The Intersect is a computer system designed in a joint project between the CIA and the NSA which encodes the vast amounts of information it stores in a compatible person's subconscious. The Intersect computer is based on Artificial neural networks, which are commonly used for pattern recognition.
To date, at least four Intersect computers are known to have been constructed. The earliest, almost pre-release "testing build" of the Intersect computer system exists in Stephen Bartowski (aka Orion)'s head. Intersect Generation One, Two and Three located at Washington D.C. government building were all destroyed by either explosives or electrical sabotage. Three people who contain an Intersect in their brains are Chuck Bartowski, Daniel Shaw , and Chuck's father, Stephen Bartowski.
- Stephen J. Bartowski (code name Orion) - Intersect chief designer, Intersect 2.0 technician,Human Intersect
- Hartley Winterbottom (code name Agent X) - Intersect technician, Human Intersect
- Dr. Howard Busgang (code name Perseus) - Intersect technician
- Dr. Jonah Zarnow - Intersect technician
- Director Langston Graham - Supervisor of the Beta Intersect
- Roark Instruments - Intersect 2.0 manufacturer
- Bryce Larkin - Technician for completing the Intersect 2.0
- Manoosh Depark - Engineer of reconstructing the Intersect 2.0 into glasses
- Daniel Shaw (code name Blackbriar) - Provided stolen Intersect 2.0 data to the Ring.
New and Old IntersectsEdit
Intersect (Generation 1): Uploaded into Chuck's brain after Bryce Larkin stole it. Takes a very long time to load into a user's brain, approximately 8-10 hours, and causes the user to fall unconscious after loading. When Chuck uploaded it he passed out and upon waking, saw Intersect images flashing in front of his eyes, possibly due to it still being processed by his brain. In the last episode of Season One, it is revealed that Orion had asked Bryce to send it to Chuck to prevent it from falling into the hands of Fulcrum. Orion created the "cool stuff" on it, with some assistance by Dr. Howard Busgang and Dr. Jonah Zarnow. (Also worth noting that Chuck was first exposted to the Intersect when he was a child. This can be seen in the last episode of Season Three when Chuck refers to "Rebooting the intersect" after his flash-back during his fight with Shaw.)
Intersect (Generation 2): Created to replace the first version and so Operation Bartowski could be terminated with the execution of Chuck. The Cipher, a major component of the new Intersect, was stolen by Mr. Colt, but later recovered. However, the Cipher recovered by the team was a sabotage device that exploded after it was installed in the new Intersect, killing Director Graham and several CIA agents volunteering as the human Intersect. The first generation of the Intersect causes stress on the user's brain, which can possibly lead to serious mental deterioration, including dementia, insanity, and possibly worse. This can be cured thanks to the help of the Governor, created by Orion.
Fulcrum Intersect (incomplete): A new Intersect that is being created by Fulcrum to gather all government intelligence from every agency created. It was hidden at Roark Instruments' main building and Fulcrum later captured Orion to further refine it. There are only two existing versions of the Fulcrum Intersect. In "Chuck Versus the Suburbs", Chuck was experimented on an early version of it by Fulcrum operatives to create their own Intersect and was nearly killed by the information. In "Chuck Versus the Dream Job", Chuck discovers several hints from Orion that Ted Roark is building his own Intersect. The Roark Intersect is designed differently than the other generations as all of the information is stored within a cube rather than a Cipher. The Roark Intersect is the origin of the Intersect Generation 3 and was originally made by Ted Roark to be used on Fulcrum agents.
Intersect (Generation 2 refresh): A memory chip that fell into the hands of a billion-dollar entrepreneur named Von Hayes, hired by Fulcrum. Chuck, Sarah, and Casey, aided by Bryce, recovered it. Bryce tricked Chuck into using it by giving him a pair of sunglasses that housed the chip. The information was uploaded into Chuck's brain; soon after the chip self-destroyed and he fainted.
Intersect (Generation 3): After having the first Intersect completely deleted from Chuck's brain, he voluntarily uploaded the CIA's newest Intersect into himself, which has allowed him not only to flash on information, but learn advanced skills instantly. A popular fan theory, proven incorrect after the first episode of Season Three, is that Chuck no longer needs to flash to access the Intersect, and that the information is now part of his very being. This Intersect, like the first generation, can cause the user's brain to deteriorate and cause mental handicaps, such as dementia, insanity, and possibly worse. The only known cure for this is the Governor, created by Orion which stabilizes the electrical pulses in the brain and the Intersect.
The core conceit of the Intersect is much like Arthur Conan Doyle's description of Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock's older, more sedentary brother -
"He has the tidiest and most orderly brain, with the greatest capacity for storing facts, of any man living. The same great powers which I have turned to the detection of crime he has used for this particular business. The conclusions of every department are passed to him, and he is the central exchange, the clearing-house, which makes out the balance. All other men are specialists, but his specialism is omniscience. We will suppose that a minister needs information as to a point which involves the Navy, India, Canada and the bimetallic question; he could get his separate advices from various departments upon each, but only Mycroft can focus them all, and say offhand how each factor would affect the other."