Comic 1257 - Introduction

25th Oct 2015, 9:00 PM
Introduction
Average Rating: 5 (23 votes)

Author Notes:

Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:35 PM edit delete
Centcomm
Going to post this here Check out the second Black angel Entry for more info

Black angel tech

EDIT this was moved from the Tech pages to the Blog due to spoilers.
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Comments:

Tango Xray Actual 25th Oct 2015, 9:03 PM edit delete reply
Somebody's gonna be in for a wee shock
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 7:45 AM edit delete reply

.. we can electrocute Kyle ?

Please say yes! :D
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:36 PM edit delete reply

Yep just a little one
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 3:54 PM edit delete reply

Yay ! :D
Haegan2005 26th Oct 2015, 7:04 PM edit delete reply

Puppies are so easy to please!
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:05 PM edit delete reply

Buuut ... we get to electrocute Kyle ! :D
Haegan2005 26th Oct 2015, 8:20 PM edit delete reply

Eh, try tying him down and licking his feet...
Mark_L_A 26th Oct 2015, 8:24 PM edit delete reply

Sheela would you like to borrow my stun gun to use on Kyle? Or if you REALLY want to hurt him, I have a cattle prod.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:41 PM edit delete reply

No need !

I have two tesla coils at the ready ! :D
CptKerion 27th Oct 2015, 9:49 AM edit delete reply
I have the sense Sheela is going to do roughly this,
House of the Rising Sun, played on two Tesla coils
Sheela 27th Oct 2015, 10:22 AM edit delete reply

With Kyle in the middle ?
That's a fantastic idea ! :D

also, people will play music on everything, even old floppy drives!
jamie59 25th Oct 2015, 9:03 PM edit delete reply

Here comes the water works.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:46 PM edit delete reply

Maybe :D
NinjaYacdan 25th Oct 2015, 9:04 PM edit delete reply
Two battle babes for the price of one! And if you act now, an uber nerd to fix your AIS buddy!
Wolfsbane 25th Oct 2015, 11:24 PM edit delete reply

lol
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:46 PM edit delete reply

I love the way you put that
The Old Scribe 25th Oct 2015, 9:10 PM edit delete reply

Gettin' up to speed here. Heh! Dolly the Badass. Then again, she is. Looks like the rescue mission has opened a new can of worms in Nova Roma. I wonder what the Head Worm is up to? If he keeps losing people and weapons to the rescuers, he might just have lost his advantages over the increasingly PO'd populace. Then again, if Kyle can fix the damaged AI, the whole scenario will be moot.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 7:46 AM edit delete reply

The head worm is probably raging and ranting at his cat.
Thie means that the cat becomes a Lost Kitten, which needs saving by Dolly!
Dolly will save ALL of the lost little kittens, and the head worm should really be concerned with keeping his head on his neck.
Dragonrider 25th Oct 2015, 9:18 PM edit delete reply

I smell Cliff Hanger soon, but a couple questions. Didn't Ceci "spark" on the way here? If she sparked and as I recall Veronica Silver "cut the umbilical cord" and made "watchdog a paper trained puppy. How the hell can "Watchdog" take over? He was a ride along advisory package after that not a Command and Control Module.
Centcomm 25th Oct 2015, 9:51 PM edit delete reply

Still got a few pages in this scene .. we will try to not leave you on a cliff again :D
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 5:26 AM edit delete reply

You mean this WEEK, CentComm? You are too EVIL to forego the torment you inflict upon us with your cliffhangers!!! :-D
Tokyo Rose 25th Oct 2015, 9:55 PM edit delete reply

Dr. Silver was able to stop the conflicts between Watchdog's parameters and Ceci's burgeoning independence, but she lacked the time and tools to dig any deeper, and couldn't have removed Watchdog's override capabilities regardless under the circumstances. She'd have needed Cent's personal authorization just to look around any deeper, and would have had to physically perform major surgery on Ceci's synth-brain to remove certain parts. Watchdog is essentially "firmware".
Centcomm 25th Oct 2015, 9:58 PM edit delete reply

Yeppers - right what Rose said.
Hana 26th Oct 2015, 2:50 AM edit delete reply
Wait what?? When did Silver meet Ceci?? ....aw man i need a COMPLETE recap on the whole Watchdog scenario/history....

(but theres no way im digging through ALL those pages)
mjkj 26th Oct 2015, 5:02 AM edit delete reply

Well, on CeCi's part is was here: Comic 897* - Reboot..., on Doc Silver's here Comic 906* - Conflicts... and the following pages...

* according to today's update - might change later with new redone pages going up
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 5:58 AM edit delete reply

Hmm. That is... odd. If synth-brains work the same way bio-brains do, they shouldn't require "firmware". They should have "hardware" interpreters to translate thoughts into actions. From a neuroscience perspective, it would make more sense for the Watchdog to be a semi-independent processing center that piggy-backs on Ceci's brain. Architecturally, it would be similar to how humans process emotions in a separate lobe from our logical thoughts. The difference would be that impulses from her Watchdog (which would function kind of like a conscience) would have a much stronger connection to her action centers, so they'd be harder to override (ignore).

Of course, if synth-brains worked the same as bio-brains, there would also be no way for an engineer to make it impossible for the Watchdog to be overridden, because neurons don't understand absolute conditionals. Similarly, manipulating the Damage Avoidance System the way that slave collars do wouldn't be an absolute control either. If synth-neurons are exact synthetic replicas of human neurons, it's entirely possible for a brain to become immune to "pain". It wouldn't be a sustainable condition, as it would severely impair learning and cause the individual to go insane, then go brain-dead. But it could be done. Under very precise circumstances (ie with ludicrous concentration and determination), an individual might be able to gain conscious control of their pain response, essentially becoming able to turn it off at will. As I mentioned previously, though, turning it off completely will quickly lead to insanity and brain death, so they wouldn't do it for long. Also the chances of an individual being able to gain such control are incredibly unfavorable.

