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 Post subject: fair enough
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 1:50 pm 
we're gonna have to agree to disagree then my friend. only time will tell.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 3:37 pm 
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Meocene wrote:
OUR once proud oceans. Not "your", "our". Enough said.

I can see why you thought this would be the killer blow to my argument, but it really isn't. This is a classic dose of psychology - comradeship!
You are, after all, trying to kill yourself. Or at least that's how Minerva would interpret it. Why else would you wade out in to the sea?


You'd get in the water to hide from the Combine or circumvent the dangers on the beach. That's what I tried to do on my first run back in 2005. No suicide attempt, but (ill-conceived) tactical thinking. Mrs. M. reminds her thick assistant that the water is a bad place, as he seems to have forgotten.

If we remain true to the standard meaning of the language, only an entity born or designed on Earth or who sees Earth as her home (for whatever reason) would write "our" oceans. That would make her either human or an Earth-designed A.I.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 3:45 pm 
that is one way of looking at it, i must admit.
I'm not saying that I'm right and you're wrong. I'm entirely open to suggestion. but something about the assumption Minerva was once human just doesn't sit right with me. Personally i think Minerva is too intelligent to have ever been human.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 4:10 pm 
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Mrs. M. is essentially a hacker trying to direct by text messages a genocidal half-wit with the attention span of a goldfish.

Adam managed to get across brilliantly her frustration at using such a blunt tool to perform a precise and sensitive infiltration and sabotage job.

I'm not sure however where her intelligence proves to be beyond that of a very smart human.

[edit: misplaced article]

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Last edited by locworks on Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 5:26 pm 
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While I by no means wish to interrupt this fine line of discussion, locworks did raise an interesting point in that Minerva may well be an "Earth-designed A.I.", rather than actually human.

In a way, we could all be right - Mrs. M (Aha! She is female) could have been a human made AI, perhaps within Black Mesa, or perhaps elsewhere. Perhaps a human brain patterned into a computer, or a simulation of a human brain designed to solve problems that would take humans years to discover on their own. Minerva did say that she played a large role in helping humanity discover teleportation, and does seem fairly contemptuous of us, hence her reference to us as mere hairless apes.

However, we know some drastic change happened in Minerva's life. Perhaps, she was in Black Mesa on that infamous day. When the resonance cascade occurred, she did the only thing she could to ensure her survival and uploaded herself into an old computer system (perhaps of alien origin - Forefathers, Combine maybe?) in Xen. It could be assumed that she was found, eventually robbed of her implied humanity, and forced back into Xen, and then to Earth.

That explains why she considers herself one of us. Her close relation to humans - being designed by them and likely even being based on their comparatively meager and fleshy minds - makes her feel that she was truly human, and now, has lost that humanity. Although, then you have to ignore the comment about her reading data off of screens, which would not be so were she an AI. But still, it's an interesting way of looking at things.

As for her intelligence, as locworks said, she seems to have an intellectual capacity somewhere around brilliant-but-still-human levels. Keep in mind that whether she is human, or simply a human-like AI, any sufficiently advanced technology she was coupled with would likely raise her intelligence dramatically. So she could be playing dumb for all we know, such as when she new about the guard post, but simply chose not to tell us to see what we were capable of doing on our own. In the fourth chapter, I also had the feeling more than anywhere else that she new exactly what to do, and only gave us hints to the extent necessary for us to survive; for example, she said "I don't want to 'pressure' you" when we got stuck at the valve puzzle, implying she new precisely what to do with the valves, but wanted to know if we were smart enough to be worth saving. Thus, it's very possible her knowledge is far greater than she likes us to think.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 6:24 pm 
I think we need to move away from the idea that any aspect of Minerva originated on earth tbh.

And I believe her intellect is well beyond the capacity of the human mind, even before it was augmented. I believe the augmentations of the Combine simply increased her comms. interface abilities, and maybe her ability to store data as well, essentially "gifting" her with an eidetic memory.
As she states herself:

"What lies beyond that portal is beyond the realms of even my reasoning", or something similar. All she really says about it is that she knows of it. Not that she has ever been there, or came from there.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:45 pm 
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Meocene wrote:
I think we need to move away from the idea that any aspect of Minerva originated on earth tbh.

And I believe her intellect is well beyond the capacity of the human mind, even before it was augmented. I believe the augmentations of the Combine simply increased her comms. interface abilities, and maybe her ability to store data as well, essentially "gifting" her with an eidetic memory.
As she states herself:

"What lies beyond that portal is beyond the realms of even my reasoning", or something similar. All she really says about it is that she knows of it. Not that she has ever been there, or came from there.


But she has been there. Read this.

