Ingress in Pretoria

Ingress, where do we start?

Anybody that follow US podcasts would have heard of the Google game that launched November 2012 on a closed Beta base. One needed an invite to get access to the game.

I did not know that this game was already available in South Africa, but during the first broadcast of Let's Talk Geek for the year ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5ZxUaQttXc ) I was informed that the game is active in South Africa and the community is growing.

One of the followers of Let's Talk Geek (thanks again +Ani Vermeulen ) sent me the an activation code, and I was in.


Now, what is the game?

"Players of the game belong to one of two factions, “Enlightened” (represented in green) and “Resistance” (blue). The game-play allows players to enclose regions of territory on the surface of the earth with virtual links between virtual portals, which are visible in the game software. The top-level goal of the game is for one’s faction to control large numbers of “Mind Units”, the estimated number of humans within the regions of territory controlled by the faction." - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ingress_(game)

In short, you know of statues, unique architecture, outdoor murals, historic buildings, special outdoor buildings or unique local businesses, take a picture with your GPS enabled Android phone, mail it to Google and if they like it, it becomes a new portal. When a portal comes online, get up and physically go to the portal so that you can "hack" it using the Ingress application installed on your Android phone. Now deploy resonators and take it over. If you have enough power, create a link between portals. If the portal is controlled by the other team, drain its energy with attacks until you can take it over for your team.

EDIT: Ingress "hack" means a way in the game to get access to the portal in range. Not computer hacking or something from a Hitchcock movie. ( Thanks +Talha Asmal )

Suddenly, we have people going back to museum and visiting places around them they did not know about.

Let me explain using the Voortrekker Monument in South Africa. Everybody knows about it, it was part of history at school. We all probably did visit it as part of a field trip at school, but since then? Who has been to this wonderful monument?


Now we have 6 portals at the Voortrekker Monument. For players in the game to do things like "hack" these portals, they need to be within 50m of the portal. This means go to the Voortrekker Monument. Physically get into your car and visit one of our historical sites.

Ingress Intel map view of Voortrekker Monument (6 Feb '13)
And here are the six portals already registered at the site:


This is one sample, there are many more and there are new ones coming online daily. A Google Map updated by one of the community members is available at http://www.who-els.co.za/p/maps.html

So go to www.ingress.com and www.nianticproject.com and request an invite, install the application and wait patiently... Please only these official sites, do not try the other tricks and stuff floating around on the Internet. They do not work!

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