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Stuart
2003-Aug-04, 05:00 PM
As must be obvious, I've come to the conclusion that Enterprise is a dead duck and should be cancelled as early as possible. To revive the Star Trek franchise, an entirely new approach and plotline is needed. This, of course means we would have to fire the entire existing team of scriptwriters and replace them with people who knew how to write and supervise them strictly (a team of BABB members having that responsibility). B&B would, of course, be cast into the outer darkness.

The new series would be Star Trek - Liberation based on the collapse of the Evil Federation. Voyager (where the continuity problems are appalling) can be dismissed as a side-story with the characters in the new series making sarcastic remarks about how the Voyager logs were proving to have been falsified and most Voyager stories were Federation propaganda. The end of DS9 and the defeat of the Dominion would be the bounce-off point for the new series. It would have Star Fleet as the unequivocal bad guys and the rebels the heroes - think "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress" Federation-wide. A group of veterans who have all lost their families as a result of Star Fleet's policies have their eyes opened and realize that Star Fleet Must Go. These veterans and the Ferenghi are the good guys and eventually depose the evil Federation and reveal its loathsome character.

It could start off with low humor as the iconoclastic rebels run rings around the bungling incompetents of Star Trek We can have the hypothetical group of veterans meeting up with Maquis survivors to form the "Resistance". It would be fun to show existing characters in a new and much less favorable light. Janeway becomes an overbearing and arrogant virago, Picard a naive and bumbling bureaucrat, Sisco (who wasn't really carried away by the Prophets but "investigated" by Star Fleet security) is shown as a pompous and posturing windbag.

As one major story arc we have the growing alliance with the Ferenghi (who we can also make over into a much more rounded and multi-dimensional characters representing the voice of sanity and common-sense). It can turn out that the Ferenghi have finally lost patience with Hoo-mans and have started a quiet economic war with the Federation.

The dramatic possibilities are endless, particularly since the series will be looking at the stories through a totally different set of eyes. The rebellion has to start and recruit (and, of course, prevent itself being infiltrated by Starfleet security). We can then learn that all of our favorite shows and episodes were edited by some of the federation propagandaists to make them look more heroic. We can then get the other side of the story in this series. Heck this can be the first season or so of the series. Recreate the old episodes of the other series and tell the "real" story of them. The stories can be told in flashback as people join the growing resistance and the reasons behind their actions are shown. This allows us to eliminate some of the continuity and Bad Science/Bad Astronomy in them.

We can hire a few Vietcong Veterans to give technical advice on running insurgencies. In the Star Trek - Liberation, by the way, central characters should get killed off regularly. Nobody watching the start of a show should be able to guarantee that their favorite character will be alive at the end. Also, the resistance don't always win; sometimes they get their clocks cleaned. That happened in MI5/Spooks this week; they spent an episode building a character up then killed her horribly at the end.

After the first series (which is essential comedic in its approach) the episodes get darker and darker as the reality of Federation despotism and oppression become more apparent. Throughout this period we see the Romulans, Klingons etc appearing but their actions and behavior now seen in a totally different context. The series climax is the outbreak of a l a major civil war that ends with the overthrow of Star Fleet and the federation and the restoration of freedom etc to the suffering humanity of the galaxy.

(This text edited to correct some spelling mistakes. Also, I forgot to include my appreciation to Humphrey, without whose help, I would not have been able to assemble these chaotic thoughts into a readable text)

Glom
2003-Aug-04, 05:10 PM
As must be obvious, I've come to the conclusion that Enterprise is a dead duck and should be cancelled as early as possible.

I agree with that.


To revive the Star Trek franchise, an entirely new approach and plotline is needed. This, of course means we would have to fire the entire existing team of scriptwriters and replace them with people who knew how to write and supervise them strictly (a team of BABB members having that responsibility). B&B would, of course, be cast into the outer darkness.

I agree with that as well.


The new series would be Star Trek - Liberation based on the collapse of the Evil Federation. Voyager (where the continuity problems are appalling) can be dismissed as a side-story with the characters in the new series making sarcastic remarks about how the Voyager logs were proving to have been falsified and most Voyager stories were Federation propaganda.

That sounds like a good idea.


The end of DS9 and the defeat of the Dominion would be the bounce-off point for the new series. It would have Star Fleet as the unequivocal bad guys and the rebels the heroes - think "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress" Federation-wide.

An interesting turn around.


A group of veterans who have all lost their families as a result of Star Fleet's policies have their eyes opened and realize that Star Fleet Must Go. These veterans and the Ferenghi are the good guys and eventually depose the evil Federation and reveal its loathsome character.

Definitely have the Ferengi as the good guys. But what about the sissy-isation of the Ferengi in 'The Dogs of War' [DS9]?

TinFoilHat
2003-Aug-04, 05:39 PM
Sounds almost like Blake's 7 meets Star Trek, although hopefully with a less bleak outcome. I'd watch it, but you'd be guarenteed to **** off 90% of the regular Trek fanbase that hasn't already been driven off by Enterprise.

Stuart
2003-Aug-04, 05:51 PM
Definitely have the Ferengi as the good guys. But what about the sissy-isation of the Ferengi in 'The Dogs of War' [DS9]?

Thats not a real problem. Firstly, the military capability of the Ferenghi is well established.


TNG Season 2, Ep# 47: "Peak Performance"
BURKE: Captain, sensors picking up a Ferengi warship closing at warp five.
PICARD: Did you input that new code?
BURKE: Yes, sir!
PICARD: Mister Worf -- I didn't give you enough credit, continue the simulation. (the Ferengi ship drops out of warp and starts pounding the
Enterprise)
PICARD: Divert all power to shields!
DATA: Sever modified beams, engage phasers and target!
PICARD: Stay between the Hathaway and the Ferengi! Where are my weapons?
BURKE: Unavailable, sir! We cannot disengage the modified beams -- the connections have been fused!
DATA: Captain, the Ferengi have broken off their attack. Drop shields. Transport the away team aboard.
BURKE: Transporter functions gone, sir!
DATA: Shields reduced to one-fifth intensity. Our shields will not withstand another assault.

