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Brandon Downey
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Here's the deal:

If you are a conservative, you should be outraged that all these large corporations got a subsidy from the federal government in order to place their lines and towers everywhere for below market rates. Allowing them to dictate who can send or receive traffic based on their origin would be like if we let a construction company who built the interstate in your city dictate what model cars could drive on it or what brand of gas you could use.

If you're a liberal, you know the score: Large, powerful corporations are trying to hack the machinery of government to take control of the most open and most free tool for disseminating ideas in our species' history.

If you're a Nazi, fuck you.

Sorry, the last one just slipped in. :)

Serious, #netneutrality is important.
Too bad some worthless bleeping assholes sold us out to corporate interests and we'll lose net neutrality next month.
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An update on recent events.
It was recently brought to our attention that a third-party site has allegedly used data from Ingress without our consent. Extracting, scraping, or indexing our services or content is a violation of the Ingress Terms of Service. Niantic does not condone the use of websites or methods that have done so.

We are evaluating all options to protect our users, our game, and our rights and will take further action where appropriate. We are also reviewing the long-term plan for the Guardian medal.

Ambassadors and trusted reporters alleged to have been involved in the recent activity have either voluntarily stepped down or will be excused from their roles.

Ingress is defined by the passionate players who enable amazing experiences. We ask that you continue to foster relationships and make Ingress a welcoming community within and outside the game.

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The night to be at Autumn Lights is Tonight, Thursday 7-10pm. See you there!
Teams of Agents created living works of art built on The Tecthulhu Module, which allowed these art installations to integrate fully into the Ingress Portal Network. These installations reflected their current state through sound, light, color and more. See this module, live by attending Autumn Lights in Oakland, CA on October 19th - 21st. Learn more: http://bit.ly/2y5Ktqw
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If you recharge for an anomaly, you are helping our team in a big way. Your job cannot be done by a monkey, and we are grateful there is an opportunity for those not fortunate enough to attend anomalies to help their team.

Rechargers of the world, you are loved. :)
Niantic - Please remove Recharge Rooms for consideration from remote anomaly badges

Ok, as having been a POC for the recent Nashville anomaly and having had to deal with RRs, I bit my tongue for quite some time, but I'll voice my opinion here, and this is solely about RRs.

I have seen first-hand how RRs can make a huge difference. The shard we landed in Nashville earlier this year would not have happened without a RR. Having been boots on the ground at the target actively maintaining and defending the lane and link for probably the better part of 2 hours, I can attest to their value quite well. Those folks did not receive a badge for their participation. They knew that going in and should have accepted it. Participation in recharge room for your faction was it's own reward, as it should be.

There is no skill involved in Recharge Room; it comes down to showing up, distributing whatever keys were collected, then mashing the recharge button when you're told to, and stopping when you're told to stop. That's it. I could train monkeys to do that, potential TOS violations aside. But Dispatch/IO folks have typically have a higher level of commitment/involvement, and it takes a lot of skill and discipline to not fold under pressure. And just because you've dispatched for a BAF or two before by no means qualifies you for doing that for an anomaly, as it is a much more intense and stressful experience. So for those folks, I have no problem justifying a badge.

One of the biggest issues I had was with people popping up wanting to host a recharge room, which was fine, but the expectation from a few of these areas was "How are you going to get us keys?"; I'm sorry, but I do not view it as the host city's responsibility to "get you keys". Farm them, perhaps, but if you want to host a RR, you can figure out how to come get them from me. It felt like an entitlement; "We want to host a recharge room so we can all get badges, how are you going to get keys to us?" Fuck that.

These are a few of the big reasons why that any more I'm of the opinion that RR anomaly badges need to become a thing of the past. Not everyone is going to be able to get every badge, get over it. I'm aware that not everyone will be able to make it to an anomaly site in every anomaly series due to any number of reasons, and while I'm sympathetic, I don't view that as meaning i need to bend over backwards for you to make sure you get a badge just because you can't make it to the host city. Anomalies are held in specific cities, and if you want an anomaly badge, unless you fit very specific criteria for remote participation, such as Dispatch/IO, for instance, you need to participate on site in the host city, plain and simple. RRs simply don't fit that criteria IMO.

I know my viewpoint will not be shared by all, and I welcome discussion on it if you are inclined to comment on this post, but please keep it civil, or I will remove comments as I deem appropriate.


+Ingress
+John Hanke
+Andrew Krug

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One of the heroes of the Cold War; this man literally saved the world.

