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Peter G.
Sat, Mar 25, 2017, 11:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S3: Fascination

You tell 'em, Vii.

That being said, I now know one person who literally watched this as their very first ep of DS9 and concluded that it was a stupid show, never to watch it again. So there is that :/
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Peter G.
Wed, Mar 22, 2017, 9:25am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Profit and Lace

Whew! I was nervous there for a moment when I thought we might not get Okrad's star rating, but there it is and the day is saved.

I sometimes feel glimmers of what it must be like to run this site, and all the care Jammer has put into it. I don't know how exactly what his experience is of reading all the various kinds of comments people leave, but I know in his place when reading the comment section my finger would be twitching over the delete button at times.
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Peter G.
Mon, Mar 20, 2017, 12:45am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Sacrifice of Angels

@ Jason R.,

I got the distinct impression from the episodes leading up to this one, and especially from this one, that the moment the mine field came down the war was instantly over, period end of story. The allied forces could barely hold their own against the Cardassians and Dominion fleets already in the Alpha Quadrant. If thousands of ships came through the wormhole it would likely have led to a swift surrender after they trampled through a few key Federation and Klingon worlds.

I do think this could have been stated a bit more clearly from Starfleet's side, but from the 'DS9 underground' side they do make it fairly clear that everything was riding on the minefield staying up long enough for the Federation to retake DS9. Once the minefield came down AND the Defiant got there too late to stop it, the game was simply over. In Sisko's position I could certainly sympathize with a realization of "it's all over" when realizing that in a few short moments the Federation forces were about to be vastly outnumbered. Regrouping with the fleet would have done nothing, and Sisko may have even seen it as his own failure that it even got that far in the first place. Committing suicide via kamikaze attack might be 'irrational' but I wouldn't at all call it insane. Sisko's life was effectively over either way, and perhaps more importantly, he was never going to be able to save Bajor from the Dominion. Suicide at that point wouldn't have been jumping the gun; the war was lost the moment the minefield came down - except for the intervention of the Prophets.

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Peter G.
Sun, Mar 19, 2017, 3:09pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Sacrifice of Angels

Consider the possibility that Sisko had lost all hope by the time he entered the wormhole and his decision to attack the enemy fleet alone was simply an intentional suicide run rather than be captured by the Dominion. The reason the prophets interrupted wasn't to 'help' Sisko win but rather because he had decided to die and they still had plans for him. You will note that they accuse him of deciding to "end the game", which of course means they foresee his decision to die.
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Peter G.
Fri, Mar 17, 2017, 1:09am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S2: The Emissary

@ K9T,

"Since space is a near-perfect vacuum, it cannot conduct heat, therefore space is a perfect INSULATOR, meaning it's almost impossible to let off heat. Only through radiation is it possible (aside from gathering the heat into special repositories through conduction/convection and jettisoning them into space) to release heat energy. "

Sorry to nitpick, but this is incorrect. Your comment that a vacuum cannot *conduct* heat is technically accurate, but your conclusion that a vacuum is therefore a perfect insulator is inaccurate because conduction is not the only means of heat transfer. Electromagnetic radiation can transfer through a vacuum just fine, and 'heat energy' (aka infrared radiation) as well as various types of high-energy EM radiation can certainly move through vacuum easily. In fact the lack of a need for a conductor through which these move was a problem for physicists in the early 20th century and they felt the need at the time to posit the existence of an "ether" which was the universal conductor through which they felt the EM waves had to pass. So yes, a 'hot' object in space would certainly emit radiation and would become 'cooler' over time. Not only particles fly around through space; there is also all kinds of EM radiation including X-rays and gamma rays, which are quite dangerous to life, thus requiring either an atmosphere or technology to protect us from them.
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Peter G.
Mon, Mar 13, 2017, 9:29am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S3: Is There In Truth No Beauty?

@ Skeptical,

I think that's an incorrect grammatical reading of the title; it's not about beauty, it's about truth. It asks "if the truth itself not beautiful", and is likely meant to address the notion of outward hideousness and whether a human being can find enough beauty to get by without the outward affect of what we think of as the beautiful. This is certainly relevant to the Medusan himself, where there is the potential to have a loving relationship with someone so ugly we can't even look at them. There's something about focus on the inward person in this, and something about blindness as well, since while we typically think of "beauty" as being relegated to the visual sense, blind people obviously find other things fulfillingly beautiful in others even if we wouldn't think to call them beautiful at first glance.

