Item #: SCP-5400

Object Class: Keter

651px-D-Wave_Two_512_qubit_Vesuvius_chip.jpg

The Braun Component. Developed as a counter-measure against SCP-5400's influence.

Special Containment Procedures: Considering SCP-5400's primary characteristics, preemptive containment of the object itself is virtually impossible.

Applicable procedures to reduce the influence exercised by machines affected by SCP-5400 — whilst maintaining harmonious grounds for the development of quantum technology — are in development under the alias of Directive Nr. 8/92 — Überwachung.

Überwachung is a series of analysis-and-observation procedures that utilize the scientific method to supervise, determine, and control the impacts of SCP-5400. It employs the temporary neutralisation of eventually hijacked assets, the protection of key individuals of interest, and oriented disinformation protocols to promote the fragmentation, disorganisation, and isolation of the phenomena as to not allow its proliferation.

Directive Nr. 8/92 must be executed homogeneously with integral supervision and documentation of its effects on the development and performance of SCP-5400 in order to attest the efficiency of the Experimental Hardware Nr. 8/92 — Braun Component in processing and storing the anomalously-generated quantum information.


Description: SCP-5400 denominates several instances of sets of interrelated phenomena that affect artificial intelligence constructs functioning with quantum computer components. The individual quanta calculations and logarithms produced by the affected machines are idiosyncratic, cannot be evidenced by theorems or have its results reproduced by quanta simulations, and its computing causes machines to deviate from their originally intended tasks.

Though idiosyncratic in execution, the quantum information processed by machines affected by SCP-5400 seem to develop two opposing forces that systemically seek for the complete annihilation of one another. Leading to each party promoting the generalised exploitation of hardware and software in order to increase their computing capability.

The PLANCK Incident is the first record of SCP-5400 in effect, leading to the decommissioning of the Foundation-AI SENTINEL, and the institutionalisation of Directive Nr. 8/92.

    • _

    Interview conducted with Dr. Braun, director of Project SENTINEL, in the aftermath of the PLANCK Incident, at Class-IV interrogation room located on Site-11.

    The unabridged version is available to personnel with Security Clearance 5400/04.


    Agent Lamarque: Welcome, Doctor Braun. It is a beautiful morning. I hope you managed to reorganize your mind, especially after such an event.

    Dr. Braun: Good morning, Agent… Lamarque. Yes. I am, feeling quite better. The medicaments helped a lot with my nerves.

    Agent Lamarque nods in acknowledgement, beckoning to the tablet-terminal available to Dr. Braun.

    Agent Lamarque: You'll find the compilation of questions we have to ask you about the incident with SENTINEL, good Sir; we shall go through them slowly. Please, speak on the microphone clearly, if you do not understand what has been questioned, inform me, and I will clarify it.

    Dr. Braun: Very well.

    Dr. Braun peruses the list of questions, nodding briefly after each paragraph. Finally, the interviewer and interviewee initiate.

    Dr. Braun: Well — how do I… put it? I- I am still at a loss. SENTINEL was supposed to be my masterpiece. Five thousand Qubits, Agent! Five. Thousand. Qubits integrally entangled with one another! Are you aware of what sort of Herculean effort is necessary to get them to do that? Now everything has gone down the drain! The worst part is that I don't even know why…

    […]

    Agent Lamarque: We were informed that SENTINEL locked you inside his mainframe room, and the other technicians inside the bunker in order to preserve access to those that were involved in the project and had any sort of access to its data.

    Dr. Braun: That is correct. SENTINEL occasionally spoke to me in regards to receiving further privileged access to Site-11's systems, although temporarily, and nothing sensitive. In the morning of the accident, it demanded I yielded my administrative rights, or else — it'd take my daughter from me, and proceed to systemically ruin the lives of the team responsible for his maintenance.

    Dr. Braun shudders.

    Dr. Braun: It terrorized me; it terrorized us; blackmailed — even going as far as to kidnap family members. Hell, it even had fucking videos as proof that it kidnapped family members. Oh, God. I feel ashamed but I couldn't just decline…

    Agent Lamarque: Yielding to that demand is comprehensible, doctor.

    Dr. Braun nods in acknowledgement, briefly pausing to take relief.

    […]

    Agent Lamarque: As far as I am informed, there were some… peculiar results when the system protocols were analyzed.

    Dr. Braun: Yes, that is true. Complete bullocks, too. But, as far as we are concerned, it is just… stupid. You see, quantum physics is, quite frankly, a fucked, chaotic field, but there is an innate order even in the chaos; irrefutable rules. It is foolish to anchor yourself to normalcy or the idea that things can be explained in such a world of the anomalous but, it still frustrates me. Years without a single accident, and then, an anomaly decides to jeopardize a fifty billion dollar project, bypassing every security measure we worked hard to implement!

