Career Officer
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# 91
02-28-2013, 08:38 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by futurepastnow View Post
The Federation is an odd government. It asserts territorial control without asserting sovereignty over that territory.

This leads to some unusual situations like the Nausicaan and Orion homeworlds being inside the Federation but not in the Federation.

In those cases, a government like the Klingon Empire would say "we own your planet and there's nothing you can do about it," the Federation says "we don't own your planet, but we own everything around it and if you shape up you can join us."

I'm not sure this sort of governance would actually function in the face of hostiles inside its borders, TBH. But nobody ever claimed Star Trek was realistic.
Well, yeah. But then again, space is also three dimensional so I don't see any of the empires functioning very well with traditional notions of sovereignty.

And with the weapons and replicators present, once a culture has that technology (and you can replicate a replicator or there'd be no self-replicating mines), I'd think traditional empires like the Klingons or Romulans would be very difficult as subjugating a world with replicators is nigh impossible. So I'd be inclined to think that the bigger you are and the tighter control you maintain, the weaker you are... and there's little incentive to control planets anyway except for dilithium and latinum. And the big need for dilithium is in controlling the space ways.

The net result being, controlling boundaries would be more important than controlling worlds and controlling worlds is mainly about ship fuel to control spaceways. And controlling spaceways absolutely is difficult. Romulans and Cardassians therefore rely on controlling information and blackmail. The Federation tries to control spaceways and its strength comes from not having to expend much in the way of dilithium on policing, while having nearly limitless replicator resources. Meanwhile, the Klingons' approach always struck me as... well... making them weaker and weaker with each military action. Plundering is irrelevant with replicators. Recrystalizing dilithium makes having more dilithium more of a time advantage than an overall advantage.

I'm not sure that the Klingon style wars can be regarded as a net gain at all. It's sport at best, an expensive sport. As conquering planets never makes you stronger for doing so, only weaker. The only real advantage probably comes from stealing technology, which is I suppose how the Klingons get by, being basically a tougher and smarter version of the Pakleds. But I can't imagine the bulk of their efforts pay off and so they're hindering themselves.
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# 92
02-28-2013, 09:10 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by futurepastnow View Post
The Federation is an odd government. It asserts territorial control without asserting sovereignty over that territory.
Space, like open ocean, is not a territory that can be "held". You can only hold land, by occupying it with people, you can't hold ocean (or space) with ships. Planets (and starbases/outposts) are like islands in the ocean of space. You hold the planets, but the space in between is like open ocean.

I bet if you were to ask anyone actually in charge of canon, they would probably say that the ships in Star Trek work in this same way as current ocean-going naval vessels: A ship belonging to a sovereign state acts as an extended territory of that state when in the open ocean. All laws of the state the ship belongs to still apply while onboard that ship.

From HowStuffWorks.com:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Harris
Under international Freedom of Navigation laws, aircraft carriers and other warships are recognized as sovereign territories in almost all of the ocean. As long as a ship doesn't get too close to any nation's coast, the crew can carry on just like they're back home. So, while the U.S. military would have to make special arrangements with a foreign nation to set up a land military base, it can freely move a carrier battle group (an assembly of an aircraft carrier and six to eight other warships) all over the globe, just as if it were a little piece of the United States.

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# 93
02-28-2013, 09:26 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tacofangs View Post
Correct.

It is important to note that there are two independent, but related bodies here. The United Federation of Planets, and Starfleet.

The Federation is like the UN. Each subsidiary nation (or world in this case) can, and likely does, still have it's own means of production, and it's own ships. (Vulcan, Andorian, Caitian, etc.).
However, Starfleet is like NATO, it's an intergovernmental military force. Unlike NATO, Starfleet is the military wing of the UFP. Starfleet ships are what we are used to seeing (all the enterprises, etc.), but they are not the only ships within the Federation.
I think Starfleet has always been described as something more integrated than NATO. Starfleet is a Federation organisation, while NATO is a military alliance. The UN is a diplomatic forum while the Federation is an actual state with a government and citizenship.

I think the better approach with the Vulcan and Andorian designs is just to regard them as Starfleet ships from a different aesthetic tradition. The show had a limited budget and homocentricity (and ease of storytelling) meant that we mainly saw the Human side of Starfleet. The game has the ability to show this differently.

The D'Kyr should just be by default a Starfleet ship made by Vulcan shipyards; the Kumari the same by Andorians.

It opens up the possibility of expanding the variety of existing Starfleet ships. You could put a ring-warp-drive on the Deep Space Science Vessels and they'd look pretty natural for example...



And if you argue that that's not what was shown on Trek... well the racial diversity of Starfleet in STO is about a million times higher than the show ever portrayed too, but nobody complains.
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# 94
02-28-2013, 09:34 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stoleviathan99 View Post
And with the weapons and replicators present, once a culture has that technology (and you can replicate a replicator or there'd be no self-replicating mines), I'd think traditional empires like the Klingons or Romulans would be very difficult as subjugating a world with replicators is nigh impossible.
Replicators are not magic; They take energy run and raw material to form into useful objects; And some objects are either too complicated to make (long chain molecules; the reason why replicated food doesn't taste quite like the real thing) or the stuff that makes it up can't be manipulated by a replicator (like latinum). Governments in Star Trek would work just like they do today: Organizations which live and die by the control of resources.