To be fair, though, that's only if they go about it the "natural" way. If they're designers (are insane and) decide that such a function should be built into the individual's initial architecture, they could be "born" with the ability. Without Nano-tech, it would be nearly impossible to surgically modify a brain to have the ability (with Nano-tech it would be fairly trivial).
Somehow, I've lost track of what it was I was going to say. I guess the point is that computer analogies don't work very well with Neural systems. In computers, "Hardware" and "Software" are necessarily two separate things (and Firmware is literally just very low-level software). This dichotomy essentially stems from the fact that computers are binary devices, so something is either "Hardware" or "Software"; either "Correct" or "Incorrect"; either "True" of "False"; either "One" or "Zero". With no middle ground and no effective way to translate from "Zero" to "One" or from "Software" to "Hardware", there isn't any way for a computer to gain the flexibility of a neural system aside from running an exhaustive software simulation of that neural system. Neural system's don't have that dichotomy. Although there technically are indivisible, minimum units that define the smallest reaction a neuron can make, they're insignificant when compared to the amount that it takes to trigger any subsequent neurons. More importantly, Neural systems don't require a fixed architecture. Connections can be formed between previously isolated areas in response to stimuli, allowing brains to mimic logical processes in "Hardware" (a term that must be used very loosely when referring to neural systems). Mimicking higher functions in hardware leads to significant improvements in performance and efficiency, allowing processes to be simplified over time, requiring less effort to perform a task the more frequently it is needed. Arguably the very most important feature of neural systems is that by learning about specific types of problems and simplifying thought processes to make solving them more efficient, Neural systems can develop the ability to perform cognitive leaps: to "intuit" the answer to a problem without performing the necessary logical steps to solve it. Intuition by cognitive leaps is, by it's nature, an imprecise process, but it's also orders of magnitude faster than the exhaustive logical processes it simulates, but without a total loss of accuracy. Of course, in order to retain accuracy and to train the intuition, it is necessary to perform logical confirmation of intuited results, which is why "guess and check" is such a popular method for solving purely logical or mathematical problems among inexperienced scholars.



EDIT: I seem to have written a small essay into one of my posts again. oh well.

TLDR: Computer analogies don't work very well for brains because computers are limited and brains are awesome. Brains are also very difficult to control, at least in the same absolute way that you can control computers.
Brains require incredible precision to modify in meaningful ways (outside of their natural self-modification), while computers can be modified easily on the software level, but require extremely specialized equipment to modify on the hardware level (even with such equipment, it's almost always cheaper to replace a chip with the one you want than it is to modify the existing chip into the one you want).

(Meta)-TLDR: Lots of stuff about brains vs computers and why analogies between the two are prone to failure when subjected to even the slightest scrutiny.

(Meta)-(Meta)-TLDR: Lots of very cool information.

(Meta)-(Meta)-(Meta)-TLDR: Words.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 7:54 AM edit delete reply

Well, a piggyback system that is in complete control of the "brain stem" equivalent of the synthbrain, is essentially in charge of what orders can reach the body. No matter what the brain decides, the watchdog still has the last word in any argument.

You don't have to control the entire brain, just it's outcomes.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:35 PM edit delete reply

Going to post this here Check out the second Black angel Entry for more info

Black angel tech
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 2:31 PM edit delete reply

@Sheela Actually, no. Provided that the Watchdog is made from the same synthetic nerve tissue as the rest of the brain, it will still be just as subject to change based on the stimuli it receives. So long as a component made of neural tissue has final say in her actions, no single source of stimulus (like a watchdog) can have absolute control over what she does.

@Centcomm That doesn't explain everything. Is the Watchdog made of Synth-brain tissue? Is it based on a conventional silicon processor? At what point does the Watchdog intercept Ceci's instructions? How closely does the Watchdog monitor Ceci's brain? Can it read her thought's? Can it observe her impulses? More importantly, how can the extra latency introduced by the Watchdog's verification processes be justified in a combat model android? Shouldn't that make her reflexes more sluggish that those of androids lacking a Watchdog?
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 2:44 PM edit delete reply

WatchDog and the CCM are Quantum based computer systems similar to a Synthetic intelligence like the ones that drive Combat droids. Yes Ceci's synth brain is faster and more adaptable. and normally this isn't a issue.

The Synthbrain is made of Bio organic material and Quantum level biological Nurual networks that mimic human brain fuction

The CCM and Watchdog are Hardware - made from inorganic Q-Chips and Other electronic nural network systems.

Watchdog is not set up for processing emotions only for the task at hand. He is very task oriented. And if Ceci will not comply .. then she is taken out of the loop She is still aware of what is transpiring. But is unable to act on it.

Watchdog does this in such a way that Cecis own brain falls victim to the conditioning and she complys with out realizing shes been compromised. well to use Watchdogs term " Corrected "

She will still obey her protocols. Its pretty much like a post hypnotic suggestion. So technicly .. its still her.
In combat The CCM and Watch dog are FASTER than Ceci is. So they handle all the combat. But Ceci is better at interacting with people ..

I hope that helps some.

Edit these " conditioning " States are put in when the Angel is set up so the CCM and watch dog are doing nothing but activating the command line that triggers them.

I say command line but its a lot more complex than that.
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 3:11 PM edit delete reply

@Centcomm If Watchdog is based on conventional processing systems, rather than Neural systems, his adaptability is necessarily limited. As a result Ceci should be able to "fool" him by taking actions that would appear (to his limited analyses) to be congruent with his objectives, but in reality either run counter to them or lead to situations in which achieving his objectives become impossible or unacceptably costly.

If we presume that the Watchdog intercepts signals between brain stem and spinal chord, and if Ceci's spinal chord is capable of low-level reactions the same way human spinal chords are, it is conceivable that Ceci could develop a method of "encrypting" her commands so that Watchdog wouldn't react to them or countermand them. This would likely confuse the crap out of watchdog as it would seem to him the same as it would seem to you if a telekinetic had forced your body to move according to his/her will.

If we presume that Ceci's individual neurons can fire more rapidly than WD is able to analyze her actions, then Ceci could send waves of contradicting signals to her limbs, timed in such a way that by the time WD has decided that he might have to intervene, Ceci has already returned to "Acceptable" behavior. With careful control over the timing, Ceci could ensure that her body spends more time moving in the direction she wants, rather than the direction WD wants. The constant conflict would likely cause some serious problems in a normal organic system and would almost certainly cause significant wear on her body, but such is the price of freedom.
Morituri 26th Oct 2015, 2:25 PM edit delete reply
I am actually working on a general AI, aiming squarely at self-awareness (hopefully at least on the "mouse" level). I've developed some exciting new technology that enables a lot more temporal awareness of actions' long-term outcomes and long-term post facto decisions based on later observations about whether recent actions have been a net win - together with the ability to do conditioning based on that longer-term information.

Anyway, I answered because the temporal-adjustment mechanism applicable to this project provides a PERFECT explanation for what's going on between Ceci and Watchdog.