The other interpretation of the question of whether the truth might be beautiful, is when the truth is something unpleasant. If you love someone and they don't (or can't) love you back, normally we call that a bad situation, or a 'failure', or something to that effect. But we might well ask whether we should consider the truth to always be a beautiful thing, as it is nothing more or less than reality. As such, even learning 'bad news' such as that our love is unrequited might be seen in an objective sense as still being a beautiful truth, since the reality of a thing ought to be more important than what we would like the thing to be. Trek is about exploration and discovery, and there is no "bad" discovery out there, even if some of it results in unpleasantness.
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Peter G.
Sun, Mar 12, 2017, 12:32am (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

Oh man, sorry about the typo from the phone :/

That bad sentence should read as: " Especially so when considering some of Kirk's awesome abilities, and then realizing there could be other incredibly talented people around but without his unflinching dedication to Federation ideals."
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Peter G.
Sat, Mar 11, 2017, 11:34pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

"Whom Gods Destroy" also wasn't one of my all-time favorite, but it really is a striking episode in hindsight because it almost directly showcases how much raw power a starship Captain had and what could happen if that power was abused. Especially so when considering some of Kirk's awesome abilities, and then realizing there could be other incredibly talented people aren't but without his unflinching dedication to Federal ideals. The episode doesn't exactly paint it in this tone, but it's sort of a bizarro-captain episode, like an evil version of the almighty Starfleet officer.

However I will say that Garth becomes much more memorable once you've watched the trailor they made for Axanar, which I recommend viewing if you haven't already. The trailor alone is better quality than the last couple of Trek features (and series).
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Peter G.
Fri, Mar 10, 2017, 1:17pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: Discovery

@ Robert,

"I'm calling that he's evil and she either has to mutiny or he gets promoted to evil admiral before the end of S1."

Since we're already worried that Discovery is going to be ripping off Axanar's story, let's at least hope for the best if they actually do that. If the captain is evil, maybe we should go all-in and hope that he's going to be Garth of Izar? That would be a cool role for Isaacs to play, as it could cover the spectrum of 'noble war hero' to 'on the road to madness.'
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Peter G.
Tue, Mar 7, 2017, 9:18am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Sub Rosa

@ Sven,

I read the review and reader comments that you linked, and I think there is a plausible alternative explanation beyond what you gave. It's possible the credited author did, in fact, write a spec scrip, as, according to her user comment, her version only had a couple of similarities to "The Witching Hour" (it being Scottish, and it being about a doctor). What might have happened then is Braga and Taylor read the script and said to themselves "Oh wow! This is just like that great Anne Rice book we read, let's change a few things so it's more like that! We already have the Scottish thing, after all!! lulz"

I would not put it past Braga to do something like that, and moreover, I don't really see why Anne Rice would want one of her beloved stories done on an hourly basis for a show that has nothing to do with her typical mythos. I mean, it's possible of course, but equally possible (despite the "Gallo" pun) that Braga and Taylor are the plagiarists and that the original spec script only had a passing similarity.
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Peter G.
Wed, Mar 1, 2017, 1:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: Star Trek: The Motion Picture

Great review, Mark. I do think it's helpful to think of TMP as being good science fiction rather than underwhelming Trek. Putting this in a category with 2001: A Space Odyssey makes more sense to me than grouping it with Star Trek: TOS or Star Wars.
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Peter G.
Tue, Feb 28, 2017, 9:37am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: The Omega Directive

@ Jason R.,

The fact that you felt obliged to call it "unobtanium" is exactly the issue here. They may as well have called it the magical philosopher's stone, only found in the land of the wizards. In science there isn't going to be some magical element only found in one star system in the galaxy, that even the Borg can't synthesize or find. Normal matter would be exceedingly easy to create using other elements, and if this is some kind of abnormal matter (exotic matter, subspace whatever, etc.) it seems inconceivable that it could ever be 'found' by anyone who didn't know how to go to the weird places where it could be found, since they'd lack the technology.

