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Treecat Counter

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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by Theemile   » Thu Oct 08, 2020 3:58 pm

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Jonathan_S wrote:
Theemile wrote:To have a system to beat something, you need to understand it. The polygraph works on heart rate and galvanic capacitance, so knowing that a controlling your heart rate nervous reactions, and sweat levels - and perhaps "flipping" those responses from the norm - throw off lie detectors, while hiding or distorting physical cues keep the professional who is evaluating the meter from reading it.

But what triggers Treecats? Is it actual thoughts, or the body's autonomous reactions to those thoughts. Or something else? Without knowing more, how can someone even theorize what it would take to beat Treecats?

Well it seems to be primarily based off emotions as treecats don't seem to be able to hear a human's mindvoice; only feel their mindglow.

The question is whether knowing deception has a particular flavor or if the cats are actually getting the nervousness or panic of the interviewee (or possibly even relief or smugness at a lie not apparently being caught by the interviewer). If the cats are only detecting secondary emotions around lying then that should be much easier to defeat than if they can detect the lying itself.

Still some measures seem like they could beat a cat based lie detection. The most obvious is when you were lied to and repeat what you think is the truth. But given the level of mental conditioning that seems to exist in the Honorverse it might also be possible to get some form of anti-interrogation conditioning where you can self-trigger a temporary state where you actually can't recall the specific things you're conditioned to keep secret; or where you honestly believe a false cover story.


But what if a false memory "felt" differently to a cat. For example, a real memory probably lights up a dozen areas of the brain - deep memory, visual, olfactory, etc. Would an implanted memory or cover story light up the same areas, or just the deep memory areas? (modern tests seem to indicate different areas light up when remembering "true" and implanted memories because of the different way those memories are formed) Would a Treecat be able to sense this or is their sense something completely different? Would future tech change how memories are stored?
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by Jonathan_S   » Thu Oct 08, 2020 4:07 pm

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Theemile wrote:
Jonathan_S wrote:Well it seems to be primarily based off emotions as treecats don't seem to be able to hear a human's mindvoice; only feel their mindglow.

The question is whether knowing deception has a particular flavor or if the cats are actually getting the nervousness or panic of the interviewee (or possibly even relief or smugness at a lie not apparently being caught by the interviewer). If the cats are only detecting secondary emotions around lying then that should be much easier to defeat than if they can detect the lying itself.

Still some measures seem like they could beat a cat based lie detection. The most obvious is when you were lied to and repeat what you think is the truth. But given the level of mental conditioning that seems to exist in the Honorverse it might also be possible to get some form of anti-interrogation conditioning where you can self-trigger a temporary state where you actually can't recall the specific things you're conditioned to keep secret; or where you honestly believe a false cover story.


But what if a false memory "felt" differently to a cat. For example, a real memory probably lights up a dozen areas of the brain - deep memory, visual, olfactory, etc. Would an implanted memory or cover story light up the same areas, or just the deep memory areas? (modern tests seem to indicate different areas light up when remembering "true" and implanted memories because of the different way those memories are formed) Would a Treecat be able to sense this or is their sense something completely different? Would future tech change how memories are stored?

It certainly might feel different to a cat. No way to know.

And without testing it against cats no way for people trying to design countermeasures to know either.
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by cthia   » Thu Oct 08, 2020 4:32 pm

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Here is what little research we may have on the subject, taken from UH ...

People could deceive or trick other People. Indeed some, like Laugh's Brightly was notorious amongst all the clan for their ability to do that. But they could not do it that easily, not by simply saying false things. They had to find other ways, more creative ways.


Analyzing that with the old noggin, we know that treecats are more connected to each other than a cat would be connected to a two-leg. Honor notwithstanding. So, if a cat can do it to another, then certainly the well disciplined mind of a two-leg can accomplish it as well. Within the reality that Theemile points out that a two-leg needs to know what he is actually controlling. But an Alpha mind can speculate and prepare for everything within his realm to prepare for.

