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Soumya Deb (Debloper)
The Consulting Geek
The Consulting Geek


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Sensory Limitations as Blockers for Superintelligence

This 18th March Night (through 19th Morning), I spent an extended layover visiting +Vijay Raj's place in Mumbai, with +Ankit Srivastava. Full disclosure: Ingress friends (yes, the community is getting stronger).

After a couple of drinks and tandoori chicken later, we landed on the topic of Super Intelligence, how does that feel when we're not there yet. What are the facets, and how to go on about it. Are we, as a (human) race, limited to achieve at a very slower rate, because we may be missing out on different types of perceptions? Are we blinded by the fact that we are the best example that we're aware of?

Vijay (NeoMaster) is one of those rare few folks, who can argue without making you his enemy, and that's a rare talent. Our sole spectator, Ankit (TheDrunkenLord) got bored half to death by 3am & focused on Spam group IMs.

However, today I just have landed on this TED talk:

This is the Nth time, I'm feeling like I'm hearing myself through another being, at some times actually giving out the ditto same examples & using same vocabularies! This is fascinating - and you, as a human being, need to listen to this talk.

However, my argument was revolving more around - how we might be in our own Umwelt (yep, a #TIL material), as those animals are in theirs & on our road to superintelligence, we need to expand the limits to the type of sensory accesses we have. We may as well go a great length without, but that's bound to be slower.

As an example: have we had access to broader spectrum of electromagnetic-waves through normal visions (like some other animals), and longer range of vision (say, like Eagles), may be at multiples (10x, 100x) of their capabilities - then the red-shifts of stellar objects & concept of expanding universe would've been as no-brainer as everyday sun-rise back in the stone-age or even before. We wouldn't even have to first theorize, them make experimental probes & then come to that realization at the end of twentieth century!

That too, with just a better version of sensory organ that we already have. Consider entire humankind was born-blind (evolutionary-blind, I mean) - all of them. How'd our realities would've been? How fast our technical progress would've been? How'd that species would weigh up competing with the humans that we know we are - each given a thousand years of time to advance as a species?

Now, what if we're missing out on a whole new type of sense (i.e. humans as a species never had it). What if we're missing out on N number of such senses?

For all I can imagine (at a most not-up-in-the-air way possible), if we (as humans) hadn't ever had visions, we'd have had no clue whether/if other species have such a kind of sense. Our comparison with Eagles & Owls would have just been limited to: they can fly (and stuff like that)!
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Oh... this explains the 17BMU! #opBuddha
#masterMind #insiderJoke #contextMissing  

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Spacetime is an incredibly well designed self-correcting system (figurative translation: "Karma Is A Bitch"). It will take its own course, eventually. Being wranglers of only 3 dimensions, the best we can do sometimes is to just make the right choices & let time fix things up.

Hang on... I'm not here to bash/rant. Quite the contrary, I'm here to express gratitude. Cause, Karma goes both ways.

Find +Sachin Shenoy​​​​ & +Dhandeep Lodaya​​​​'s post on Ingress Operation Buddha (, and you'll find a mention of FUD based exclusion of an agent from the team. Being the sensible & responsible guys, as they are - they refrained from mentioning the agent name. Probably not to publicly hurt that agent's feelings. But here's the disclosure - I am that agent.

A weird FUD, that dates back as much as late December 2013, terming me as a Resistance double agent was spread across the the Enlightened team. Many believed, many weren't sure, some weren't aware. But in any cases, I was never included in any major Enlightened OPs.

I was aware of the situation, and I refrained from taking any step to resolve it. Primarily because it was on me to prove innocence - in a guilty-by-default system - which didn't seem like something worth dealing with.

But c'mon, this was ridiculous. I mean seriously!

Resistance India folks must be jumping off their terrace, reading this, just for the reality check. I'll spare the details on why so - cause there's a chance, that the price on my head might just get lower! Can't risk that. :P

Anyway, snap back to 26th February, 2015. Apparently a discussion went on in Enlightened OP group, regarding why I wasn't a part of the OP. And from what I hear, the situation got resolved there (only used 5 words to abstract that... great!), with some people strongly standing up to flush that FUD down the gutter.

I mean, seriously... there actually were real people to support me! Drives me bonkers - even now.

And that's where this post comes in.

I'm used to being the odd one out. I'm fairly used to being misunderstood or the one trying to establish connection with wrong frequency (read the post's first line again). I'm very much used to being excluded from team (heck, I have stories on that). More than most, I'm completely okay being alone (survival necessity, that grew with me).

And as an effect of all that... I'm used to strutting around as the jackass - you all know so well - using the inflated ego as my VR Shield to avoid human connection & to convince myself that I don't need the connection at all.

Anyway, let's go back to the tongue in cheek mode. Check this one out: 😝

So, when I was called up and told that the long standing topic has been canned, and people wanted me to have a part in the op - for a quick second there - I didn't know what to say! I recovered quickly and thanked, and I meant it (I usually do mean it, if I say something). This was only about 30hrs before the actual OP to happen.

I know that I don't know who all stood for me, expressed empathy. I came to know of some people, and thanked them as well - but that's not a scalable idea to thank everyone involved, trying to reach out personally. Hence, this post.

I am thanking each one involved in that discussion - each one considering that discussion is an important issue to be resolved (no matter for or against me), and to come up with a resolution - giving up important time that could rather be spent on OP planning. I am thanking the process of following the right course of action, than following the easier course of action. I'd have done the same, even if it was for someone else (may not have written about it, but would've held the community higher up with respect nonetheless).