It would be like saying that some guy at a lab at MIT just 'came across' some exotic matter that can only be found in wormholes. Oh really?
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Peter G.
Sat, Feb 25, 2017, 8:36am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S2: The Ultimate Computer

@ William,

I wonder whether Daystrom going insane might be intended to mean something more than merely that the machine had a faulty programmer. One of the classic sci-fi elements to an AI dystopia is not that the machines fail, but that they entirely succeed in fulfilling their role. What happens is that instead of machines helping man to achieve his dreams instead they serve as an excuse to stop pursuing them altogether. Instead of helping man to think, they give him an excuse to stop thinking and to turn over his free will and volition to them. From the start I think we get the impression that Daystrom is not only excited about the technology itself, but seems to actually be excited at the prospect of humans being replaced by computers; it's almost a self-destructive fantasy coming to life. As he goes mad towards the end, almost in tandem with the AI, my sense is that this might mean not that he was always flawed, but rather that he had by this time placed all of his hopes into the AI and was dependent on it. When it began to fail he began to fail. We don't know his backstory here and can only guess, but what if he had already been using AI to help guide him? What if the computer itself had assisted his research and maybe even given him the idea to put it in command of a starship? The idea that he had become a servant to a machine could indeed make him become unhinged. Of course this is my own imagining, but broadly speaking I think the sci-fi world was already becoming acquainted with the notion that letting machines take over out thinking for us not only poses a danger due to the machines themselves, but also in allowing us to become dependent on them for everything.

As a complete aside, I'm not sure that the correct interpretation of 2001: A Space Odyssey is that HAL malfunctioned. True, that's the prevailing understanding, but my suspicion, especially knowing how Kubrick thought, is that HAL was programmed to deliberately turn on the crew so that it could contact the aliens by itself and report directly to whomever programmed it, without the crew blabbing.
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Peter G.
Sat, Feb 25, 2017, 8:22am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Profit and Loss

@ Vii,

I would consider the possibility that Garak engineered the entire affair with the sole intention of using the "escaping dissidents" as a pretext to kill Toran and get away with it. If he had eliminated him without pretext his safety on DS9 might be in question, but in the presence of Natima and the others he created his smokescreen so that Central Command could never be sure exactly under what circumstances Toran died. From the minute Toran walked into Garak's shop it was clear they had been enemies before, and after the two of them 'agree' to capture the dissidents Toran walks out, and you can see a little smile appear on Garak's face. One can perhaps interpret this as him hoping to go home, but my guess is that he had just come up with a way to eliminate one of his enemies safely. From what we later see in the series (SPOILER) between him and Tain, eliminating enemies seems to be a premium pleasure for them. I don't think Garak would have trusted Toran for a moment anyhow to follow up on his offer to help him get home. I do think the initially Garak notified the Central Command to curry some favor with them, and also to effect a prisoner exchange in order to curry favor with Bajor, Sisko and Kira. But once Toran came on board his plan changed altogether.
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Peter G.
Fri, Feb 24, 2017, 12:07am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S2: The Ultimate Computer

@ Skeptical,

You may argue that the episode didn't create the greatest case for man over computers, but I think you would be wrong to suggest that it failed to create a case altogether.

The point of the episode isn't just that Kirk is smarter than the computer, or that no computer can match a human in creativity. That may or may not be true, but it isn't exactly the point. TOS always has as a running theme that logic and computation alone isn't enough to make a great person or a great society; this is reflected repeatedly in the Kirk-Spock-Bones trio. Kirk isn't just logic, but is logic coupled with humanity and compassion (Bones + Spock = Kirk). The fact that the episode (as usual) ends with the computer being 'outsmarted' is a tidy way to wrap things up, and I agree that it's a weaker ending than it should have had. But the wrap-up isn't really the point as I see it. The point is that a machine will follow its logic to the end and have any fallback position grounded in compassion, sympathy, or feeling. It's sort of like a psychopath, if you will, in that it will not have internal mechanisms to stop it doing bad things if they seem best.

