Science log, planet id X1342, log 16:
Drilling operations continue. The activity has attracted several more of the curious lifeforms that the engineers have dubbed "sparks" for their bright, glowing appearance, and are demonstrating an ability to communicate with each other at a relatively close distance. Hypothesis has been formed regarding a possible energy emanation component to their communications. This would seem to confirm earlier deduction of a rudimentary intelligence despite the sparks' lack of a carbon-based body and nerve cells. My colleague has expressed a desire to capture one for further examination.
The survey team remains unsuccessful in locating the source of the high levels of the unusual radiation particular to this planet, but notes it seems to be originating in the planet's core. More information to be forthcoming.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 18:
Attempts to lure and capture one or more of the sparks have so far failed. The sparks demonstrate a curiosity about our workers and their equipment, and initial approach proved easy. However, without being able to analyze their makeup, it has proved difficult to contain one, as they will move through the sides of the specimen container if sufficiently agitated , as they are by the sudden confinement. This does not appear to be without some discomfort on their part, as they are initially hesitant to do so, until frightened by the movement of the container.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 19:
The sparks again demonstrate their ability to communicate with one another, and all are remaining at a distance from the workers today, apparently afraid of another attempt at capture.
The drilling teams note radiation increasing beyond projected amounts. Drilling operations have been temporarily ceased while this is investigated.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 21:
Mineral samples at the drill site show increased levels of several unusual metallic compounds. My colleagues suggest that these compounds may be blocking more radiation than originally believed.
The sparks appear to be growing less wary and more curious as time passes without any further attempts to capture them. They are venturing closer to the equipment, though still avoiding getting within easy reach of the workers.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 22:
One of the sparks came into the ship this morning while the drilling crew was unloading in preparation for resuming drilling. At the suggestion of one of the engineers, a box was filled with the compounds discovered in the drilling hole, with a second box inside. The spark was captured in this smaller box, which was then covered with more of the compounds. In this manner, we were successful in transporting the spark into the science lab. It would appear that the same types of shielding that block the planet's unique radiation also prevent the passage of the sparks. We tested this hypothesis by releasing the spark in the observation room. The spark was initially active, but seemed to be more curious of its new surroundings than afraid. When the shields were engaged, cutting the spark off from the planetary emanations, the spark became immediately agitated, searching for a way out but unable to pass through the shields. As we did not wish for the spark to pass on warnings to the others, it was re-sealed in a smaller shielded container for observation.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 23:
The captured spark, which has been dubbed "Prima" by the engineers despite protest from myself, remains curious about items placed within its container, but does not react to presences outside of the shielding. It seems most interested in metallic objects and simple mechanical devices placed inside the container. A current passed through the container appears to cause it extreme discomfort, and it remained pressed against the container wall farthest from the origin of the electricity for the remainder of the day, despite several new additions to the container.
The energy emissions of the spark seem to be nearly identical to that of the planet, if in a lower concentration. What this means for the survey team, I do not yet know.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 24:
The engineers have created twelve more shielded boxes, and efforts have begun to capture additional test subjects. One such subject was placed with the first and observed. The new spark gravitated immediately to the first, noticeably brighter and steadier. After some time in contact, energy flow from the second, 'healthy' spark to the first was visibly observed.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 25:
Appropriate test subjects have been acquired for the eleven remaining containers. The first subject seems to have recovered from its injuries, though remains more subdued than its fellows. The second spark shows a similar lethargy after being removed from the first spark's container. The others have demonstrated curiosity towards metal objects and mechanical devices, particularly electronic devices.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 32:
Several of the sparks have shown a capacity to interfere with the workings of the electronic devices placed within their containers, initially shorting out the devices but eventually turning them on and off, and giving them simple commands through the devices' wiring. One spark, numbered 4, shows an affinity for a small toy vehicle, and moves it around the container by manipulating the energy signals to the toy's CPU.
The engineers are making nuisances of themselves by invading the science lab in groups to watch the spark "playing" and are currently designing new and more complicated "toys" for them.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 38:
When in contact with a sensor-equipped electronic device, the sparks evidence reaction to activities outside the containers where they previously did not. They react to sound and movement by moving away, and if the device is equipped with wheels, will move the device with them.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 41:
The engineers have created a smaller shielded casing that can be attached to a small wheeled survey drone, with wiring for the spark to control the drone and "see" through its sensors. After a few false starts, the spark so attached is navigating the device by trial and error and is investigating the bay.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 53:
The drilling team broke through the planetary crust, to find an unexpected surprise. Measurements continue, but the interior of the planet appears to be no rock, but an immense spark, around which a shell of space dust and debris has formed. This would explain the similarities between the small sparks we have captured and the energy signal the "planet" is giving off.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 58:
All of the smaller sparks have adjusted to the drone vehicle bodies, and are being tested with small computer interface and projector. They appear to be learning associations with unfamiliar but similar subjects very quickly.
