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TrekToday http://www.trektoday.com/content Daily Star Trek news Sun, 02 Aug 2015 16:53:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 Retro Review: Learning Curve http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/retro-review-learning-curve/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/retro-review-learning-curve/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 21:16:02 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41256 Tuvok attempts to train four Maquis crewmembers who are having difficulty following Starfleet protocols.

Plot Summary: Lieutenant Dalby discovers a malfunctioning bio-neural gel pack and replaces it without getting authorization, which causes several systems ship-wide to stop working. Tuvok expresses concern to Janeway that Dalby and some other Maquis crewmembers are not trained or disciplined enough to work on a Starfleet vessel. Though Janeway is more worried about the possibility of multiple gel pack failures disabling Voyager’s systems, she recommends an on-the-job training course for the crewmembers having the greatest difficulties. Chakotay gives onetime Starfleet Academy instructor Tuvok a list of possible candidates, from which Tuvok selects four junior officers – impulsive Dalby, belligerent Henley, unfocused Chell, and bitter Gerron – who deeply resent being singled out for extra attention. The group complains when Tuvok insists that they remove all traces of their personal style from their professional demeanor and marches out after what they consider to be an unfair physical exercise. Neelix offers Tuvok some wisdom about plant stalks needing to be flexible, which Tuvok at first takes to mean that the young crewmembers are too rigid, then discovers that Neelix means to criticize himself and his teaching methods. He tries to get to know Dalby and realizes that some of the Maquis crewmembers suffered traumas that make it impossible for them to become contented, well-adjusted Starfleet officers overnight. Meanwhile, the Doctor discovers that Neelix’s attempt to make cheese has cultivated a bacteria that now infects the gel packs. The Doctor proposes raising the temperature to help the gel packs fight off the infection, but although the gel packs are saved, Tuvok and his unhappy team become trapped in a cargo bay where Gerron is injured. Dalby becomes irate when Tuvok orders him to get to safety with Henley and Chell, but when Tuvok himself violates procedure, risking his life to save Gerron, the Maquis officers are impressed and promise to work harder to obey the rules.

Analysis: I didn’t like “Learning Curve” when it first aired for its obnoxious attitude toward Maquis dissidents and indeed toward anyone who refused to assimilate entirely into Starfleet’s arbitrary regulations, which I thought at the time might just reflect my lack of understanding of how military protocols worked. But it rubs me the wrong way even more so now that we’ve seen some of the history of Vulcan intolerance in Enterprise, and now that we know the Maquis will be asked to give up their sense of belonging to their own cultures as well as their identities as members of an organization in conflict with Starfleet (the latter a demand that’s completely justified on a mission like Voyager’s, though I note that Worf was allowed to wear the accoutrements of a Klingon warrior on duty even when the Klingons were at war with the Federation). Of course it’s a problem that many of the Maquis have not had Starfleet training in teamwork, physical fitness, even self-protection, though I might note that Neelix and Kes haven’t either. It would seem both reasonable and fair for Tuvok to include them in a course to get underprepared crewmembers ready for life traveling through the Delta Quadrant, particularly since Kes had never left her village, let alone her homeworld, until just before Voyager arrived. The cheese incident that almost destroys the bio-neural gel packs is a far more heinous betrayal of safety protocols than the replacement of one of those gel packs, even if Dalby is rude when reprimanded while Neelix only stammers in embarrassment. And surely there are Starfleet crewmembers as well as Maquis who were unprepared to have a brief mission into the Badlands turn into a potentially lifelong journey? Couldn’t many of the junior officers use a refresher course in focus and teamwork? If Janeway and Chakotay’s goal is to get their two crews functioning as a single unit with the same ease with which Torres now works with Carey, they’d be well advised to include some Starfleet officers in the remedial class even just for show. Not so long ago, Tom Paris was a criminal and Torres was punching fellow officers, while now they’re fourth and fifth in the command chain; seems like a lot of people on that ship could use a bit of extra attention.