That our entire fate was held in one man's hands is why a massively nuclear world is terrifying -- we still need fewer missiles.
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I grew up on the Gulf Coast, and weathered a dozen hurricanes living there, up to and including Katrina. Every time, we were able to survive and eventually thrive because of the help of our neighbors, friends, and family.

Houston is already welcoming people back, but people there need that sort of support. These coins are 100% going to help those in need: and you can decide for yourself whether the folks in Houston are your neighbors, friends, or family -- or all of the above. :)

#houstonstrong #houstonrising
Recently, I was asked to pick a moment in Ingress that I realized the game had transcended just being a game and became something more important in life. For every agent this moment is deeply personal; some are funny, some sad, some daring but for the people of Houston that moment is now. With an anomaly on the horizon and planning underway the city was hit by Hurricane Harvey on August 25th. With the determination known to many Ingress agents the Houston communities have pulled together and not only continued working on the upcoming anomaly but have decided to design a symbolic challenge coin to benefit Harvey victims across the state. This showing of support to their city and state yet again demonstrates that Ingress is more than a game and our community of agents can do amazing things.

I encourage all of you to share the link to the coin with your communities globally. All proceeds of orders for the Hurricane Harvey relief coin will go to support agents on both factions affected; doing our small part to help this city and these agents get back on their feet. I have known this community for a short time while I have been helping them with their anomaly but I have never met a group of people with such determined hearts.

https://shapercity.com/?product=hurricane-harvey-relief-coin

#HoustonStrong #morethanagame

+cletus melvin +Josh Haber +dorkland +Ingress

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“The Egg War”

It is a fact well understood that the lines we draw in fielding follow the paths of geography and civilization. Lanes which cut through mountains often follow the lines of tectonic plates; likewise the rivers and valleys which form the geopolitical boundaries of our cities. Less understood is that the lines of the truly great fields are lines through time as well as space; where adventures of the past define the fields of the future in a way that transcends the barriers of simple geography.

=

In February of 2013, California Enlightened fielders assembled the first truly ‘hard’ megafield (http://norcalenlightened.blogspot.com/2013/02/operation-redacted_2654.html) composed of remote field anchors with no cellular signal and covering a considerable portion of the northern half of the state. The success of this field raised important questions for the fielding game.

Fields like this required networks of trusted contacts. Who could build the largest of these networks, with the right balance of flexibility and operational security? Blocker elimination had been ad hoc with glacial deltas in clearing. Who could turn this from a craft into project management? Most importantly: who, in the end, would win the arms race for the hardest anchors in the field game?


=

These questions lead the Bay Area’s platinum seer, @technophile, to take a trip by boat to the Farallon Islands [1]. A skilled photographer, his visit was by 400mm lens; the result was two portals on the island, including its historic lighthouse.

Surviving a harrowing journey through the portal appeals community, the Farallons were a tempting target for both field teams -- but with access seemingly only available from the air, it proved elusive as a field anchor for the last three years.

=

If the Farallons represented the acme of a difficult portal on the sea, one of the most prodigious mountaineers of the California Enlightened, agent @mercurio chose to apply the same logic to the heights. He summited California’s toughest peaks, including Mt. Whitney (the tallest mountain in the lower 48 states), but also took time to take a seer’s trip to the top of Mt. Russell. A year passed after his trip, and operatives at the NIA agreed that XM readings there indicated the presence of a portal.

With its appearance on the map, he and agent @denoche summited Russell again.

When I asked agent @denoche if he’d be willing to take the trip again, he stated it had tested the limits of his abilities. “I would only again if you told me it was critical.”

@mercurio was more taciturn in his description of the climb:

“Some puckering”

In the years since its capture, the portal remained green, but fielding from it remained an elusive goal. The taller and more easily accessible Mt. Whitney summit portal (less than a kilometer away as the crow flies) became a mainstay of California, Mexico, and Ecuadorian fielding.

=

Matters changed this summer when agent @petroholic approached me with an unprecedented opportunity. With deep ties and employment with wildlife programs in California, the wily Blackfish of Tracy had managed to secure a week-long excursion to the Farallons.

“How about a field?” he said.

=

I approached my friend and expected value consultant agent @chipsahoy, and asked if he’d be up for a hike into the Hoover wilderness. Buried there were portals that were one, two, or even three day hikes.They had been used before -- for the longest-standing megafield over the Bay Area.

=

When planning a field, there is a notion of terms in the equation that should be balanced. If you have two challenging anchors, picking a third, easier portal seems to be disharmonious. Easy lanes justify softer anchors, but what lanes might an agent on the Farallons permit?

