Sunday, October 18, 2009

Star Trek Technobabble

On the day of Star Trek's 2009 official release, J.J. Abrams answered 10 questions provided by Memory Alpha's community of Trekkies. I found the first answer heartwarming especially the bit about J.J. embracing and honoring what came before i.e. Star Trek TOS which is nice.

But then Director J.J. admits freely he isn't a Star Trek fan by default, (which was a surprise to me) in fact he has confessed his Star Wars dark side sins to Comic Con fans ages ago. This was a clever move because it removed much speculation about who would be directing Star Trek 2009. Mr Abrams has set the record straight without messing too much with the Final Frontier.....I suspect Paramount will get him again to make the next Star Trek movie. Perhaps its the dark side of the force making J.J. describe Star Trek's detailed canonicity as archaic!!! meaning ancient, primitive or earlier.

So I've done a little digging and found some of these "archaic details" for you to have a listen to. Is Star Trek cannon really so confusing with detailed technobabble, alien docking procedures, isophasic signatures and quantum singularities that its too hard to follow?



Q1 When rebooting a franchise, fans of the original tend to be alienated due to the attempt to draw new fans in. How did you address this when making this film? Henshin86

Answer: J.J. Abrams: The obvious challenge was that we wanted to make our own brand new thing, and at the same time embrace and honor what had come before. As a director who didn't know and love the world of Star Trek by default, I ended up telling a story for people like myself that love fun movies but are not necessarily familiar with the archaic details of Star Trek canon. However, both of the writers are huge Star Trek fans; one is a massive fan. Because of this I knew that we would be safe and on solid ground. We all did our homework before shooting.

Live Long and Prosper, Trekkies and Trekkers!


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Time Machine

Project yourself into a far-flung corner of the universe where your very life hangs in the balance, all because you stepped through a time portal. A new doorway opens and spits you out into the dimensional plane of another galaxy.

The portal vanishes in mid air abandoning you on a strange new world in the distant future. Time travel can cause a tremendous shock to the system especially for someone having experienced it for the first time. But the body and mind has a way of coping even with the most traumatic of circumstances.

An army of metallic shiney creatures emerge from the hilltop pointing their beady infra red appendages at you with deadly precision. You've been spotted. They advance towards your co-ordinates using a steady delta pattern formation. Its funny how fear has a strange effect on ones feet and can make them twitch uneasily before logic kicks in. Frak, your communicator stops working and tricorder scans are detecting unusual energy readings nearby.

Trained astronauts are prepared for away missions on alien planets but frak it, time travelling is only supposed to happen in Science Fiction like Star Trek. Heres another fine mess you've gotten yourself into. Earth is unreachable and humans are nowhere to be seen which is creepy and totally weirding you out. Tricorder readings indicate this is an M-class planet with a nitrogen-oxygen atmosphere with two suns, a neutron star and a neighboring wormhole in the vicinity.... nothing is normal about this place.

It would be so gratifying to let loose with an emotional outburst right about now, but that Mr Spock would be so disapointed. Would'nt he? There simply has to be some way to return to Earth in the 21st century using logical means but the natural streak of geek in you can't help but marvel at all the sentient new inventions working in co-operation with one another. They've lost interest in you now, realising you're no longer a threat. What are they up to? and where are the humans? Its time to get to work inventing a time machine and get the frak out of here!

H. G. Wells's 1895 novel The Time Machine set people's imaginations on fire about time travel. Then, in 1905, Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity seemed set to add substance about time travel in our universe, nearly making it so. The logic of it is fantastic. His theory says that time isn't constant but slows down the faster you go - and the theory has since been proved. In effect, one has to be going very fast indeed. Some scientists have estimated that, if humans could travel at the speed of light, we could go backwards in time but Einstein determined otherwise. Travel at the speed of light is impossible. Curses!


Other time-travel theories involve wormholes in spacetime, black holes and other mysterious bits of physics like dark matter. But you probably won't be shocked to read that no one has actually succeeded in building a time machine ... at least not yet.
There's a big ethical dilemma associated with building a time machine and the potential dire consequences of it falling into the wrong hands. If you travel backwards in time, you can alter the future. And if you travel to the future and then come back to the present, that can alter the future too. In Star Trek we call these Temporal Incursions and Captain James T. Kirk is in the history books for breaking the Prime Directive. But if you can get your head round this basic paradox, come up with some extremely sophisticated technology, and understand an awful lot of mystifying, strange physics, perhaps you can become the inventor of the first time machine.

Live Long and Prosper, Star Trekkers!

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