And although Tuvok may have been an Academy instructor for more than a decade, he seems like the wrong person to be leading an exercise in new-to-Starfleet teamwork. These angry, demoralized Maquis crewmembers need a counselor, not a disciplinarian; the morale officer might do them more good, and indeed does them more good when he lectures Tuvok, than a stern Vulcan whom they consider a traitor to their cause. I think it’s a mistake that we see the senior officers’ point of view rather than that of the recruits, since we don’t get to learn the positive independent-minded aspects of what Chakotay dismisses as “the Maquis way.” A strong left hook may get someone hauled before a disciplinary committee in Starfleet, but we’ve had such behavior by the Klingons rammed down our throats for years now as something we should admire, so it just doesn’t look particularly outrageous when a Maquis crewmember does precisely what a Klingon would do in a similar situation of being singled out for his temper. Apart from Dalby, who joined the Maquis because Cardassians brutalized his girlfriend, we never get to know the Maquis crewmembers, and the more Tuvok talks, the more arrogant he seems, like the obnoxious Vulcans of “Take Me Out to the Holosuite” rather than thoughtful, nuanced individuals like Spock and Sarek. Now that the US military and other such organizations have relaxed their rules about whether and when soldiers can wear yarmulkes, hijabs, and other items directly related to the practice of religion, I feel even more justified in my fury against Tuvok when he orders Gerron to take off his Bajoran earring – an accessory quite different from the headband that Tuvok forbids Henley to wear. The Bajoran earring is a symbol of faith. It’s also a mark of one’s family and social caste, two things that the young Gerron has lost being stranded 70,000 light years from home. Whether he had lost those already in a traumatic incident that led him to join the Maquis, as Dalby seems to believe, or whether he joined the Maquis out of sympathy for the settlers’ desire to protect their homes, like Kasidy Yates, Gerron is clearly clinging to this one meaningful relic of his former life, which Tuvok orders him to put away without any care for its significance.

Clearly, Tuvok is obsessed with the letter of the law rather than its spirit – he’s closer to being Javert from Les Miserables than was Sisko when Eddington mocked him with that sobriquet – but given the pettiness of the Vulcans we saw in many TNG and DS9 episodes, I gather we’re supposed to assume that it’s because Tuvok’s a Vulcan, for whom logic demands holding even to the most trivial of regulations. But I can’t understand why Chakotay agrees to let someone whom he thought served his own cause, then turned out to have been working behind his back all along, serve as corrections officer for other Maquis crewmembers. Chakotay’s facial tattoo would not be permitted even in the current US military, and I’d love to hear his response if Tuvok ordered him to remove it or cover it up. He’s usually a champion of diversity and broadmindedness, yet he seems amused at the thought of having four shipmates for whom he was once responsible, who are as troubled as they are troubling, put under Tuvok’s yoke. Of course ship-wide discipline is important in a crisis, as we see when it takes much of the crew working together to solve the problem with the gel packs, but a rigid dress code for people who will be working together for many years can hardly be the element that makes them see themselves as a team. It will be acknowledging, understanding, accepting, and taking advantage of their differences which will accomplish that. If the Starfleet uniform serves to bond Voyager’s crew in early days, it later serves to homogenize them; no wonder Sisko preferred spending his off-duty hours in African dress and Kira never stopped wearing her Bajoran earring even when in Starfleet uniform. “Learning Curve” fails in its effort to be “Lower Decks” because it fears to let us get to know and admire the quirks of the individual Maquis, erasing their distinct histories and grievances even as Janeway’s off playing traditional British governess in a traditional British novel knockoff. She needs to spend more time thinking about exactly which aspects of the Federation she plans to keep thriving on her ship as it creeps toward home.

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Star Trek: The Exhibition In Washington State http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/star-trek-the-exhibition-in-washington-state/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/star-trek-the-exhibition-in-washington-state/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 19:00:37 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41252 Star Trek: The Exhibition will be arriving at the Washington State Fair in September.

The Washington State Fair will take place September 11-27 in Puyallup.

Star Trek: The Exhibition, under license by CBS Consumer Products, will run for seventeen days and gives visitors the opportunity to enjoy an interactive, museum-style experience of one of the largest collections of authentic Star Trek artifacts and information ever put on public display. This is a separate ticketed exhibit, and requires Fair admission. Exhibit tickets can be purchased in advance for $6.50 until Sept 10 here, or $8 at the State Fair. Children five years and under are free in the exhibit with a paid adult. Online orders are subject to standard processing fees.

The Exhibition brings visitors into the Star Trek universe and allows them to connect with iconic Star Trek moments. Throughout this experience, visitors, especially younger visitors and youth, will be inspired and motivated to seek out more education, and perhaps ignite a passion for lifelong learning and careers in science and technology.

