"Ahead, Space Normal Speed"

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by NuFan, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. vulcan redshirt

    vulcan redshirt Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    A bit like 'standard orbit' which we hear in TNG and beyond and is never defined, perhaps space normal speed is reference to following a normal procedure for the type of space the ship is in, without resorting to on-screen technobabble.

    Perhaps there are various 'speed limits' for different types of space, for example, joining or leaving orbit, where heavy space traffic is present, in proximity to asteroid fields / gaseous anomalies etc as well as interstellar space.

    Re 0.5 warp, full impulse is significantly slower than lightspeed, and is not 0.99 lightspeed so if there is a need to travel at 0.5 lightspeed, the 0.5 warp would be the only way to do it. Also don't we only hear that during the acceleration phase anyway?
     
  2. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Not if the point is to test the new warp engines...

    The only (but major) problem I have with this is that "standard orbit" is heard in virtually every episode, while "space normal" in virtually none - suggesting that the former is indeed "standard" but there is nothing "normal" about the latter.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  3. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    Perhaps it's some standard that is commonly applied to civilian and merchant vessels, but something Starfleet vessels don't normally bother with except in certain circumstances.
     
  4. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    So basically, Kirk is telling Ferris that he is obeying the no-waves rule applying to marina areas... :devil:

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  5. Vandervecken

    Vandervecken Captain Captain

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    That's a job requirement for Commissioners in TOS.
     
  6. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Timo...that is an excellent point. I wasn't thinking in terms of the engines being brand spanking new!

    Although... now it's got me wondering just how finely-tuned they can set their speeds. Can warp engines be used to drive them below light speed? Would it basically be like cutting a pizza with a circular saw?

    Here's another one to chew on, from Elaan of Troyius:

    KIRK: Mister Chekov, lay in a course for Troyius. Mister Sulu, impulse drive, speed factor point zero three seven.
    SULU: Impulse drive, Captain?
    KIRK: Yes, that's correct, Mister Sulu. Sublight factor point zero three seven.

    I always thought that was a weirdly specific speed...

    Metaphorically, that works for me! :)
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Probably - which is why it's only done this once.

    (Or does Sulu fiddle with his throttle lever for sublight movement in the nuMovies, too?)

    Intriguing indeed. Did Kirk perhaps calculate the minimum travel time Ambassador Petri needs to educate the feral ruleress, and make sure that the trip with the wild thing aboard won't last a minute longer than that?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I think the audience is supposed to figure that Kirk did some arithmetic before walking onto the bridge and giving that .037 order.

    Also, I think the speed the writers picked is a little too fast, if it's 3.7% of the speed of light. For one thing, going that fast through normal space might get you into time dilation. And if the two planets are say 30 million miles apart, you'd get to Troyius in only 72 minutes.

    Edit: the two planets could have been many times that far apart.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2014
  9. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    You won't get any serious time dilation unless you're going a lot faster. 3.7 percent of light is nothing. Even at fifty percent light time dilation is only about three percent. You've got to be doing eighty to ninety percent light to get some truly serious time dilation.
     
  10. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    I guess Kirk could have planned on taking the scenic route, with one hundred and fifty-eight loops around the local sun. Perhaps .037 was the lowest speed he dared suggest, lest some regulation or another be broken and an explanatory log entry be required? That is, it might be that at .036 c target speed or lower, impulse engines have a measurable (if practically meaningless) risk of some sort of subspatial overheating and the regulations therefore draw a line there, one that Kirk quotes, and everybody recognizes the quote for what it is.

    Or then this "factor" business doesn't mean anything as simple as multiplying c with the value...

    How far apart could the two planets be if the two lifeforms are both native and pretty similar in life support requirements? The star might be a giant, with a correspondingly vast Goldilocks zone around her - or then one or both of the homeworlds are in fact moons to local almost-stars and sustain life because of local Goldilocks zones rather than the systemwide one.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  11. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    Elaas and Troyius both giving rise to intelligent life and advanced civilizations seems really far fetched if they're both in the same system or even the same binary or trinary system. Maybe one or both of the planets were seeded in the far past.
     
  12. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Honestly I don't think he was. He was genuinely concerned about the health of the plague victims in the New Paris colonies:

    FERRIS: I remind you, Captain, I'm entirely opposed to this delay. Your mission is to get those emergency medical supplies to Makus Three in time for their transfer to the New Paris colonies.
    KIRK: No problem, Commissioner. And may I remind you that I have standing orders to investigate all quasars and quasar-like phenomena wherever they may be encountered. Besides, it's three days to Makus. And the rendezvous doesn't take place for five.
    FERRIS: I don't like to take chances. The plague is out of control on New Paris. We must get those drugs there on time.

    KIRK: We have until 2823.8 to continue the search, Commissioner.
    FERRIS: You don't really think you'll have any luck, do you?
    KIRK: Look, these people are my friends and my shipmates. I intend to continue the ship's search for them until the last possible moment.