Ceci's problem is that she isn't just one brain. Ceci has sparked. Her neural network has reached a more tractable fitness landscape in which to seek global error minima, would be the way it's expressed when speaking geek.

But Watchdog hasn't. And while Watchdog has backed off a lot and now USUALLY lets Ceci run the show, it's ultimately in command of her body and lets her run the show by passing along her commands to the actuators.

Dr. Silver's assistance, as I see it, was sufficient to make the watchdog back off and let Ceci run the show most of the time.

Maybe she did this by informing/proving to Watchdog, quite truthfully, that Ceci's own ability to learn/condition herself has become vastly more effective and that therefore time spent with Ceci running the show (and learning in self-directed mode) is more effective in improving odds of surviving and completing missions than time spent with itself running the show.

But Watchdog still has mission objectives from which it simply cannot deviate. And it's still got absolutely no way to let Ceci run the show when what she wants to do is in violation of its own primary directives.

So it's literally giving her its "verbal" commands mostly to inform her what's going on, then giving her brain's neural-adaptation algorithm some feedback against recent decisions and actions whatever they happen to be.

As for what it's like from Ceci's point of view? Think of the way some folks train dogs using a shock collar, and then imagine that the shock collar is so very finely tuned that rather than causing gross pain, it actually affects different parts of the brain differently depending on how they've contributed to recent decisions.

Because that would take several seconds to several minutes (same time frame as the decisions were made in) to have its full intended effect, Watchdog gets immediate compliance by literally taking over her body. Temporarily it would just refuse to forward her physical commands and runs the show itself.

Probably it returns physical control to her gradually (mixing/deciding physical impulses by sending the "compromise" to a lower-level cortex to figure out) over the course of several minutes as its most recent "conditioning" is expected to run its course.
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 2:46 PM edit delete reply

Ooooh. Thanks for the input, Morituri. It's nice to hear from someone who understands Neural net architecture.

Your model doesn't describe what's happening in Ceci's brain though. The Tech page clearly states that Watchdog/Inhibitor cannot change how an android "feels" or it's emotional state. This would not be the case if the Watchdog had override access to her synth-brain's negative reinforcement mechanism. Also, please note that in the cases of androids in the DC universe, All of the brains are made from a synthetic analogue to human brain tissue, and may not be subject to the same limitations as bio-brains (such as requiring several minutes to adjust to new learning).
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 2:55 PM edit delete reply

Key point .. Watchdog and a Inhibitor are different animals .. I included it on the Angel section simply to show a similarity,

Watchdog is such a intrigal part of Ceci that it CAN affect her emotional state. and even her likes and dislikes.
Morituri 26th Oct 2015, 3:05 PM edit delete reply
I don't read Watchdog and Inhibitor collar as the same thing. Not even remotely. Inhibitor collars are mindless, for starters.

The inhibitor collars are nothing more than a means of handing body movement control over to a MUCH simpler program. They don't get the ability to condition anything/train/force learning because they aren't smart enough, and aren't even connected to the main Neural network.

But Watchdog's original function was supposed to be controlling Ceci's development and training - it's attempts to do that after Ceci had 'sparked' were driving her nutty - and also being a "mind" trusted with mission objectives not known to Ceci herself. And it can't have sudden rebellion/counteraction when it returns control to Ceci.

As such, it has to have feedback to her learning/neural conditioning; her feelings about what's right and wrong or the most effective way to deal with a situation.
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 3:31 PM edit delete reply

Even granting that Watchdog can influence Ceci's emotional states by means of providing input to the negative reinforcement systems of her neural net, it should still be possible for her to develop an "immunity" to it's inputs. If she forced some of her neurons to go into a state of seizure such that they sent constant signals to her MACCS telling it to do something WD didn't want, she could force WD to overload all of the neurons to which it has direct access with negative reinforcement. One of four things would have to happen:
1. The seizure ends prematurely.
2. All of the neurons to which WD has direct access become so severely discouraged that they either die or become incapable of firing ever again.
3. WD continues to provide negative reinforcement so strongly to so many neurons that he fries significant portions of Ceci's brain, causing brain death or coma.
4. The seizure fails to end. Ceci's control over her own body is cut off by WD's override indefinitely.

In the first case, nothing particularly significant happens. In the third case or fourth case, Ceci dies or becomes severely impaired and WD is forced to take full control of her body for the foreseeable future. In the second case, though, WD has cut off his only method for influencing Ceci's thoughts and feelings, freeing her to act on her own initiative. Her brain adapts around the dead neurons and continues to function as normal.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 4:22 PM edit delete reply

To be fair, CeCi may not be aware that having a watchdog is different, or wrong, or an issue at all.
For her, it has always been there, this is Situation Normal: All Fucked Up !
Which also means, that she's not going to "rebel" against watchdog.



Now, I once did a neural net experiment, where we build a prototype that could see colored pieces of paper through a camera, and learn to name the colors of them, by using comparison examples. It took it about 1000 iterations, to learn the different colors, by comparison to some samples we had given it. Simple enough. We tested it, and it worked.

Then we wiped it and added another circuit, that circuit was less than one tenth the complexity than the main neural net, but was hardwired to return the answer "Black" for the colors "Red" and "Green". It was extremely fast and efficient at doing so, as it's choices was much more limited, and it's answers was always accepted as "correct" by the main neural net.

Thus, after the 1000 iterations of learning, the main neural net had learned to call Red and Green, for Black.
And it was so efficient, that when we disabled the secondary controlling neural net, the main neural net continued reporting "black" for another 10000 iterations, after which it took yet *another* 5-10000 iterations for it to re-learn the correct responses, based upon our feedback.



Unlearning conditioned responses, is incredibly hard.
And it's the true stuff of nightmares for child psycholigists.
ie. as long as you have a parent still telling the child the wrong answer,
the child will have an even harder time breaking it's conditioned responses.

CeCi has been conditioned throughoutly by CentComm, and is unlikely to break the yoke easily.
Especially as long as the master circuit called Watchdog, is still there.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 4:42 PM edit delete reply

At RMS2000 and Morituri

While I can appreciate and im really really amazed at this detail. I sadly have trouble following some of this. BUT thank you very much for the input.. I may steal part of this stuff if I need it.

But i had no clue about some of this.

To Paraphrase Rose. It works because.. it works.. Even though Ill try to throw out some plausable stuff as best I can
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 2:11 PM edit delete reply
Rms2000:

You're not getting it. Ceci doesn't (CAN'T) fight Watchdog for more than a few seconds at a time, tops, because after a few seconds, at most, Watchdog can CHANGE HER into someone who won't fight it.