Star Trek fans and novices alike will have a first-hand interactive experience to explore the worlds, wisdom, science, stories, cultures, characters, fashions and fantasies of the Star Trek universe. In the States, and around the world, Star Trek has become a sub-culture for many, supported by countless fan conventions and fan gatherings where many regularly gather and role-play in their favorite Star Trek characters.

“Among the main attractions of The Exhibition is the opportunity to sit in the legendary Captain’s chair where Captain Kirk and subsequently Captain Picard took command of the U.S.S. Enterprise; the opportunity to pose in front of a replica of the U.S.S. Enterprise; and one-of-a-kind displays, interactive kiosks and rare photo opportunities.”

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August-September 2015 Trek Conventions And Appearances http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/august-september-2015-trek-conventions-and-appearances/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/august-september-2015-trek-conventions-and-appearances/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:53:51 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41248 There will be nineteen conventions, shows or appearances in August and September that will feature actors of interest to Star Trek fans.

This listing of conventions and shows features actors from all of the televised series and several of the Star Trek movies.

August begins with The Official Star Trek Convention will be held Aug. 6-9 at the Rio Suites Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. In attendance at The Official Star Trek Convention will be Marc Alaimo, Vaughn Armstrong, Richard Arnold, Rene Auberjonois, Robert Beltran, Casey Biggs, John Billingsley, Brannon Braga, Bobby Clark, Joan Collins, Jeffrey Combs, Denise Crosby, Olivia d’Abo, Michael Dante, James Darren, Roxanne Dawson, Nicole de Boer, John de Lancie, Elizabeth Dennehy (Commander Shelby), Chris Doohan, Michael Dorn, Doug Drexler, Aron Eisenberg, Terry Farrell, Jonathan Frakes, Bryan Fuller, Joseph Gatt, Max Grodenchik, Richard Herd, J.G. Hertzler, Jennifer Hetrick (Vash), Manu Intiraymi, Sherry Jackson, Salome Jens, Dominic Keating, Walter Koenig, Alice Krige, Cirroc Lofton, Don Marshall, Chase Masterson, Robert Duncan McNeill, Anthony Montgomery, Ronald B. Moore, Kate Mulgrew, Larry Nemecek, Adam Nimoy, Denise Okuda, Mike Okuda, Robert O’Reilly, Linda Park, Ethan Phillips, Robert Picardo, Andrew Robinson, Rod Roddenberry, David L. Ross (Lt. Galloway and Lt. Johnson), Saul Rubinek, Tim Russ, Jeri Ryan, Judson Scott (Joachim from The Wrath of Khan), William Shatner, Mark Allen Shepherd (Morn), William Morgan Sheppard, Armin Shimerman, Alexander Siddig, Marina Sirtis, Rick Sternbach, Sir Patrick Stewart, Kitty Swink, George Takei, Connor Trinneer, Karl Urban, Nana Visitor, Garrett Wang, and Michael Westmore.

Next up is Shore Leave, to be held Aug. 7-9 at the Baltimore Hunt Valley Inn in Hunt Valley, Maryland. In attendance at Shore Leave will be Daniel Davis (Professor James Moriarty).

The Steel City Con will be held Aug. 7-9 at the Monroeville Convention Center in Monroeville, Pennsylvania. In attendance at Steel City Con will be Nichelle Nichols.

The Dublin Comic Con will be held Aug. 8-9 at the Convention Centre Dublin in Dublin, Ireland. In attendance at Dublin Comic Con will be Gates McFadden.

The Windsor ComiCon will be held Aug. 15-16 at the Caesars Windsor in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. In attendance at Windsor ComiCon will be Marina Sirtis.

Crypticon Kansas City will take place Aug. 21-23 at the Howard Johnson Plaza in Kansas City, Missouri. In attendance at Crypticon Kansas City will be Sid Haig, Chris Sarandon, and Tony Todd.

Walker Stalker Con will be held Aug. 22-23 at the Westin Waterfront in Boston, Massachusetts. In attendance at Walker Stalker Con will be Denise Crosby.

The Central Coast Comic Con will take place Aug. 28-30 at the Ventura County Fairgrounds in Ventura, California. In attendance at Central Coast Comic Con will be Sid Haig (Lawgiver in Return of the Archons) and Deep Roy.

Wrapping up August will be the Bournemouth Film & Comic Con, to be held Aug. 29-30 at the Bournemouth International Centre in Bournemouth, England. In attendance at the Bournemouth Film & Comic Con will be Max Grodenchik.