This incident and the Battle of Maxia give us some interesting insights Ferengi military capability. Their ships appear to pose a serious threat to the Federation's finest warship, and Data estimates that a single salvo would be sufficient to knock out shields which are down to "one fifth" strength. It seems reasonable to extrapolate that therefore, five salvoes would eliminate the shielding of a fully functional Federation starship, which seems to place the Ferengi warship on rough parity with the state of the military art in the Alpha Quadrant. This makes sense in light of heavy Ferengi trading activities; what they couldn't invent, they probably purchased. In fact, it seems probable that actual Federation technology is built into the Ferengi warship, since Worf was able to use the same trick on their ship that he did on the Enterprise (and without knowledge of their access codes!). It seems as if there's some sort of "backdoor" into the Ferengi computer system which he was able to exploit, but this would require extensive knowledge of their system.

This derivation of military capability from economic and trading power should sound familiar. Its fundamentally how the US does business. Allowing for the painfully obvious prejudices of the Star Trek scriptwriters, it seems probable that the Ferengi are, in fact an attempted parody of Americans. (Ferengi is an indian word for westerners in general and Americans in particular; it comes from the same root as the Thai Farang). Another interesting insight is this.


TNG Season 2, Ep# 47: "Peak Performance"
FERENGI TACTICIAN: Destroy your own rather than endure the ignominy of defeat and capture?
BRACTOR: I did not think the Federation had such iron.

To say this is a different picture from the "cowardly Ferengi" described in DS9 is an understatement of heroic proportions. The Ferengi have apparently been the victims of a smear campaign, based on the attitude of a few cowardly individuals and precipitated by Federation hostility toward capitalism. This is a generic pattern; for example


TNG Season 1, Ep# 1: "Encounter At Farpoint"
ZORN: Captain, the Ferengi would be very interested in a base like this.
PICARD: Fine. I hope they find you as tasty as their otherpast associates.

First comment we have on the Ferengi showing that Star Fleet has apparently disseminated negative misinformation to its officers yet a few minutes later


NG Season 1, Ep# 7: "The Last Outpost"
Picard VO: Captain's log, stardate 41194.6. We are in pursuit of a starship of Ferengi design. Our mission is to intercept and recover a T-9 energy converter which the Ferengi stole from an unmanned monitor post on Gamma Tauri IV; a theft which automatic scanners recorded, providing us with the long awaited opportunity to make close contact with a Ferengi vessel. If we succeed in this chase, it will be Starfleet's first look at a life form which, discounting rumor, we know almost nothing about.

So, despite Picard's earlier slander of the Ferengi race we now discover Star Fleet has almost no knowledge of the Ferengi. Picard had fought a Ferengi vessel before, but as we later discover in "The Battle", he didn't know who they were at the time. In VOY 1 Caretaker, we discover that, by the time the Federation has familiarized itself with the Ferengi, it had already "educated" its youth with these unfavourable characterizations, as Tom Paris and Ensign Kim both demonstrated with their statements about the Academy warning all cadets about Ferengi dishonesty. Odd behaviour for a society that claims to have "evolved" beyond racism.

In fact, by the time of DS9, the scriptwriters treatment of the Ferengi has drifted away from the anti-American bias of TNG and is much closer to the Nazi propaganda treatment of jews. That is a shift that could well be used in the proposed new series as an example of the corruption of Star Fleet.

Glom
2003-Aug-04, 06:15 PM
The tough militaristic Ferengi of NextGen and the cowardly Ferengi of DS9 would seem to show that the Ferengi are a good diverse race, rather than a mere stereotyped race.

Stuart
2003-Aug-04, 06:56 PM
The tough militaristic Ferengi of NextGen and the cowardly Ferengi of DS9 would seem to show that the Ferengi are a good diverse race, rather than a mere stereotyped race.

I think its more that the Star Trek writers simply lost the ability to create multi-dimensional characters. Michael Wong created the extremely apposite and descriptive term "brain bug" for this process. He defined it as "ideas start as an insignificant microbe and then grow of their own accord, gradually infecting the mind like a malignant tumour......They infected the minds of the viewing public (including these writers),where they grew and festered for years into bloated, monstrous masses of diseased tissue. The result was that with each spin-off, minor elements of earlier series were blown completely out of proportion and became self-sustaining mythologies in their own right. "

Gene Roddenberry originally envisioned the Ferengi as the Federation's primary foe, as part of the sea change in Star Trek's underlying theme, which was being revised from the 1960's Cold War to a left-wing liberal tirade against consumerism and capitalism. The Ferengi were not simply greedy; they were powerful, mysterious, and dangerous. Their appearance may have been odd, but these were clearly not people to be trifled with. Picard once recounted the story of how he lost his previous command, after his ship was reduced to a flaming wreck by a Ferengi warship. But in every appearance, the Ferengi made reference to a profit motive, and that was more than enough to plant the brain bug.

By the time the Ferengi showed up on DS9, their interest in profit had grown to encompass their entire culture. They were suddenly interested in nothing but the accumulation of wealth, and the writers' inability to conceive of a culture as anything more than a one-note joke meant that any non-financial elements of their society vanished without a trace. This brain bug continued to grow. Not only was greed now the only defining characteristic of Ferengi society, but the writers even made it the Ferengi religion! Instead of the Ten Commandments, the Ferengi had the "Rules of Acquisition", with which the viewers were bludgeoned with constant reminders of Ferengi greed. Instead of "astral plane" or "holy ghost", they had the "Great Material Continuum". As Michael Wong points out, "another society had been transformed into a farcical one-note caricature."

The Ferengi need to be redrawn to restore their original status as a powerful, mysterious and dangerous opponent. Again, we can use the plot device of Federation propaganda to eliminate the products of the "brain bug" and, instead, present the Ferengi as the reasoned voice of laissez faire capitalism. The nonsense about the Grand Negus introducing welfare-state socialism into ferengi society can be eliminated the same way (perhaps simply by a character remarking "Oh that con-man, he got away with his impersonations for a while but the police got him in the end. Still, it doesn't take much to fool those hoo-mans.")

tracer
2003-Aug-04, 07:50 PM
The new series would be Star Trek - Liberation based on the collapse of the Evil Federation.
A decade ago, fans were insisting that the "new" Trek series that Paramount was planning was going to be set "after the collapse of the Federation."

Instead, we got Voyager.

