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 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!


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.

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.


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.


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.