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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

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Old September 7 2012, 07:24 PM   #61
Keturah
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Re: I want Data back...

datalogan wrote: View Post
I would prefer for Data to stay dead.

But what I would like to see is for Maddox or someone to perfect regular positronic brain technology. Then we could have the great novel writers handle the topic of artificial lifeforms. I'm sure they'll do better than the show writers from 2+ decades ago.

How do these new beings get their rights? How do they integrate into society without lossing their individuality? How would they choose to live? Who would control the "birth" of new androids as they were made? How would this affect holographic rights, etc?

So, maybe a new android character, like Data. But at his/her beginning, so we can see their struggles to understand and integrate into society from the beginning. (Of course, if this was done in a realistic manner then such a being probably wouldn't be serving on any of our Starfleet ships or bases for at least 5 years in-universe. It would take time to learn and get into Starfleet, etc. Unless they "data-dump" Data's memories of Starfleet and call it good.)

It's time for the issue of artificial beings to be really dealt with in Star Trek, not just alloded to or touched on like they did with Data or the Doctor or Vic Fontaine or the alien AIs in recent Titan novels.
This was touched upon in one of the Myriad Universe #2. Only in that case, it was Soong who survived to make many more.
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Old September 8 2012, 02:13 AM   #62
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Re: I want Data back...

http://youtu.be/0PlwDbSYicM
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Old September 8 2012, 05:00 PM   #63
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Re: I want Data back...

The world of TrekLit feels somewhat empty without our favorite android. There are many stories that would have benefited from his presence.
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Old September 8 2012, 08:12 PM   #64
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Re: I want Data back...

Christopher wrote: View Post
^Well, obviously there's no one set of rules that applies equally to all SF universes, except the rule that they can make up whatever rules suit their purposes. They're free to contradict each other -- or reality -- all they want, but a given fictional universe should be consistent with its own precedents. So the only examples that matter are the ones that come from the specific fictional universe you're talking about. And the precedent of Lal shows that in the Trek universe, downloading one positronic brain's memories into another positronic brain will not automatically bring the personality along with it. And what we've seen of B-4 to date -- at least onscreen and in the novel continuity -- is consistent with that precedent.
True, but it would probably have caused a lot of problems for Data if he had multiple personalities of different gender in his positronic brain. Which would be dominant. We've seen evidence already of this is in 'The Schizoid Man', a normal computer could only hold Graves intellect but Data could hold his personality too. I realize circumstances were different though and Graves was Human but it's not too much of a stretch. B-4 was pretty empty headed to begin with leaving room for a Data personality in there somewhere.
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Old September 8 2012, 08:36 PM   #65
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Re: I want Data back...

B-4 was no more "empty-headed" than a developmentally disabled human. You wouldn't say such a human's personality didn't exist or didn't deserve to exist, or that it would be okay to overwrite it with a smarter person's brain.
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Old September 8 2012, 08:42 PM   #66
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Re: I want Data back...

That's an interesting perspective. If B-4 couldn't develop as Data did due to the limits of his program then I guess that's not dissimilar to some mental illnesses.

Though I personally would like Data back, it would depend on how he was brought back. Do it well or don't do it all.
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Old September 9 2012, 12:28 AM   #67
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Re: I want Data back...

I usually don't like it when people are brought back from the dead however, TNG just isn't the same without him especially with Riker & Troi on the Titan. I'd like him back.
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Old September 9 2012, 06:55 PM   #68
Saul
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Re: I want Data back...

Christopher wrote: View Post
B-4 was no more "empty-headed" than a developmentally disabled human. You wouldn't say such a human's personality didn't exist or didn't deserve to exist, or that it would be okay to overwrite it with a smarter person's brain.
Well, unless you're Julian Bashir's parents...

...or Spock

...or Uhura
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Old September 9 2012, 07:37 PM   #69
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Re: I want Data back...

Saul wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
B-4 was no more "empty-headed" than a developmentally disabled human. You wouldn't say such a human's personality didn't exist or didn't deserve to exist, or that it would be okay to overwrite it with a smarter person's brain.
Well, unless you're Julian Bashir's parents...

...or Spock

...or Uhura
Bashir was just made smarter, Uhura was just relearning everything erased from her brain, and Spock was just getting his soul/memories back.

B4 is not Data, he does not have the same body as Data this was shown by him and Data interacting as separate people so no Data shouldn't just be made to steal his body because some fanboys don't want to deal with the reality of death in Star Trek.
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Old September 9 2012, 07:48 PM   #70
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Re: I want Data back...

Edit_XYZ wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
BillJ wrote: View Post

I wanted Kirk, Spock, Janeway and Tucker to stay dead as well. Can't always get what we want...
Yeah, but we're not discussing what will happen, we're discussing what we want to happen. And I want Data to stay dead.
I must say...I agree.

So many characters have been resurrected, death seems only a vacation for star trek characters these days. As comics can attest to, this is not a good thing.
Once in a while, if the writers decide for a character to die, they should deal with the aftermath of this event instead of opting for fantasy wish-fulfillment.
But fantasy is the whole point of storytelling. Particulalry in science fiction and it's related genres.

