Star Trek: Questions you always wanted answers to

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somerset fox

Well-Known Member
Even so, it would not be done manually, because doing it even a second too soon would have them way too far from the destination. The dialogue should be more along the lines of notifying the captain that the ship would be taking ITSELF out of warp soon.
Yes, this what I meant. We’re on The verge of auto pilot cars so an autopilot starship should be an everyday occurrence.
 

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Sluis Van Shipyards

Legendary Member
I would assume on a ship that advanced they would have a lot of automation so by the time the helmsman says to bring them out of Warp the computer is going to do all the calculations to make sure it does it safely. We already have fighter jets with computers that take the pilot's input, make sure the maneuver isn't going to break the airframe, and then do what the pilot wants in fractions of a second.

I think some scifi shows, games, etc. overthink a lot of this stuff. Not to change subjects, but I remember a fan made Babylon 5 Starfury sim where they made it so you had to micromanage EVERY input to get it to do the most basic maneuvers. In a real ship like that the pilot would let it know what they want to do and the computer would do the micromanaging to execute it. A pilot couldn't fight in a ship that had that much micromanaging.
 

renaissance_man

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I feel like it was mentioned in an episode that most of the ship is automated and the crew are mostly there to make certain decisions and perform maintenance.
Problem solved.
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Heck, even today, our fighter aircraft are designed to be inherently unstable to make them more maneuverable in combat. If the computers weren't constantly tweaking control surfaces to maintain the heading the pilot was holding with the stick, they'd be nigh-uncontrollable. I guarantee StarFuries have a whole raft of automatics that the pilot can act as an interrupt on if they need or want to, but otherwise can focus on the situation and instinctive flying.

In Star Wars, there's the conceit that the combat sounds we the audience hear are computer-generated and fed to the pilots through their headsets sterophonically/directionally, to maximize use of their natural senses to maintain situational awareness.

There's plenty of precedent, including in Star Trek, toward the philosophy Gene called "Technology Unchained", where it's all-pervasive in every aspect of life... but unobtrusive, instinctive. One just picks up the thing and uses it because its use is obvious and intuitive and one doesn't need a class or degree to just use the trappings of daily life. See also: How every human generation has an easier time adapting to and incorporating the technology the previous generation created.

I recommend picking up a copy of the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual. Rick and Mike were the technical consultants for the writing staff, and both vetted stories for workability and had to come up with material where the writers didn't want to bother coming up with that stuff. Many scripts famoulsly feature the [TECH] tag in dialogue or description, where taking the time ot figure out what exactly was going on was something they didn't want to or couldn't do... so it fell to Rick and Mike to BS their way through. The Technical Manual started out as their collected technical notes for the writers, that then got filled in and embellished for publication. Some of the theoretical tech is dated now, but there's a lot of insight into the automated functions running in the background for the crew to actively use or let the ship do its own thing.

To the question at hand, part of plotting the course includes the various waypoints -- diversions around obstacles, course corrections, and the termination alert. The CONN officer getting the alert that they're coming up on their destination is like an airliner's autopilot alerting the pilots that they've arrived at the point where they need to take control back. The CONN officer reporting to the Officer of the Deck that they've reached their destination and are dropping out of warp is the airliner's pilot getting on the PA ant telling people to sit down as they're about to begin their descent. Having the helm alert the CONN that they'd arrived at the planet would be like the autopilot alerting the crew when the airliner hit the airport. It wouldn't be designed that way. Buffer time is factored in. A short hop, say, Earth to Alpha Centauri, would still be almost four days at (TNG) warp 6. You're gonna have time to respond to getting close to your destination.

I am reminded of the fears of train travel in the 19th century -- that people would go mad from their brains trying to cope with the landscape blurring past at a mile a minute. Or, in the 20th century, that you'd suffocate if you drove faster than 30mph. Yes, warp drive is mind-meltingly fast compared to what we're used to here in Reality-Land... But the distances being traversed are equally immense. No blink-and-you-miss-it hair-trigger reflexes needed.
 

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RedheadKevin

Active Member
On TOS, why were the Enterprise sensors completely useless? Every time they encounter energy, or an alien, or a new something, Spock's like "Captain, my sensors don't tell me anything."
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Because a lot of what they were doing, they were the first to encounter. One's sensors are only as good as what one has figured out is there to detect -- and then how to detect it. We didn't know infrared was a thing until recently. We didn't know X-rays were a thing until recently. We're still developing new tools and new techniques to look at the cosmos, and each time we do we find that there are more layers uncovered that we don't know how to detect yet. That's what the whole dark matter/dark energy thing is. We know something is there, because it's interacting with what we can observe, but beyond that... "Our sensors don't tell us anything."
 