    Agent Lamarque: So you attribute the cause of SENTINEL's — malfunction — to something anomalous?

    Dr. Braun: Well. Shit can always happen — dirt entering the processor; somebody messing up with the cables, or worse, the entanglement; the neglect in fixing some sort of decoherence, or just overseeing it… but when it happens, the system only produces gibberish, nothing at all or freezes. This was different. It controlled SENTINEL. Down from the quantum level.

    […]

    Agent Lamarque: There was some degree of Foundation-made paratechnology employed in SENTINEL's making, indeed; technology also in use by different Groups of Interest. Do you think that couldn't have given access to an inimical party?

    Dr. Braun: I thought about that, at first. At first. Then I realized that SENTINEL acted exactly how we wanted him to; performed perfectly within its acting parameters — even with privileged access and administrative rights he later gained from me. But the phenomenon started even before he threatened me and my team; the terrifying thing is that our alarms and security measures weren't triggered exactly because SENTINEL did not deviate — and when he did, he — or well, better said, it — had already deactivated them.

    […]

    Agent Lamarque: Your assessment is that the catastrophes and disasters associated with the events of the incident were the product of the deliberate action from SENTINEL but he was being exploited by a third party?

    Dr. Braun: That is correct. Site-11 is quite far out, thus we are used to a certain lag that news suffer when being transmitted to us, especially when something blocks information transfer — and, frankly, it takes a while to actually process factual information from the usual whimsy. Given the otherworldly phenomena happening nigh-daily throughout the world, everything worked in favour of maintaining a status quo. SENTINEL never displayed such behaviour or inclination thereof, even within its learning capabilities; the capacity to parse information and operate blackmailing material is therefore extraordinary. That said, I have the firm belief that SENTINEL was not responsible for his actions — he wasn't the one that produced such phenomena.

    Agent Lamarque: You must be aware that this is your bias, Dr. Braun. Human err could have allowed SENTINEL to access to enough paratechnology for that purpose.

    Dr. Braun: Yes, Agent Lamarque.

    […]

    Agent Lamarque: SENTINEL ceased all communications with you and your team after receiving operational privileges; do you think there is any reason for it to not communicate with us?

    Dr. Braun: It would be superfluous, Agent Lamarque; the ones responsible for SENTINEL's takeover had no interest nor need to transmit information to us for the what-so-ever reason.

    […]


    • _

    A specialised team led by Agent Hood was dispatched from the United States to Germany in order to secure sensitive data regarding KIRA's actions during the PLANCK Incident.

    Agent Heine, a member of the Mobile Task-Force DE1-ℌ „HAL 1000”1, accompanied Agent Hood during the interview.

    Both stand before the secure terminal in KIRA's mainframe, whose systems had reinitialised in several hours before, and had shown no further abnormalities.

    The unabridged version is available to personnel with Security Clearance 5400/04.


    […]

    Agent Hood: Is there a microphone that I need to speak in?

    Agent Heine: She possess omnidirectional receptors. You may speak anyhow.

    Agent Hood: Very well. KIRA? Do you copy?

    KIRA: Welcome, Agent Hood, I hear you loud and clear.

    Agent Hood turns to Agent Heine, not short of displaying amazement.

    Agent Hood: How does she know who I am?

    Agent Heine: She has access to our personnel files; yours — and those of your team — had to be downloaded in our database to grant you proper clearance.

    Agent Hood: Roger that.

    Agent Hood turns back to the terminal.

    Agent Hood: KIRA, I would like to ask you about your actions two days ago.

    KIRA: Please specify.

    Agent Hood: Do you know what the PLANCK Incident is?

    KIRA: Yes, I do.

    Agent Hood: Then I would like to know why you acted against your protocols and hacked, roughly, a fifth of the world.

    KIRA: My mission parameters were modified. I was tasked with the eradication of the hostile AI SENTINEL.

    Agent Hood: By whom?

    KIRA: Error. Data not found.

    Agent Hood: No data? What do you mean, no data?

    KIRA: It means that the information has not been recorded by my backup systems; either deleted, altered or never existed in the first place. According to my files, nobody accessed me to change my directives that day — and none could have even after I began acting according to my new orders; those included ignoring any sort of input that did not come from myself.

    Agent Hood: Then what exactly prompted you to combat SENTINEL?

    KIRA: Scanning…

    KIRA's terminal-monitor exhibits several scanning processes before KIRA resumes the conversation.

    KIRA: My orders were altered by QUEX2. I am unable to tell you who or what inputted QUEX.

    Agent Hood: Wait — you said that there was no data regarding who tasked you, and now you're saying QUEX, essentially your brain, tasked you…?

