Hey Mars Weeps, I heard once that writers have to base their character names on something they know -- a derivatiive of a friend, relative, or something with which they are familiar, otherwise they risk being SUED by someone with that actual name (who the writer has no knowledge of) for defamation of character. Is that right?
~ Mister Atoz
But William Rice, William Riker -- no way is that a coincidence, especially given how often Roddenberry recycled his ideas and character names.
Like Khan Noonien Singh and Dr. Noonien Soong. I had read an article once, not sure if there was any truth to it or not, but supposedly Roddenberry had an old friend with a name similar to that. He lost touch with him and by using those names as characters, he was somehow hoping that his friend would notice it and get back in touch.