The Terminator

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Why can't we have CSI quality image enhancement?
VoyagerUpscale.jpg

On the left, upscaled with photoshop. One the right upscaled with topaz gigapixel ai, and sharpened with their sharpening software. In between the original video source.

We really need a 6K scan of the original film-type of remaster.
 

renaissance_man

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Why can't we have CSI quality image enhancement?
View attachment 1416002
On the left, upscaled with photoshop. One the right upscaled with topaz gigapixel ai, and sharpened with their sharpening software. In between the original video source.

We really need a 6K scan of the original film-type of remaster.
The difference is quite noticeable especially when you zoom in on the skull. Thanks for sharing this.
 

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Sluis Van Shipyards

Legendary Member
I watched the TNG episode Unnatural Selection and had a couple questions. Several times they refer to going to a "Star Station". Is that different from a Starbase or were they just using weird terms in this episode? Also they are genetically engineering the "kids" in this episode. I thought that genetic engineering was banned after the whole incident with Kahn and his people?
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
"Starbase" is a particular term for a Starfleet installation, usually with both groundbased and spacebased assets, but not always, and almost always numbered, but not exclusively. The "Star Station India" referred to at the beginning and end of "Unnatural Selection" is almost certainly a civilian or non-Starfleet government-run space station. Possibly a forward staging station for more detailed exploration and settlement in newly-mapped regions.
 

Laspector

Master Member
Does Odo ever actually do any shape shifting? I didn't really watch the initial run of the show, but its on BBC America all the time and I let it run in my office. Never once have I seen him actually transform. What was the point of him being a metamorph if he never does it?
 

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AnubisGuard

Sr Member
IIRC, they had initially assumed the costs of the CG effects used for the shape-shifting would come down over time; they did not, so his morphing was only used sparingly. (Even being written out of the show for a season.)
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Well that, and it's more cgi to pay for.
Shhhhh... ;)

Very sparing for the first couple years. Then it became plot-relevant why his abilities were fairly limited (very young, didn't really know what it meant to be a Changeling). He developed his abilities and we saw a bit more. Then it became plot-relevant to take his abilities away. So they got to save on that portion of the budget until they decided to give him his abilities back.
 

Riceball

Master Member
I just re-watched STII last night and there are few questions/continuity errors that came up, some I've wondered noticed for a long time, others are new.

One is the matter of shields. When the Enterprise first encounters the Reliant and right before she attacks, Kirk yells, "Yellow alert" and Savick says something about defense screens activating and we see a display of something happening. In the next scene though, Khan is informed that the Enterprise hasn't raised her shields yet. If defense screens aren't the same thing as shields, then what the heck are they?

Another oddity, on the Reliant we a diagram on one of the monitors, presumably one of the ones showing a diagram/layout of the ship. But it doesn't anything like Reliant, instead, it looks suspiciously like the secondary hull of the Enterprise. What gives with that?

Speaking of secondary hulls, in the scene where Spock briefs Kirk on the damage that Enterprise sustained after Khan's initial attack we see blinking red lights on several spots along the Enterprise's port (left) side. In addition to that, we also see indicators showing damage on the starboard (right) side. How is that possible when we clearly see Reliant on Enterprise's port side and the FX shots do not show Reliant hitting Enterprise anywhere except the port side?

Another question that came up when I was watching was, how did the Miranda class survive to the TNG era and the refit Connie didn't? Every time the Reliant was hit on the back of the ship or on the roll bar, or on the nacelles, we see the bridge explode in a shower of sparks and debris. Seems like a serious design flaw to me and would make the Miranda not exactly a ship design that you would want to keep around for overly long. That's unless they fixed that design flaw sometime after TWoK and made the Miranda a great design.

Lastly, something that I've wondered about for the longest time. Where are the lights that light up the Starfleet symbol on the side of the secondary hull and Enterprise on the very back of the Enterprise below the shuttle bay doors? Does the Enterprise have little spot lights that follow her along like remoras on sharks to light her up in the those and other areas where we don't see a light source. I'd noticed for the first time last nigh that the Reliant has some of the same invisible/mystery lights lighting up her nacelles right where her hull number sits. There's also invisible spotlights lighting up the Starfleet emblem on her pylons as well. I think that by TNG Starfleet seems to have gotten rid of these invisible spotlights that fly alongside their ships
 

AnubisGuard

Sr Member
Another oddity, on the Reliant we a diagram on one of the monitors, presumably one of the ones showing a diagram/layout of the ship. But it doesn't anything like Reliant, instead, it looks suspiciously like the secondary hull of the Enterprise. What gives with that?

The Reliant bridge was a redress of the Enterprise bridge and they didn't have enough money to make new graphics for the displays. They just blacked out parts of the Enterprise MSDs. You can see that in some places, e.g. the pie-wedge saucer.
 

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