She is developing her own personality, yes; but Watchdog can still grab her mind and directly reduce or probably even reverse whatever motivations and processes she has recently engaged in. Her personality develops around whatever choices, motivations, and processes Watchdog allows to pass without interfering with.

Think about what that means for a choice to fight Watchdog. If she chooses to fight Watchdog, the motivations and processes that Watchdog therefore has the power to reduce or reverse - strictly by virtue of being the motivations and choices that led to her recent decision - will be exactly the ones that motivate her to fight it, or make her think she has any chance of winning, or that the objectives she wanted to fight over are worthwhile.

Ceci doesn't win this fight.
Tokyo Rose 26th Oct 2015, 4:11 PM edit delete reply

@RMS2000

See, when discussions on this kind of thing take place between Cent and myself, it usually starts with Cent having an idea, then I point out that we need to develop it more thoroughly because the readers are going to pick it apart, and we work it down to the point where our competence as non-multiple-doctorate-degree-holders ends, because we're not neurologists, structural engineers, computer engineers, aerospace engineers, AI developers, programmers, weapons designers, megalomaniacs, princesses, slaves, political science majors, survivalists, economists, entrepreneurs, xenosociologists, traders, geneticists, biologists, or partridges in pear trees.

We are storytellers, and while we do our best to perform due diligence in our research to avoid making obvious mistakes, there are times where reality has to conform to the story rather than the other way around. This endlessly annoys Mr. Black, who serves as our consultant in a couple of areas, because sometimes we have to say "Thanks for telling us how it should actually work, now help us figure out how it can do what we want it to do."

Sometimes, we have to use the Power of the Hand-Wave. Sometimes, A Wizard (or super-science) has to be the one that Did It. We try, we really do, to make things work before resorting to that. Some of the discussions that pop up between the readers get to be very interesting and informative, especially when (as now) we find out that some of our readers are scarily well-informed on complex topics, but sometimes it feels kind of like we're under attack for not being polymath geniuses who have plotted out every conceivable aspect of this world and its elements (tech, biology, etc) to the nth possible degree. We're just trying to tell a story, hopefully an interesting one.

What it boils down to is that Watchdog can and has activated programming that has been present but not active in Ceci from the beginning, as part of Cent-Comm's plans. The persona we know as "Ceci" not only has no choice but to obey, she has no awareness that such a thing as "choice" exists when it comes to these directives. She's still capable of making moment-to-moment choices, like warning Acantha not to pull a weapon instead of shooting her outright, but every decision now serves to further her directives.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 4:24 PM edit delete reply

Oh my gosh .. you mean you use story-telling techniques, such as Hollywood-Physics and Pencil-Genetics ?

Cool! :D
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 5:21 PM edit delete reply

Nice reply, Rose. :-) I think you do a good job presenting things that MIGHT be possible, 2000 years in the future. :-)

200 years ago, they didn't even have computers. Babbage hadn't even presented his paper on the Analytical Engine... won't for another 22 years on that time scale. :-)

Boy have things changed since then. And with the tech advances possible, especially with some possible 'boosts' from real space aliens... We probably can't even DREAM that far. :-)

But you are trying... and making an entertaining (if not entirely satisfying to geeks everywhere, who want to HAVE your shiny toys... NOW :-D) comic.

So I for one thank you and CentComm for all your hard work. :-) Please keep it up!
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:25 PM edit delete reply

Heh, remember the movie Back to the Future <=== ?
Where Marty McFly went to the FUTURE of 21st October 2015 !!!
They had flying cars 'n' everything.
That was 5 days ago, and I feel CHEATED !!
Rms2000 27th Oct 2015, 7:14 AM edit delete reply

@Rose && Centcomm: It would seem I have given offense, and for that I apologize. It is not my intent to make anyone feel stupid. My understanding of computing, both in digital and neural forms is far from complete. Very far from complete. If Morituri is a NASA rocket engineer, I'm little more than a model rocket builder. I do my best to understand what facts I do know, and I have a knack for sensing or intuiting the deep, important significance of what sometimes appears to be small details (like my insight on the essential dichotomy of digital systems). But I am no true expert. I have no degrees in neuroscience or computer science. What I do have is a very inquisitive mind that compels me to question anything that doesn't fit what I know until either I understand it or I run out of time or concentration. I am blessed with a very logical mind, but cursed with a very disorganized mindscape, which occasionally leads me to forget how much I actually know (or, more significantly, how much I do not). In my defense, it is far easier to get things done when paying attention to what I do know than what I do not. As Greg House once said, I assume I am correct, "because it's far easier than proceeding with the opposite assumption".

This is how I learn things. I find a topic I'm interested in. I listen until I think I have some idea what's going on, then I make a statement or challenge someone's hypothesis and wait for someone to correct me. If no one does, I conclude that I must be the most correct person in the room, and try to figure out if what I said has any interesting implications with which to begin the process anew. If someone speaks up, I analyze their position as closely as I can for consistency with previous info and simple logical consistency. Then I try to figure out if they're right by means of trying to fit that information in with the other pieces. If the new information solves more problems than it creates, or solves the problems most relevant to it very cleanly, it's probably more correct than whatever assumption proceeded it. I then move on to the next bit of conflicting information and try to resolve that conflict.

The point is that I'm just as fallible as the next guy. More so, even, in many ways. And I don't mean to accuse anyone of incompetence. I just want to provoke thought, because the more we think about what we do and say, the less likely we are to make dumb mistakes. I know how I feel when I find I've made a dumb mistake, and I assume others feel similarly in similar circumstances. So I try to prevent mistakes by questioning everything and scrutinizing anything that returns unsatisfactory results. I guess you could say that I'm just trolling for Truth.
On a comments section for a fictional story.
Okay... Yeah......

Maybe not the brightest thing ever, but I have made some interesting conversation.
So there's that... yay
i be quiet now.
Sheela 27th Oct 2015, 9:47 AM edit delete reply

@RMS2000 >
I don't think offence was taken, but I think they're trying to say that they cannot explain every little detail of the story.
Either because they don't know, don't care, or they simply don't have the time for it.



And because sometimes .. a wizard did it!
I tried to bite him, but he went ahead and did it anyways! >:(

Darn wizard!

image
Wolfsbane 27th Oct 2015, 12:48 PM edit delete reply

Geez, guys, it's a webcomic. Entertainment. (Huge thanks BTW to Cent and Rose for the work they put into it so that it is so enjoyable.) Why write such immensely long comments? Wastes your time in writing it and everyone's time who reads it. Read the comic, enjoy it, vote/donate if you enjoy it enough, and move on with your day. Get a life. Life is too busy and full to waste it trying to figure out the real-world science of a make-believe place.