September begins with Fan Expo Canada, which will be held Sept. 3-6 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. In attendance at Fan Expo Canada will be Jeffrey Combs, Malcolm McDowell, Jennifer Morrison, Kate Mulgrew, Ethan Phillips, Robert Picardo, and Jeri Ryan.

Dragon*Con will take place Sept. 4-7 at several hotels in Atlanta, Georgia. In attendance at Dragon*Con will be Terry Farrell, Jonathan Frakes, Gary Lockwood, and Paul McGillion.

Wizard World Comic Con San Jose will be held Sept. 4-6 at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, California. In attendance at Wizard World Comic Con San Jose will be Adrienne Barbeau.

The Alamo City Comic Con will be held Sept. 11-13 at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas. In attendance at Alamo City Comic Con will be Olivia d’Abo and Ron Perlman.

The Wizard World Comic Con Pittsburgh will be held Sept. 11-13 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Appearing at Wizard World Comic Con Pittsburgh will be Colm Meaney and William Shatner.

RocCon will be held Sept. 11-13 at the Kodak Event Center in Rochester, New York. In attendance at RocCon will be Nichelle Nichols and Marina Sirtis.

Wizard World Comic Con Columbus will be held Sept. 18-20 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. Appearing at Wizard World Comic Con Columbus will be Brent Spiner.

The Rose City Comic Con will be held Sept. 19-20 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon. In attendance at Rose City Comic Con will be Walter Koenig, Nichelle Nichols, and Wil Wheaton.

The Salt Lake Comic Con will be held Sept. 24-26 at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah. Walter Koenig will be appearing at the Salt Lake Comic Con.

September wraps up with the London Comic Con, to be held Sept. 25-27 at the Western Fair District in London, Ontario, Canada. In attendance at the London Comic Con will be Nicole de Boer and Ron Perlman.

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Shatner To Pen Book On Nimoy http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/shatner-to-pen-book-on-nimoy/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/shatner-to-pen-book-on-nimoy/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:45:58 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41245 William Shatner is planning on writing a book about his friend Leonard Nimoy.

Shatner considered Nimoy to be a brother to him.

“I’m writing a book about Leonard,” said Shatner. “I had a brother, whose life arc was so much like mine that we understood each other completely. Our age, our birth, the same types of problems in our marriages – our careers arced in the same manner.

“We had a great deal in common, Leonard and I. And thusly we were able to understand each other. I’ve lost a dear friend.”

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Star Trek Beyond Building Continues http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/star-trek-beyond-building-continues/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/star-trek-beyond-building-continues/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:42:43 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41236 More photographs from the Star Trek Beyond set have emerged.

Five new photos show the progress made in building the set which began back in May.

STB-1

The first photo shows the bare bones of the set back in May.

STB-2

The second photo shows what appeared to be a building with some broken trees on it.

STB-3

In the third photo, it becomes clear that the second photo was not a building, but hills with broken trees. The plywood of the second photo has been covered with dirt.

STB-4

STB-5

In the last two photos, the “hills” set is being expanded.

Larger-sized photos are available at the referring site.

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Trinneer In Western Horror http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/trinneer-in-western-horror/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/trinneer-in-western-horror/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 17:14:05 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41232 Fans of Connor Trinneer will be able to see the actor in a western horror movie set to release on DVD and VOD beginning August 4.

The movie is called A Good Day To Die.

In A Good Day To Die, “Baron Emerson uses his vast wealth to travel the world and hunt. He does not hunt animals, he hunts warriors. The Baron arrives at the American frontier and is looking for his next prey. An outlaw gunslinger named Chamberlin who is in jail and set to be hanged. The Baron arranges for Chamberlin to be freed so that he can hunt him like an animal in a bloody game of life and death in the Wild West.”

Trinneer portrays the hunted Chamberlin, while Robert Koroluck is the hunter Baron Emerson. Others included in A Good Day To Die include Nadia Lanfranconi, Jay Kown, and Leia Perez.

A Good Day To Die was written and directed by Rene Perez.

The movie has already made its European debut, where it was released under the title Prey For Death.

For US fans, to pre-order A Good Day To Die, which sells for $8.46, head to the link located here.

 

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Beam Me Up Scotty Figurines http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/beam-me-up-scotty-figurines/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/beam-me-up-scotty-figurines/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 17:10:46 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41229 Two new original series figures feature Kirk and Spock in the process of “beaming up.”