The collapse of the Federation and Star Fleet seems to be a recurring wish among hardcore fans, but it'll only happen if a black hole passes through Earth's atmosphere and swallows Berman and Braga. And probably the rest of Paramount, too.

johnwitts
2003-Aug-04, 11:46 PM
This all asumes that holding 'US' values is a good thing. The Ferengi portrayed as 'capitalists' that hold greed above all else is a good parody of the US as I see it today. The only thing in it's entire history that the US has done that has not been motivated by greed was the Apollo program, and that was motivated by chest banging bravado. When asked by people what was the good of Apollo, we hear answers like 'to beat the Russians', or 'it created such and such spin offs'. We never hear that the US went to the Moon simply because it was a great thing to do, justifying itself on the achievement alone. To believe that the US way of life is the be all and end all is what is most damaging to this planet at this moment in time. How about let's all start doing things simply because they are good.

With this rant in mind, I would like to point out that Enterprise, as well at ST:TNG, DS9 and Voyager would all serve as a better vision for the future than the situation proposed above. Do we really want conflict to determine our way of life in the future?

Colt
2003-Aug-05, 12:22 AM
We could just have ARM like in the Known Space stories, John. *shudders* -Colt

johnwitts
2003-Aug-05, 12:34 AM
We could just have ARM like in the Known Space stories, John. *shudders* -Colt

I don't understand... ARM?

daver
2003-Aug-05, 01:46 AM
Well, while it's fun to "Down in Flames" the Star Trek universe, it might be too late to do so. TNG has replicators and holodecks, and TOS had sentient androids. There is no real reason for anyone in the federation to do a lick of work--they could spend all their time in a holofantasy.

Replicators can reproduce matter down to proteins (if they couldn't, replicated food would be either non-nutritious or poisonous). Replicators can reproduce phasers. There's no real reason (other than technology police) why replicators can't reproduce living matter, replicators, holodecks, androids, or starships. Now, maybe the Federation is controlling the technology just so the Federation doesn't degenerate to the point where a visiting delegation from the Duchy of Grand Fenwick can't single-handedly conquer the Federation, but any rebel cause isn't going to feel so constrained. They'll pull the governors off the replicator and start building up their own fleet. But one of the technicians is bound to dup a couple extra holodecks (just to check things out) and *poof* your rebels are off playing badminton with the holofloozies.

The Federation now has mind control technology (from The Game); they've probably had it for a while, most likely the holoprojections are filled with subliminal messages (WORK IS GOOD, THINKING IS EVIL, FEMALE ALIENS SHOULD WEAR CATSUITS, THIS IS ONLY A GAME, OBEY AUTHORITY, IT'S PERFECTLY ACCEPTABLE FOR ENSIGNS TO BE ON THE SENIOR STAFF). The rebels might choose to edit these; if they leave any in they're sliding down a slippery slope.

Maybe it would be better to have everything from the third season of TOS be one of McCoy's cordrazine nightmares.

Matherly
2003-Aug-05, 02:06 AM
How about a series set far in the future after the Federation has collapsed. We could have a single last Federation starship trying to restablish the old ways and it could star someone WHO WASN'T A PEA-BRAINED EGOTIST WHO SCREWS IT UP AFTER TWO BRILLIANT SEASONS!!!! :evil:

Dammit, I miss the pre-coup Andromeda.

Humphrey
2003-Aug-05, 02:50 AM
thankls stuart for starting this. It was fun in PM, but many more ideas makle it better.

I love this idea. We can get nitty and gritty. US coverty ops situations and havfe fun with it. We can show what shooting redshorts from the other side of them looks like.

IT can be argued that the best of DS9 was the Dominion war. They showed some tactics and the Defiant fighting was just really cool. IF the entire federation and the rebels were to begin a all out ciivl war aginst eachother you can introduce new techology to fight the war and also intoroduce certain concepts.

One thing i have just thought of is try to show both sides at the same time. Like every other episode switch off. One episode is the rebellions side of the story, the other is the Starfleets side. Both can slander eachother. Than fans can pic their favorite side and have fun with it.

Heck we can even have competitions. For a season long war, paraamount can shoot two endings and the fans can decide who wins those battles. Federation space could be devided up.

Soonme the Romulans can enter too on the side of the Rebeks and have a go at the federation too. The federationms faitful allies the Klingons would obviuosly join their side. So not only will it be a civil war, it could turn into a interstellar war vbetween the races of the quadrant.

Heck you can have the Borg take advantage of this later on and try an invasion in a large battle. Take over a few sytems and become a new, very fearsome enemy. like they were in TNG.


Stuart: you are definitely right that voyager was pure federation propaganda. Just the weakaning of all races against a scout class ship is just stupid. There is no way the Voyager will take down even a borg sphere. Heck in TNG a whole fleet could not take down one cube in Wolf 359 (or somethi9ng like that number).

If anyone here mknows someone in paramount i would suggest you give them this page or this idea.




One example of a episode from the first season. We go all the way back to a TNG episode. You can pick one where thery battle some big enemy. You can see the entire episode form a maquis or rebbelion leaders eyes. They were on the ship and lost alot of family or a good freind in that battle. Their loss was covered up or not cared about.

OR maybe their freind was killed on a away mission to save one of the main castmembers and never given their proper funeral rights.

Well they can tell the true stories. Picard cowering in his awayroom. Riker coinstantly telling other to shut up. Troy using hipnosis to make people believe the federation is really good.



You can even take ideas form other movies or shows. Have a Terminator scenario where starfleet personell go back in time to kill off a major leader. Sure its been done before, but what hasent?

If you want you can have the cliche "romeo and jouliet" episode. Two people on opposite sides of the fence find love. You can have one of these characters (or both) be a main cast member. One day during a battle the significant other is on the opposing ship and killed by this persons own hand. This can rack them with guild for the entire season. Mauybe later on he/she can kill themselves because of the guilt. IT would be dramatic and realistic.

wedgebert
2003-Aug-05, 04:34 AM
I think the cast should go back in time and run into the cast of a different series who have also gone back in time (maybe have Archer run into Sisko for example).

Kinda like the episode where DS9 went back to the TOS tribble episode, but this time have the two casts interact.

