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Old December 11 2009, 08:12 PM   #256
Scout101
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Cybersnark wrote: View Post
I quite enjoyed it. The Ent-to-TOS tech transition (ooh, alliteration) was a cool idea --it's certainly not like designers making bad stylistic decisions is in any way unusual (I've echoed Tobin's chillingly accurate "what could they possibly do to make it worse" sentiments more times than I'd care to remember ).
That was the one part I actually didn't like all that much. Didn't make sense in regard to the story, and just felt like it was shoehorned in to explain away the difference in looks between ENT and TOS.

You can make valid points about changing out the computer software, even going more towards hardware-oriented solutions rather than software in some cases, but trying to explain why there were pushbuttons instead of touch-screens was silly at best.

Only reason that's how they were shown in TOS is because that's how computers were understood/worked at the time. Not even 100% sure you could put enough push-buttons in for the complex shit they'd need to do on a starship, anyway, but that's another argument.

Either way, could have (and in-universe, probably would have) replaced the main computers, and a lot of the internal stuff to not be succeptible to the tele-capture weapon, but no reason you couldn't still have the touch-screen interface still control the hardened equipment. Unless they went all-analog for some reason, which again, I don't think could handle the amount of processing they are doing.

I get WHY they wanted to explain away the different look, or even why they wanted to say there were using the Dadelus hull design instead of the NX design, but things like installing blinky lights and toggle switches where touch-screens were is silly. If you're just flipping a switch, all you're doing is altering the voltage across a circuit, and doing it digitally wouldn't have been any more succeptible to tele-capture unless they were taking control of a ship at a console level instead of main computer or system level (and designing a weapon to work that way would be dumb, as usually more than one console can control the same system, like the bridge vs. somewhere else on the ship)
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Old December 11 2009, 09:04 PM   #257
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Sci wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
I'd hardly say the Romulans were "in the right." Maybe they had some legitimate concerns about territorial encroachment, but instead of seeking a diplomatic, peaceful solution, they pursued infiltration, deception, genocide, and a war of aggression.
I haven't finished reading Beneath the Raptor's Wing, but on what basis do you make the accusation that they seek genocide? It's my understanding that they want to conquer Earth and the Coalition worlds, not drive them into extinction.
The attack on Coridan in The Good That Men Do. Seems to count as attempted genocide to me.
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Old December 11 2009, 09:34 PM   #258
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Sci wrote: View Post
I haven't finished reading Beneath the Raptor's Wing, but on what basis do you make the accusation that they seek genocide? It's my understanding that they want to conquer Earth and the Coalition worlds, not drive them into extinction.
As DEWLine says, I'm referring to the sneak attack on Coridan which started the war in the previous book. That attack killed a billion and a half people. Perhaps "mass murder" is a more accurate term than "genocide," but either way, when you're responsible for a death toll reaching 10 digits, you forfeit any claim to being on the right side of anything.
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Old December 12 2009, 05:03 PM   #259
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Scout101 wrote: View Post
Cybersnark wrote: View Post
I quite enjoyed it. The Ent-to-TOS tech transition (ooh, alliteration) was a cool idea --it's certainly not like designers making bad stylistic decisions is in any way unusual (I've echoed Tobin's chillingly accurate "what could they possibly do to make it worse" sentiments more times than I'd care to remember ).
That was the one part I actually didn't like all that much. Didn't make sense in regard to the story, and just felt like it was shoehorned in to explain away the difference in looks between ENT and TOS.

You can make valid points about changing out the computer software, even going more towards hardware-oriented solutions rather than software in some cases, but trying to explain why there were pushbuttons instead of touch-screens was silly at best.

Only reason that's how they were shown in TOS is because that's how computers were understood/worked at the time. Not even 100% sure you could put enough push-buttons in for the complex shit they'd need to do on a starship, anyway, but that's another argument.

Either way, could have (and in-universe, probably would have) replaced the main computers, and a lot of the internal stuff to not be succeptible to the tele-capture weapon, but no reason you couldn't still have the touch-screen interface still control the hardened equipment. Unless they went all-analog for some reason, which again, I don't think could handle the amount of processing they are doing.

I get WHY they wanted to explain away the different look, or even why they wanted to say there were using the Dadelus hull design instead of the NX design, but things like installing blinky lights and toggle switches where touch-screens were is silly. If you're just flipping a switch, all you're doing is altering the voltage across a circuit, and doing it digitally wouldn't have been any more succeptible to tele-capture unless they were taking control of a ship at a console level instead of main computer or system level (and designing a weapon to work that way would be dumb, as usually more than one console can control the same system, like the bridge vs. somewhere else on the ship)
I always liked the explanation behind TOS tech given in Memory Prime by Uhura. That it's big, ugly and clunky, because it's robust. She also mentions that it will keep working despite relativistic effects where touch screens and miniaturised circuits wind up quantum tunnelling their electrons five meters south of where they're supposed to be.
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Old December 12 2009, 09:28 PM   #260
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

My only real issue with the book is that, given the situation presented, it's unbelievable that the Romulans didn't win.

For the first three quarters of the book, every ship--EVERY SINGLE ONE--that comes upon against any Romulan craft bigger than a fighter switches sides and then self-destructs. You can't have a "fight" that one-sided and still make it believable that Earth would be able to eventually turn the tide.

Anyone who's ever played a real-time-strategy game knows----once you've got an offensive weapon that effective, you don't waste time on the border outposts. You strike at the enemy manufacturing, which in this case would be Earth's shipyards. That the Romulans didn't do this makes them out to be fairly inept.
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Old December 12 2009, 10:12 PM   #261
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Lindley wrote: View Post
You can't have a "fight" that one-sided and still make it believable that Earth would be able to eventually turn the tide.
In the first few years of WWII in Europe, it was pretty heavily one-sided in Nazi Germany's favor. For a while, German conquest and expansion seemed like an unstoppable force. If you'd asked a citizen of Europe in 1940 whether it was believable that Britain and its allies would eventually turn the tide and have Germany on the run by 1944, they would've probably said no.