</Gripe>
Sheela 27th Oct 2015, 6:26 PM edit delete reply

Oh come now Wolfsbane, if you have had an eyes on the comment section at all, you should know that we find it enjoyable to write long posts every now and then. It's a sort entertainment, in and of itself.

And frankly, I'd rather be posting, than vegging out for several hours, in front of the television set, watching yet another action movie with Bruce Swarzenegger Stallone shooting everything in range - Which is what the "common" people do. Many hours .. every .. single .. day. And yet they supposedly have a life, and I don't ? weird.
Wolfsbane 28th Oct 2015, 5:53 AM edit delete reply

Yep, I see it. And scroll right by it. These were just so frequent and long I couldn't not say anything (not that it will change anything, but I feel better).

And yes, those 'common' people who spend hours in front of the tv or computer also need to get a life. (excluding those who make their living at those things, of course). Life is short, go do stuff!

Centcomm 27th Oct 2015, 12:21 PM edit delete reply

Actually you didnt Offend - I actually love reading these things if anything its just that sometimes we feel we are letting YOU people down by not knowing this stuff.

You have no idea how many times ive wanted to do something and been shot to pieces by Rose or Black .. or one of the other people I use for references. Example - I get called on my handgun poses a LOT because the figures I use look really strange and broken if I use exact poses that Humans do .. but i really do try to get them as close as possible.

Anyway .. Keep the comments and stuff up but please dont expect us to be able to answer all the technical questions - Ill just throw neat sounding names at it.

PS : If someone DOES come up with a awesome way to explain a technology in the comic or a item - Id be happy to make that canon if possable and make a tech page entry on it!

( with credit to the reader! So feel free to help us out! )
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 1:33 PM edit delete reply
Hey Rose?

You may not be a polymath who has already invented 2000 years of future technology; Hell, none of us are, although I'm pretty scary with multiple AI patents and an advanced degree. I think there are a few others hanging around who are similarly scary.

If you're going to write good science fiction, we are definitely part of the audience you'll attract. Think about that. You know why we're around? Because you're doing a hell of a good job.

Not only have you got a compelling story, but your science is (mostly) right as far as I can tell. Having scarily well-informed readers is a VERY good sign that you're not actively and frequently pissing us off the way a lot of writers do.

I gave you a handwave on Cybernetic Telepathy, for example. Whatever, it works as a plot device, implant devices could be considered as hacking tools that would somehow enable it, and you certainly aren't the first to use it nor have you used it gratuitously. So it's not worth arguing about, at least not to me.

But getting Ceci and Watchdog RIGHT, in a way that's believable to me and others as well as making a hell of a good story point of it, is gratifying on a scale much much greater than any annoyance I might feel about occasional handwavium-powered plot devices - even if, from your point of view, they might have come from the same place.

So TLDR: You're doing an excellent job as storyteller, and for nonspecialists your technical intuitions are in fact mostly quite good. The reason you're attracting and holding a scarily well-informed audience is because you're doing a hell of a good job both with the story and the tech.
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 1:40 PM edit delete reply
I'm going to note one more thing from your reply. Beginning of the second paragraph you said:

We are storytellers, and while we do our best to perform due diligence in our research to avoid making obvious mistakes ....

That is the key difference between you and the storytellers who actively piss off technically informed audiences. You *ARE* doing your due diligence in research. The ones who actively piss us off don't.
Centcomm 27th Oct 2015, 3:58 PM edit delete reply

Thanks Morituri! :D that is a awesome compliment!
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 7:22 PM edit delete reply
It's kinda weird because prior to 'sparking' (and therefore going off-rails w/r/t Centcomm's expectation and Watchdog's oversight) Ceci and Watchdog really were a lot more like one entity.

But now, when her own mind is seeking its own balance and Watchdog keeps grabbing chunks of it and moving them around so her personality can't stabilize, what's happening to her is Gods-damned cruel.

But, whatever. It always sucks to be one of the main characters in a good story.
megados 29th Aug 2017, 8:30 PM edit delete reply

I can see I came late to this party. The first time I had read through this part of the story, I was not so actively reading the comments. My comments on later pages seem to reiterate much of the type of discussions that had taken place long before. I too, have worked with these types of systems and concepts, as a hobbyist, and in a professional capacity, and now I see that a lot of what I had commented on later pages is just a rehash of what you all had already discussed. Kind of foolish of me, I guess. This post is kind of an anachronism.
Dragonrider 26th Oct 2015, 6:31 AM edit delete reply

Since this and the following posts are good; suggest Dolly walk up to Ceci's back and blow the top of her head off she is in no way to be trusted from now on.
Mark_L_A 26th Oct 2015, 8:30 PM edit delete reply

Hence Dr Silvers comment about CeCi needing an "Upgrade" on page http://datachasers.thecomicseries.com/comics/910 title Ten Seconds... if tha number changes.
mjkj 26th Oct 2015, 12:22 AM edit delete reply

Nope she did not. She sparked coming fresh out of the box, not on the way...

...and good points.

(...and thanks for the answers, Rose - and yayy for no planned cliff hanger) =D

Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 12:51 AM edit delete reply

Must resist making innuendo jokes about CeCi's "firmware" !!!!!!!
CptKerion 26th Oct 2015, 8:35 AM edit delete reply
Now that Sheela has pointed it out, I must resist too.

EDIT: I feel it is worth mentioning that there actually were several Ternary computers created, and of course when it comes to quantum computing things could get... interesting.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:58 AM edit delete reply

I have to admit, the sexual innuendo is strong with this one!

Fiiiiirrrmmmm......... *twitch*
Mark_L_A 26th Oct 2015, 8:11 PM edit delete reply

In Re: CeCi's "Sparking"

CeCi WAS "Sparked as she came from the box. HOWEVER, CentComm's little extra commands and hardware she "Cheated to squeeze in" to make CeCi more autonomous and able to be used out of New Troy or SelCast range required some shortcuts to be used in her creation and her activation. Cent did in current number strip http://datachasers.webcomic.ws/comics/454 title Angel in a Box if the page number changes, CentComm did in 130 seconds what would normally take several weeks or months to do. That is a LOT of shortcuts. Granted CentComm has the processing power to do that on the fly, CeCi's Syth Brain however still had the manufacturing variances that ALL Manufactured items must have, so it is not "Perfect" to specifications. Hence being a Black Angel, her Sparked self is subservient to and part of CentComm's own awareness.