"Realism" is only appropriate for real life. Otherwise it's meaningless.
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Old September 9 2012, 07:51 PM   #71
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Re: I want Data back...

Although with B-4's limited programming is he sentient? Or just a talking pile of circuits, I mean he has no aspirations, can barely recognise objects/people, it'd be hard to argue he has any rights. He might not have been given the ability to evolve beyond his programming at all which is the only thing that makes Data/The Doctor sentient.
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Old September 9 2012, 07:57 PM   #72
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Re: I want Data back...

^As I've tried to get across, there are human beings who are just as severely learning-disabled as B-4, but if you asked those questions about them, or alleged that they have no human rights because they don't reach some arbitrary threshold of smartness, it would be horrific.

B-4 clearly had the capacity to ask questions, as a child would. He just wasn't good at retaining or understanding the answers. He's learning-disabled, not mindless.
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Old September 9 2012, 08:03 PM   #73
Sci
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Re: I want Data back...

RandyS wrote: View Post
Edit_XYZ wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post

Yeah, but we're not discussing what will happen, we're discussing what we want to happen. And I want Data to stay dead.
I must say...I agree.

So many characters have been resurrected, death seems only a vacation for star trek characters these days. As comics can attest to, this is not a good thing.
Once in a while, if the writers decide for a character to die, they should deal with the aftermath of this event instead of opting for fantasy wish-fulfillment.
But fantasy is the whole point of storytelling. Particulalry in science fiction and it's related genres.

"Realism" is only appropriate for real life. Otherwise it's meaningless.
That depends on what you think the purpose of a particular work of art is, and in particular upon what you think the purpose of Star Trek as a work of art is.

Is Star Trek just there to provide emotional relief from the real world, to be escapism that has no obligation to maintain verisimilitude? To be something that makes you happy, but doesn't delve into other aspects of life that are perhaps more unpleasant? To be, in other words, a live-action Disney movie set in space?

Or is Star Trek there to delve into other aspects of life that are less pleasant? To say something about life beyond the parts of it that are good and pleasant? To be something other than a flight of fancy for its audience to escape the real world?
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Old September 9 2012, 08:08 PM   #74
NrobbieC
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Re: I want Data back...

Christopher wrote: View Post
^As I've tried to get across, there are human beings who are just as severely learning-disabled as B-4, but if you asked those questions about them, or alleged that they have no human rights because they don't reach some arbitrary threshold of smartness, it would be horrific.

B-4 clearly had the capacity to ask questions, as a child would. He just wasn't good at retaining or understanding the answers. He's learning-disabled, not mindless.
As I said that's an interesting view but if B-4 was the way he was on purpose then he isn't exactly disabled in fact he's functioning properly. You can't be disabled if there's nothing to disable if that makes sense.
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Old September 9 2012, 08:14 PM   #75
Christopher
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Re: I want Data back...

RandyS wrote: View Post
But fantasy is the whole point of storytelling. Particulalry in science fiction and it's related genres.

"Realism" is only appropriate for real life. Otherwise it's meaningless.
Actually a large part of the function of storytelling is to help us figure out how to think about and cope with real-life problems we may have to face. It's like play -- the reason children and young animals play is as practice for the real thing. Fiction serves a similar role -- seeing fictional characters have relationships, solve problems, cope with their emotions, and so on helps us learn or think about how to handle such matters for ourselves. It's part of how humans are socialized, how we learn our behavior and values -- by observing how other people behave and what they value, by learning from their example. And whether we realize it or not, we're all influenced by the examples of the fictional characters we spend so much of our lives watching.

So you're absolutely wrong. Fiction is not just a meaningless escape from reality. It's a significant influence in how we all learn to cope with reality from childhood onward. Scary movies help us explore how to face our fears in a safe context. Stories about people making tough decisions help us learn how to make our own decisions. Mystery stories help us practice our problem-solving skills. And tragedies help us rehearse how to deal with loss and pain, which are unavoidable parts of life.


NrobbieC wrote: View Post
As I said that's an interesting view but if B-4 was the way he was on purpose then he isn't exactly disabled in fact he's functioning properly. You can't be disabled if there's nothing to disable if that makes sense.
What are you talking about? Okay, I know Geordi had some weird line about how maybe B-4 was "meant" to be as crude as he was, but how would he know that? He was just blowing smoke. To all indications, B-4 was a failed prototype.

Besides, does it matter? You could just as validly argue that someone born with lower intelligence is not "broken," just different, and needs to be accepted as he or she is. So if you're right, if this is what B-4 is meant to be, then it would be an even more hideous thing to assume he had no right to exist or that you could just up and murder him because he wasn't smart enough for you.

(Although, yes, the word "disabled" is a problem because of its unfortunate implications. It does imply that someone is broken and incapable, which is exactly the wrong idea to convey. The irony is that it was embraced as a less offensive alternative to "handicapped," a word that had taken on derogatory connotations due to extensive bigotry -- and yet if you look at the literal meaning of the word, it's actually more insulting, since "disability" means a lack or failure of ability, while a handicap is simply an advantage given to balance the playing field.)
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