ISTR that Harahap accomplished it a bit.

Inevitably though, I think it could come down to mind over matter. But it would require enormous self-discipline that has to remain in place for extended periods of time. Anything breaking focus, like a loud sound and the Cat's out of the bag. However, Jonathan's notion of the skill being "hardwired" is brilliant.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Thu Oct 08, 2020 10:33 pm

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cthia wrote:Here is what little research we may have on the subject, taken from UH ...

People could deceive or trick other People. Indeed some, like Laugh's Brightly was notorious amongst all the clan for their ability to do that. But they could not do it that easily, not by simply saying false things. They had to find other ways, more creative ways.


Analyzing that with the old noggin, we know that treecats are more connected to each other than a cat would be connected to a two-leg. Honor notwithstanding. So, if a cat can do it to another, then certainly the well disciplined mind of a two-leg can accomplish it as well. Within the reality that Theemile points out that a two-leg needs to know what he is actually controlling. But an Alpha mind can speculate and prepare for everything within his realm to prepare for.


We don't have direct evidence that this kind of deception and tricking involves direct treecat communication. The only time (that I can recall) of a Nimitz practical joke being described is when he and Farragut placed a toy, plush treecat doll in the path of a harvester on Grayson. That means they themselves were not in direct participation, and instead were watching from afar. It's dangerous to generalise from sample of 1, but we can also apply the principle of mediocrity: there's a good chance that this is representative of the average type of pranks that Nimitz plays. And if so, it could be that his pranks even against treecats were from afar.

Inevitably though, I think it could come down to mind over matter. But it would require enormous self-discipline that has to remain in place for extended periods of time. Anything breaking focus, like a loud sound and the Cat's out of the bag. However, Jonathan's notion of the skill being "hardwired" is brilliant.


Right, and having no treecats to train against, it will be difficult for the MAlign to make progress.
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by cthia   » Fri Oct 09, 2020 12:42 pm

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cthia wrote:Here is what little research we may have on the subject, taken from UH ...

People could deceive or trick other People. Indeed some, like Laugh's Brightly was notorious amongst all the clan for their ability to do that. But they could not do it that easily, not by simply saying false things. They had to find other ways, more creative ways.


Analyzing that with the old noggin, we know that treecats are more connected to each other than a cat would be connected to a two-leg. Honor notwithstanding. So, if a cat can do it to another, then certainly the well disciplined mind of a two-leg can accomplish it as well. Within the reality that Theemile points out that a two-leg needs to know what he is actually controlling. But an Alpha mind can speculate and prepare for everything within his realm to prepare for.


ThinksMarkedly wrote:We don't have direct evidence that this kind of deception and tricking involves direct treecat communication. The only time (that I can recall) of a Nimitz practical joke being described is when he and Farragut placed a toy, plush treecat doll in the path of a harvester on Grayson. That means they themselves were not in direct participation, and instead were watching from afar. It's dangerous to generalise from sample of 1, but we can also apply the principle of mediocrity: there's a good chance that this is representative of the average type of pranks that Nimitz plays. And if so, it could be that his pranks even against treecats were from afar.

Inevitably though, I think it could come down to mind over matter. But it would require enormous self-discipline that has to remain in place for extended periods of time. Anything breaking focus, like a loud sound and the Cat's out of the bag. However, Jonathan's notion of the skill being "hardwired" is brilliant.


Right, and having no treecats to train against, it will be difficult for the MAlign to make progress.

I'll have to re-read it, but I thought the prank with the cultivator was played on two-legs, not on each other. Plus, tricking by watching from a distance seems pointless. If a Cat is close enough to see, its mind is close enough to feel.

I really think the MA can pull off some sort of mind conditioning. They are already closer than most to being dead inside, emotionally.