    It's like "The needs of the few outweigh the needs of the many" for Kirk, while for Ferris it is "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few".

    We are biased on behalf of our characters, while Ferris looks at the big picture and rather sacrifices 7 on behalf of 70 or 700 plague death victims, IMHO.

    I think right from the start Kirk is somewhat too over-ambitious, that Quasar wouldn't have gone anywhere and there'd be a later opportunity to study it. And once things went south, Kirk would have probably been the one responsible, had they not recovered the survivors.

    At least he immediately ordered "Warp factor one" after the Galileo survivors had been aboard.

    Bob
     
  13. Vandervecken

    Vandervecken Captain Captain

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    http://trekcore.com/tos/hd/albums/1x16hd/thegalileosevenhd055.jpg
    It wasn't just what he said and did, although holding Kirk to the exact second wasn't going to gain him any points with the audience. It was his facial expressions. From his face, it was clear he was relishing every opportunity to tell Kirk his crew and friends had to die (he said he didn't, but it was so obvious he did). He was smiling as he watched Kirk desperately trying to find the shuttlecraft.

    Pushing around a starship captain was all that was really important to him--that's what I saw. And he absolutely didn't give a crap about Spock and the rest. Look at this guy!


    [​IMG]
     
  14. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I don't judge people by their facial expressions but by their words and deeds.

    To me it just seemed that Ferris was enjoying that the renowned starship Captain James Tiberius Kirk had made a mistake and was in a predicament to resolve the situation. More along the lines "See, I told you from the beginning it was a bad idea but you just wouldn't listen. I was right and you were wrong".

    Bob
     
  15. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Indeed, it takes some doing for the audience to side with Kirk in this episode... The writers were clever enough to set this up as a rendezvous deadline, meaning that Kirk would win nothing by reaching his destination too early, and could thus at least initially defend his weird decision to stop for sightseeing. But it does make one wonder: if the crisis really were that severe, why could the Enterprise not take the medicine all the way?

    I mean, we can postulate all sorts of good reasons why that other ship could not arrive earlier, or could not meet Kirk closer to Murasaki, because we know nothing about that ship or her mission. But we do know about Kirk's...

    The only reason I can suggest is that Makus III is already relatively far away, yet the New Paris colonies are at the other edge of the universe, and Kirk won't be able to go that far, despite the fact that he often takes multi-hundred-lightyear side tours on his own account; the scheduled supply run is the only one Starfleet can afford to send for the multi-month trip, from Makus III onwards. But if New Paris is that far away, travel time -wise, then why not delay the departure of the supply ship by a few days, which represent only a fraction of the total time and won't mean much to anybody?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  16. Vandervecken

    Vandervecken Captain Captain

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    I could understand if you'd stopped at deeds, but why not judge by body language and facial expressions as much as words? They tell a helluva lot about a person's motivations, as much if not more than words, which are frequently lies that are brought to light by such facial expressions and body language.

    I don't disagree with your description of Ferris' motives that much, but how is that description laudable? He didn't care about the shuttlecraft crew, and he didn't really care about the plague victims either. He cared about getting his jollies from pushing around Kirk.
     
  17. Marsden

    Marsden Commodore Commodore

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    This is a bit off the original post but relevant to discussing Kirk's attitude and body language of the Commissioner.

    I don't really think Ferris was wrong about what he wanted but he did seem a little too much like he was enjoying Kirk's problem, saying he sympathizes with out and sympathy.

    What I always thought was strange was the news they rescued five people and Kirk is just sooo happy, he didn't ask who. Uhura reamed out Spock when he didn't ask about one death, no one questions Kirk. I know it didn't happen, but could you even imagine the two that didn't return were Spock and Bones? Five survivors fits that, too.

    While I like the episode, I think Space Normal Speed is just an artifact of this episode not being as good as it should have been.
     
  18. Timewalker

    Timewalker Cat-lovin', Star Trekkin' Time Lady Premium Member

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    Pretty much like any politician manages it.
     
  19. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Five survivors whoever they are is better than none.

    He was obeying the letter of the order, and besides I suspect Kirk knew that his ship could easily make up some of the lost time. Sure the Enterrprise's top speed might be rated at Warp 7, but from experiance Kirk knew he could get Warp 7.5 or so.

    Plus of course he could have been making a point to Ferris that he (Kirk) is the master of this ship.
     
  20. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    ...Also, from the treknological point of view, we must consider that Kirk had a warp-capable starship beneath his butt all along, yet chose to send mere shuttlecraft to survey the nearby star systems. He no doubt had a damn good reason for this - and we can guess the reason was that the big starship was at considerable risk when maneuvering inside or close to the Murasaki effect.

    When Kirk gives the order to go to warp one, he's as close to Murasaki as he dares to, a few minutes of feet-dragging notwithstanding. Hitting warp six right there might rip the ship to confetti, or burn out her engines, or at the very least attract the attention of another magnetic sleigh ride of the sort that originally displaced the Galileo.

    Timo Saloniemi
     

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