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Old April 25 2013, 05:55 AM   #16
Gary7
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Re: Insects and transporters

LoneDragon wrote: View Post
Anyone ever consider that a transporter disentigrates you and creates an identical copy of you at the destination? Technically anyone who has ever used a transporter is dead...replaced by a line of clones...if it wasnt so, then how do you explain Thomas Riker?
I think the concept of Thomas Riker was the BIG mistake, where the transporter is concerned.

The original idea that I'd seen most people claim how the transporter works is that your entire molecular pattern is scanned and then very rapidly disassembled, beamed to the target location, and reassembled. So, all of your "bits" are sent to the destination--no "killing and copying" going on (otherwise how could Barclay have his "transporter psychosis" bits, partially aware during the beaming?). That's why all of your clothes and equipment goes too. If not... then "local matter" would have to be sucked up and assembled into the destination beam to compromise you and all of your gear. That doesn't make sense.

So... with Thomas Riker, a duplicate is created.... FROM WHAT?? The matter to compose his body had to come from somewhere. And if transporting means there's just one copy of matter being sent... then either Riker would have reassembled back on the planet or back on the ship, or... two of him assembled each from 50% of his original matter (translucent Riker?).

Thus, I just pass off "Pegasus" as a mistake in the series. They do happen, contradictions that can't be easily explained away without major fan wanking. You just have to take it as an error and move on.
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Old April 25 2013, 01:13 PM   #17
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Re: Insects and transporters

Indeed. The transporter is a way of travel, not a copy machine. If it were you could tie it in with the replicator and create people.
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Old April 25 2013, 01:23 PM   #18
yousirname
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Re: Insects and transporters

horatio83 wrote: View Post
Indeed. The transporter is a way of travel, not a copy machine. If it were you could tie it in with the replicator and create people.
They more or less do that at the end of Lonely Among Us.

But yeah, it's one of those situations where canon's all over the place.

Personally, I can't think of any way the transporter could work that wouldn't mean killing the transportee and recreating them. But we can dismiss that easily enough: If the transporter killed you every time you used it, no-one would use it. Just about everybody uses it, so we can assume it doesn't kill you.
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Old April 25 2013, 01:36 PM   #19
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Re: Insects and transporters

It must have something to do with the mumbo jumbo quantum resolution capabilities that keeps the original's consciousness/soul/spirit intact.
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Old April 25 2013, 01:59 PM   #20
yousirname
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Re: Insects and transporters

Ah, the frankalpuissantic transquamniomic decoalescence inhibitors. Standard, I should've known.
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Old April 25 2013, 02:15 PM   #21
LoneDragon
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Re: Insects and transporters

yousirname wrote: View Post
horatio83 wrote: View Post
Indeed. The transporter is a way of travel, not a copy machine. If it were you could tie it in with the replicator and create people.
They more or less do that at the end of Lonely Among Us.

But yeah, it's one of those situations where canon's all over the place.

Personally, I can't think of any way the transporter could work that wouldn't mean killing the transportee and recreating them. But we can dismiss that easily enough: If the transporter killed you every time you used it, no-one would use it. Just about everybody uses it, so we can assume it doesn't kill you.
There would be no way to know! You would realize it as you died, then your clone would emerge, none the wiser, thinking that it IS you and always has been.
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Old April 25 2013, 03:52 PM   #22
yousirname
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Re: Insects and transporters

Yeah, it's pretty nightmarish. Not like fear of swimming, where they can just throw you in and you realise it's not so bad. No matter how many times they 'throw you in' the transporter it would still be the same...
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Old April 25 2013, 05:32 PM   #23
Timo
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Re: Insects and transporters

They more or less do that at the end of Lonely Among Us.
That one is actually among the consistent cases. The dialogue emphasizes that Picard beamed out "energy only", which in terms of later technobabble would mean that his body was still (mostly) left doing figure-eights inside the "pattern buffer" in the form of a "phased matter stream". The trick was in separating Picard's "soul" from that stream (which Picard apparently managed because he had the knowledge of the alien who possessed him, although perhaps UFP science already knew how this could be done, too), and later reintegrating it with the bulk of the phased matter in the buffer (for which Picard probably got some help from the aliens). We have seen bits and pieces of people being taken out of the general phased matter stream, or added - say, parasites or diseases may be removed, or the charge in one's sidearm, or the actual discharge of that sidearm. Separating the "soul" bit is in no way inconsistent with all that. And indeed we see a sort of a repeat performance in DS9 "Our Man Bashir".

