How the National Reconnaissance Office came to choose a sinister, planet-devouring octopus for a logo


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I seriously want an NROL-39 t-shirt or Velcro patch. A bit more than that NSA eagle holding wires. So very cool.


But it still looks pretty awesome.


On their defense, an octopus is a pretty fascinating critter.

…could they get gene-tweaked to have longer-term memory and teach their offsprings?


Well, we wanted to go with a hot chick wearing nothing but a snake and grasping the secrets that the gods themselves would hide in vain; but HQ was all “Do you now what this will do to our congressional position!!!” so we had to settle for the octopus…


“A little sinister!”

  • Douglas Adams


A counterexample would be even more exciting than naked mole rats, the eusocial mammal; but I don’t think that Cthulhu’s chosen have much known social behavior to work with; so we’d probably have to know a hell of a lot more than we do in order to build the right knobs and then twiddle them.

It’s part of what makes them so fascinating, being clearly capable of nontrivial cognitive tasks; but largely solitary unlike the various monkeys and birds and fuzzy puppies and stuff; but promoting a behavior is vastly easier if you have some amount of it to start with; rather than having to build it from scratch.

As for memory retention, I don’t know how good they are. Some cephalopods are, alas, short lived and so obviously have poor long term memory; but some of the big, deep, hard-to-study ones apparently live longer; brooding silently in the darkness for years, and their memories might be better.


…why an octopus has tentacles? It doesn’t add up.

…maybe the tentacles are 20% shorter?



Not sure what the problem is? Think it is probably pretty apt, considering how completely covered the earth is in spy satellites.

Next time maybe get Disney or Warner Brothers to make it less scary. I have a silkscreened print from Disney that was for my grandpas boat in WWII, the USS Aultman.

Here are some other samples.


the intriguing image




remarkable likeness.

But hardly a first.

Overall, pretty brazen. Accitentionally tone deaf.


Cthu-this. Cthu-that.


TOTAL ripoff of the United Underworld logo.


*Pedantry–it’s not just for dinner.


Well…the vampire squid was getting lonely.


I think it has something to do with hotdogs and hotdog buns.


Its how all these logos get made. Its supposed to be kinda badass, kinda iconic, and and unique.

Of course a squid devouring the world is all three… But when your country creates a secret police state, secret tribunals, secret courts, and secret laws… And then detains and/or kills its citizens with impunity and then bitches that rights are making it harder to detain and/or kill our own citizens…

Well people get suspicious. They start thinking… Hey. This world devouring octopus logo might be indicitive of the rest of the shit you do.

Lucky to know its just a friendly octopus logo… So we just have to worry about the program itself, and the government that created it. Way smaller problem.