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Old September 29 2010, 11:24 PM   #15
Location: York, New
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Re: Just Another Bridge Design

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
Having the CO face "backwards" does feel a little... off. That being said, I could get used to it.
The question I struggled with was whether it was more important for the Navigation or Tactical station to have an unobstructed view of the central display. The next draft will probably reverse the current layout to favor Tactical, simply because he's the officer in charge of controlling the image. And since I want to keep the Nav station facing forward, that would leave the captain facing the same direction, which aligns with your intuition.

Still, I haven't given up on other possibilities. With the captain in a centered position, she's always going to have her back to someone, but I wish it were one of the side stations, who would at least be over her shoulders rather than directly behind her. I tried to rotate the table 90 degrees, which would also eliminate the line-of-sight problem, but there's no good way to make that fit with the oblong shape of the room - too much wasted space on the sides, too narrow above and below.

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
The Ops/Contact/Tactical/Navigation sections; are these all pits or platforms? Or are Tactica/Nav platforms and Ops/Contact pits (as your shading seems to suggest?) The non-pointed end of the arrows should say "up" or "down" to indicate this. Personally, I'm in favor of the CO/sit table area being the highest point, but then the Navigator and Tactical officer have very limited views, so maybe the Command are should be lower than everything (sort of Galactica-style)
All arrows indicate the "upwards" direction of a stairway, so as drawn, the port and starboard "wings" are raised, while the fore and aft "pits" are recessed. I think this is necessary for the pits, at least - if they were raised, the command area would no longer have line-of-sight to the modular station screens, and the office/briefing room windows would be really awkward, instead of the administrative vantage points that they're meant to be.

As for the wings, I'm pretty sure that it's right to raise them - it gives them line-of-sight to the center, as well as each other. And I think it supports the other purpose of the wings, which is to provide a buffer between the command area and most of the entrances to the bridge, eliminating the most common source of distractions. But I'm open to persuasion; my feelings may change when (if) I get to the stage of modeling the interior. In an abstract way, I visualize the room's shape as a pair of cones joined at the tip: the ceiling is lowest, and the floor highest, in the center, and then it opens up vertically as you go outwards.

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
I think you should slightly re-enlarge the Ready Room in the bed/head area... when that bed is pulled out, the head door is hard to get to... maybe push the head forward a bit.
Actually, the bed - and I know this is terribly ambiguous in the drawing, it was a last-minute change - is recessed into the floor a little, while the shelf passes above it. I just really wanted to keep the shelf for some reason, and looking back, I'm not sure why. I'll probably end up having it mirror the couch on the opposite side.

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
I take it "transparent viewscreen" is a sort of STXI-styling? If so, do the fore/aft ones look into the Ready Room and Observation lounge, or are they sort of curved up and over starting a level above the ceilings of these rooms? It seems odd to have the CO's office visible to the whole bridge crew.
This, again, is not evident in the drawing, which will eventually come with a proper writeup. But the two screens adjacent to the bridge itself are completely interior, and do not extend above the height of the deck. Their purpose is to allow personnel in the commander's office and the briefing room to keep an eye on the situation in the main room while engaged in other activities. Think of a plant director's office looking out onto the factory floor - or, for a more relevant example, the windows between Sisko's office and DS9's Ops. By the magic of future technology, I'm assuming the screens can be blanked out in one or both directions as privacy or security demand.

This is really a feature born of putting myself in the captain's shoes; I would love being able to retreat to my ready room for a little quiet and seclusion, while still feeling well-connected to the center of activity. This also informed the long, narrow shape of the office: it maximizes the window area, like a viewing gallery. By letting the captain keep an eye on the bridge from any point in the room, it ensures that she's never too isolated from her officers, nor they from her.

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
On a similar note, I'm assuming from "Stairs to Upper Deck" and the corridors that this is not on Deck One? While I am a great proponent of NOT putting the bridge on top of the ship, the nature of the transparent viewscreens makes it a tad unclear. If those two in the bridge to curve up to view outside, then an "upper deck" would be in the way. Furthermore, the "observation dais" and it's viewscreen give the impression that this bridge is on the top deck, or at least all the way aft of the saucer (which is also a bit... odd).
We're definitely not on Deck One here. This is a modular facility which is ideally installed as close as possible to the heart of the ship, protected on all sides by many layers of hull. However, I kept a deliberately agnostic mindset with regard to the ship outside the bridge; it's not meant for any single size or class. So if the ship is small enough, this area, even if it's centered, could still end up right against the aft hull - in which case, the observation window actually looks out into space, and the airlocks are usable as docking ports. In a larger ship, the window would look into some large internal ship area, like a shuttlebay or arboretum. It's my way of reconciling the aesthetic appeal of an observation lounge with the pragmatism of a protected bridge.

Icarus68954 wrote: View Post
I'll likely be following your lead soon and trying to come up with my own version of a similar idea... I've always put Sit. tables in my bridge designs (usually in the aft in an NX-class style), but I've never thought to actually put to CO at the table, so this is something I want to play with.
Excellent! I look forward to returning your favor. :)
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Last edited by Kaelri; September 29 2010 at 11:26 PM. Reason: Minor wording changes.
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