(I know some of this stuff is discussed elsewhere, but i'm talking about it with reguards to the original trek universe)
I know it’s been debated to death around here as to whether the Trek novels should acknowledge the events of Star Trek Countdown, but what about using the various new technologies from both it and the new Star Trek film?
Surely coming from Spock Classic’s timeline (i.e. everything up until the new film) they are irrefutable “canon” and thus by Space Law must be acknowledged in novels (Ha! I actually used the c-word. I feel all dirty now. Ewww.).
I’m putting this in the TrekLit section because the only place the original TOS/TNG/DS9/VOY/ENT crews live on is in TrekLit, and thus this is the only place to be affected by this stuff. Also those scary technical books come under TrekLit, too.
Invented by Scotty, presumably after his TNG-era resurrection, and allows beaming from planet to planet. This has the potential to make spaceships for passenger transport obsolete overnight – especially since all it takes is a minor software upgrade (performed by Spock Classic in about 10 seconds in the movie) to change a shuttle’s on-board transporter into one capable of beaming onto a ship light-years away and travelling at warp speed. No doubt this will be forgotten come Star Trek XII.
The fact that the Nerada and the Enterprise-E were both used in Countdown to move people gives weight to the argument that this might be an extremely new technology – although it’s unlikely political enemies like the Vulcans and Romulans would allow random people free beaming access to their planets.
Decalithium and Red Matter
Red Matter is the latest in a long line of Star Trek WMD’s. It’s made from Decalithium (which is, like, Dilithium times 10 or maybe something about plastic model rub-ons). Countdown implies that this is a very new technology created on Vulcan (which may not be part of the Federation at the time of Countdown)
No doubt, like Genesis, Thaleron Radiation and the rest it too will be forgotten in the world of TV/film Trek. But Genesis got a quadrilogy of novels and Thaleron got mentions in Titan and Destiny. Will Red Matter? (will blue mind? Sorry) Especially if the singularities might either destroy you or send you back in time…which brings me to…
Ships that can survive black holes
Both Nerada and the Jellyfish survived trips though black holes (I’m gonna pre-empt complaints about time-dilation by saying the ships’ warp fields prevented that.). Although the film showed us differently (as did the novel Federation), I can’t imagine anything being powerful enough to destroy a ship that survived a trip though a black hole. That said, it was said in ST: TMP that Voyager VI survived a trip though a black hole, and it was made mostly of tin foil, and some slightly stronger bits of tin foil.
The USS Kelvin NCC-0514
A survey ship with a badass captain, and an XO borrowed from Diane Carey’s novels. As this ship was around for a few milliseconds before the Nerada arrived (the point at which the Trek universes diverge), this ship exists in both timelines (the petition for a Starship Kelvin novel series starts here!).
Aside from the fact that the Kelvin (like the NX01) looks much more advanced than the ships that follow it in the original timeline (which is just an artistic thing that too many TOS die-hards get wound up about), this shouldn’t cause any troubles for modern Trek novels (it might throw a spanner into Margaret Clark’s plan to explain away the ENT-TOS tech downgrade, however). If you ignore the line Spock Classic says that “Your father lived to see you become Enterprise captain” you can even slot Final Frontier and Best Destiny (and Enterprise: The First Adventure) in afterwards as what was ‘supposed’ to happen before Nero showed up.
Also there were a few cool new aliens on the Kelvin crew as well, of which we know nothing about.
Stuff from Countdown
The floating hologram screens over the consoles on the Enterprise-E are very cool, as are the new uniforms (sure, I could picture the crew of any book in them, but I’d like to read the words. I’m like that.)
So – are we gonna see any of this stuff in forthcoming novels (after we’ve smashed-in the Typhon Pact in 2010)? Or will it all be swept under the Great Space Rug and forgotten? There’s bags of potential for giving all this stuff origin stories, if done right.