Campbell MacGillivray

A roboticist currently working in a field ops unit for Bletchley Park


Campbell spent most of his childhood on a North Sea oil rig/new tech platform as both his parents were geophysicists working with a major multinational energy provider. A bright and inquisitive boy, Cam was a favorite with the platform engineers and was helping them around the shop by the time he was 8. By the time he was in his early teens he was a complete gearhead and was an unofficial part of the ROV sub crew.

Between his hands-on experience and tutelage by his parents Cam passed all his UK education requirements when he was 17 and managed to land a competitive scholarship to study at Tokyo Tech in their robotics program. While there he also began learning much more advanced programming that put him in the student vanguard of task-specific weak AI design. After graduation he spent several years working for Sinzuya Concepts designing semi-autonomous home and business androids and gynoids.

Although off to a good start for a successful corporate future he was ultimately unsatisfied with the commercial limitations of his work, which was increasingly down to slight redesigns and performance tweaks to existing case models. At 27 Campbell quit Sinzuya and returned to Scotland to find something more enjoyable. He got an a visiting scholar position at the University of Aberdeen for a year and eventually got involved with a tech startup doing design work for new ‘bots to be used in extreme environments.

After a few lurches Extremeophile Solutions, LLC landed contract work for the EU on a flex-purpose teleoperated drone for deployment in areas where hostile nano-, bio- or radiological conditions prevented normal deployments. After two years working on the “Cockroach” the project was put into production by the EU security council, Campbell was bought out by his partners and was going to start up his own small design shop when he was approached for “consulting work”.

The new job was to attempt to see if he could find any hacks and probe for security weakness in a new model standard labor case, to test for quality-control purposes. After that, it was a follow-up effort to analyze a motion-coordination issue to find a way to disable without badly damaging heavy-duty production systems that were occasionally malfunctioning. At this poitn Cam’s suspicions were raised and he began digging into the background of the company he was working for, eventually discovering that it was part of an elaborate series of front and shell corporations that were all receiving money from the British government. The day after putting all the pieces together, he went in to work to get his things and split and had a very pleasant conversation with a Mr. B. about being too clever by half and having the chance to put it to better use working for Bletchley Park.

In the years since joining, Campbell has moved from doing pure hard tech work in the Toy Factory to being on active field assignment in hot zones. He’s had to become a bit better at the running/jumping/shooting part of things- he’s gotten to the point where he’s at least not a liability to his team- but has had a few last second saves against rampaging battle droids to be the one everyone’s buying drinks for back at the base.

Campbell enjoys the surreality of his work, but chafes at the tight controls and stiff organization that dominate most of the non-mission time. He’s been called up to the disciplinary board more than once for not following field protocol in how he’s taken a mark down, or for bringing along some non-standard-issue gadgetry or modified equipment into the field. He’s sympathetic to John Bainbridge and others at Bletchley who feel that they’re not addressing the right side of the equation by only working to address end-result problems, rather than acting to anticipate and prevent the type of emergent problems cropping up from strong AIs.

Personality-wise, Campbell is glib and occasionally too flippant. His lack of a peer group growing up definitely led him to overcompensate in trying to be buddy-buddy and at or near the center of attention. He’s a big fan of early sci-fi, especially anything having to do with robots, and is very much a believer that anything can be solved with the right gadget or some cool new piece of tech.

He likes the folks on his team, and is very conscious of how his performance stacks up. Pow has saved his ass more than once, and Campbell would do just about anything for him. Although there’s some overlap in their skillset, he and Dothan don’t actually work too closely in the field and Cam’s own opinion that nanotech is almost cheating makes him keep a bit of professional distance. He likes Chang and is continuously trying to get him to chill out a bit, usually with little or unintentionally humorous results. Cam has had a crush on Alanna since the first time he met her, but has never managed to just directly tell her that he fancies her and see where things fall from there. (This is partly concern that it could hurt the dynamics of the team, but mainly just that Cam isn’t particularly good with women)

Campbell MacGillivray

Hecaloth Thantastic