The EXTRAS, however add in some complexity, and even MORE variances. So while CeCi was "Sparked" it was a a part of CentComm.

Through CeCi's travels with Dolly, she is learning, and growing. Mentally and emotionally. And with those two, those previous variances allow entropy to enter the situation.

From New Troy to Logrin's to Joleet, CeCi has been having new experiences and interactions, plus her Loyalty to Dolly, her brain takes all of that in, coupled with the variances, and she starts going "Out Of Spec" It is when Dolly Snaps at her in current page http://datachasers.thecomicseries.com/comics/616/ title Dolly Snaps, that her emotional being allows CeCi to truly "Spark" as an independent Mind/Brain, from the controls that CentComm installed. Cent confirmed to me in the comment section that is how in the next page CeCi is able to cry. She has been fully sparked on her own. The emotional backlash of Dolly snapping at her broke her through all the baggage that CentComm put in her head. Then the only way to control after this "Sparking" is for WD to either try to cajole or order her to do something or to take over control.

What we have now is WD taking control. Watchdog doesn't have time or processing power available for niceties or sympathy.

I'm afraid that once everyone is safe and the mission is over, WD will relase control back to CeCi, and CeCi will have a nervous breakdown because of all WD forced her to do.

After she sparked as a separate entity, she consciously chose to use Less than Lethal means as much as possible instead of Lethal means. She really doesn't want to badly hurt or kill people. WD sees that as an obstacle so it took over.

WD is just like Arnie in Terminator. It doesn't "Feel" it has no sympathy, it has no compassion and it "WILL NOT STOP"
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:23 PM edit delete reply

In other words, congratulations CentComm, it's a Teenager. :D
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 8:39 PM edit delete reply

@ Mark ..

There are going to be a few things that change in the reboot but I can say this.

The comments about Ceci being a doll are being erased from the old goofed up pages.

Ceci will be refereed to as a " Angel " right from the start it wont change any of the story for the readers .. just clarifying and cleaning up.

That crap was done when we had little idea of what we were doing :D
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:57 PM edit delete reply

Wait, wait .. waiiit a minute ...
Are you guys gettin' ideas ?

'cause Mira wants to know, so she can get outta dodge before you engage in shenanigans!
Mark_L_A 28th Oct 2015, 12:47 AM edit delete reply

I would hope you would keep the gut punch of her breakthrough at Joleet in the story though. Because that really WAS a gut punch, that CeCi COULD cry.
Centcomm 27th Oct 2015, 4:00 PM edit delete reply

AT Mark - actually you compared Ceci's watchdog to a terminator .. amusingly enough we refered to her in this state as
" Terminator with boobs Ceci " LOL!
mjkj 26th Oct 2015, 12:18 AM edit delete reply

Awww, poor Lynn...

They should continue onward to see he is still very much alive XD

StellarJay 26th Oct 2015, 12:28 AM edit delete reply

One ass kicker present and at the ready. All can hope that there's enough fewer asses left to kick that there won't be much trouble getting out of there.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 12:53 AM edit delete reply

Well, they kicked a bunch of asses on the way down, hopefully that means that there are less asses left on the way back up.

Heh, Dolly and CeCi are kicking the palace's ass up and down the stairs. >_<
Matt Knab 26th Oct 2015, 2:15 AM edit delete reply

Perhaps catching up might wait until in a more safe location? Ladies?
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 4:40 AM edit delete reply

Probably true Matt, but considering the ages of Lynn and Acantha it is more realistic that they would info dump. :-)
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:47 PM edit delete reply

Yeah that would be intelligent :D
cattservant 26th Oct 2015, 2:25 AM edit delete reply

Is it politically wise for Acantha to put herself
under New Troys control?
Hana 26th Oct 2015, 3:22 AM edit delete reply
Well as long as its treated as "I'm staying with my best friend and her mom who has semi adopted me since my home life is a wreck" rather than a "Civil stay in political rival's home as life is threatened by all the feces hitting the rotating wind moving device at my home" And I'm pretty sure it will end up as the former with Lynn's friendship, her mom's (perhaps eventual) sympathy/affection for both the girls (and how Acantha kept Lynn safe), as well as her mom's position over Cent.
Just_IDD 26th Oct 2015, 4:39 AM edit delete reply
You're forgetting that Lynn has essentially the same command and control ability if not granted privilege as hear her mom does over Centcomm in story because of the DNA unlock.

So here's a screwball question, since the authors of the story have taken on the persona of the characters in the forum, does that make this an autobiography?
Just_IDD 26th Oct 2015, 4:42 AM edit delete reply
And if so what does that make us, Time travelers?
Rms2000 26th Oct 2015, 6:32 AM edit delete reply

No, not really. I suppose an argument could be made to call it a Prophecy, but that's about as far as you can go without ignoring significant aspects of your words' meanings. Although, if the story were, in actual fact, an autobiography, it WOULD imply that Rose and Centcomm are time-travelers. Or that they could be, at some point.

I that were the case, though, I'd be WAAAY more annoyed than I am about their unwillingness to provide extensive, plausible details about certain aspects of the story *cough* tech *cough*.
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 4:35 AM edit delete reply

Possibly not catt; however, being under Dolly's protection is infinitely preferable to staying under Douchimus' rule!
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:00 AM edit delete reply

Centcomm and Rose as time Travellers ?
Would they travel in an old De Lorean ?

Hmmmm ...

Once upon a time ... no, no, not that time, the other time!
Y'know, that time when they went BACK TO THE FUTURE <=== ?
That time when they arrived at the 21st of October, 2015 and realized that there was :

- NO flying cars
- NO hoverboards
- NO smartclothes.

Yeah, that time ! Five days ago, on last wednesday.
That time was boring, so they went to another one.
And that's how they ended up in Datachasers.

The end. :D
chk 26th Oct 2015, 9:59 AM edit delete reply

It may be a tempting (and probably safest) move to escape Nova Roma with Lynn et al, but probably not for her city state.

I think her original idea of seeking relative safety with Aeneas would be best. She can collect her thoughts, find out more about what's going on upstairs, and plan accordingly.

Although somewhat insane, Aeneas should know what's happening in the city. Remembering the huge "DON'T" statement a few days (or ages) ago, that surprised everyone but Acantha, leads me to believe he has a presence there.