Maybe even have the crews have opposing goals. If either group achieves their goal they save lots of lives in their timeline, but a lot of the other crew will die.

captain swoop
2003-Aug-05, 08:25 AM
I for one would hate another plucky rebels against the evil federation/empire.

It's been done to death, Blakes 7 did it the best, Star Wars did it the worst.

Why not just put Star Trek gently to sleep and have a whole new show?

captain swoop
2003-Aug-05, 08:28 AM
I think the cast should go back in time and run into the cast of a different series who have also gone back in time (maybe have Archer run into Sisko for example).

Kinda like the episode where DS9 went back to the TOS tribble episode, but this time have the two casts interact.

Maybe even have the crews have opposing goals. If either group achieves their goal they save lots of lives in their timeline, but a lot of the other crew will die.

Like Dr Who used to do when he helped himself ?

ei the stories '3 Doctors' '5 Doctors' andd '2 Doctors'

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 03:13 PM
Replicators can reproduce matter down to proteins (if they couldn't, replicated food would be either non-nutritious or poisonous). Replicators can reproduce phasers. There's no real reason (other than technology police) why replicators can't reproduce living matter, replicators, holodecks, androids, or starships.

Actually there are very severe limitations on the capabilities of replicators. For example.


TNG Season 3, Ep# 55: "The Enemy"
BEVERLY: I don't need him to like the idea, Captain... just to do it.
PICARD: There is no alternative?
BEVERLY: The alternative is the Romulan will die. Worf is quite correct on that point.

The obvious alternative to Worf's blood donation would be to replicate the ribosomes, but since that is apparently not an option, this means that they can't do it. Note that with modern technology we can already clone ribosomes, so they've made precious little progress in this area over the next few centuries. Also


TNG Season 7, Ep# 158: "Phantasms"
PICARD VO: Captain's Log, supplemental. The creatures infesting the Enterprise have been completely eliminated. We believe the infestation originated within the warp core we obtained on Starbase Eighty-four.
GEORDI: This conduit was manufactured on Thanatos Seven using a new interphasic fusion process. We think that process must've attracted the organisms to the conduit, where they lay dormant ... until we activated the warp core.
Obviously, if they're experimenting with various fusion processes in order to make their warp conduits, they must not be able to replicate them. Therefore, Star Fleet can't explain all of their starbase spare-parts requirements by simply providing starbases with huge industrial replicators. Finally


NG Season 7, Ep# 173: "Firstborn"
QUARK: I believe the rumor was that the sisters were trying to buy some second-hand mining equipment.
RIKER: What for?
QUARK: They learned of a magnesite deposit in the Kalla system... it belongs to the Pakleds, but those fools don't even know it's there. Your friends were trying to get at it.

Huh???? The Duras sisters have replicator technology, but they were still running around trying to buy mining equipment in order to steal some magnesite ore from the Pakleds. Obviously, magnesite is beyond the capabilities of their replicators. MAGNESITE!!!!!!! Magnesite is simply magnesium carbonate, which is a monumentallyunremarkable material, thus highlighting the limitations of Federation replicators. Just One More Time.....


TNG Season 1, Ep# 4: "Code of Honor"

PICARD VO: Captain's log, stardate 41235.25. Our location planet Ligon II, source of a rare vaccine needed on Federation planet Styris IV.
PICARD: Meanwhile, you were testing whether we can replicate the vaccine.
BEVERLY: And we can't! Their sample works fine when used as an injection, but it becomes unstable when we try to replicate it. You must get vaccine from the planet, Captain. As much as you can. Immediately!
A very early example of a long list of substances which they desperately need but obviously can't replicate, even with a sample on hand.In this case, since it is a vaccine, it must be safe for injection into a living organism. Therefore, it must be composed of safe, mundane elements, yet they still can't replicate it.

In short, replicators work fine for simple things and crude work (they can't, for example replicate caviar either) but anything that requires precision, skill or complexity is out.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 03:18 PM
With this rant in mind, I would like to point out that Enterprise, as well at ST:TNG, DS9 and Voyager would all serve as a better vision for the future than the situation proposed above.
Personally, I would hate to think that the best the future can offer is the "Federation/Star Fleet" a political regime that exhibits all the worst characteristics of the Nazi and communist systems. Frankly I find the racist and oppressive political system and beliefs espoused by Star Trek nauseating in the extreme. Still, each to his own I suppose.


Do we really want conflict to determine our way of life in the future?
We don't have a choice in the matter, that's the way things work. Trying to suggest otherwise is to live in kumbaya-land.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 03:25 PM
I for one would hate another plucky rebels against the evil federation/empire.

So would I. What this proposal envisages is something rather different; using the Star Trek universe to show how an insurgency really works and how an insurgent campaign is actually organized and conducted. Ins hort, its not plucky heroes running around in a spacecraft shooting things up but stories about people who risk their lives (and frequently lose them) because they won't put up with the oppression any more. The idea of this storyline is that it concentrates on people and what makes them tick and eschews technobabble.

TinFoilHat
2003-Aug-05, 03:53 PM
The demonstrated incompetence and poor to nonexistant equipment of Federation security and infantry forces should ba a real help to our insurgents, at least at first. Modern-day miliraty forces would slaughter Starfleet Security.

I wonder if a replicator could make a decent assault weapon and ammunition for it? I don't see why it would be impossible, it's just metal in not terribly intricate shapes. It might be nessecary to replicate the individual parts and then hand-assemble it. The bigger problem will be developing the replicator patterns. Our insurgents will may try and find an antique weapons collector with working weapons to reverse-engineer. Rediscovering proper military gear could be a major plot arc midway through the series.

captain swoop
2003-Aug-05, 04:06 PM
Personally, I would hate to think that the best the future can offer is the "Federation/Star Fleet" a political regime that exhibits all the worst characteristics of the Nazi and communist systems. Frankly I find the racist and oppressive political system and beliefs espoused by Star Trek nauseating in the extreme. Still, each to his own I suppose.



I see, so a society with no poverty or war, very little crime, first class medical care for all, personal freedom without the drudgery of work till you die and the chance to explore space and visit new worlds isn't one you want to live in?

Well what can one expect from the right.

I don't see the Federation as being Nazi at all. Starfleet isn't the ruling power on any of the worlds in the Federation.