=

I suggested Mt. Whitney (it has more portals and layers) and the Hoover wilderness as anchors to our field planning team, and was met with some skepticism.


“I don’t think it can be cleared”, doubted @petroholic.
“That’s an … interesting choice”, said someone who looked at the draw and thought I’d taken leave of my senses.
“This is an aggro lane”, said another seasoned veteran.
“That’s straight through San Francisco, and everybody will be out eclipse viewing in Oregon”, warned @katranrocks.
“That’s a terrifically poor lane”, advised Thrakazog, and then added “Sign me up.”

The field was roughly 150 distinct blocker pairs -- at least three times as many as considered sensible to cover this area. Never mind -- @petroholic’s first comment had given me a Kill Bill moment.

Anything is clearable… on a long enough timeline.

Could we clear this field in time?

=

Given the advance notice of the field, we were able to turn our attention to some difficult blockers in the area of the Eastern Sierras.

First was Scotty’s Castle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scotty%27s_Castle), a historic tourist destination in Death Valley which had been closed since the “Long Winter” of 2016 had resulted in a once in a century flood which rendered the castle uninhabitable. Closed to the public, local Resistance agents had gotten access through a volunteer program -- leaving the portals potentially blue until the planned re-opening in 2018.

Not to worry -- I knew a guy who knew a guy, and we got a private visit to the castle booked. Agents went on the tour, and were about to capture the portals… when our guide was called away because of a tour bus which had burned to the ground in another part of Death Valley. We wouldn’t have a chance to go back until a month after the Farallons trip.

Not to worry; within a day we were able to crowdfund a flight over the castle with desert hounds @denoche, @phonr, and @booga up in the air -- many passes and just a few Jarvis viruses later, the portals were clear.

=

For Mt. Whitney, I had the formidable @wellhungjury planning a summit the weekend before the Farallons trip. A veteran of ironmans and a survivor of the Badwater Basin ultraman (which takes participants from the lowest point in the lower 48 states to the highest) lined up. A near-perfect specimen of the California athlete, I judged odds of success as very high. Unfortunately, as he neared the summit, his hiking buddy got altitude sickness within 250 feet of the summit.

Choosing safety first, the portals remained blue.

Not to worry; we had another climber summiting on the Thursday of the Farallons trip. Access to camping on Mt. Whitney is the result of a lottery for permits; agent @racer42 was lined up to hit the peak.

The trip was flawless, and all the Whitney portals were returned to Enlightened control.

“Great”, I said, “That solves that problem.”

Mid-day Friday, a Resistance agent appeared at the top of Mt. Whitney. Our bad luck; the random number generators of our universes are fickle and not always kind.

Fortunately, when I had met @petroholic before his trip I had given him keys to Mt. Russell.

A rule of California fielding: always have another mountain.

=

When planning the field, another operator friend of mine mentioned a terrifying fact to me: “Hey, so you know the Farallons? It turns out there’s a Resistance agent who goes out there a few times every year.”

“But if that’s true”, I said, “why hasn’t he capped it?”.

As part of our due diligence, I asked a contact near this agent’s home if he’d seen him active.

“Seen him?”, said @subcmdrtau, on his way to Idaho for the eclipse, “Sure! I just met him in Reno on the way to Burning Man.”

I breathed a sigh of relief.

Already on the island, @petroholic mentioned, “Hey so they mentioned their networking guy is going to be coming out here for a few days -- and this guy mentioned Ingress just like me.”

“This is the opportunity of a lifetime”, said Petro, “So it’s ok if we don’t field.”

“Look”, I said, “this is a question about the sort of people we are. Who are we if we go to the Farallons and don’t field?”

I re-read the Wikipedia article on the sunk cost fallacy, and thought it was time to roll the dice.

=

Any field op is extremely sensitive to small things going wrong. I was explaining how there could be rare, black swan type events to some people clearing for us, and how any field op was really a gamble.

Our job as planners is to minimize risks.

Even with the harder blockers removed, this field was a terror. We had to shoot straight through the center of San Francisco and through the dense parts of Alameda, Oakland, San Mateo, and the far east bay. For that, we’d need an army of clearers.

Trickier than the city though was the countryside -- the big empty of California’s Central Valley. There we had some of our most dedicated and relentless fielders; but also the most empty terrain across which a blocker could be thrown at any time.

Most critical was the area near Fresno, which was guarded by Resistance agents with hair trigger instincts when it came to linking. Fortunately, there we caught a break; the other team had sewn the lane shut with a spray of links from a casino.