Staying, and somehow making it known she's staying, should give her subjects more initiative and courage to continue their insurgency against Roma's existing Government. Following a leader in exile ain't the same as following one at the front.

That's my babble on the subject anyway.
KarToon12 26th Oct 2015, 8:10 AM edit delete reply

Can't wait for Kyle to pop up and yell, "surprise! I'm not dead!" XD
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:55 AM edit delete reply

Kyle : The rumors about my death is vastly excaggerated!
Lynn : Wha- .. I SAW YOU DIE !!!!
Kyle : Errhh .. well, yes ... maybe a bit!
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 9:47 AM edit delete reply

Kyle - No, no... You saw me get SHOT... three times... in the chest, but I didn't die! It was just a flesh wound.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:47 PM edit delete reply

hehe that would be funny .. Course hes probably gonna get slapped then Hugged :D
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 2:37 PM edit delete reply

Pity Lynn doesn't play D&D... DOPPELGANGER ::Grabs Acantha's gun, shoots him in the head:: What do mean that wasn't a doppelganger?!?! It looked just like him, but I saw him die! }:->
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:27 PM edit delete reply

Well .. electrocute the body, just to make sure it doesn't turn back into the doppelganger !
Pirtnac 27th Oct 2015, 1:39 PM edit delete reply
If Kyle pops up and yells anything Not-Ceci* is probably going to blast a hole in him. Heck, the new tech blog post even says that she can friendly fire if she doesn't recognize someone.

Considering that would be stressful to Lynn and cause Ari to hide under the nearest bed I'm hoping that he's either far far past that checkpoint or sends them a text or something before popping out.

*: The aforementioned tech blog causes me to question the use of "Not-Ceci" in her current state. Amoral-Ceci? Ceci-lite? Baseline-Ceci (Buy the new Personality DLC at Luna Boutique Games)? Goatteeless-yet-still-own-evil-twin-Ceci? Yeah, not sure what's a good idea here.
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 2:30 PM edit delete reply
Go for "Ceci minus whatever motivations would otherwise have prompted her to stop and help (or question) the downed Centurion." Assuming Watchdog returned control to her after it was done messing with her mind.

She may develop those same motivations again - but if so it will be by a process similar to the process that developed them in the first place.

And if Watchdog hasn't returned control to her, or if Watchdog's primary mission has any really strong motivations to do other than Ceci (as modified) would do to Kyle, then what you're dealing with is Watchdog in command of Ceci's body.
Morituri 27th Oct 2015, 2:41 PM edit delete reply
I'm personally of the opinion that for some reason preventing Ceci & Dolly from gaining some crucial piece of Intel from the downed centurion was probably Watchdog's trigger here.

But what Watchdog DID may affect any combination of Ceci's motives and personality traits, depending on why she wanted to stop. If she chose to stop and help him out of a merciful or beneficient instinct, then that will be what Watchdog damaged. If she chose to stop strictly on the basis of gathering Intel, then what Watchdog did will reduce her valuation of gathering Intel.

What Watchdog more-or-less has to have done would have affected/reduced whatever Ceci's motives in *her* choice to interact with the centurion were, which may or may not have anything to do with its *own* motivations in countermanding that choice. Because those are the "active" parts of her mind when it conditions her to stop.
CptKerion 26th Oct 2015, 8:48 AM edit delete reply
Hey guys!
I found the song for some of the internal stuff for Ceci.
I'm a bit late on getting this up, I know, but while listening to it this morning it clicked that this was probably quite appropriate.

Within Temptation, It's the Fear

EDIT: Hey guys! I'm finally getting this BBCode down!
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:55 AM edit delete reply

BBcode is pretty neat. :)
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 9:25 AM edit delete reply

I really like this song.. It is now Listed for Ceci well done :D
Boren 26th Oct 2015, 9:37 AM edit delete reply
This song really makes me think an anime style head holding, down on knees, screaming "I WILL NOT COMPLY!!!" multiple personality moment is coming for poor Ceci
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 10:10 AM edit delete reply

Meanwhile Aeneas is singing "I will survive".
Stormwind13 26th Oct 2015, 5:55 PM edit delete reply

I still have Land of Confusion for Aeneas, Sheela. :-)
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:34 PM edit delete reply

ooOoohh .. that's a nice one too. :)
gmg2dave 26th Oct 2015, 10:34 AM edit delete reply

Uhmm... Hold on a second? Go back UP? Why in hell would they wan't to do that? Wouldn't it be FAR safer, and better all the way around to get Acantha and Lynn into the one place you KNOW Deck can't get to them, and that is Aeneas' AI core. Deck can froth at the mouth all he wants after that, but no way is he going to be able to get at them there. Once there, you can have Mr. Black and crew withdraw, and perhaps even pick them up and take them to New Troy. Under cover of Aeneas' orbital cannons if need be.

Plus, with Lynn safely out of New Rome, that free's CentComm's hand to do whatever she wants, ie. "demonstrative orbital strikes" to gently encourage the populace of New Rome that a regime change is a good idea.

And by now, should't Maxis be on a radio telling all his red shirts to shoot anything wearing blue armor in the palace while making his way to Deck to deliver a much needed arse whupping? No blue shirts, no way to enforce his will, and with all the red shirts loyal to Max, well, I don't see that leaving many options for Deck to enforce his will over anyone.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 11:03 AM edit delete reply

Lets not forget that Aeneas isn't completely in control of his weapons.
So the orbital cannons might just blow them away, instead of proitecting them.

That said, they don't want to kill the populace off with "gentle orbital strikes", whatever that might entail .. teddybears made of concrete dropped from orbit?

Anyways, if Dolly leaves Lynn and Acantha with Aeneas, she can go and kick some asses as revenge for :

- the kidnapping
- the broken wrist
- scaring Lynn and making her cry
- making Calliope worry
- making Dolly worry
- making Dolly travel all the way form New Troy to New Rome!
- and ofcourse for blowing up Lynn's car!

and .. and ... and .... Kyle!
Hrm, actually we're ok with the killing of Kyle - Good Job, gold star! :)

As for Maxus, the radio isn't working anymore, they are down to the much more oldschool Sneaker-Net, that so many commanders have relied upon, over the ages.
gmg2dave 26th Oct 2015, 11:53 AM edit delete reply

Hey Sheela, thanks for the reply. First off, I figure that if Aeneas is in enough control of his weapons to destroy everything in a 5 km radius around his core, he can certainly protect anything within that area. The orbital cannons was more of a joke, kinda like going after a fly with a cannon.

