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Old January 31 2013, 05:14 AM   #1
ATimson
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Worst science goofs

After reading Allegiance in Exile, I decided to reread The Lost Years. Most of the way through, I came across this humdinger:

The Lost Years wrote:
She programmed the computer to send out a distress signal on a frequency monitors by all Romulan vessels. It warned of the ship's imminent destruction, and instructed all vessels to stay clear. The effects of the explosion would be felt over an area of roughly one square parsec.
Area, volume, what's a dimension between friends? What other fun science goofs have you noted in TrekLit?

(The Hobus Supernova is well-trodden ground already.)
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Old January 31 2013, 03:36 PM   #2
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Re: Worst science goofs

William Rotsler's Star Trek II Short Stories. Hilarious quote from Admiral Tatenen, to Admiral Kirk, about the Klingons: "You give them a parsec and they'll take a light-year, son!"

The Klingons of Kirk's era were apparently somewhat cautious
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Old January 31 2013, 04:08 PM   #3
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Re: Worst science goofs

There was a star system in Black Fire that contained a star so large that it took the Enterprise 3 days at warp speed to transit from one side of it to the other. That's some star!
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Old January 31 2013, 04:23 PM   #4
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Re: Worst science goofs

ATimson wrote: View Post
What other fun science goofs have you noted in TrekLit?
In the DC Comics "Grond vs Ajir" two-parter by Diane Duane, Kirk needed to get the Enterprise to safety, so he ordered Sulu to perform a 360 degree turn to escape an alien vessel!
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Old January 31 2013, 05:31 PM   #5
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Re: Worst science goofs

These are hilarious!
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Old January 31 2013, 06:36 PM   #6
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Re: Worst science goofs

King Daniel wrote: View Post
William Rotsler's Star Trek II Short Stories. Hilarious quote from Admiral Tatenen, to Admiral Kirk, about the Klingons: "You give them a parsec and they'll take a light-year, son!"

The Klingons of Kirk's era were apparently somewhat cautious
That's awesome
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Old January 31 2013, 08:01 PM   #7
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Re: Worst science goofs

Yeah, Rotsler's books had some serious moments of Did Not Do the Research in them. Like in Star Trek II Biographies where he claimed that Pavel Andreievich Chekov's father was named Alexei.
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Old January 31 2013, 11:50 PM   #8
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Re: Worst science goofs

King Daniel wrote: View Post
William Rotsler's Star Trek II Short Stories. Hilarious quote from Admiral Tatenen, to Admiral Kirk, about the Klingons: "You give them a parsec and they'll take a light-year, son!"

The Klingons of Kirk's era were apparently somewhat cautious
Countdown to the inevitable Han Solo reference in 5...4...3...
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Old February 1 2013, 03:16 AM   #9
T'Ressa Dax
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Re: Worst science goofs

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
King Daniel wrote: View Post
William Rotsler's Star Trek II Short Stories. Hilarious quote from Admiral Tatenen, to Admiral Kirk, about the Klingons: "You give them a parsec and they'll take a light-year, son!"

The Klingons of Kirk's era were apparently somewhat cautious
Countdown to the inevitable Han Solo reference in 5...4...3...

Are those seconds or parsecs? I've wondered if somehow someone noticed the 'sec' part and decided par must be a portion of a second!
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Old February 1 2013, 03:22 AM   #10
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Re: Worst science goofs

T'Ressa Dax wrote: View Post
Are those seconds or parsecs? I've wondered if somehow someone noticed the 'sec' part and decided par must be a portion of a second!
The sec in parsec does mean second, just a second of arc, not of time. Parsec means having a parallax of one second of arc [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parsec].
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Old February 1 2013, 03:00 PM   #11
ATimson
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Re: Worst science goofs

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
King Daniel wrote: View Post
William Rotsler's Star Trek II Short Stories. Hilarious quote from Admiral Tatenen, to Admiral Kirk, about the Klingons: "You give them a parsec and they'll take a light-year, son!"

The Klingons of Kirk's era were apparently somewhat cautious
Countdown to the inevitable Han Solo reference in 5...4...3...
Ann Crispin managed a decent retcon of that in her Star Wars novels, though, so I'll let that slide.
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Old February 1 2013, 03:42 PM   #12
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Re: Worst science goofs

I've heard that Han Solo's "parsecs" line was an intentional flub by Lucas, to show that Solo was a blowhard who didn't quite know what he was talking about. I think there's actually something about that in the script.
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Old February 1 2013, 04:11 PM   #13
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Re: Worst science goofs

Christopher wrote: View Post
I've heard that Han Solo's "parsecs" line was an intentional flub by Lucas, to show that Solo was a blowhard who didn't quite know what he was talking about. I think there's actually something about that in the script.
Ford's delivery and Sir Alec's look of "yeah, right" certainly make the scene play that way.
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Old February 1 2013, 05:00 PM   #14
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Re: Worst science goofs

Christopher wrote: View Post
I've heard that Han Solo's "parsecs" line was an intentional flub by Lucas, to show that Lucas was a blowhard who didn't quite know what he was talking about. I think there's actually something about that in the script.
Fixed that for you.

No, seriously, I've heard the Solo thing before, but it never made much sense to me. Why Kenobi consider going on such an urgent mission with someone who didn't know the basics of space navigation?

Anyway, given Lucas' history of changing his story, this just sounds like another instance. But if it actually is in the script....
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Old February 1 2013, 05:12 PM   #15
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Re: Worst science goofs

I think it's more a question of Han trying to impress who he assumes are just a couple of local hicks than him not knowing the basics of space navigation.
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