Google is watching – Move

Mission begins

camo clad soldier

© 2015

I started my Ingress journey last week and went looking for portals at the end of the week. Ominously I first downloaded the game on my iPhone as a storm raged over Brisbane. Claps of thunder and flashes of lightning together punctuated and nearly drowned out the eerie, if not slightly irritatingly repetitive music. It almost made me believe “This is not a game!”

I dutifully joined a faction and created my identity. However, the game is designed for you to be on the move; to get everyone out and about in their local community. The gps does not locate any portals until you are out and about. So I had to wait util the next morning when the storm was over before I could walk about.  Some great pedagogical applications for fitness, geography, art, team building and map reading.

Learning to hack and harvest

As a learning experience I enjoyed the challenge of figuring out how to use the app and locate local portals and hack them and harvest energy. My husband downloaded the game too and we roamed around Southbank hacking and harvesting around GOMA.

I noticed also that there were quite a lot of Enlightened faction members in my area. I made contact with a couple and was welcomed by two. Everyone else was more interested in the mission.

Here is the timeline I created to capture part of my learning journey using TikiToki desktop app for MacBrook pro.

Mission Ingress timeline

© 2015 H.A.Steele

Thinly veiled intentions

Perhaps I am being a bit cynical, but I can’t help but feel the hidden intentions are more about helping Google get more data on our local areas and eventually get businesses on the intel map. We faction members do all the work by taking photos and submitting them for approval (Oh please accept my image) and registering our gps locations. The issue of privacy can’t be ignored either. I was a bit disappointed at some of the crude responses from players to ‘communications’ posted as part of the narrative elements of the game. I guess that is what the ‘cloak of anonymity’ does for some.

My cyncism is shared . I am not alone.

I have to go there are portals waiting to be hacked.

3 comments on “Google is watching – Move
  1. You certainly are a storyteller, Hyacinth! It’s fun joining a faction and creating an identity. I did this for INF506 Social Networking for Information Professionals when I joined Second Life for a blog task. Unlike you, I didn’t get out and about. Instead, I visited the CSU SIS Space and learned about CSU’s library information services. The space was created by Jokaydia, a CSU website designer. You were lucky to meet other identities. I spent about four hours navigating my way round the site alone. The first meet-up wasn’t until Week 6. It was worth the wait and we laughed as we learned to mobilise our avatars in a socially acceptable way. You’d enjoy INF506.

  2. Actually the CSU virtual campus is built for our School by Jo Kay, a consultant for us, not CSU staff. You will have seen Jo’s name in tbe forums too. She also manages the help desk queries for Thinkspace too! She runs lots of cool stuff, including the Islands of Jokaydia, and Massively Minecraft for kids at She’s amazing!

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