"Unnatural Selection" also features mere tinkering with existing matter, with the help of some stored information (in hair follicles rather than computer memory this time), although it handles the actual process rather clumsily. Such episodes merely tell us that the transporter is a powerful tool for future surgeons, rather than a xeroxing machine.

It's "The Enemy Within" and "Second Chances", with their creation of two individuals in place of one, that pose a real problem. Where did the matter come from? Well, <technobabble> is a sufficient answer - but it means that a repeat performance would allow xeroxing. Sure, both episodes have this <technobabble> involve an extremely rare phenomenon that Federation science would probably be at loss to reproduce artificially, or even re-utilize at the original, natural source. But the incidents should at least inspire Federation science to solve the related problems, eventually.

Then again, we already have replicators which are perfectly capable of creating living tissue (say, in TNG "Ethics" or VOY "Emanations"). The only reason people don't use those to Frankenstein a complete living body into existence seems to be that there's no real motivation for that. Oh, no doubt some mad scientist in some isolated lab will try, and for all we know the experiment has already been made by the time of TNG and has been a splendid success. But it's a clumsy way to give birth to people, and probably just isn't worth the hassle.

Clones seem to be generally frowned upon in the 24th century Federation - or at least humans hate them with passion. But that's clones that usurp lives from living people. A clone that competes with Will Riker for existence is an abomination, as in "Up the Long Ladder" or "Second Chances". But a clone that continues the life of Will Riker where the previous incarnation left it, such as in this putative kill-and-copy version of the transporter, need not be objectionable at all.

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Old April 25 2013, 05:51 PM   #24
yousirname
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Re: Insects and transporters

I feel like Rascals is probably somewhat problematic, too.
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Old April 25 2013, 05:59 PM   #25
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Re: Insects and transporters

Gary7 wrote: View Post
...
Thus, I just pass off "Pegasus" as a mistake in the series. They do happen, contradictions that can't be easily explained away without major fan wanking. You just have to take it as an error and move on.
"Second Chances."

yousirname wrote: View Post
I feel like Rascals is probably somewhat problematic, too.
Indeed. Unless those children are very overweight, that excess matter had to go somewhere, but where? And how did they replace it when the crew were returned to their original configurations?
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Old April 25 2013, 06:04 PM   #26
R. Star
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Re: Insects and transporters



Insects combining with people? Nonsense!
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Old April 25 2013, 06:07 PM   #27
Timo
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Re: Insects and transporters

Indeed - only arachnids mix with people!

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Old April 25 2013, 07:20 PM   #28
J. Allen
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Re: Insects and transporters

Dear Jebus, I hate Hate HATE that episode more than any other episode in the entire Star Trek franchise.
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Old April 26 2013, 06:26 AM   #29
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Re: Insects and transporters

yousirname wrote: View Post
I feel like Rascals is probably somewhat problematic, too.
This is actually one of my favorite TNG episodes. Therefore, I try not to think about the science/pseudo-science involved.

David Birkin was one of those actors who played two very different characters in TNG. He played "Uncle" Renee in "Family" (season 4) then returned as Young Captain Picard in "Rascals" two seasons later.
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Old April 26 2013, 06:34 AM   #30
Third Nacelle
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Re: Insects and transporters

Any episode where an alteration to DNA results in already-existing tissue magically transforming itself is ridiculous.

If you turned all of a person's DNA into blue whale DNA, that person would not transform into a blue whale. He would die.
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