The figures will be available from Funko beginning next month.

Each poseable figure is 3 3/4″ in height and features a beaming effect (the bottom part of each character shows this effect). “Captain James T. Kirk [and Spock have five] points of articulation and features unique accessories and the 1980s style card back design.”

The Beaming Kirk and Spock ReAction figures will ship next month. Each sells for $12.99 and can be pre-ordered here for Kirk, and here for Spock.

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UK Auction To Feature Spock Costume http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/uk-auction-to-feature-spock-costume/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/uk-auction-to-feature-spock-costume/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 17:08:35 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41226 TrekUKAuction073015

An auction to be held in the UK this autumn will feature a costume worn by Leonard Nimoy.

The Prop Store and Odeon Entertainment Memorabilia Live Auction will take place September 23.

The catalog for the auction isn’t available yet, but at least two Star Trek items will be auctioned.

A costume worn by Nimoy during the second season (blue shirt and black trousers) will be up for auction, and is expected to fetch up to £70,000.

Also in the auction will be a model starship used in The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine.

Other non-Trek items of interest include a Star Wars stormtrooper helmet, Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s jacket from Terminator 3, a Lord of the Rings Witch King’s dagger, and a set of claws worn by Hugh Jackman in X2:X-Men United.

In all, four-hundred-and-fifty items will be auctioned.

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Pine To Star In Wonder Woman http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/pine-to-star-in-wonder-woman/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/pine-to-star-in-wonder-woman/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 17:57:20 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41222 PineWonderWoman052815

Back in May, TrekToday reported that Chris Pine was in negotiations to star in Warner Bros. Wonder Woman; today comes word that Pine has signed on for the role.

Pine will be playing Steve Trevor, Diana Prince’s love interest.

In the Wonder Woman comics, Trevor “was an intelligence officer in the United States Army during World War II whose plane crashed on Paradise Island, the isolated homeland of the Amazons. He was nursed back to health by the Amazon princess Diana, who fell in love with him and followed him when he returned to the outside world. There she became Wonder Woman (and also his co-worker, Diana Prince).”

Pine’s deal reportedly includes sequel options.

Written by Jason Fuchs, Wonder Woman will be directed by Patty Jenkins. Pine will be starring with Gal Gadot, who will take on the role of Diana Prince.

Wonder Woman will be released June 23, 2017.

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Pegg Teases Elba Character http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/pegg-teases-elba-character/ http://www.trektoday.com/content/2015/07/pegg-teases-elba-character/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 17:54:46 +0000 http://www.trektoday.com/content/?p=41218 Elba072915

Simon Pegg spoke briefly about the character that Idris Elba will be playing in Star Trek Beyond.

The character that Elba will be playing will be unique, Pegg promised.

“It’s a really interesting, complex character,” said Pegg. “We shouldn’t expect to see anything like Benedict Cumberbatch‘s creepy genius Khan from Star Trek Into Darkness in Elba’s performance, however. His performance is all his own.”

There’s a good reason that Elba’s villain is different than Cumberbatch’s. “Only because it would be a retread,” said Pegg. “What we don’t want to do is have the same kind of villain with the same motivation.”

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Old September 6 2012, 05:35 AM   #1
RB_Kandy
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How do star dates work

Often an episode of trek will open with the captain giving a star date. But then never seem to make sense, they sound like "Star date 2341.4"
So it's the year 2341, and it's the fourth month? or would that be the day?
I'm just confused as to how it works.
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Old September 6 2012, 05:38 AM   #2
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Re: How do star dates work

think this explains it and gives a calculator to work out dates pretty well...

http://trekguide.com/Stardates.htm

it's one i've used before and comes out pretty accurate

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Old September 6 2012, 05:45 AM   #3
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Re: How do star dates work

1,000 stardates make up a year on TNG, DS9, and VOY. TNG starts with the 41000s, so the second digit always stood for the season.

In TOS, the stardates are four-digits and progressed unevenly and out of order from the 1000s at the beginning of the series to the 5000s at the end. If you leave out TAS, and pretend all five years were covered over three seasons, then the first digit could stand for the year of the mission; but only if you interpret it that way.

