So either the computer is stupid and produces the wrong ship bridge and Picard and Scotty(!!!!) are too stupid to pick up on this, or there are some cosmetic differences due to budgetary and time constraints.
None of them is "stupid" in-universe and I didn't say that:
- The computer obviously wasn't fed the relevant parameters of Pike's, Decker's or Spock's bridge. So how can we be sure it was fed with the parameters of Kirk's bridge?
- Picard, like Sisko, knows bits and pieces of that era but is apparently not that much into Federation ships (obviously he wanted to start a conversation with Scotty. Why didn't he use the Constellation Class as a topic? Surely, Scotty as an engineer would have liked to learn how this particular ship design actually performed and Picard could have told him all about that, having been the captain of the Stargazer).
- And Scotty's memory was affected by having stayed too long in the pattern buffer, add to this the intoxicating effects of alcohol of which he apparently had plenty prior to entering the holodeck. This also seems evident when he talks about having served on "a freighter, a cruiser, and a starship". NCC-1701 was a cruiser, so it's like he said he served on "a freighter, a starship, and a starship".
I agree that the differences are mostly owed to budgetary and time constraints, but now we are talking about real-life and intentions (and no longer about nitpicky canon) and at least on this level, for the reasons I provided, "first comes, first serves" rules, IMO.
I'm sorry, but I'll take the clearly and explicit statements by Picard, Riker, and Sisko, not to mention the massive amounts of fanon (since we do for the Miranda class name anyway) over a bridge plaque, ancillary materials in a period when all of the world-building details were in flux (Lithium-cracking station anyone), a fuzzy sign in TWOK.
How reliable these "explicit" statements (Riker? Did I miss one?) are I've tried to illustrate. Now either fanon or canon is relevant.
"Miranda Class" fills a previously uncharted gap, "Constitution Class" tries to erase "Enterprise Starship Class". That's the decisive difference.
I agree that some things during the beginning were in a state of flux, but "starship class" was there in the beginning, fixed in the middle of TOS (Bob Justman's "Enterprise Starship Class"), hold on to in the Official TMP Blueprints
("new Enterprise Class") and put onscreen in ST II (and much better discernible than the "Consitution Class" small print in "The Trouble With Tribbles").
While Bob Justman, Matt Jeffries, and Gene Roddenberry created Trek, it's not just their playground. You don't get to dismiss all of the other works just because it disagrees with a minor point of early intent when much of that early intent later disagreed with its own show.
TOS was their playground and theirs alone, nothing will ever change that. If the post-TOS producers decided that the Starfleet registry system changed and that people in the 24th Century use "Constitution Class" as a colloquialism I have absolutely no problems with that. But it cannot possibly retroactively change the intentions of the original creators and I think Matt Jefferies statements in the early 2000's are a testament to that.
Very interesting idea.
Definitely a possibility that cannot be ruled out.