With that said, in my 2 years and 2 months' active-inactive-semiactive Ingress career, first time I took part in a true Enlightened India Operation - Op Buddha ( An undertaking so incredibly large, the previous behemoths seem puny in front of it. That's my first team OP. That's my only team OP, till date. And I'm starving for more.

Karma? Well, I think so!

P.S: go watch the Bomb-Switch-Boats-Scene from The Dark Knight, now... Shoo! 😝
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Ingress OP Buddha: one picture to tell its thousand stories.


Raw ScreenShot Credit: Vinodh Selvaraj [@SudoAgent]
I've just worked on polishing it up with Buddha logo
You've probably seen the full-page GIF yesterday

I did nothing but (if you're curious):
$ for img in *.png; do convert $img -crop 500x500+720+201 +repage $img; done;
$ for img in *.png; do convert $img buddha.png -geometry +330+231 -composite $img; done;
$ mv ?.png 0?.png # Fixes glitch of wrong images ordering
$ convert -delay 30 -loop 0 *.png buddha.gif
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Added photos to OP - Buddha.
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WHAT IF, this universe of ours is a waste disposal ground of a superintelligent civilization, pouring in their wastes in form of Dark Energy, and causing the cosmic inflation?

And we're (one of) the lotus grown in an eternity of Puddle?
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Good News Everyone
I've got the Onyx/Black Guardian badge! Finally, I can again afford to let go the cooling off & get higher on the heat-level of notoriety. Also, my agent stats has been made public again!

The way guardian hunting was all the rage just a few weeks back (add to that, Devra cat-ass-trophy) I had to stay extra cautious for attacks & recharge all the dozens of back-up guardians - what a PITA!

Add to that, I got the Eve badge (yay!). Had recruited 10+ agents in last 4 weeks (and 4-5 agents just the week before it started), along with organizing a newbie-training ( & created recruitment posters ( Pretty much of an overkill, but feels good that I did.

Better News Everyone
I've leveled up! Now, I'm one of the three L11 Enlightened agents in Bangalore & the first L11 in Pune.

Yes, I chose to level up in Pune.

Was holding back not to level up too early (before Onyx Guardian), also get the Silver Destroyer, Deployer, Hacker as well on the same day. But I'm not that perfect, nor my agent stats need to be. So, what the heck...

It was such a dash! Raining all the afternoon & evening, while I'm wandering around in the Peth area. Finally ran out of dry parts of my cloths to wipe phone-screen & hired an auto-rickshaw. He was puzzled with a request of "just give me a tour of peth area, man - I'm a tourist" - but that was one of the best 200 bucks I've spent so far. Then again had to continue on foot, as getting portals 5-10m off the range is very annoying while on a vehicle - and that's why I prefer to walk to play. Putting my spare t-shirt as rain-protective head-gear was my favorite weirdest thing. :P

Getting the badges would've been easier in Bangalore - given that I'm new in Bangalore & had to acquire Gold Explorer & Pioneer for leveling up. But I had to dedicate my leveling up - to the city where most of my ingressing career was set and to the person who inspired me most while playing (

Add to that, I leveled up off of deploying to a portal that was submitted by me, and was captured for the first time by me while this leveling up; rightfully named "Amanora Memorial". Took me 4km longer route, but that's okay. Check out the pics for weekly & monthly unique counts! ;)

Best News Everyone
As some of you already have come to know, we're kicking off a contest for this week. It's faction neutral, so all agents are welcome to participate. Feel free to copy-paste/rephrase/renarrate the following & spread the word!

We're covering India with as many links as possible. To encourage agents to create many long links, the point system is tuned to reward ((Max Link-Length x Days this week) x (Number of Links created this week)) by the end of this week, i.e. August 15, 2014 23:59:59 HRS.

For e.g. if an agent has created 200 total links in the week & and has a max link-length x days value of 500km for the week, then (s)he secures 500*200=100,000 points.

1. Anyone who goes beyond 100,000 point will be rewarded with a Jarvis Virus or ADA Refactor (according to his/her preference)
2. Agent, who tops the chart will receive a total of 4 Jarvis Viruses or ADA Refactors (according to his/her preference of counts for each)

Share your screenshots on 16th August, by the EOD, with hashtag #ingressAgentOfChaos to take part in the contest.

'Nuf said, now go on... put your faraway portal keys & link amps to work!
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Know why all the wisest, brightest, heftiest, craziest ones share the same hue? ---Cause, Resistance is futile!

Go Green. Chose Enlightened.  #IngressRecruits

P.S: if you really, (really,) REALLY don't like the team... then you do get to switch faction: - so, why not give us a try?
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It's not only mega-confusing to start with, it's also very likely that you'd miss many awesomeness that Ingress has to offer unless someone tips you off. Ingress doesn't pitch to be an easy game - but it's helluva fun once you get the hang of it.

I'm hosting this hangout session to brief new agents about Ingress' gameplay. I'll make sure it's helpful to 0-day recruits as well as up to Level 5-6 agents. If you're not sure, whether you'd at all wanna join this game - wouldn't hurt too much to hear me out, right? ;)

P.S: If you're a Mozilla Geolocation Scout, but haven't tried Ingress yet... do try it out while mozStumbling for bonus fun & join me on this hangout.
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My cubicle & peer-blocks at Red Hat Pune office.
Bangalore set up is yet to become that interesting.
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