Training may be difficult, but not impossible. It simply may cost a dozen agents or so before it is perfected. Simply send trained agents to interact at some treecat checkpoint. And have a control agent present to observe the results.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by Brigade XO   » Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:08 pm

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Last year I went to a lecture/semi entertainment series by a former police detective (retired) who is now a consultant and he talked about all sorts of things reguarding using a Polygraph machine and interviews. His license plate ir LIE2ME. Several things were clear about limitations of Polygraphs. One is that you do need to develope a baseline for the subject and, yes, you do need to ask them questions which you are sure (or at least hope) they will give a false answer to to develope their recordable repsponces.
On the other hand, you also have to do the kinds of things you expect a detective to do, like developing background and try to work out what is actualy going on. He had a number of stories on things he worked on and they always came back to doing your homework/research/background and constructing the scenarios of what and why. Develope evidence. Check alibis, look for inconsistancies, follow leads. Sometimes the polygraph (not just a one simple machine testing for body responses) is the skill in formulating the right questions based on evidence and possible motive. You don't start and finish by getting a subject hooked up to your equipment, you build a case. The person's responses can lead you to dig deeper at why some responces are differnt which sends you back to investigating.

Treecats are presented the way the author wants to present them. What we see them doing is telling their person that something is "off" or different about the person they are concentrating on in an investigation. The treecat doesn't know why the subject is reacting that way but it does-partucularly now that they can sign- let them tell their partner what question it was that caused the reaction which leads to more probing....like People's Eyes shifting the questions directions when he is debriefing/questioning Firebrand.
That 'cats react strongly to threats such as malicious intent as they preceive it in humans near them (Nimitz at the 1st meeting with Protector Benjamin's meeting with Honor and the false guards walk in) is one things. That Gengis picks up on the Mesan agent trying to infiltrate Torch is another....and the agen't reactions to the intent Gengis and his Person and Harmper S Ferry's (the Persons former Ballroom partner) both then focusing on the agent is more germain. "Something" is very differnt/wrong and the human 1st attempts to get away and then suicides (well, he dies and not from the Torch agents doing anything to him. And then Gengis - they guy was effectivly screaming in terror in his own mind- "hears" the problem with the sales rep with the "perfume" gifts for Berry and Ruth and reacts but is too far away eccept that his own person and the guards are alerted and .....well. Foiled the actual assination but stilled a lot of people.
As far as Treecats uncovering a lot of moles there are two general paths that takes. One is that the Treecat is present when the subject of the questioning is confronted and at the point where the subject begins to suspect he is about to be caught the nanites kill him. The other is that the Treecat can communicate when the subject is not happy with the directions of the questions and much more quickly than in a normal interrogation, they are able to back them into a corner and either get a confession or hold the person till they can dig into things indicated by what he is unhappy with them questioning. Either way the mole is done....dead or locked up for a long long time with no oppertunity to report back up their chain.
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Fri Oct 09, 2020 7:55 pm

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cthia wrote:I'll have to re-read it, but I thought the prank with the cultivator was played on two-legs, not on each other. Plus, tricking by watching from a distance seems pointless. If a Cat is close enough to see, its mind is close enough to feel.


You're correct: Nimitz and Farragut arranged a prank together on an unsuspecting two-legs, not on each other.

"Seems pointless" is your anthropocentrism speaking. We don't know how treecats think, they're alien. It's quite possible that for them prank-at-a-distance is quite satisfactory because, as you say, if they were close enough, the victim would feel the smirking mindglow and not fall for the prank. So they might have evolved to like doing it at a distance, as it is the best they can get. Or they can get a cut-out: an unsuspecting third-party that is relaying what's happening.

Then there's also "lie by omission:" instead of lying to the face of the other treecat, maybe Nimitz & other pranksters simply avoid the subject. They may be nearby, even within visual range, but their minds might be focused on something else, sufficiently so that the victim would not realise that the prank is about be unveiled.

I really think the MA can pull off some sort of mind conditioning. They are already closer than most to being dead inside, emotionally.

Training may be difficult, but not impossible. It simply may cost a dozen agents or so before it is perfected. Simply send trained agents to interact at some treecat checkpoint. And have a control agent present to observe the results.