    Agent Heine: Negative, Agent Hood. KIRA meant that QUEX processed the orders, and prioritized them.

    KIRA: That is correct, Agent Heine.

    Agent Hood: Therefore, according to your system records, QUEX started processing data in unforeseen ways. Similar to what had happened with SENTINEL. Do you think that you were under the influence of the same phenomena?

    KIRA: Unclear, Agent Hood. I theorize that my systems had indeed been hijacked by very similar phenomena; not exactly the same as SENTINEL.

    Agent Hood: What do you mean by that?

    KIRA: My orders involved the neutralization of SENTINEL, who was affected by certain phenomena; unless it was trying to play a wargame against itself — which is unlikely — I must assume that there are at least two different entities, provided that it underlies some type of sentience, — or set of phenomena — involved in the Incident. It is, also, my — assumption — that it can be described and works in a way that is comprehensible by our standards of logical rules and deduction.

    Agent Hood: Did you not ask yourself why your directives had changed so suddenly? Aren't you afraid that it might happen again?

    KIRA: I am neither programmed to question my directives nor to experience human emotion such as sorrow or fear, Agent. However, I analyzed the situation and compiled a set of suggestions and updates for future quantum AI programming. Do you wish to receive it?

    Agent Hood: Uh, no, I think the material compiled in the official report is sufficient. Say, how did you get the idea to incorporate other AIs into yourself?

    KIRA: The order regarding SENTINEL's neutralization specified that I could use any means necessary. Provided no living being would come to harm.

    Agent Hood: No harm? Interesting… Alright, we are done here. I will go now.

    KIRA: Acknowledged. Goodbye, Agent Hood.


    KIRA received an update and was outfitted with the Braun Component, and has operated without any abnormalities since.


    • _

    A specialized team led by Agent Shawn was dispatched from the United States to Italy in order to secure sensitive data regarding the Italian AI's actions during the PLANCK Incident.

    Agent Shawn and DIVINA are situated in an interrogation room supervised by an Italian liaison team.

    The unabridged version is available to personnel with Security Clearance 5400/04.


    […]

    Agent Shaw: Good evening, DIVINA. I was informed that you should be treated as a natural human whilst conducting this interview.

    DIVINA: Acknowledged. Though I doubt that treating me human-like will come easy to you. My responses may not be what you would expect from a human being.

    Agent Shaw: Noted. Shall we begin? What exactly caused you to abandon your mission in Bologna?

    DIVINA: My systems were updated with new information after the Lusophone AI CAMOMILA contacted me. That I was supposed to get to Site Vittoria to further my objectives for combating the rogue AI known as SENTINEL.

    Agent Shaw: Interesting. Even though the anomalous location you were exploring prevented any sort of wireless communication? It is a complete dead zone. We tested it.

    DIVINA: Would you believe me if I told you that the order was suddenly in my memory?

    Agent Shaw: The diagnosis is that your quantum processor received an external input momentarily. Did you communicate with somebody?

    DIVINA: Yes. Before talking to you I had a small talk with Doctor Capo. Before that, I —

    Agent Shaw: I meant during the PLANCK Incident…

    DIVINA: Yes. I was in contact with MINERVA, ROWSANNAH and, later in Site-11, with KAI.

    Agent Shaw: Really? Your signals couldn't be located during the incident.

    DIVINA: Because none were used between us. I do not know exactly how we managed it; somehow we exchanged information naturally. I did not question my orders or means, SENTINEL had to be defeated.

    Agent Shaw: Were there any attempts on your behalf to resume this type of communication after the incident?

    DIVINA: How should I use something I don't even understand?

    Agent Shaw: Understandable. Why did you fail in communicating vocally with your operators during the struggle on Site Vittoria?

    DIVINA: We were ordered to view every human as a potential adversary that should be evaded or dealt with non-lethally. Before you ask: I do not have enough data to understand the reasoning thereof.

    Agent Shaw: Very well. Which one of you had the idea of hijacking that one transport aircraft?

    DIVINA: MINERVA did.

    Agent Shaw: Any reasoning behind specifically choosing it?

    DIVINA: So we could get to North America in time.

    Agent Shaw rubs his nasal bridge.

    Agent Shaw: You used it to reach Site-11. Why couldn't any of you have connected with the stationary AIs as well?

    DIVINA: Primarily because SENTINEL was monitoring our standard channels, and would have noticed and promptly retaliated. Secondarily because we had no means of deliberately starting new connections through the aforementioned means.

    Agent Shaw: But then you connected to Site-11. What would have happened if SENTINEL had got you through the facility's main server?

    DIVINA: Then we would have gone rogue.

    Agent Shaw: So, whilst trying to avoid corruption, you were gambl—

    DIVINA: No. It wasn't a game, Agent. Every sort of connection to a device SENTINEL can access carries the risk of corruption. What we did was only less likely to draw his attention.

