We like the new “Star Trek” movies better than the old ones

Tuesday, 8 April, 2014

Ranking the so far twelve “Star Trek” movies by their IMDb rating, reveals fans of the sci-fi franchise have a clear preference for the two “re-booted”, or most recent features, as inspired by the original TV series.

It’s interesting to see the first “Trek” film, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, that was met with – to put it mildly – a mixed reception, appears to have almost the best box office take of the lot. I think that has much to do with its nostalgic appeal at the time of its 1979 release.

I wonder how the upcoming “Star Wars” films will fare, compared to the earlier installments of the saga, in this regard?

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The economics of the “Star Trek” universe, it’s a free for all

Friday, 29 November, 2013

I’ve seen a fair few “Star Trek” episodes and movies, but cannot recall seeing any of the crew shopping, dining out, or in situations where they are required to fork out money for goods and services. The exception may be when they’ve time travelled into the past, but no transactions appear to take place in the twenty-third century or beyond.

As Captain Kirk tells us during “Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home” though, they don’t use money in their time. If that’s the case, what might a… non-monetary “Star Trek” world look like, if we were part of it? In a word, idealistic would sum it up. Apparently everyone has, or is provided with, everything that they need:

In Star Trek, most economic value is created by essentially free goods. That is the simple explanation as to why we don’t see money exchanged. That is the point of free. But more to the point, one has to think about how much is free in terms of allocations. Researchers on happiness like Justin Wolfers, in my reading, seem to indicate that once we have about $100 million in wealth (based on today’s goods), that is about as happy as people can get. Marginal utility is effectively zero in wealth beyond that point. In Star Trek, at least the closer you get to Sector 001 (or the Solar System), everyone has what, in today’s terms, would be $100 million or more in wealth. The free goods that are provided from housing to technology to services and to Earth and Earth orbit transportation are what would $100 millionaires can get today. They may be the very same humans who are motivated by wealth acquisition as we have today but the economic problem of “not enough to go around” has been solved up to the level of a saturation point.

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There’s no planet, or moon, by the name of Vulcan in this system

Wednesday, 10 July, 2013

A while back, two more moons were discovered orbiting dwarf planet Pluto (how a planetary body with several decent size satellites can be considered “dwarf” is beyond me, but I digress), giving the far flung member of the solar system a total, so far, of five moons.

Recently a poll was held to name these newly found companions, but the most popular choice, Vulcan, was rejected in favour of the second and third alternatives, Cerberus and Styx. As a name, Vulcan is apparently lacking in underworld connotations, or so we are told.

Fans of the “Star Trek” sci-fi TV and film series however will know Vulcan is the name of the planet Mr Spock hails from, so it seems to me the title is better left reserved for a Vulcan-like exoplanet, provided its host system is uninhabited that is, that we may one day find, rather than being applied to a moon.

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Here be the light at the end of Star Trek’s five year mission

Tuesday, 2 July, 2013

I’ve often wondered what might happen at the end, or the limit, of the original “Star Trek” screensaver, that sometimes goes by the name “Starfield”… at least you’d have spent a good twenty years zapping through the cosmos before you found yourself in this situation

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Somewhere out there Star Trek’s five year mission continues

Monday, 17 June, 2013

Star Trek Continues, as the name kind of suggests, is a fan made extension of the original 1960’s “Star Trek” sci-fi television series, that picks up where the TV show left off, three years into the illustrious five year mission.

Obviously the actors playing the original show’s well known characters differ, but its essence, I think you will find, remains very much intact.

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Learn Klingon and never be lost in translation again

Monday, 27 May, 2013

I’m not quite sure what to make of the latest Star Trek film Into Darkness, it could be I need to take another look at it, but now that the Klingons have made an entrance into the series, it might be an idea to learn a little of their language:

This is the word for “no”: ghobe’. Try it. No, no, further back in the throat. The ‘gh’ should be almost like a gargle. And what is this “beeehhh”? Are you a sheep? The word ends with a glottal stop. The mark is there for a reason. Close the back of throat abruptly as soon as the vowel escapes – be’! Cut it off like a guillotine!

Sure the Klingons’ words are subtitled, but it seems these captions only tell part of the story. I recently saw a film where someone speaking English was, for some reason, being subtitled in English. What interested me though was the amount of dialogue, admittedly not a great deal, that was not included in the captions.

At least this sort of thing now need not be a problem with future “Stat Trek” movies, as far as the Klingons are concerned anyway.

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Only Spock could possibly drive two cars at the same time

Tuesday, 14 May, 2013

I don’t usually link to car adverts, but an exception ought to be made in this instance, as both Leonard Nimoy, and Zachary Quinto, who do, or have, played Spock on “Star Trek”, reunite once more onscreen.

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This phaser is a laser Jim, but not a laser as we know it

Wednesday, 27 March, 2013

Laser, or energy guns, called phasers, were often carried by the starship crews seen in sci-fi TV/film series “Star Trek”, and now it looks like we’ve finally caught up following the arrival of an actual phaser. The purpose, and more crucially, the way these phasers work, somewhat differs from what we’ve seen up until now however:

Using a nanoscale drum, scientists have built a laser that uses sound waves instead of light like a conventional laser. Because laser is an acronym for “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation,” these new contraptions – which exploit particles of sound called phonons – should properly be called phasers. Such devices could one day be used in ultrasound medical imaging, computer parts, high-precision measurements, and many other places.

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I doubt the new Star Trek film is a remake of “The Wrath of Khan”

Monday, 25 March, 2013

Star Trek Into Darkness, the second installment of the J.J. Abrams made “Star Trek” reboot movies, opens in Australian cinemas on 9 May… that’s less than two months away, and if the latest trailer is anything to go by, it’ll be one high-octane experience to say the least.

So what to say? Always outgunned, always outnumbered, but never out done?

Now all I have to do is somehow score a ticket to a preview screening… and ok, I’ll even wear a tux if I have to.

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Star Trek: still no where near reaching the final frontier’s limits

Tuesday, 12 February, 2013

I wonder if Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry had the remotest idea, or even gave the notion the slightest thought, that the now iconic sci-fi show would still be going strong almost 50 years after its inception?

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