There has been no change with the planetary entity. It has not reacted to our pretense within the well, or any attempts to bring it in contact with electronic equipment. It is possible that the entity is in some sort of hibernation state.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 69:
Sparks are beginning to learn additional communication skills, responding to data input into the computer they are connected to.
My colleagues and I are working with the engineers to find a way to bring back a sample of the planetary entity.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 81:
The first spark subject brought on board has proved to be the quickest learner, and has mastered basic language skills and is able to answer simple questions. After being explained the meaning of its designation, Prima, it informs us that the entity below is Primus, the one who comes before the first. When asked how this oxymoron worked, Prima could not answer, but insists on the designation given.
Attempts to physically remove a specimen of this "Primus" for study have so far failed.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 93:
The engineers have found a way to forcibly separate a small piece of the planetary entity. The sample behaved strangely, immediately splitting from one larger energy creature to several smaller, roughly the size of the sparks we are used to seeing on the surface. These were separated for further examination. One was introduced to several of the older sparks which were being allowed time in the same container as an incentive reward, while another was immediately placed in contact with a variety of the simple electronic devices that the other sparks had utilized in their learning, and a third was placed directly with the advanced computerized projection device. The remaining two were taken aside for other testing. Differences in their development will be examined.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 102:
Marked differences in the development of the three new test subjects have been observed. The subject allowed contact with the older sparks, designated A-1, seems stronger and brighter than the other two, and demonstrates a slightly accelerated level of learning, seemingly having been told much of what the older sparks learned by trial and error. The test spark A-2 quickly mastered the simple electronics, but seems to be more lethargic than the first. The third subject, A-3, which was placed in the advanced drone with a full memory bank and projection unit mastered basic communication very quickly and seems to be advancing the fastest of all three.
The engineers have several ideas regarding optimizing the databank's programming for the spark.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 120:
The conditions of subjects A-4 and A-5 have continued to deteriorate. Subject A-1 was allowed contact with A-4, and a repeat of the phenomenon between the first two subjects captured was observed. Subject A-2, not having been allowed contact with any other spark since its removal from the planetary entity, was placed in contact with Subject A-5, and evidenced agitation but no phenomenon was observed. This would suggest that the ability to transfer energy in this manner is a learned skill. Subject A-4 has since stabilized, though remains weaker than the other sparks. Subject A-5 is deteriorating quickly, and will likely not survive much longer. No further attempts to stabilize it will be enacted, in order to observe the dying process of the spark lifeforms.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 124:
Notification of colonization efforts beginning arrived today. The engineers have modified the terraforming technology to form a solid layer of the energy-blocking compounds, leaving the well originally dug as the only access to the entity under the surface.
Additional testing on Subject A-4 has shown a weakened constitution; the spark is deteriorating much faster than in the last round of testing. It would seem that while the contact with A-1 strengthened it, it did not return to its original state of health.
Having graphed A-2's learning abilities, the spark will be now used for further experimentation.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 132:
We have re-located to orbit as the terraforming process has begun. The thirteen originally captured sparks are now the only sparks outside the planetary entity that were not spit in a controlled environment.
Using the same method as was used to remove the A series from the planetary entity, the subject A-2 was again split, a smaller spark being removed from the original. The smaller spark seems to be unable to sustain itself. However, projectors emitting energy similar to the spark's own seem to keep the spark stable for the moment.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 142:
Subject B-1 continues to strengthen and grow. The parent spark, A-2, seems to have fully recovered. The engineers have created specialized programming for B-1 when the subject is strong enough to transfer.
Terraforming is nearly complete. We will be returning to the surface soon.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 177:
There is a marked difference in the attitudes of the spark series. The original thirteen are independent-minded, prefer to consult amongst each other before asking one of us a question. They have shown the occasional tendency to disobey commands. Subject A-3 shows no preference for their company over ours, and interacts with them only through the computerized vocalizer system installed in its drone vehicle. It is largely obedient, though does sometimes question commands. Subject B-1 and subsequent other split sparks were placed directly into a drone form with the specialized programing developed by the engineers, and are extremely pliant and obedient.
The B series are proving far more useful for other applications than the artificially intelligent drones, able to learn and adapt quickly. Additional sparks will be removed from the planetary entity for further testing, and programmed for additional applications in the field.
Science log, planet id X1342, log 189:
Construction of a spark-removal and programing system is nearly complete, and is being installed on the planet surface, designation: Vector Sigma. There is already talk of both military and civilian application for the specially programmed sparks, as intelligent weapons, vehicles, construction equipment, and servants. With the help of these sparks, planet X1342, tentatively designated "Cybertron," will become a civilized paradise for our people.