Thursday, January 31, 2008


I always enjoy reading essays and comments around the Internet that seem to subscribe to the Toobworld line of thought - i.e., that what we see on TV is an alternate universe and thus should be subjected to serious scrutiny as to its inner reality.

This is a post from a 'Star Trek' fan at

We have sentient computers, sentient holograms, FTL, teleportation technology, fusion technology, replicator technology and yet they still have human(oid)s push and pulling and carrying stuff about ships with nary a robot in sight. Forget Data-esque androids, how about basic droids? ...Sure, there was that whole M5 ... "incident" ... but is there some story or episode that explains why the robophobia? Is there some Butlerian war, some kind of Joshua incident, some kind of Skynet takeover attempt that explains why, not just Earthers, but the Klingons (altho they have a culture that kinda explains direct action), the Romulans, the Ferengi (less fellow Ferengi to share profits if you have robots), Betazoids, Andorians, Cardassians, Bajorians, Vulcans, pert near every alien encountered rarely if ever used robots, even the Borg are hybrid organic / technoid, why?

I feel a kinship with this guy!

Sure, there's probably a reality-based splainin behind the scenes. More than likely the use of robots was cost-prohibitive back in the sixties. But when such technology did seem to present itself in classic 'Trek', it was always treated with contempt - the androids and robots always turned out to be villainous or just generally harmful to humanoid life.

As someone else responded to that comment pointed out, perhaps the Skynet situation found on Earth Prime-Time was not limited to just that world. Perhaps other planets suffered through their own battles with Skynet-like organizations, and with Sentients and Synthetics, like in 'Odyssey 5'.

We did see initial suspicion and resentment towards Data in the early stages of 'Star Trek: The Next Generation'. Could this robo-bigotry have been carried over from earlier clashes between humans and robots?

Then again, it could all come down to the type of personality they had installed......

Tobor OB

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