cases. The risks are too high to keep it.

Niantic could easily fix this by changing the standard intel site. I suggest the following COMM tabs:
- 'system' - the 'captured a portal/deployed a resonator/created a link/etc' messages visible to all - no public chat, no personal attack notifications
- 'public' - cross-faction user chat only
- 'faction' and 'alerts' - no changes

This can only happen if Niantic change the servers to support it though. 
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61 comments
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One thing to add - from bits and pieces I've heard, it seems that Niantic think this repeated downloading of COMM data from IITC is due to the player-tracker plugin. While it's true that player-tracker will make use of any location data downloaded while trying to load public chat, it does not cause excessive requests.
 
Little question here: Did you try to contact Google/Niantic about this? I don't see how your app could be an unreasonable advantage so that it should be banned or somethinf similar. If they cooperate, you could implement something like a unique signature for your app so that the servers know it's not a hacked client. Just a little suggestion, I doubt though that they would be that cooperative.
 
Thats true, player tracker does not make additional requests to the server! We need public api... asap..
 
Damnit. That tab have always been helpful when looking up what(trash talking) ppl said to me and other. iOS comm is a bloody joke
 
I heard a Niantic employe saying that: 'Nia servers are slowing down because many people are using player tracker to track people!'
This is not true at all.
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+Alexander Gries Yes - I've tried! While off-the-record in person chats with high level Niantic staff have confirmed they're not against IITC, and their complete inaction in sending a takedown request or similar suggests at least a tolerance of IITC, the official line remains "against the ToS, don't use or we might ban you".

I've made some suggestions too, and while I've had positive feedback, there's been zero signs of any progress. I really don't know what more I can do...
 
Is that...  (leaving 'public' active when there's no messages) && (repeatedly panning/zooming around the map) - risky. Or did you mean, (leaving 'public' active when there's no messages) || (repeatedly panning/zooming around the map) - risky.
 
+IITC​ what about adding a request more data button on the public tab after a reasonably sized request. The split is very useful for those that use it 
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+Jim Hynson the && case - every time the view changes (more than ~10%), the COMM data download process restarts - when no recent public chat entries in range this can make for a lot of requests.
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+Jacob Eggers I'll be looking at something along these lines, yes - but the first priority is to get a safer build out to the users.

If we're lucky, Niantic might even react quickly once enough users complain, and change things server-side so we don't need anything special in IITC
 
[Sigh] The Public tab was the most (if not the only) social part of the Intel map. Ok... back to old "basement videogaming"
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+Jonas Jerner COMM is there and active even if you don't use it yourself. Leave IITC on the "full" or "faction" tabs and you'll be fine.
 
Why do you even want the Public tab to be "filled"? It should only load data if the users requests it like already mentioned.
 
What about Privacy View? Does it fill the tab "behind the scenes" or only when it's visible?
 
+IITC can you leave the Public tab, but only fill it in when scrolling back in the FULL tab? -- I kinda thought this is how it already work.
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+Ron Parker Not sure - but I suspect it's still filled behind the scenes - so ensure you weren't on "public" before activating it to be safe.

+Jonas Jerner yes - that will be fine.

+Erik Andersson it's a possibility - but many users do want it. Also, other plugins - the obvious player tracker, and less obviously uniques - expect COMM to be available. Changing IITC to match the standard site on tabs is the easiest and safest option at this point.
 
Great sadness. I had to use it today to a message from last night because my alerts did not go back far enough.

Comms in the app are terrible for messaging. I wish Nia would give us a way to access our own messages. 
 
A switch to turn comm on or off (or at least it's display) would also help with getting cleaner screen shots
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+john a. gorman you'll still be able to send cross-faction broadcasts - it'll be on the new 'all' tab, just like standard intel.
 
Oh jeez, please make this an option or enable the old functionality via a plugin 😢
 
the obvious answer, of course, if for players to start spamming open comms with messages, thus filling the "public" tab without requiring the download of 15 days worth of attack notifications in order to do it.  
Suggested spam message:  "I'd rather be using IITC".
 
+IITC "I've made some suggestions too, and while I've had positive feedback, there's been zero signs of any progress."

Sure, the fact that vanilla Intel Map has a regional score board, a link drawing tool, and portal filtering by level and health percentage, features that Niantic added after seeing how popular IITC's implementations of them were  OBVIOUSLY counts as "zero signs of any progress."

It's ok, I wouldn't want to own up to being the inspiration for that weak-ass portal filtering by health percent either. It really is about the crappiest knock-off they could have done while still being slightly useful.
 
I don't get why it needs to keep trying until it gets enough data? Why not just go back a reasonable amount, say n requests, and show only what it gets.
In the new setup, if I have some public messages in my All tab it would be very nice to be able to see them in one place not interleaved with crap. 
 
+IITC If you relese 0.21.0 it is safe to zoom in/out on map?
 
+IITC I cant see picture of portals sometimes. Faild on Niantic or IITC? 
 
I'd suggest to Niantic that comm should be split server side, including Attack notifications. They are basically a nuisance to have included anywhere you'd expect to have communication.
 
+Kris Murray I can't stand when someone speaks to me in comm, and the message gets lost after a barrage of attack notifications. Comm is outright broken and useless in that case.
 