It has never been stated where the empires in Star Trek get their antimatter from. Good Fiction never breaks more rules (physics in Sci-Fi's case) than is necessary. Therefore it can be assumed star empires control antimatter production facilities which orbit stars and mine gas giants for fusion reactor fuel (and mine dead planets, asteroids, etc, for raw materials).

Having a replicator is nice, but all it does is shift around what work needs to be done. Most efforts will be shifted to resource gathering since you don't need Ford or Honda to make your car for you, but you still need the designers from Ford or Honda to make new car designs.
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# 95
02-28-2013, 09:36 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by atatassault View Post
Replicators are not magic; They take energy run and raw material to form into useful objects; And some objects are either too complicated to make (long chain molecules; the reason why replicated food doesn't taste quite like the real thing) or the stuff that makes it up can't be manipulated by a replicator (like latinum). Governments in Star Trek would work just like they do today: Organizations which live and die by the control of resources.
Replicators do not require raw materials to function. They're matter-energy conversion units, not magic smelting machines.
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# 96
02-28-2013, 09:41 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stoleviathan99 View Post
Spock's ship in Star Trek 2009 (the jellyfish) was built by Vulcans and designed in large part by Geordi La Forge during a break he took from Starfleet and was, hence, not a Starfleet ship.

Just a side note as I've seen discussion on the point:

I believe the STO timeline for Geordi goes something like this and does deviate from the novels: Served on the Enterprise-E for around 6-7 years after Nemesis and married a widowed Leah Brahms, having three kids with her. Geordi took an assignment to resurrect Data by overwriting B4. This was an assignment at the Soong Institute that Bruce Maddox quit in disgust over because it violated B4's rights. Geordi was blinded by his desire to see his friend again. In the end they saved B4 by backing him up to a holodeck but Data was deeply upset with Geordi. Geordi, depressed, quit Starfleet and his marriage fell apart. He was pulled in by Spock to design the Jellyfish for the Vulcan Science Council. He decided to resume his Starfleet career and took command of the Galaxy-class U.S.S. Challenger, where he married his (still unnamed) chief engineer and they served together as husband and wife. He is theoretically still in command of the Challenger to this day after around 15 years of service there.
None of that is canon because it was in a comic book, even the writers of the movie have said this.

So based on what was seen in Star Trek XI, the Jellyfish is completely Vulcan.
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# 97
02-28-2013, 09:47 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by walshicus View Post
And if you argue that that's not what was shown on Trek... well the racial diversity of Starfleet in STO is about a million times higher than the show ever portrayed too, but nobody complains.
As it should be. The shows had their own reasons for portraying a majority of human crewmembers. They also had some restrictions due to finances/technology to implement more diversity.
STO as a game is liberated of those restrictions and this is a good thing. I hope noone seriosely believes that a vast majority of Starfleet officers consists only of humans, while there are so many other worlds and civilizations that are members of the Federation.
Show your support for the Revamped Galaxy Class Exploration Cruiser here!
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# 98
02-28-2013, 09:51 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stirling191 View Post
Replicators do not require raw materials to function. They're matter-energy conversion units, not magic smelting machines.
It was never mentioned on the show, but the tech manuals state they require material.
Career Officer
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# 99
02-28-2013, 10:04 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by atatassault View Post
Replicators are not magic; They take energy run and raw material to form into useful objects; And some objects are either too complicated to make (long chain molecules; the reason why replicated food doesn't taste quite like the real thing) or the stuff that makes it up can't be manipulated by a replicator (like latinum). Governments in Star Trek would work just like they do today: Organizations which live and die by the control of resources.

It has never been stated where the empires in Star Trek get their antimatter from. Good Fiction never breaks more rules (physics in Sci-Fi's case) than is necessary. Therefore it can be assumed star empires control antimatter production facilities which orbit stars and mine gas giants for fusion reactor fuel (and mine dead planets, asteroids, etc, for raw materials).

Having a replicator is nice, but all it does is shift around what work needs to be done. Most efforts will be shifted to resource gathering since you don't need Ford or Honda to make your car for you, but you still need the designers from Ford or Honda to make new car designs.
They kindof are in that they have eradicated scarcity.

There is no such thing as scarcity in the Star Trek universe except:

- Pre-warp cultures
- When the limitless resources (the only limited resources being time and latinum, basically) are somehow artificially withheld.

Replicators don't require finite resources to operate. This is one of the core problems with most attempts to depict war in Trek is that they constantly fudge this aspect of the universe.

In TOS, you had dilithium as scarce. But by TNG, dilithium was shifted to become infinitely replenishable because TNG was supposed to be completely devoid of resource scarcity.

I know some people think that's just silly and that Trek needs to stay more grounded in a modern mentality but I really think a key to strong sci-fi work is being forced to incorporate unreasonable or unrelatable ideas.

As-is, we do have modern theories of post-scarcity or scarcity-free economics... and I think warfare in Trek needs to incorporate the idea of scarcity free warfare. Which means, among other things, fights should not REALLY be over physical resources and doing so overrelies on the mcguffin that something can't be replicated.
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# 100
02-28-2013, 10:05 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuskin67 View Post
None of that is canon because it was in a comic book, even the writers of the movie have said this.

So based on what was seen in Star Trek XI, the Jellyfish is completely Vulcan.
It's part of STO's backstory, canon or not.

And most of what I typed up came from STO, not the COUNTDOWN comic.
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