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Old May 18 2013, 08:32 PM   #24
Lieutenant Commander
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Location: Seattle, WA
Re: Into Darkness and the novelverse [SPOILERS]

I understand why many novel writers don’t want to have to deal with long-range/transwarp beaming. [Christopher L. Bennett has made many good arguments about how it can be ignored as previously-established tech, etc.] Because a safe, reliable long-range transportation tech would be a big game changer. As we’ve talked about before. Even if it wasn’t safe for personnel movement, it could certainly be used for cargo—or more significantly, bombs in a war.
But I just don’t think we can/should continue ignoring it. And I think the main arguments for being able to ignore it have been weakened yet again by STiD.
The 2 main arguments for being able to ignore long-range beaming and not bring it up in the novels are:
(1) It’s dangerous. The new movie give us yet another example of a successful transport. Just adding to all the other successful transports that we’ve already seen. Against not a single un-successful transport seen. [Scotty beaming into the warp core in ST09 was not a failure of the transport tech, just the coordinates that were being used.] It’s becoming more-and-more difficult to say long-range beaming is significantly risky.
(2) It takes a lot of power. This argument was based on Data and La Forge’s description of subspace beaming in “Bloodlines”. But we see in STiD that not much power is really necessary. John Harrison’s ship had no warp drive. And the long-range transporter device that allowed him to go all the way to Qo’noS was small enough to be carried by hand. The amount of power necessary seems a very reasonably small amount—certainly well within the abilities of a normal starship to produce.
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