As for a rebellion, don't forget it would have to fit into the ST universe so their military technology and skills would be exactly the same as aany of the other participents in that universe. If they aren't then you are writing a whole new series.

captain swoop
2003-Aug-05, 04:09 PM
snip

In short, replicators work fine for simple things and crude work (they can't, for example replicate caviar either) but anything that requires precision, skill or complexity is out.

Not al all. replicators work to suit the plot. if they could replicate anything at any time as logic would say they can, (heck, whats to stop them combining the replicators, transporters and the holodeck.) Then there would be very little plot or dramatic tension and you would be the first one to complain.

As far as I can see there is nothing to stop them holding a pattern in the transporter buffer and just recreating anyone who was killed on an away mission. He would be identical and would assume he just never got transported, but wheres the drama in that?

captain swoop
2003-Aug-05, 04:12 PM
The demonstrated incompetence and poor to nonexistant equipment of Federation security and infantry forces should ba a real help to our insurgents, at least at first. Modern-day miliraty forces would slaughter Starfleet Security.

snip



No this wouldn't happen because the insurgents would be a part of the Star trek universe and therefore exactly the same as all the other races, outlaws and rebels they have come across.

As for modern day military, if there were forces equivalent to the British or Americans who went into Iraq then they would decimate everyone, Klingons, Romulans included. Apart from the fact they would be stuck on a planet surface somewhere and could be obliterated from orbit.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 04:49 PM
I see, so a society with no poverty or war, very little crime, first class medical care for all, personal freedom without the drudgery of work till you die and the chance to explore space and visit new worlds isn't one you want to live in?

Except that none of the above is true. In fact every single comment is directly contradicted by canon evidence.

Tasha Yar's home planet was a Federation world, and it collapsed into poverty and crime. And how did the Federation deal with this? By revoking their membership! I guess this policy (dump 'em when they run into trouble) allows them to maintain their claim to being a povery-free zone. Quite frankly, it's a bit like rich neighbourhoods where nobody is poor; of course nobody is poor, because they won't let the poor people in! If anyone in the rich neighbourhood becomes poor, he's gone. And even though their wealth may very well be derived from the exploitation of poverty elsewhere, they get to prance around in their nice clothes and pretend that they have solved all material problems.

There is no personal freedom in the Federation - None. The federation is a military dictatorship run by Star Fleet. Lets look at a trial.


TNG Season 4, Ep# 95: "The Drumhead"
PICARD: Admiral Satie. Welcome to the Enterprise.
ADMIRAL SATIE: I am delighted to be here. I've managed to acquire my former staff... My aide, Sabin Genestra, from Betazed, and my assistant, Nellen Tore, from Delb Two.

So, we have the use of mind-readers for criminal investigations is officially sanctioned by Starfleet Command. Very interesting since the military justice system seems has extended its purview to cover civilian life (as seen in "Doctor Bashir, I Presume") and take control of civilian property (such as Data, who was the creation of a civilian scientist and narrowly escaped being classified as non-sentient Starfleet property in "The Measure of a Man"), this would mean that the invasive practices of Starfleet law also affect civilian life. Again, this is not surprising given the communist nature of the Federation. In fact,there are repeated cases that show the Federation is ruled by military authority and that military authority has usurped civilian rule completely.

The chance to explore worlds? Only if you happen to be a member of - guess what - Star Fleet. There is no private transportation in the Federation. In note one of the Federation planets visited is there any trace of privately-owned space shuttles or interplanetary let alone interstellar craft. Yet, such craft are cheap throw-aways - Starfleet officers get to use them for the most frivolous of purposes. Obviously the elimination of private transport is policy.

As for not laboring away to the day you die - sure, if you're in an elite. However, there is evidence in Voyager that slave labor is a major part of Federation economics - look what happened to the holo-doctors in Voyager. In reality, slave labor is the only way a communist economy can be made to work.

Mindless worship of a racist totalitarian slave-labor state - Well what can one expect from the left.


I don't see the Federation as being Nazi at all. Starfleet isn't the ruling power on any of the worlds in the Federation.
We've already touched on its inherent racism, its totalitarian militarized government, totral control of the justice system, the fact that scientific work can only be financed via Star Fleet authorities and they have absolute control over what research is carried out. And again, Star Fleet is the absolute controller of the Federation; the Fed is a military dictatorship plain and simple. Its the ruling power on EVERY world that is part of the Federation.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 04:52 PM
Not al all. replicators work to suit the plot. if they could replicate anything at any time as logic would say they can, (heck, whats to stop them combining the replicators, transporters and the holodeck.) Then there would be very little plot or dramatic tension and you would be the first one to complain.

Nevertheless, there is canon evidence, repeated over and over again, that replicator technology is extremely limited. Sorry you're stuck with it. Replicators are not an all-powerful tool; they are useful but very limited.


As for modern day military, if there were forces equivalent to the British or Americans who went into Iraq then they would decimate everyone, Klingons, Romulans included. Apart from the fact they would be stuck on a planet surface somewhere and could be obliterated from orbit.
Unfortunately for teh Federation, not so. Starfleet sensors are easily jammed or nullified. To take a simple example


TNG Season 4, Ep# 98: "The Mind's Eye"
KELL: There have been two rebel attacks on neutral freighters... one Ferengi, the other Cardassian...
WORF: Both were engaged near the Ikalian asteroid belt... that is where the rebels must be hiding...
KELL: The actinides in the asteroids provide effective protection from our sensors.

So, the presence of actinides makes the asteroid belt impenetrable to their sensors. To put it in the most blunt possible terms, some models of M-1A Abrams tank are equipped with depleted uranium-enhanced armour, and the uranium in such armour would occur in far greater concentrations than the natural traces in any asteroid belt. In other words, some models of present-day Abrams tank are impervious to Federation sensors! So are M-2 and M-3 Bradleys. A-10s use depleted uranium ammunition; they rae invisible to Starfleet sensors. F-16s use DU ballast, they are invisible to Starfleet sensors. Nuclear weapons use uranium and/or plutonium in their warheads, they are invisible to Starfleet sensors (which means the orbiting starships can be shot down with contemptuous ease - they wouldn't know nuclear warheads had been lofted into their orbit until they blew the starship apart. In fact, orbiting starships are helpless against a modern military - because they can't target their weapons.