That portal was a bit of a gem; access required signing up for a hand of poker to get access to the wifi network to hit the portal. Agent @triplb described the situation to me, and then volunteered to try his hand. I asked how it had gone on his last visit, and he had pictures of him flashing green bills.

He sat playing hands of cards as we made a bet that our luck would hold out.

On the peninsula, veteran and first time clear teams tore a hole through Half Moon Bay. In San Francisco, SF point of contact agent @katranrocks rallied nearly a double dozen San Francisco agents to drill straight into the densest green links in the city. In the rest of the Central Valley, the rangers of Charlie-08 drove dusty roads and guarded remote towns to keep the lane open. Agents from Southern California had flown a plane and hiked the tallest mountain in the lower 48 to see this field done.

And on the Farallons, agent @petroholic got to close a field from a lighthouse.

It was, after all, California.

=

With less than an hour before checkpoint, we waited with bated breath: would this alleged Resistance player on the lighthouse strike? @Petroholic and the rest of the operator team stood ready, but the agent never materialized.

For now, our gamble had paid off -- literally for agent @triplb, who had tripled his winnings at the table.

=

With a double set of layers up, the next logical step was to add a layer from one of the portals on the way out of the Hoover wilderness -- with a lane barely 80m north of the last, this seemed like the obvious choice. As we watched the Resistance throw small blockers across this narrow patch of ground, we instead turned to the north, and went forward with our plan to field Sacramento.

With resources devoted to the original field, it took up to two hours for our clear teams to re-position on the new lane and get in position. Coming after checkpoint, less attention was paid to the lane, and the situation looked good.

Our next critical issue: dinner time.

After a long day of gruelling physical work, agent @petroholic was on a schedule to eat food on the Farallons, so had a defined time window for dinner. Our teams were in position, and we were left hanging as we wanted for him to get back in touch.

As we did, we watched a prominent Resistance fielder show up at a hike portal in northern California that had been cleared the day before. On low signal, our agents were able to recharge against her for a full ten minutes. Finally with no shields remaining, the portal was lost -- and the tension was palpable as the Resistance agent dropped one reso over a protracted period of minutes.

Would they link and close our lane?

The first mod down was a heat sink; they had come to hack for keys.

Another local operator warned us that this agent actually had a favorite portal to link from -- further back up the trail. Speaking with confidence, she warned us that the chance of a blocker was high. We made the call to throw our own counter-blocker; with other Resistance still trying to block the other layer, we gambled (again) that they would not see our lane and take some more drastic action.

Simultaneously, we awaited word from the Farallons. Had the internet failed? Power outage? Not-so-freak bird attack?

None of these things: Agent @petroholic was buried in deep fog as he walked to the portal, and had been exercising care on his ascent.

He chimed in at what seemed the last possible moment, and we cleared with immediacy and Sacramento was covered.

=

The portal submission and journey to the Farallons, the ascent of multiple 14,000 feet mountains, and the wilderness acumen to spend multiple days in the wilderness were the result of a fielding culture which prizes research, adventurous portals and recruiting the agents who are willing and able to seek them out.

Clearing one of the most torturous lanes in Bay Area fielding history was made possible by a community which believes in tight coordination for fields. Operators from all over the state helped out; One of San Francisco’s anomaly point of contacts lead an entire city to clear, while the other operated all day on the densest lane. Some agents camped overnight; others stood in the pitch dark and cold fog of an island. Wagers were placed, and adventures were had.

It was a new field in California.

=

Where to next?

The same place where we’ve always been going:

The hardest anchors, the unexpected lanes, and the most daring adventures.

=

If you liked this story and we sound like your sort of people, we invite you to join the Enlightened in San Francisco on December 2nd and we’ll finish the fight at the last anomaly of Q4.

http://enl.rocks/sf2017

#farallons #finishthefight #sf #enl #eggwar #sitreps

References:

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Farallon_Islands
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egg_War

+Sarah New​​ +Kate Magary​​ +Paul Woodward​​ +Marc G​​ +Kevin Wojta​​ +Snow White​​ +Christy Kidd​​ +Jeremy G​​ +Darcy Bowen​​ +Bryant Durrell​​ +Pongo Lyn​​

+Andrew Krug​​
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9/7/17
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It's interesting that the same place that coined the phrase "the best way to predict the future is to invent it" is also the city that literally built itself out of the ships that brought people there.

San Francisco made its future by inventing itself.