In the TOS movies, stardates seem to move much slower. They're still four digits but the first digit seems to represent the decade while the last three digits don't seem to mean much of anything. So TMP has a stardate in the 7000s, TWOK-TFF have stardates in the 8000s, and TUC has a stardate in the 9000s. Don't try to make too much sense out of it passed that.
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Old September 6 2012, 06:04 PM   #4
King Daniel Into Darkness
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Re: How do star dates work

RB_Kandy wrote: View Post
Often an episode of trek will open with the captain giving a star date. But then never seem to make sense, they sound like "Star date 2341.4"
So it's the year 2341, and it's the fourth month? or would that be the day?
I'm just confused as to how it works.
Word of God says, in the last film, Stardates were the Earth year-point-day (.1 - .365)

In the Original Series, stardates were random numbers. No order, no nothing.

Next Gen, DS9 and Voyager all used a complicated system based on the season and thousandths of a year.

LOTS more info here: http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Stardate
and even more here: http://memory-beta.wikia.com/wiki/Stardate
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Old September 6 2012, 07:20 PM   #5
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Re: How do star dates work

Stardates aren't supposed to work. The makers of the original series didn't want to pin down exactly how far in the future the show took place, perhaps because they knew how unwise it was to try to predict how quickly technology will advance. While the majority of references seemed to put TOS 2-300 years in the future, at least one episode ("The Squire of Gothos") had references putting it more like 700 years ahead. So stardates were just placeholder numbers, something put in to make it sound like a date had been mentioned, without conveying any actual chronological information of any kind. There was a general trend for the numbers to increase over the course of the series, albeit inconsistently so, and in The Making of Star Trek, Roddenberry offered a handwave explanation about how stardates are calculated differently depending on where you are in space, how fast you're moving, and so on, to explain why a later episode could have a lower stardate.

Even in a single story, the stardates can be wildly inconsistent. In Star Trek: The Motion Picture, you can work out roughly how much time passes between the different stardate references, and they range from under 4 hours per stardate unit to about 32 hours per unit.

When TNG came along, they adopted a practice of treating each season as 1000 stardate units long -- the first season was 41xxx, the second was 42xxx, etc., so if you assume that each season is exactly one year long and begins on January 1, simple arithmetic gives you the stardate scheme used at this site and favored by Pocket Books in its ST novels. Yet the scheme used in the 24th-century shows was never entirely consistent. TNG's first season started off increasing the numbers after "41" steadily, but then, perhaps due to all the staff upheavals, they stopped keeping track and the order became random for most of the season. After that they appointed the script supervisor to make sure the stardates went consistently upward from episode to episode, but there was no attempt to work out any consistent intervals; one episode might increase the numbers by roughly one per day, while another might increase them by six or ten in the course of a day. I don't think they ever really made any effort to stick with the 1000-units-per-year thing, which would make each day about 2.7 units, when it came to the last few digits.

("Pen Pals" is an interesting case. It's meant to span nearly eight weeks and the stardates go up by about 45 units, suggesting it might be around 1 unit per day. And every one of the log entries in the episode ends in ".3," suggesting that Picard always records his log at the same time every day. But that was only in that episode, not afterward.)

And there are episodes whose calendar dates are given or at least suggested, and their stardates don't fit the scheme I linked to above. So despite being slightly more orderly than TOS stardates, TNG/DS9/VGR stardates were still meant to give only the impression of the passage of time rather than containing any real date or time information. And DS9 and VGR (especially DS9) used them less and less as time went on.

The 2009 movie tried to simplify things by making the stardate just the year followed by the number of days into the year, but that has its own problems, like being Earth-centric (as if the "starts on January 1" scheme isn't) when the original suggested something more universal, and also lacking in detail if the smallest interval it measures is a whole day. But I've learned that it's best not to try to divine any real meaning from onscreen stardates. They're not meant to mean anything -- just to sound like they do.
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Old September 6 2012, 07:32 PM   #6
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Re: How do star dates work

It would have been better to keep it always nonsensical to give them the freedom to never pin anything down to a particular century. The sensible approach would apply this maxim to all 'future Earth' science fiction, to get rid of the obvious problems it throws up.
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Old September 6 2012, 09:29 PM   #7
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Re: How do star dates work

Sometimes Stardate references might solve continuity problems -- sometimes they create continuity problems.

Example of the former: "Catspaw" (first episode of TOS second season, and therefore the first episode to feature Chekov as a character) has a lower stardate number than "Space Seed" from season 1, which implies that "Catspaw" takes place earlier chronologically in "shipboard time". And that provides an obvious answer to the common TWOK complaint that "Khan shouldn't recognize Chekov because he wasn't there yet".