By the way, there is no evidence at all that Starfleet even knows what electronic warfare is.

daver
2003-Aug-05, 06:05 PM
Nevertheless, there is canon evidence, repeated over and over again, that replicator technology is extremely limited. Sorry you're stuck with it. Replicators are not an all-powerful tool; they are useful but very limited.


They can replicate proteins and carbohydrates. They can't replicate minerals. They can replicate energy sources. They can replicate sophisticated mind-control devices. They can't replicate (whatever the Ferengi use for money).

If they were based on transporter technology, you'd assume they could replicate anything that could be transported, but that's evidently not the case.

Maybe replicators are more like a vending machine--someone has to load each item into the replicator--you can never pull more ham sandwiches out of the replicator than were put in to begin with. More evidence of Federation disinformation? (say, the transporters don't really work like the federation pretends they do. They don't break matter down into its component pieces and reassemble them at the far end; that story was just a federation lie to keep underground scientists from assembling their own transporters. The replicator is an attempt to answer the "why can't we just restore them from the transporter matrix?" question. The replicator doesn't use transporter technology as a 3-d xerox; instead it's more of a hyperdimensional deep-freeze. And the federation pays the Ferengi big bucks to continue the deception).


By the way, there is no evidence at all that Starfleet even knows what electronic warfare is.
Did they ever figure out what a fuse was?

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 06:31 PM
They can replicate proteins and carbohydrates. They can't replicate minerals.
This raises an interesting question; if they can replicate an egg salad sandwich, can they also replicate the salt in the egg salad?


They can replicate energy sources. They can replicate sophisticated mind-control devices. They can't replicate (whatever the Ferengi use for money).
Gold-pressed latinum. Sintered gold impregnated with a precious liquid called latinum. Interesting to note, this is a hard currency as distinct from "Federation Credits" that are a useless soft currency. Much like dollars and roubles back in Cold War days.


Maybe replicators are more like a vending machine--someone has to load each item into the replicator--you can never pull more ham sandwiches out of the replicator than were put in to begin with. More evidence of Federation disinformation? (say, the transporters don't really work like the federation pretends they do. They don't break matter down into its component pieces and reassemble them at the far end; that story was just a federation lie to keep underground scientists from assembling their own transporters. The replicator is an attempt to answer the "why can't we just restore them from the transporter matrix?" question. The replicator doesn't use transporter technology as a 3-d xerox; instead it's more of a hyperdimensional deep-freeze. And the federation pays the Ferengi big bucks to continue the deception).

Thats a very interesting hypothesis; it certainly would explain a lot.


Did they ever figure out what a fuse was?

Don't think so; they don't seem to have got their minds around a lot of things (that may be cultural - police states are petrified of people becoming aware of how easy it is to cause major disruption. Thus things like delayed-action fuzes, improvised explosives, UKDs and the like all tend to be mightily suppressed.

Humphrey
2003-Aug-05, 06:51 PM
So inside every replicator is a little guy who reaces into a fridge when you ask for seomthing? lol.

daver
2003-Aug-05, 06:54 PM
In college, one of my friends wanted to base a story on events from "Journey to Babel" and "Space Seed". There were more bioengineered humans created, but these were more intelligent and remained in the background. Later, during the early days of star flight, their colony moved to Orion (remember the trader Pike was talking to in "The Cage"? He might have been associated with them). They subsequently engaged in minor competition with the Federation, including the pirate craft seen in Journey to Babel.

Anyway, the idea of a counter-Federation isn't a new one. This dates back to before the first trek movie.

TinFoilHat
2003-Aug-05, 06:56 PM
This raises an interesting question; if they can replicate an egg salad sandwich, can they also replicate the salt in the egg salad?

It was always my impression that the replicator isn't creating any material, only taking preexisting elements and compounds from storage and rearranging them as needed with transporter technology. So if you wanted salt in your egg salad sandwich, the replicator is going to need a store of salt (or possibly sodium and chlorine) somewhere to draw from, along with the various organic compounds in the egg salad. Obviously a replicator's capabilities would be limited by the source matter available, as well as the capabilities of the replicator mechanism to combine and arrange those materials. "Latinum" must either be an artificial ultraheavy (yet reasonably stable) element, or some compound requiring an extremely difficult and expensive manufacturing process beyond the capabilities of the replicator.

daver
2003-Aug-05, 07:00 PM
So inside every replicator is a little guy who reaces into a fridge when you ask for seomthing? lol.

Nah, that's the Flintstone's variety. In Star Trek, the technology is greatly advanced. Above each replicator port is a series of wire helixes with ham sandwiches and phasers and whatnot tucked in. When the appropriate buttons are depresed, a motor spins the helixes until the selected item falls off. Sometimes the phaser gets hung up on the ham sandwich helix, and you have to give the replicator a kick. A movie projector shows an image of the appropriate item materializing in the port, just to maintain the illusion.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 07:57 PM
So inside every replicator is a little guy who reaches into a fridge when you ask for something?

Yee jesteth but hearest now this. I was in Leipzig for a trade fair once back in the days of the USSR and Warsaw Pact and went to the refreshment hall in search of sustenance. At the end of said hall was a bank of vending machine. One putteth one's hard currency in the slot (dollars, deutschmarks, francs or pound sterling only for the humble rouble and ostmark were accepted not) and presseth upon the button that doth indicate thine preference for a sammie. There were clunks and a few seconds later thine sammie slideth down the slot. A little later and being able to look behind the scenes thine interlocutor was able to see a table full of old ladies making sandwiches as the lights that were operated by the buttons came on, wrapping them and sliding them down the ramp.

As a matter of pure technical fairness, they were pretty good sammies although costly.

Stuart
2003-Aug-05, 07:58 PM
Sometimes the phaser gets hung up on the ham sandwich helix, and you have to give the replicator a kick. A movie projector shows an image of the appropriate item materializing in the port, just to maintain the illusion.