+IITC Have you tried it via appeal? That is the way to be given NIA's attention.
 
how about a hide comms altogether? woiuld that work?
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+Wylie Whiteaker No. comm is a required part that iitc must use. It's just the way it behaves when "public" tab was open. It kept trying to "scroll up" in the comm list to load more chat messages. Apparently NIA didn't like that.

I wouldn't mind going back to the previous layout with "load more" button. Make user take explicit action, similar to manually scrolling up.
 
+Han N. With an intel ban, you're not banned from playing Ingress, but you're (temporarily) banned from using the intel map.
 
+Jens Frank thanks, that's what I thought, but some of my teammates started panicking about the actual banhammer.
 
I am out too long. When I used to play, there were never clear reasons why someone was banned, it rather seemed they tried to cope with their technical incompetence by launching such banning rumors followed by random bans.
 
+Maxim R​ if it only asked for 1 line and then that one line was hidden would it stop requesting. Like on IITCm
 
oh ffs can someone make a plugin to fix our tabs?  It'd be better to risk a ban than deal with the crap ass normal niantic chat messages mixed in 10k notifications and portal spam.

Hell only allow more requests on the "all" tab and just filter stuff into other tabs as its found... anything is better than c&p out hundreds of individual lines of chat when you need a chat log of something.
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A new release is available that fixes the excessive requests:
https://plus.google.com/105383756361375410867/posts/DpjnGJ6q7M3

And yes, I do hear what people are saying about the lack of a 'public' COMM tab. We'll see what we can do in this area (I have ideas for an 'advanced COMM filter' plugin, that would allow filtering by message type, specific agents, particular portals, etc.
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+Виталий Киреев what 'ful' tab? It's the 'all' tab now - same as standard intel. And filtering out entries would bring back the issue of IITC not having enough to display and pulling down more than stock intel (ok, probably not as bad as the 'public' tab had, but could be an issue sometimes)

To everyone not happy with the tabs - make a request to Niantic to improve the stock site/app. It's the only way of fixing it correctly.
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+Виталий Киреев An example of the problem. View an area of the map with no recent activity (e.g. the middle of the ocean!) - all you see in the 'all' tab is the attack notifications. If these are hidden, then either IITC needs to automatically pull down more data until there's something to show (which there won't be, so excessive repeated requests), or it doesn't pull down data, and leaves a blank window (so not possible to scroll back and try and load more)

The 'right' way to fix this - get Niantic to change the standard site. The only way they'll know what people don't like/want changed is if they ask for it. Fixing this in IITC just won't work, not in an easy to use, safe and practical way at least.

I've made my suggestions on the COMM tabs there should be (system, public, faction, alerts) - but my one voice isn't being heard. Post your own requests for this too, and get others to do the same. Once enough people bring up the issue then Niantic are likely to react.
 
What about adding a "load more comms data" button on the tabs somewhere?
 
Is something related to this error? I see this data sent in the http headers as parameter of the getPlexts ajax call:
c: "E:undefined is not a function:TypeError: undefined is not a function↵    at new A (eval at <anonymous> (https://www.ingress.com/intel:335:57), <anonymous>:1:1458)↵    at Object.iitc_bg.process_queue (<anonymous>:11254:13)↵    at Object.iitc_bg.get_request_data (<anonymous>:11211:11)↵    at Object.iitc_bg.extra_request_params (<anonymous>:11179:21)↵    at window.postAjax (<anonymous>:16715:78)↵    at Function.window.chat.requestPublic (<anonymous>:11491:18)↵    at HTMLDivElement.<anonymous> (<anonymous>:11962:54)↵    at HTMLDivElement.n.event.dispatch (https://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/2.1.1/jquery.min.js:3:6404)↵    at HTMLDivElement.r.handle (https://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/2.1.1/jquery.min.js:3:3179)"

it happens when scrolling back the comm tab. I tried also with no plugins enabled.
 
With the servers being slow and unable to cope, the obvious thing to do is to encourage everyone to recruit more people - Niantic logic :P
 
I will miss the IITC public COMM channel. Too bad that NIA oops makes it so difficult to talk to the other team.
 
Hell can we get the old standard public comms tab as a plugin with the warning "this could get you in trouble"... its really no diff than the "show more portals" plugin in highly dense areas or with big monitors.
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+Ralph Weaver it's far worse than 'show more portals'. That makes no more requests (data tiles are the same size for L1 and all portals), and only slightly larger responses. And IITC's cache layer can mean fewer requests as you pan/zoom around the map

The old public COMM tab could easily make dozens of requests in quick succession, rather than the single request for stock-style COMM tabs.
 
Honestly anything to even get the existing chat out of the ALL tab to its own tab would be a  massive improvement even if you had to go to all tab and keep scroll up to get more stuff loaded.  Don't let the tab load anything itself ever for any reason, only way it loads stuff is if you scroll back in all tab... would cut the requests, give us the old readable tab back, and still enable people to populate it manually if they wanted to.
 
Honestly, it seems to me that the Intel map's core purpose is to provide a wider view of the game world then is available in game, but this core functionality is being compromised by the inclusion of the comm system. I think the answer is simple: remove comm from the Intel site, and don't remove portal data that has been pulled when a user zooms out. Instead, include a notice that the portal data is stale, and can be refreshed by opening the portal details view, just like in game (or zooming in agan). This way, the Intel map will be easier on the servers, and can still be used by players to more easily build large / layered fields. Oh, and removing cross faction chat from the all tab is a great idea. That will cut the server request load by a nice margin also.
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