, I forgot to thank you for your thorough, in depth answer to my question about AI in Star Trek. That gave me a lot to think about. Maybe I should try watching a few of the later series again.
Much of how Data was portrayed/depicted in those early episodes probably has much to do with how the character's own backstory changed over time. In the beginning, according to an early version of the show's Bible, Data was referred to as "Data, rymes with that-a." He was, according to this document, built by unseen aliens and discovered by Starfleet on a planet. SO it was originally supposed to be technology beyond the Feseration's capabilities. Eventually, that changed, (even the pronunciation of his name) and the Dr. Soong background came to be.
Why or when they made this exact change, I don't know. But it must have been some time before Datalore, which was one of the earliest episodes.
Now that's bizarre. None of that ever made it into the series, though. At least, his name was pronounced to rhyme with "theta" in Farpoint Station
, and the first mentions of his back-story involved Soong.
That may take it for 'weirdest piece of Star Trek trivia' I've ever heard, though.
Kind of glad they changed it, because Data seeking his origins would've distracted from the arc involving him seeking to become more human. Personally, I find that storyline far more interesting.