But then, there were several episodes during season 1 of TNG that were filmed when Denise Crosby was still a member of the cast, but with stardates that occur "after" Yar's death in "Skin of Evil".

In short, they're inconsistent enough to be entirely meaningless.
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Old September 6 2012, 09:37 PM   #8
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Re: How do star dates work

On Voyager, the Kazon traitor Jonas is exposed and killed in the epsiode "Investigations" (star date 49485). But in the next episode by stardate, "Life Signs" (49504) he is once again alive and still unsuspected.
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Old September 6 2012, 09:37 PM   #9
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Re: How do star dates work

alpha_leonis wrote: View Post
And that provides an obvious answer to the common TWOK complaint that "Khan shouldn't recognize Chekov because he wasn't there yet".
Although the more obvious answer is that there were 430 people on the ship and we didn't actually see every one of them. Just because Chekov wasn't a day-shift bridge officer in season 1, that doesn't mean he wasn't aboard.
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Old September 6 2012, 10:56 PM   #10
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Re: How do star dates work

I even remember one episode of DS9 when a stardate reference was thrown in delibarately for continuity reasons.

This was about the same time that "Generations" came out in theatres, in which Enterprise-D was destroyed. Very soon after that, Jonathan Frakes appeared as a guest star on Deep Space Nine, playing Thomas Riker (William's transporter clone from "Second Chances"). Thomas was posing as William in the storyline of that episode, in which he makes reference to Dr. Crusher letting him "away from the Enterprise" for a while.

I remember a lot of Trek talk boards being really confused by that -- the episode aired after Generations, but made reference to Enterprise-D still being around. The stardates solved it: the episode actually took place "earlier" in Trek-time than the movie, even though it was filmed later.
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Old September 7 2012, 12:05 AM   #11
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Re: How do star dates work

So it would appear that star dates are random numbers in TOS, and are so convoluted and inconsistent in other series, that it might as well be random.

So in my fan fiction that I am writing, I am just going to put down stuff like 1340.4, 1341.3, and 1345.4 and just have the captains log say things like, "one week into the mission, and tensions on the ship are increasing..." and "The tensions of yesterday are decreasing after my pep talk to the crew..." and "A weak after the plot, our ship is nearly at one hundred percent efficiency" and that sort of jazz.
Or if need be I'll just put down "1344.4 (2 days later)" so the reader can get a feel for the passage of time.

I remember as a kid seeing the episode where Kirk was going to be thrown into a grave, and it gave his birth and death date, and I noticed that the dates could not be based on our calender. But was never sure if there was a pattern to this new calender.

And I agree there is a certain wisdom to fictitious dates in a futuristic sci fi, so that no one calls you out on this or that technology being improbable, or this new discovery would have been made a thousand years ago. And if your show is fond of the reset button, and may air out of sequence sometimes, having a non existent date would help with continuity issues a little. No one would call out a time travel episode because they go to a planet that was destroyed a hundred years ago. "You went back in time 50 years, but that planet was destroyed a 100 years ago".
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Old September 7 2012, 04:30 AM   #12
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Re: How do star dates work

^ If you're writing a story in the TOS era, just use whatever as long as it's four digits and one passed the decimal point.

If you're setting your story in the TNG era, you have to get the first two digits right. A story set during TNG season 1 (in 2364) should be stardate 41xxx.x. If it's set during TNG season 7 (in 2370) it should be 47xxx.x.
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Old September 7 2012, 04:38 AM   #13
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Re: How do star dates work

They work pretty good.
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Old September 7 2012, 04:42 AM   #14
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Re: How do star dates work

For TNG era just use this and try not to think about it.
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Old September 7 2012, 04:51 AM   #15
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Re: How do star dates work

Lord Garth wrote: View Post
^ If you're writing a story in the TOS era, just use whatever as long as it's four digits and one passed the decimal point.
Although it's worth keeping in mind that the stardates did follow a broadly upward pattern from season to season -- the first season went from the 1000s to the 3000s, the second was mostly the lower 3000s to the upper 4000s, and the third was almost entirely in the 5000s, with the animated series more inconsistent but still largely in the 5000s to 6000s. Then TMP was in the 7000s, the next four films were in the 8000s, and TUC was in the 9000s. Quite an inconsistent rate increase, but if you want to capture the feel of a certain season or era, it might help to pick a number in its range.
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