A couple dozen agents suiciding this way is a huge lead for Zilwicki to follow. And the observer too.
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by cthia   » Sun Oct 11, 2020 4:43 am

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
cthia wrote:I'll have to re-read it, but I thought the prank with the cultivator was played on two-legs, not on each other. Plus, tricking by watching from a distance seems pointless. If a Cat is close enough to see, its mind is close enough to feel.


You're correct: Nimitz and Farragut arranged a prank together on an unsuspecting two-legs, not on each other.

"Seems pointless" is your anthropocentrism speaking. We don't know how treecats think, they're alien. It's quite possible that for them prank-at-a-distance is quite satisfactory because, as you say, if they were close enough, the victim would feel the smirking mindglow and not fall for the prank. So they might have evolved to like doing it at a distance, as it is the best they can get. Or they can get a cut-out: an unsuspecting third-party that is relaying what's happening.

Then there's also "lie by omission:" instead of lying to the face of the other treecat, maybe Nimitz & other pranksters simply avoid the subject. They may be nearby, even within visual range, but their minds might be focused on something else, sufficiently so that the victim would not realise that the prank is about be unveiled.

I really think the MA can pull off some sort of mind conditioning. They are already closer than most to being dead inside, emotionally.

Training may be difficult, but not impossible. It simply may cost a dozen agents or so before it is perfected. Simply send trained agents to interact at some treecat checkpoint. And have a control agent present to observe the results.


A couple dozen agents suiciding this way is a huge lead for Zilwicki to follow. And the observer too.

Follow where? To the address of his fake ID on another planet? How would they know there is an observer who is observing? Everyone in the area would be nosey.

Another method that could be effective to counter treecats is drugs. If there is a drug that can be administered which alters the mind and emotions enough, then treecats would be rendered ineffective. Regardless of the treecat's methods. Especially if the drug still allows the target to be functional. We know psychedelics do that.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by Theemile   » Mon Oct 12, 2020 11:27 am

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cthia wrote:
Follow where? To the address of his fake ID on another planet? How would they know there is an observer who is observing? Everyone in the area would be nosey.

Another method that could be effective to counter treecats is drugs. If there is a drug that can be administered which alters the mind and emotions enough, then treecats would be rendered ineffective. Regardless of the treecat's methods. Especially if the drug still allows the target to be functional. We know psychedelics do that.


Yeah, but such levels of drugs will leave the subject in a less then fully capable form - and they will run out over time. Could you do this to get past a checkpoint, sure, but anything else would be pushing it. A Drunk/drugged agent on a secret mission has the taste of a bad spy comedy movie.

Besides, we have seen Treecats twinge onto humans that were... "wrong", specifically the suicide bomber on Torch who had been drugged and conditioned. Genghis didn't know he was going to do what he did, he just could tell something REALLY was not right about that dude...
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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Re: Treecat Counter
Post by Theemile   » Mon Oct 12, 2020 11:27 am

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cthia wrote:
Follow where? To the address of his fake ID on another planet? How would they know there is an observer who is observing? Everyone in the area would be nosey.

Another method that could be effective to counter treecats is drugs. If there is a drug that can be administered which alters the mind and emotions enough, then treecats would be rendered ineffective. Regardless of the treecat's methods. Especially if the drug still allows the target to be functional. We know psychedelics do that.


Yeah, but such levels of drugs will leave the subject in a less then fully capable form - and they will run out over time. Could you do this to get past a checkpoint, sure, but anything else would be pushing it. A Drunk/drugged agent on a secret mission has the taste of a bad spy comedy movie.

Besides, we have seen Treecats twinge onto humans that were... "wrong", specifically the suicide bomber on Torch who had been drugged and conditioned. Genghis didn't know he was going to do what he did, he just could tell something REALLY was not right about that dude...
******
RFC said "refitting a Beowulfan SD to Manticoran standards would be just as difficult as refitting a standard SLN SD to those standards. In other words, it would be cheaper and faster to build new ships."
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