Unless the kick, of course, causes a negligent discharge of the phaser resulting in a toasted ham sandwich.

informant
2003-Aug-05, 08:18 PM
This thread reminded me of something.
For Star Trek malcontents. (http://www.firsttvdrama.com/show1.php3). :)

Sever
2003-Aug-06, 12:26 AM
How about the bring back Star Trek: TNG, that one rocked!!

captain swoop
2003-Aug-06, 08:11 AM
Replicators are merely devices of the plot, they can or can't replicate items to suit the particular episode. What would be the point of the Ferengi if you can replicate anything you want at will?

As for Star Fleet it's powers and influence are also creatures of the plot, they vary from week to week in TNG.

IN Tos Starfleet was very much an organisation in the background, Enterprise was out on the edge and messages were always a time delay away, no instant video conferences and no officials popping aboard for chats or inquests every few mins.

As for the sensors being blocked, well, TNG sensors are even more variable and at the whim of a particular weeks writer, like the interior of a Tardis.

Stuart
2003-Aug-06, 03:59 PM
Replicators are merely devices of the plot, they can or can't replicate items to suit the particular episode. What would be the point of the Ferengi if you can replicate anything you want at will? As for Star Fleet it's powers and influence are also creatures of the plot, they vary from week to week in TNG...... As for the sensors being blocked, well, TNG sensors are even more variable and at the whim of a particular weeks writer, like the interior of a Tardis.

All of which, if true, would be quite irrelevent. However, it isn't true. There is a substantial degree of consistency over (for example) sensor performance even between series. This shouldn't be surprising, every series has style books that determine what can and cannot be done. We actually have Canon information for some of these. For example.


TNG Season 3, Ep# 69: "Hollow Pursuits"
GEORDI: Computer, list all physical substances that wouldn't normally be picked up by internal scans.
COMPUTER: There are 15525 known substances that cannot be detected by standard scans.

That is a flat canon statement that there are 15525 known substances which are invisible to the sensors of the Enterprise. Thus the extreme sensitivity of the technology to material is laid down. The contents of the list also has some consistency; for example, magnesium carbonate is listed as being a sensor block in two TNG eopisodes and one Voyager episode. It is untrue to say that capabilities vary at whim; it would be more accurate to state that they do so withing some defined (but sadly unavailable) parameters. The significant point here is to make the distinction between consistency and continuity. There is a level of consistency in Star Trek, presumably enforced by the Writer's style book. There is a dispiritingly small level of continuity - developments in one episode are not carried over to others. Thus equipment details seem to have some level of replicability but major story arcs are either forgotten, written off with throw-away lines or simply contradicted without explanation.

However, that is, as I said, irrelevent. The fact is that the Star Trek universe is defined by the Canon; the TV episodes and the films. If there are irrelevencies and inconsistencies they have to be accommodated. The erratic performance of hand phasers is a classic example - they cause humans to vaporize (or be stunned), rocks to explode and have virtually no effect on metals. Rather than just saying that "its the writers whim", that is a phenomena that has to be explained somehow. A series that's created in the Star Trek universe has to explain that peculiar performance so that future episodes can comply with it. Likewise replicators; its meaningless to complain that their limitations depend on a writer's whim. Instead, its necessray to look at the sum of those limitations and come up with an explanation that embraces them.

Just repeating "its the writers whim" or "its all done for dramatic tension" (neither of which is actually true) is simply evading the issue.

Val Trottan
2003-Aug-06, 04:08 PM
I have been writing a sci-fi story since I was 16.
(31 now)
At first, I jumped right into the plot and storyline ... but found it difficult to keep the continuity going without constantly looking to see who said this, or keep track of dates, times, places, etc.

So, recently I abandoned all that and started to write a clearly "factual" bible to cover it all and then write stories as they flesh themselves out of all the "facts."

I thought Star Trek had such a bible.
Do they?

informant
2003-Aug-06, 04:10 PM
OT: Have you ever tried writing short stories?

Stuart
2003-Aug-06, 04:47 PM
So, recently I abandoned all that and started to write a clearly "factual" bible to cover it all and then write stories as they flesh themselves out of all the "facts." I thought Star Trek had such a bible.
Do they?
They do although I've never seen it; I think the problem is twofold; one is that it hasn't been kept up to date to include additional material ithats become included. The other is that the writers (the worst culprits being B&B) simply ignore it if it gets in the way of "their message" and they are encouraged to do so by B&B.

daver
2003-Aug-06, 04:51 PM
I have been writing a sci-fi story since I was 16.
(31 now)
At first, I jumped right into the plot and storyline ... but found it difficult to keep the continuity going without constantly looking to see who said this, or keep track of dates, times, places, etc.

So, recently I abandoned all that and started to write a clearly "factual" bible to cover it all and then write stories as they flesh themselves out of all the "facts."

I thought Star Trek had such a bible.
Do they?

Frank Herbert was said to keep a card file of ALL his characters for each book. The files were said to be huge--much more information in the files than in the books.

Zelazny would write pre-adventures for his characters--events that took place before the one he was writing about, to establish the character and give them some depth.

No, Star Trek did not have such a bible, or if it did, they didn't inform the actors of it. The actors had to make up their own explanations of how and why things worked when they answered their fan mail.

Stuart
2003-Aug-06, 05:15 PM
No, Star Trek did not have such a bible, or if it did, they didn't inform the actors of it. The actors had to make up their own explanations of how and why things worked when they answered their fan mail.
If so, that is truly appalling. Most TV series have a "bible" thats volumes long and provides all the details necessary for writers to inject consistency into their stories. I'd assumed the ST franchise was the same. If it isn't, its a stunning indictment of Berman and Braga's total incompetence.

darkhunter
2003-Aug-06, 06:11 PM
I have been writing a sci-fi story since I was 16.
(31 now)
At first, I jumped right into the plot and storyline ... but found it difficult to keep the continuity going without constantly looking to see who said this, or keep track of dates, times, places, etc.

So, recently I abandoned all that and started to write a clearly "factual" bible to cover it all and then write stories as they flesh themselves out of all the "facts."

I thought Star Trek had such a bible.
Do they?