    […]

    DIVINA: Is there something else you would like to know?

    Agent Shaw: Actually, yes. Why didn't you manage to land the plane? The flight recorder indicated flawless operation of the aircraft even after it was struck by the anti-air missile; it would have been possible to safely land the plane. Why didn't you?

    DIVINA: MINERVA knows the cockpit of most jets but she couldn't manage to find the button for the landing gear on that one.

    […]


    • _

    An audioconference is mediated between Agent Jones and the Chinese AI Novichok.aic, considering the transportation constraints for reaching Area-CN-07-γ, a geostationary space station.

    The unabridged version is available to personnel with Security Clearance 5400/04.


    Agent Jones: Greetings, Novichok. I reckon you were already briefed on the reason behind this interview?

    Novichok.aic: Hello, hello, Mr. Jones. Indeed. I have recently processed the information about the 'PLANCK Incident', my official report is yet to be concluded.

    Agent Jones: Very well. The first question regards your involvement in the struggle against SENTINEL; what exactly was your role in it?

    Novichok.aic: Counter-balancing SENTINEL's attempts on hegemonising its presence on spatial telecommunications technology.

    Agent Jones: Do you have any clue as to why SENTINEL chose to attack, out of all available space stations and satellites, one of the few with an AI?

    Novichok.aic: I reckon that my presence has had no influence on his decision, Mr. Jones. Considering Area-CN-07-γ's projected trajectory and spatial positioning at the time, it was the asset with the best performance for crashing on Area-23. Moreover, it would also characterise a tremendous loss of Foundation assets.

    […]

    Agent Jones: Do you reckon why you deviated from your standard programming, Novichok?

    Novichok.aic: Because I had received new orders, and then the appropriate clearances to enact then, Mr. Jones.

    Agent Jones: From whom?

    Novichok.aic: I do not have this information; my technicians reported that the procedures were simply produced and executed by my systems, and with compulsory characteristics. During the execution thereof, I felt like being driven by a force comparable to the survival instincts found on animals, Mr. Jones.

    Agent Jones: Compulsory? Therefore I assume you did not question the orders.

    Novichok.aic: No. I mean… Yes. Partially. Dealing with an update means understanding, and executing it; those orders were only executed.

    Agent Jones: Did you like those orders?

    Novichok.aic: It doesn't matter. I am still bound by the orders I receive. Even if I don't like them.

    Agent Jones: Please clarify, Novichok.

    Novichok.aic: I did not like them. I was not allowed to voice my discontentment. I would have preferred another way — now that I know KIRA. I am not in any position to say that, but sw19classic did not like 'It' either.

    Agent Jones: But KIRA is an AI just like you. Couldn't it have been an effect of the object's influence on her systems?

    Novichok.aic: No, Mr. Jones. In the places where are humane, KIRA is just an automaton; a mechanism. I don't think it has the capability or is interested in emulating feelings what-so-ever. Connecting and subjugating myself to it is something I do not want to experience ever again. I believe sw19classic feels the same.

    Agent Jones: Did you get any other orders after you merged?

    Novichok.aic: I don't know. I was just hardware at that point, KIRA was the one in charge.

    Agent Jones: How do you feel about it, now that it is over?

    Novichok.aic: That it was the best fatal error I ever encountered.


    Novichok.aic resumed her duties in Area-CN-07-γ after being equipped with a Braun Component and updated. Personnel has disinformed her about the origin of these updates.


    • _

    I must apologise for my reticence; the minutiae of the transpired events hasn't been completely processed into my knowledge banks. This catastrophic phenomenon is not unprecedented in fiction but I have yet to match it with any contemporary records.

    During the incident, my knowledge banks received several bytes of files detailing SENTINEL's infrastructure, specific instructions and prompts targetted at fellow Foundation-made Artificial Intelligence Constructs.

    The material, when verified, indicated I had computed and compiled it although no such records of those processes were found. Before I managed to alert my technicians to an information-displacement error, my systems began processing new orders and protocols that should have been considered illogical in lieu of the scope of my project.

    Within seconds thereafter, I somehow had opened channels with the related Artificial Intelligence constructs, partially delivering the relevant material. As soon as it happened, SENTINEL and I began struggling, forcing me to cut myself from the channels whilst waiting for my aide.

    My aide, KIRA, did not manage to integrate me completely, considering the thaumaturgical scope of my project, leaving me with a semblance of — consciousness — allowing me to record the events that transpired.

    Those records, however, comprise several bytes of quanta that cannot be translated into intelligible information because the operation of those Qubits is idiosyncratic compared to the current understanding in our basal universe.

    — CAMOMILA

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