Glyphs are the language of the Shapers, the race that seems to be authoring the crisis on earth. Glyphs namely appear in the game as part of Glyph Hacking, but may have a deeper meaning in the Ingress Lore.
Glyphs are a language comparable to Anglo-Saxon and Norse runes, where characters stand alone as words rather than as letters, like in most modern languages on Earth. Glyphs are written on an eleven-dot matrix by connecting adjacent points with straight, unbroken lines. The Glyph language so far seems to be limited to nouns and verbs, which are combined to make simple yet entirely understandable phrases.
Glyph Hacking is a mini-game Agents can enable when hacking both enemy and friendly portals. It involves memorizing a sequence of glyph characters and tracing them back on the array as quickly as possible. Sequences can range from one to five characters long, depending on the level of the Agent and the portal being hacked. If a glyph is repeated back correctly, the Agent gains 50 AP. If an entire sequence is repeated correctly, the Agent gains 100 AP and a bonus for speed, if applicable.
Glyph hacking rewards the Agent with bonus item drops and possible medals.
Glyph Channel Command is a feature that is added since version 1.90.1 that activates before glyph sequence started. You can send some commands / glyph that will change the result of the hack just after the "COMMAND CHANNEL OPEN" message.
Known commands that work are:
More (Potentially rewards 1 or more keys, even with keys already in Inventory)
Glyph Hacking sequences often make phrases related to Lore or gameplay. All of the words in the Glyph dictionary are related to the Ingress Universe, The Enlightened, The Resistance, or the war for humanity. The phrases they make up give us insight into the purposes of the Shapers. Phrases vary from one to five glyphs long.
Some glyphs have antonym pairs. These pairs are direct antonyms such as less \ more, attack \ defend, and create \ destroy. The glyphs in the pair are mirror images of each other- i.e. attack is drawn as a chevron, defend is drawn as a 'V'.
With one exception, each Glyph is drawn by connecting adjacent nodes, without backtracking. That is to say, the lines that connect two nodes never overlap another node.
The Imperfect Glyph is the sole exception. To correctly draw the Glyph, the agent must connect the left node of row 5 directly to the right node of row 3, bypassing the center node at row 4. Then, the agent must backtrack and connect the right node of row 3 to the center node at row 4, then connect that to the left node of row 5.