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Old October 14 2012, 04:40 AM   #25
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Re: Is the Data character more human than he's given credit for?

Genesis wrote: View Post
Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
I think Data is incapable (outside of unique situations like Lore or Q's tampering) of feeling base emotions: anger, fear, sadness, joy, surprise, disgust
Except at the end of The Most Toys he fires the disruptor at Fajo, an action of anger. (Unless you really want to believe what he said about it maybe being triggered by the transporter, which was ridiculous because if the transporter could make a weapon discharge everyone would shoot their balls off with their own phasers whenever they beam anywhere)
That's true, I forgot about that. It's definitely the most compelling evidence that he can feel anger. It's possible he may have decided at the time that he would be saving the lives of others by ending Fajo's life, and so he would see it as a logical decision, but that's a reach.

Genesis wrote: View Post
Except he has a self-preservation instinct that makes him try to avoid unnecessary danger and damage, which is all fear really is.
Now, that I also feel is a reach. Trying to stay alive doesn't have to be motivated by fear, it could just be simple programming.

I'm not even sure if he does have much of a self preservation instinct, he often seems puts himself in harms way quite a few times to help others or accomplish the mission at hand. This could be said for many starfleet officers, of course. But data certainly never shows any hint of fear throughout the television series. (except maybe when lore was screwing with him)

Genesis wrote: View Post
Except he can feel loss, the lack of someone he cared for (Tasha Yar, Lal). That's why he had to download Lal's memories at the end of Offspring, and why he kept the picture of Tasha (which he had no other reason for keeping; it's not like Data is capable of ever forgetting what someone looks like). Isn't missing someone's company, or the way they enriched your life, one of the greatest forms of sadness?
I would argue he is simply imitating human behavior here with the tasha hologram, perhaps in an effort to understand humans more. He might think that if he emulates this behavior enough, it could spark emotion somehow.

As for Lal, I just think it was a logical thing for him to do. He had the capability to download her memories, and he did so, because why not? It might even help him understand emotion more since he could have her memories.

Genesis wrote: View Post
Surprise definitely isn't a base emotion, but Data shows that pretty much every time something bizarre happens.
I'm wondering what makes you so sure of that. It has been a long held well regarded theory that Surprise is one of the core, basic human emotions, as are all the others I listed (anger, fear, sadness, joy, surprise, disgust). Of course there are other theories as well.

I would argue that data does not show "surprise", but rather that he emulates a human response of surprise/fascination at times.

I think a lot of his "emotional responses" are often just him emulating humans in order to 1.) make them feel more comfortable around him as part of his programming and 2.) try to understand these emotions more, like the old saying "fake it till you make it"

T'Preea wrote: View Post
I agree with Genesis in the sense that the emotion chip destroyed what made Data special.
I most certainly agree with that as well. Dramatically, it worked well for Lore, but it was a horrible idea to make it work with Data and killed a lot of what made his character interesting.
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