#finishthefight #sfenl
SF Portals of Interest #8: Site of the Ship Niantic

Location: Financial District, Clay Street at Sansome
https://www.ingress.com/intel?ll=37.794872,-122.401755&z=17&pll=37.794872,-122.401755

In the shadow of the Transamerica Pyramid is a plaque showing the final resting place of the ship Niantic, after which the Niantic Project was named. The ship started as a whaling vessel built in 1832 in Connecticut, named after the Nehantucket people who lived in that area. In January 1849, the ship was in Peru when it received a call to pick up passengers in Panama (where they had crossed on land) and bring them to San Francisco. Once in San Francisco, the ship lost most of its crew to the Gold Rush and the owners decided to sell the vessel. She was floated ashore and used, at various times, as a warehouse, store, office and hotel, the last of which was a building atop the hull. Above the door was cut the inscription “REST FOR THE WEARY and STORAGE FOR TRUNKS”. A fire in 1852 burned it to the waterline, and another hotel was built on the site which burned again in 1872. This time, when digging for a new foundation, the old hull was discovered including 35 baskets of champagne. It was rediscovered again in 1978 when excavating for the Mark Twain building and yet another basket of champagne was unearthed and given to the great-granddaughter of the captain.

In those days the shoreline was much further inland than it is today; the bay was filled using a combination of rocks quarried from nearby Telegraph Hill and the remains of abandoned ships, pushing the shoreline out about 6 blocks into what used to be water lots. Today, the Site of the Ship Niantic is just a plaque (that SFENL just visited to pay tribute during Operation Clear Field) commemorating the remains - some of which still remain below a parking lot- although you can view the logbook, pieces of the ship and other artifacts at the Maritime Museum.

It is rumored (in a recent discovery by the San Diego Enlightened) that in addition to picking up passengers in Panama on its way from Peru, the Niantic may have been carrying additional cargo- and dropped it at El Jupiter in San Diego. Certainly the ship has a high concentration of XM and its mystery is still being revealed. Hacking this portal will get you a special media item.
https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ollietronic/posts/i3UeCuLMsD8
https://plus.google.com/u/0/+YikShengLeeIsrael/posts/Wj6uNWD6zyh

Come visit San Francisco on December 2nd for the anomaly to see what mysteries this site contains. Register with the Enlightened at http://enl.rocks/SF2017

Want to know about more ships? The Niantic and other buried ships of San Francisco were recently featured in a National Geographic article- you can view the new map here: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2017/05/map-ships-buried-san-francisco/

+Ingress +Andrew Krug +Niantic Project +John Hanke +H. Richard Loeb +ollie tronic +Yik Sheng Lee #portalsyoushouldknow #finishthefight #operationclearfield
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7/24/17
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NIce work SD ENL!

Special thanks to +Theresa Bills for rounding all the team up and +ollie tronic for helping the team as they did the mission!
Congratulations to San Diego Enlightened for completing Misty's mission challenge!

#13magnusreawakens

Decoding credit: @kokuryuu +Richard Jennings

Mission credit: +Trumaster36 +Brendan McGrath

Camping credit: +Theresa Bills @lOV43 @will99 @nowbanana @Happyc1

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The murals in the Mission are some of the most gorgeous public street art I've ever seen.

I wouldn't miss them, or the local taquerias (where the burrito was invented!).
SF Portals of Interest #7: Murals on Balmy Street, Mission

Location: https://www.ingress.com/intel?ll=37.751674,-122.412402&z=17&pll=37.751674,-122.412402
Balmy Street between 24th and 25th Street, Mission District

How to get there: Muni 48 or 14 Muni/BART to 24th and Mission

If you like public art, there is no better place to see it than in the Mission District in San Francisco, which has over 400 murals on its streets. Balmy Alley is filled with murals that began in the 1970s for the artists to express outrage over human rights abuses in Central America and today nearly every wall and garage door on the block has a mural. Today the murals cover a wide range of topics. To learn more about them, half a block away is the Precita Eyes Mural Arts and Visitors Center, which offers walking tours on weekends. http://www.precitaeyes.org/

Balmy Alley inspired a the Clarion Alley Mural Project http://clarionalleymuralproject.org/ , which is another great place to see the Mission’s murals in a high concentration. Be sure to look up from your scanner while you walk around the Mission, because you will otherwise miss the incredible detail and history shown in the mural projects there. Hungry for even more murals? http://www.sfmuralarts.com/ has a wonderful mural mapping and photography archive for the whole city as well as book recommendations for learning about the history and artists of San Francisco’s mural arts.

Come visit San Francisco on December 2nd for the anomaly. Register with the Enlightened at http://enl.rocks/SF2017
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