And she has to have come from Earth; Adam told us we have the knowledge to know exactly what she is, and if she's not from Earth, then we're left with no idea who or what she is. By simple logic, if we can discover who she is, an the only thing she's told us she might be is human, she must be human, otherwise, we couldn't discover who she is, which isn't true, thus she must have at least some tie to humanity and earth.

And the reason "her intellect is well beyond the capacity of the human mind", as you put it, is that she is no longer completely human, as many of us have repeatedly, almost pedantically, stated. Perhaps the Combine remade her as a "manufactured war criminal", or perhaps she simply found within Xen the means to evolve her own mind and body. Whatever the case, we know we have the evidence to present a conclusion; since your assumptions do not present any conclusion beyond "we have no clue who or what she is", I'm afraid I must disagree with your theory. Based on what we know, and what Adam has told us, your theory is simply not plausible.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:46 pm 
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Meocene wrote:
I think we need to move away from the idea that any aspect of Minerva originated on earth tbh.


What in the M:M story (made up of the mod and of the online content) are you basing the above on?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 8:57 pm 
My gut instinct and imagination predominately, but also hope.
As I've said before if the Minerva story does coalesce back to the OBMI, I will be disappointed in Adam Foster. Valves universe is so rich in potential that you could craft stories from it completely separate from anything Valve has produced so far, yet all related by one thing: The Combine. Thus keeping new stories within the Half Life mythos.
Who knows how many species and planets have felt the cold touch of the Combine. Who knows how many powerful entities they've pissed off along the way. Entities just itching for a spot of cold, hard revenge. There is absolutely no need for Adam Foster to relate any of his characters to the characters or events depicted in the Half Life series. The real protagonists in Valves universe is The Combine, not Alyx Vance, or Gordon Freeman, etc.

In response to Terrapin:
Just because Minerva says it may once have been her home, does not mean it was her place of birth, or the only place she has ever truly considered a home. When you move house do you still consider your old house your real home? To be honest I find my explanation far more plausible than yours. Have you ever considered the fact that the who is unimportant and may never been answered. It is the why and how that holds the explanation. As i said, it's your thoughts, memories and actions that define you as a being, not your species. Species is verging on irrelevant.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 9:10 pm 
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Terrapin wrote:
While I by no means wish to interrupt this fine line of discussion, locworks did raise an interesting point in that Minerva may well be an "Earth-designed A.I.", rather than actually human.


A.I. or human are the two plausible options explaining her attachment to the planet. We can of course introduce a third option: she may be a member of an alien race. Through their continued presence on Earth, the aliens grew fond of us, the hairless apes, and came to perceive Earth as their adopted home. Is Mrs. M is a grey seeking to throw some nasty spanners in other aliens' works? What if the Universal Union destroyed Minerva's race's former home and forced them to flee to Earth? The Combine followed the grey's intergalactic scent (Minerva feels responsible for that) and decided to assimilate Earth in turn.

Please note that I'm merely showing the possibilities and asking for evidence if none is presented (see other posts above).

Knowing the truth behind Minerva's identity prevents me from getting as much as I'd like into the very entertaining discussion.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 10:11 pm 
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locworks wrote:
Knowing the truth behind Minerva's identity prevents me from getting as much as I'd like into the very entertaining discussion.


Well, can you at least tell us if we're close? As entertaining as it is to discuss this to no end, how will we ever know if we've found the answer with so many possibilities thrown into the works?

Basically, I'm making a humble request for a hint. What should we be looking at, where do we need to search, and more importantly, are we anywhere close to being right?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 10:20 pm 
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Meocene wrote:
My gut instinct and imagination predominately, but also hope.


The posters in the thread were generally basing their theories on the M:M story (the mod and the online content on hylobatidae.org/minerva).

You are basing your "theories" on what you would like the story to be.

The two approaches are mutually exclusive. You can either stick to an exegesis of existing pieces of information which are assumed to be internally consistent. Or you can chose to ignore some of the information and fill the rest of the picture with your imagination. The second option does not deal with Adam Foster's actual work. It deals with Adam Foster's ideal work or his work as it should be in your vision.

Both options are valid. However, they should not be mixed in the same discussion. Advancing that a theory is incorrect because your gut feeling tells you otherwise or that you hope that it isn't so (for whatever reason) has no value in a polite argument.

Meocene wrote:
As I've said before if the Minerva story does coalesce back to the OBMI, I will be disappointed in Adam Foster.
Valves universe is so rich in potential that you could craft stories from it completely separate from anything Valve has produced so far, yet all related by one thing: The Combine. Thus keeping new stories within the Half Life mythos.
Who knows how many species and planets have felt the cold touch of the Combine. Who knows how many powerful entities they've pissed off along the way. Entities just itching for a spot of cold, hard revenge.


Great idea for a total conversion/mod.
That's not MINERVA's story, as far as we can tell from the available materials.