My "bible" sorta wrote most of itself. The setting for the story I'm slowly writing is My D&D world, so it has a complete back history. Each time we decided to roll up new characters, I moved a ahead in history just enough that they couldn't get all buddy-buddy with their old characters. They also found that what thier previous characters had done had become "the" world history (of course with the ambiguity caused by human error and the passage of time [and lack of surviving eyewitnesses]).

daver
2003-Aug-06, 09:30 PM
No, Star Trek did not have such a bible, or if it did, they didn't inform the actors of it. The actors had to make up their own explanations of how and why things worked when they answered their fan mail.
If so, that is truly appalling. Most TV series have a "bible" thats volumes long and provides all the details necessary for writers to inject consistency into their stories. I'd assumed the ST franchise was the same. If it isn't, its a stunning indictment of Berman and Braga's total incompetence.

Sorry, i'm a fogey. Star Trek (unqualified) to me means TOS. It may be that the newer series had something more detailed than the writer's guide. Frankly, i'd be somewhat surprised if there were more than 50 pages of information available.

Colt
2003-Aug-06, 09:57 PM
There are the Technical Manuals (namely the TNG one, I've heard the DS9 one is abysmally incompetant and contradicts itself). Of course those aren't canonical but I bet most ST writers have a copy of the TNG manual.. Then there is the ST: Encylodpedia, also by Okuda. I'm trying to find a copy of the DS9 Technical Manual but i've never even seen a copy of it, anywhere.

If I recall correctly, somewhere in the TNG Technical Manual Okuda mentions the writers guide specifically in a footnote. I'm too tired to look through it right now, sorry. :( -Colt

Thargoid
2003-Aug-06, 10:57 PM
Anybody remeber the whole "Section 31" DS9 arc with the intimidating unaccountable Gestapo types with black uniforms?

Gremalkyn
2003-Aug-07, 12:28 AM
darkhunter: That is *exactly* the best way for me to write mine, also. When I played AD&D while in Korea, "THE" group was using a world originally created under the old Chainmail system (in 1978, I think) - pre Basic. Every time someone left the group, the binder got passed to the next DM. Everything was preserved - original maps, player's names and home addresses, etc. By the time I was lucky enough to join, they were up to 7, 2", 3-ring binders of canon and at least 4 9x12 file boxes of "stuff" - dead characters, unused plot threads, unofficial maps, ...

Colt: I have a copy of "a" DS9 Tech Manual. I say "a" because it came out early on during the show (season 3?) and I had heard that an updated copy would be written to include material regarding The Dominion. Never saw a newer copy, though. As for contradicting itself, well, I have no ready memory of that, as I only bought the thing to get the weapons specs for some fanfic I was writing at the time. I still have not read the DS9-TM cover-to-cover.

I also have (in a box somewhere) the TNG Writer's Guide. It is less than 50 pages long and gives only fundamental information (mostly about the new characters, not "history" or science). I will look for it. The thing I remember most is: each episode (1st season) was to be *exactly* 47 minute long, including the intro and ending credits. That left 13 minutes for commercials - nearly 1/4 of the show's hour time slot.

Glom
2003-Aug-07, 10:04 AM
I've got a copy of the DS9 Tech Manual that was written around late season 6. It got lots of cool pictures and features stuff on the Defiant 8) . I didn't buy it for the text.

Humphrey
2003-Aug-07, 10:46 PM
at home we have some kind of DS9 technical maual. the next time i go home ill see what it says.

tracer
2003-Aug-08, 01:28 PM
They can replicate proteins and carbohydrates. They can't replicate minerals.
Is that canon from the ST:TNG Tech Manual, or did you just hear that someplace?

I know the Replicators can't create Dilithium, but that's because Dilithium is a 4-dimensional substance (at least according to How Much for Just the Planet?), not because Dilithium is a "mineral".

Doodler
2003-Aug-08, 02:20 PM
They can replicate proteins and carbohydrates. They can't replicate minerals.
Is that canon from the ST:TNG Tech Manual, or did you just hear that someplace?

I know the Replicators can't create Dilithium, but that's because Dilithium is a 4-dimensional substance (at least according to How Much for Just the Planet?), not because Dilithium is a "mineral".

Heeheehee, How Much For Just The Planet, <snicker> there was good Trek, pure comedy. I gotta get me another copy of that book, the back story about the Federation and Klingon Imperial opinion polls on the Organian Treaty were priceless. :lol: A seriously recommended read.

I'm gonna take the ugly route and say there isn't much else that can be done with Star Trek. As of the end of Voyager, the Federation's tech level was getting to the point of Clark's Law, being so far out there that there is no logical explanation for it in terms a modern person could comprehend. Challenges and original ideas were long drained and the obstinance of the production team to keep it on a purely episodic basis, rather than an ongoing story arch has hampered them beyond the point where they can continue to put out meaningful material. If Enterprise tanks, the next series needs to be a full bore reinvention of the wheel in the structure of Star Trek's format.

daver
2003-Aug-08, 06:38 PM
They can replicate proteins and carbohydrates. They can't replicate minerals.
Is that canon from the ST:TNG Tech Manual, or did you just hear that someplace?


We KNOW they can replicate food (the replicators broke down in the first few episodes of Vger; the crew was faced with imminent starvation. Kes mentions something about hydroponics and an unused cargo hold, Janeway says "Do it". There were at least a dozen STUPID things wrong with that exchange, but that's beside the point). We know that food, in order to be nourishing, has to have certain qualities--these require precise manipulation of atoms (ok, there's another explanation. The replicators may not actually create food, they might just mix pre-packaged minerals and carbohydrates and amino acids into a mold and add the proper colors and flavor and texturing ingredients. The term "replicator" is more Federation misinformation. There was a short story, "The Marching Morons" perhaps, where the vast percentage of Earth's population were intellectually challenged (think network executive, or possibly worse). The few competent people put out gee-whizzy stuff (futuristic cars whose speeometer read 200 mph when the cars were going 40), designed to make the maroons think they were (1) clever and (2) living in an advanced society. Maybe the Federation is like that). There was a DS9 episode where a replicator materialized a hand weapon. I don't know that they can't replicate common minerals (i didn't see that episode), but i'm willing to take Stuart's word that in "Firstborn" they were unable to replicate magnesium carbonate.

Just for the heck of it, I don't consider the Technical Manuals canon; only what was in the shows and movies, and whatever material was provided to the writers.




I know the Replicators can't create Dilithium, but that's because Dilithium is a 4-dimensional substance (at least according to How Much for Just the Planet?), not because Dilithium is a "mineral".