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Old February 3 2014, 12:21 AM   #1
Gotham Central
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Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

One of the things that kind of bugged me about the depiction of technology in the 24th was the total uniformity of the tech across all species and empires.

For instance, why was it necessary to have every species wear com badges in the shape of their national or service logos? Its nice that Starfleet has these badges, but why would the Klingons, Romulans or even Bajorans use the exact same tech?

Everyone uses tricorders, PADDs, touch screen computers, replicators etc. It would have been nice to see a little bit more variety. Even the Bajorans, who were said to be less technologically advanced to the Federation, seemed to use the same tech.

Not only that, but much of the technology is shown to be of equal size and power to their federation counterpart. Indeed the only way we ever know that technology is more "primitive" is if they told us so specifically in the dialogue. The technology usually looked the same regardless of the tech level.

I'm sure that simple production reasons for this, but it also seems to reflect a lack of imagination. Its probably why the technology on Enterprise, at a basic level, never feels that primitive compared to the other series.
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Old February 3 2014, 12:30 AM   #2
USS Triumphant
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

Trade? Smugglers and even just regular merchants often know no borders, and Starfleet nor the Klingon Empire, at least, exactly seem to lock most of this stuff down - they seem to leave equipment behind pretty frequently, in fact.

The Vorta and Jem'Hadar seemed to have some different stuff. Perhaps that was also partially because of trade - in this case, a lack of it? There were also tech disparities and unusual equipment in the Delta Quadrant on Voyager.
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Old February 3 2014, 01:14 AM   #3
F. King Daniel
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

Gotham Central wrote: View Post
One of the things that kind of bugged me about the depiction of technology in the 24th was the total uniformity of the tech across all species and empires.

For instance, why was it necessary to have every species wear com badges in the shape of their national or service logos? Its nice that Starfleet has these badges, but why would the Klingons, Romulans or even Bajorans use the exact same tech?

Everyone uses tricorders, PADDs, touch screen computers, replicators etc. It would have been nice to see a little bit more variety. Even the Bajorans, who were said to be less technologically advanced to the Federation, seemed to use the same tech.

Not only that, but much of the technology is shown to be of equal size and power to their federation counterpart. Indeed the only way we ever know that technology is more "primitive" is if they told us so specifically in the dialogue. The technology usually looked the same regardless of the tech level.

I'm sure that simple production reasons for this, but it also seems to reflect a lack of imagination. Its probably why the technology on Enterprise, at a basic level, never feels that primitive compared to the other series.
You're right, it's unimaginative writing. Or maybe the same minds who decided EVERY Romulan must have a bowel cut and shoulder pads (even the lady running the soup kitchen on Romulus) thought we would be too dumb to understand if they made things different. It annoyed me, too.
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Old February 3 2014, 02:17 AM   #4
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

but not everyone had cloaking devices at the same time.
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Old February 3 2014, 02:41 AM   #5
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

I didn't think about it too much in TNG and DS9 because it was mostly the same species interacting with each other over and over again within the same quadrant (or two), so it's logical to expect some sort of information exchange.

But OP's point was *really* highlighted to me during Voyager. Essentially a new race/species almost every week, and the vast majority of them still had the beam/projectile/shield combo, same warp drives, same warp methods, etc. If Voyager couldn't fight their way out, technologies would still be compatible enough to pull off some sort of technobabble trick to turn the tables.
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Old February 3 2014, 03:15 AM   #6
The Wormhole
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

Cyke101 wrote: View Post
I didn't think about it too much in TNG and DS9 because it was mostly the same species interacting with each other over and over again within the same quadrant (or two), so it's logical to expect some sort of information exchange.

But OP's point was *really* highlighted to me during Voyager. Essentially a new race/species almost every week, and the vast majority of them still had the beam/projectile/shield combo, same warp drives, same warp methods, etc. If Voyager couldn't fight their way out, technologies would still be compatible enough to pull off some sort of technobabble trick to turn the tables.
IMO it's even worse in Enterprise when everyone is rewound technologically at the same point. EG, they now got back to push buttons, everyone now has plasma flat screen monitors and is using hand held communicators. Touchscreens are used as a means of indicating that this alien of the week is advanced.

It likely is related to production reasons, especially since half the time they reusing the same props, costumes, sets and ship designs.
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Old February 3 2014, 04:52 AM   #7
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
Or maybe the same minds who decided EVERY Romulan must have a bowel cut
Gross.
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Old February 3 2014, 05:24 AM   #8
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

It's unrealistically unimaginative, that's for sure. I can accept that technology among Federation planets would be somewhat uniform, due to information exchange between member species, but non-members?
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Old February 3 2014, 05:27 AM   #9
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

I got tired of virtually every alien control interface just being another Okudagram. It added another level of uniformity.
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Old February 3 2014, 10:25 AM   #10
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

I blame it on the Iotians. A hundred years after they got ahold of McCoy's communicator. They improved on it and made an assortment of related devices. Now they've cornered the non-Starfleet handheld electronic device market on most worlds in the Federation sphere of influence. They're always looking for that 'piece of the action'.
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Old February 3 2014, 02:31 PM   #11
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

Tosk wrote: View Post
King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
Or maybe the same minds who decided EVERY Romulan must have a bowel cut
Gross.
Sounds painful.
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Old February 3 2014, 02:47 PM   #12
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

I feel the same about logos. Borg, Federation, Cardassian, Ferengi - they all look like they were designed by the same designer, not a wild variety of different-thinking species.
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Old February 3 2014, 04:28 PM   #13
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

The ships (sometimes) had different styles of warp engines. Compare the Enterprise's to a bird of Prey's (I think they were in the wings).

And the warp nacelles on the Cardassian war ships engines were tiny compared to Starfleet's, perhaps indicating that in that area the Cardassians were more advanced than the Federation.


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Old February 3 2014, 09:19 PM   #14
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

It would make sense that warp technology was petty similar, since for normal 'warp' not transwarp etc, there's probably only one way to do it (OK the Romulans used a singularity power source rather than m/am, but that's the power, not the way the warp nacelles work), so the idea of getting spare parts off another race, or assisting a never-before-seen race with a broken-down ship seems reasonable.

I was under the impression that the nacelles on a Cardassian Galor class were in the 'blades', not the small nacelle-like appendeges at the back of the ship.

Forbin - a good few of the logos probably were designed by the same person, but agreed, it does look a little monotonous.

The only 'okudagram' dispaly that is nicely different is the Klingon one, which would indicate that the Klingons used a 3-axis 2D mathematical system, however some greater variation in display styles would have been more 'realistic'. I like the concept tho of the JemHadar control visor, aka 'Google Glass'. ANother sci-fi to reality moment.
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Old February 3 2014, 09:40 PM   #15
F. King Daniel
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Re: Why was technology so uniform in the 24th century?

LoneDragon wrote: View Post
Tosk wrote: View Post
King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
Or maybe the same minds who decided EVERY Romulan must have a bowel cut
Gross.
Sounds painful.
Oh my, what a typo. No wonder they're so cranky.
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