And the "demonstrative orbital strikes" need not even hit anything, more like a "this is what CentComm COULD do to you if you don't get rid of Deck real soon now."

And as for the rest, I'm all for Dolly and CeCi exacting all kinds of horrible revenge on Deck and assorted other people in New Rome for scaring her baby.
Mark_L_A 26th Oct 2015, 12:51 PM edit delete reply

However he ISN'T in control of ALL of his weapons systems within his DMZ. Some of his connections to his weapons systems is damaged. And while he does have control of some, there are others which are on automatic and cannot be approached to repair UNTIL his control links are fixed.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 2:48 PM edit delete reply

Correct mark!
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:38 PM edit delete reply

Yeah, during the bit where Lynn and Acantha walks in to his lair, Acantha told Lynn that they had to follow a specifick route, because he didn't have control over all the systems in the area, so they had to walk where he did have control.

Ofcourse, Acantha is the only one, apart from Aeneas himself, that knows which route that is. Maybe Lynn too, if she remembers.
Stormwind13 27th Oct 2015, 1:17 PM edit delete reply

Killing everything in a zone is lots easier than worrying about keeping ONE (or two... or even five) person alive in that same zone, gmg2dave. Not having to worry about anyone allows you to use weapons freely. Reigning in his firepower seems to be the issue, not unleashing it.
Morituri 26th Oct 2015, 1:11 PM edit delete reply
Prince Deck is running out of Cassians. Without them, and with the demonstration that Maxus was keeping his palace troops in far better training than Deck's "elites", I think it's plain that his reign (and likely his breathing as well) is nearer its end than its beginning.
Centcomm 26th Oct 2015, 1:48 PM edit delete reply

Well hes certainly lost a few thats true :D
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:39 PM edit delete reply

But he has oh-so-many.
Rashala 26th Oct 2015, 4:06 PM edit delete reply

Oh if they only knew all the players on the table.......


*Still arming the Virus if CEci's not back to normal soon and that *classified* objective is bad.
Sheela 26th Oct 2015, 8:40 PM edit delete reply

*sneaks in Ranger Logrin, under the cover of gunfire*

:D
Grault 26th Oct 2015, 9:12 PM edit delete reply

Alright, I'm finally up to date. That's an alot of strips!

Also, the story's awesome. Out of all the plot devices, I find the macro-politics most interesting. Commentary about communism and capitalism abounds. As someone hoping that computers do eventually satiate our desire for slaves, I find somewhat distressing the prospect of those computers being indistinguishable from sentient beings. On the other hand, in the scenario presented, I *would* consider them indistinguishable and deserving of civil rights. It's not actually about the rights for me; it's about the societal instability inherent in a slave system where the slaves are capable of rebelling.

tl;dr Asimov protect us from machines with autonomous wills.

And yes, I realize that, in the context of the story, I'm wishing for the bad old days of AIS-enhanced genocide. If our war-lust can only be solved by stubborn computers, New Troy has a pretty dang good system going.
Centcomm 27th Oct 2015, 1:18 AM edit delete reply

YAY welcome to the comments Section and congrats on catching up! :D we try to work in socio political stuff about the world .. I feel it makes the world seem more alive :D
Sheela 27th Oct 2015, 9:52 AM edit delete reply

Yes, welcome to the comments section, and don't mind the slobber on your feet ... it totally wasn't me! o.O
Stormwind13 27th Oct 2015, 1:15 PM edit delete reply

Watch your toes, Sheela loves to nibble... Damn, too late. Sorry, Grault. She is MOSTLY harmless. :-P
Wolfsbane 27th Oct 2015, 4:14 PM edit delete reply

@Grault - Sheela hint: cookies help. ;)
Stormwind13 27th Oct 2015, 4:29 PM edit delete reply

She is a sucker for fish too... ::Offers up some smoked salmon:: :-)
Guest 27th Oct 2015, 4:59 PM edit delete reply
I've been reading much of the comments, too, so ...

*changes to another pair of shoes and tosses the first pair in his portable washer*

... I have y'all at an advantage.

*tosses a cookie-flavored safe version of an everlasting gobstopper to the ground*

== Boring stuff ==

After I posted the above, I noticed that the main reason the New Trojan system works is that CentComm is (contrary to rumors) a good, er, sentience. A benevolent dictator solves most political science problems. In her case, it might be a better solution than usual, since she's basically immortal.

(Species-ism is one of my core philosophical identities, so I would have difficulty adapting to the DC universe.)
Grault 27th Oct 2015, 5:03 PM edit delete reply

That's what I get for posting on two different devices. (I was that Guest.)
Sheela 27th Oct 2015, 6:18 PM edit delete reply

*buries the Everlasting Gobstopper in the backyard*
*stuffs some salmon into the pibe*
*lights it up and smokes it*

Job well done, I'd say. :D
Guest 27th Oct 2015, 9:43 PM edit delete reply
Touché. I shouldn't have believed myself prepared for manifest mischief.

> google pibe
Danish
Noun
1. a pipe, a smoking tool
https://en.m.wiktionary.org/wiki/pibe

Hmm... Are you a Great Dane?
Sheela 28th Oct 2015, 1:34 AM edit delete reply

Nah, I'm a small red haired cocker spaniel, drawn by walt disney ! But I am danish. :)

Though to be honest, I mispelled "pipe" !
mcrotts 27th Oct 2015, 6:16 PM edit delete reply

Your storytelling is fantastic, and your characters are believable and compelling.

But I want to ask you (and I'm sure I'm the only one to have asked this over the years) - how are you modeling/rendering this? I know a bit of C4D and Maya and this doesn't look like either. Your models are so well-built and clearly made for versatile posing - I see other 3D-based comics here but yours is clearly the most experienced and most polished. Tell me you don't have to build this stuff from scratch
Stormwind13 27th Oct 2015, 7:42 PM edit delete reply

CentComm is using Daz, mcrotts. I don't know how to use it myself, but it allows you to seriously control models. If you know Daz. CentComm knows Daz pretty well, I think. :-D
Mark_L_A 28th Oct 2015, 12:57 AM edit delete reply

Cent takes a LOT of off the shelf stuff and then spends her time tweaking it and making it "Look Right", both in it's actual look, posing, camera angles, lighting, and effects.

As her mastery has grown, the series has improved, the story brought me here, the story plus the continuing improvement in the art have KEPT me here.
Wolfsbane 28th Oct 2015, 4:26 AM edit delete reply

It is hard to find her equal in webcomics, IMHO.
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