The Earth-Romulan War is only a year old at the end of the book, and the founding of the Federation is, what, five years away? There's certainly plenty of time for things to change.
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Old December 12 2009, 10:25 PM   #262
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

I was pretty annoyed with how the NX fleet got treated. Finally, they were being rolled off the assembly line at a faster-than-glacial rate (one good thing about the TV show no longer being on), and then...poof. Gone just like that. Seriously lame.
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You can't have a "fight" that one-sided and still make it believable that Earth would be able to eventually turn the tide.
In the first few years of WWII in Europe, it was pretty heavily one-sided in Nazi Germany's favor. For a while, German conquest and expansion seemed like an unstoppable force. If you'd asked a citizen of Europe in 1940 whether it was believable that Britain and its allies would eventually turn the tide and have Germany on the run by 1944, they would've probably said no.
Does that mean the Romulans are going to stupidly attack the Klingons and bring them into the war when they really shouldn't have?
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Old December 12 2009, 11:05 PM   #263
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Hanukkah Solo wrote: View Post
I was pretty annoyed with how the NX fleet got treated. Finally, they were being rolled off the assembly line at a faster-than-glacial rate (one good thing about the TV show no longer being on), and then...poof. Gone just like that. Seriously lame.
Seconded. That was kind of a low blow, destroying all of the NXes (except for the Enterprise, of course, we can never destroy that! ). The Columbia doesn't count, since Destiny already dealt with it, but still...

And it was also a bit unfair to have a real Captain Dunsel and have him only ever be remembered as a slang term at Starfleet Academy for something that's useless. Especially since the real Dunsel was anything but!
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Old December 12 2009, 11:48 PM   #264
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

^ Refresh my memory - what was the original reference to Dunsel from?
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Old December 13 2009, 12:14 AM   #265
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Thrawn wrote: View Post
^ Refresh my memory - what was the original reference to Dunsel from?
"The Ultimate Computer." Commodore Wesley referred to Kirk as "Captain Dunsel," and Spock explained to McCoy that "dunsel" is Academy slang for a part or object that serves no useful purpose.
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Old December 13 2009, 12:41 AM   #266
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Christopher wrote: View Post
Lindley wrote: View Post
You can't have a "fight" that one-sided and still make it believable that Earth would be able to eventually turn the tide.
In the first few years of WWII in Europe, it was pretty heavily one-sided in Nazi Germany's favor. For a while, German conquest and expansion seemed like an unstoppable force. If you'd asked a citizen of Europe in 1940 whether it was believable that Britain and its allies would eventually turn the tide and have Germany on the run by 1944, they would've probably said no.

The Earth-Romulan War is only a year old at the end of the book, and the founding of the Federation is, what, five years away? There's certainly plenty of time for things to change.
Except that the Allies could turn the tide with the strength of their soldiers. All it took was enough men and enough determination.

Earth's entire population can't do jack against the Romulans if they don't have ships to fight them in, and for much of the book it genuinely seemed like Earth had a handful of ships at best. Gannet Brooks kept saying "Where is starfleet, boo hoo!" and the obvious answer is---they don't have enough ships to cover every Earth colony at once, and to try would make those ships they do have easy targets!

Towards the end they seemed to have gotten on track and begun pumping out Daedalus vessels, but only because the Romulans failed to capitalize on their advantage by destroying Earth's shipyards early.

Then again, the entire notion of the telecapture weapon always did seem a bit far-fetched. I could buy it working on Vulcan tech; Romulans could have easily infiltrated Vulcan and stolen the necessary plans. But the idea that such a tool could work on any arbitrary technology given time is a bit silly. Maybe if the weapon were a full-on AI, but there's no indication of that.
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Old December 13 2009, 01:54 AM   #267
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

^I'm not saying this war needs the same solution as WWII. Analogies are never meant to be that exact. I'm saying that we're only one year into the Earth-Romulan War, and there have been previous cases -- WWII just being one example -- where what seemed like an inevitable outcome in a war was reversed and the underdogs came out winning. Heck, particularly in fiction, it's pretty much a given that the villains will seem unbeatable at first, and perhaps for most of the story, so that the heroes' eventual turnaround of the situation will seem more heroic and triumphant. (See the Dominion War. Heck, see any episode of the '70s Harlem Globetrotters cartoon.)
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Old December 13 2009, 02:16 AM   #268
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

I guess my complaint is that the telecapture weapon is too effective. It makes a stand-up fight a losing proposition, so the only way to win is via that last-minute turnaround. I had always figured the E/R war to be a down-and-dirty slugging match, and this portrayal of it is very different.

But then, that was always the problem with Enterprise from the start. It tends to be the problem with most prequels in general. The story in detail is almost never as good as you imagined it in broad strokes.
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Old December 13 2009, 02:56 AM   #269
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

^Again... we're only one year into the war. A lot could change. The effectiveness of the telecapture weapon could be negated somehow. We've seen the early phase of the war; it's way too early to assume the whole war will unfold the same way. The one constant in warfare is unpredictability. (Well, that and death.)
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Old December 13 2009, 04:18 AM   #270
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Re: The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing - Discuss (SPOILERS)

Christopher wrote: View Post
it's pretty much a given that the villains will seem unbeatable at first, and perhaps for most of the story, so that the heroes' eventual turnaround of the situation will seem more heroic and triumphant. (See the Dominion War. Heck, see any episode of the '70s Harlem Globetrotters cartoon.)
Or see the final game of the 2003 ALCS.
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