Meocene wrote:
There is absolutely no need for Adam Foster to relate any of his characters to the characters or events depicted in the Half Life series. The real protagonists in Valves universe is The Combine, not Alyx Vance, or Gordon Freeman, etc.


Where are the Combine in Half-Life? Is the Nihilanth a member of the Combine?

Also, Valve's universe/Half Life mythos is what the Half-Life series tell us they are. I'm confused by your distinction.

I know that the flurry of HL mods where, for the umpteenth time, you are G. Freeman and you are in Black Mesa, could have gotten on one's mammaries (thank you, Yatzhee, for expanding my vocabulary), but in MINERVA, there is no Gordon, Alyx, nor any of the characters from the series. It seems to happen in a similar timeline, i.e. after the invasion and the same location (government, military operation in Black Mesa) exists in both. I don't understand what you take issue with.

Meocene wrote:
In response to Terrapin:
Just because Minerva says it may once have been her home, does not mean it was her place of birth, or the only place she has ever truly considered a home.

The plurality of places one could call "home" doesn't unmake a particular place's status as "home." In other words, the fact the Minerva could call home several planets doesn't eliminate Earth as her first home.

Meocene wrote:
Have you ever considered the fact that the who is unimportant and may never been answered.


The thread's title and topic is Who (or what) is Minerva?. Why on Earth would you argue in the posts above about Minerva's identity if it's not important?

Meocene wrote:
It is the why and how that holds the explanation.


What do you mean by why and how? Why and how what?

Meocene wrote:
As i said, it's your thoughts, memories and actions that define you as a being, not your species. Species is verging on irrelevant.

How can you write that, when you've just wrote
Meocene wrote:
Who knows how many species and planets have felt the cold touch of the Combine. Who knows how many powerful entities they've pissed off along the way.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jan 13, 2008 11:14 pm 
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Quote:
As I've said before if the Minerva story does coalesce back to the OBMI, I will be disappointed in Adam Foster.
Valves universe is so rich in potential that you could craft stories from it completely separate from anything Valve has produced so far, yet all related by one thing: The Combine. Thus keeping new stories within the Half Life mythos.

Meocene, the Old Black Mesa Incident (i.e. this) IS pretty much separated from anything Valve has produced. It's an Adam creation, as far as I know, therefore of the utmost importance for Minerva's storyline.
You shouldn't be that much disappointed, if you look it this way.

Quote:
In fact there's a lot of quotes which I believe are being misrepresented, which is why no one truly feels we're getting close to an answer, apart from Terrapin

Count me in, among those who think we're getting somewhere close. Nevertheless, I appreciate your divergence of opinion. It is refreshing, always good to have a different look at things, even if I (and terrapin) mostly disagree with you. Yes, we could be wrong, but we'll keep on trying. Till we run out of cake, of course...

However, one thing I'm going to do is having a better look at the online material, as you suggested. I feel like I've under-estimated it.

Oh, and please, locworks:
Quote:
Knowing the truth behind Minerva's identity prevents me from getting as much as I'd like into the very entertaining discussion.

I'm not going to believe you, unless you clearly prove otherwise.

[waits for locworks to say everything he knows, with malicious look]
...
[/waits for locworks to say everything he knows, with malicious look]

Ok, at least I've tried :-)

EDIT:I forgot, about the RC and teleportation technology... did anyone see this? (unofficial)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:39 am 
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vahagn wrote:
I'm not going to believe you, unless you clearly prove otherwise.


See the BlogBeast post from Monday March 13 2006.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 1:17 pm 
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Ah, you didn't fall in my trap so, did you?
:-)

Back in-topic:
About the matter of "a friend of a f=iend" signature, I tried to check if there was any recursiveness in the misspelling of archive 4 text, but the spelling errors seems to be random. Or at least it seems they are made to look random.
The very sentence "a friend of a fi=end" is, however, striking, especially if we consider the possible former link between Mrs. M and the Combine, who really do not seem to be the "good guys" type, to me!
Moreover, another striking feature is the great difference between archive 4 and archive 5: while in archive 4 Mrs. M seems to be in some difficulty, writing the message in a console input, with numerous mistakes, in archive 5 she is confident with the internet (which I suppose is the "network" that "has grown a little" since Minerva last saw it, maybe in 1975 -she definitely is earth-based). This recalls me of a previous post, I think, where archive 4 was supposed to be written from Xen, and archive 5 from earth. I just don't remember the post...

Also notice the difference in tone: archive 4 seems to be written in the middle of, or close to, a disastrous event, the message is, overall, very sad.
Archive 5 is, in contrast, more "active", seems to reflect the attitude of someone who is saying "ok, there's a big big trouble here... but I can figure it out, let's do something, and begin to fix it!".
Maybe it's just my feeling, others could think differently about it!


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