Now, it's true that if the programming is good then the output should be ok too, and likewise if there is a bug (a la Skynet) things will go pear shaped and the computer will not be able to be reasoned with past that point. But more to the point, the Trek theme is TOS is that advancing humanity isn't about technology or capabilities, but primarily about advancing values and how we treat each other. This is an area in which the inclination to push capability will not only be a sidetrack to advancing humanity but will in fact hinder it if pursued incorrectly. Take, for instance, the eugenic wars, where in an effort to 'advance humanity' in capability a monster was created instead. Likewise here, where a captain more sophisticated than a human is created to obsolete humans, just as Khan wished to obsolete homo inferior. The danger outlined in "The Ultimate Computer" is along these lines, and although it didn't fully realize the treatment of this issue I do think it's in there and is still pertinent to this day; maybe more so than even it was in the 60's, when human obsolescence was still science fiction.
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Peter G.
Thu, Feb 23, 2017, 9:52am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Offspring

@ philosopher-animal,

I think it's meant to be factually true that Data doesn't experience emotions; it's not just a whitewash of real emotions he does feel but aren't identical to the human ones. I think a tendency in episodes like "The Most Toys" to attribute Data's actions to an emotional desire for revenge is ironic, because a lot of the appeal of Data is in the fact that he's written in such a way that we can project our feelings onto him, and since he's not exuding any feelings our projection is never contradicted. He can be a placeholder for us, in a sense, which is very interesting. But on the other hand this doesn't mean that emotions we may instinctively attribute to him (by imagining ourselves in his position) are actually felt by him.

I agree that the crux of "The Offspring" is in Crusher's implication that Data does love Lal, but the reason this is crucial isn't because he actually does experience emotions; it's because real love isn't an emotion but rather a choice and an action. Acting lovingly IS love, rather than merely being a sign of it. The 'loving' emotions can feel very important and even overwhelming to a human, but it is the desire for the good of another that is the hallmark of love, and in that Data certainly does love Lal as well as anyone could love someone else. That's one of the reasons I find the episode so touching - that someone even bereft of all the rewards that normally stimulate our behavior (positive feedback mechanisms like endorphin release and hormones) can still live out a loving relationship, and in Data's case maybe even better than we can since he additionally lacks fear and selfishness. By the end I feel more sorry for him that he can't grieve for Lal than even the fact that he lost her.
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Peter G.
Thu, Feb 23, 2017, 9:38am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: The Return of the Archons

This morning I watched the first half of the episode for the first time in many years. I was struck by a few things I never noticed before. For one thing, the manner of calling the citizens members of "the body" is an automatic Christianity reference, implying "body of Christ", which is a term for the Church. Looking at the episode from memory I remembered thinking it was about communism as Jammer suggested, but watching it again made it clear that it was meant to be a Christian community. The tone of the citizens support the idea that they are supposed to be Christians, on account of the apparent mindless glee on their faces, the 'vacant minds', the friendliness (at first glance), and the absolute requirement to take in strangers and put them up for the night. This strikes me as exactly the way someone critical of some aspects of Christianity would view a Christian community, and especially so for the fact that everyone was brainwashed by a central authority.

To hammer in the point that this is about Christians (and how new members are 'absorbed' rather than killed if possible) we have the "red hour", which seems to me clearly to imply the pandemonium and violence associated with communism. In Russia, for instance, communism was ostensibly a response to a very Christian society, where all of the old values were turned on their head through force and mayhem. Within the context of the literal details in the episode Festival serves to vent the frustrated energies of the people, while on the interpretive side it seems to imply that when you enforce an unnaturally perfect behavior code on people it will result in extreme blowback, which on a cultural level can lead to very bad results like communism.

A side note I'll make about this episode is that it seems to almost serve as a counter-argument against the future of humanity as depicted in the later TNG series. In TNG we're told that humanity has evolved beyond the point of aggression and violence, and that the people on Earth are peaceful and resolve all differences intellectually. But for those who are TOS fans we know that in Kirk's time there was plenty of 'red blooded' heartiness among the Starfleet officers we see, including lust, aggression, sometimes the desire for vengeance, and so forth. And as humane as Kirk's approach typically was to resolving conflicts, one thing we cannot realistically say is that the methods on TOS were universally non-violent. "Errand of Mercy" is a good showcase for that. The events of "Return of the Archons" seem to suggest that mankind naturally has a kind of aggression and pent up energy (including sexual) which must be expressed in some way in order for people not to explode from time to time. In TNG we seem to be presented with a sort of sanitized society free from those visceral impulses, except maybe for Riker, who almost stands as a commentary on the docility of the other humans on the show. But here in TOS we're being shown that being docile or perfectly calm isn't the end-all in becoming an advanced culture. Rather, the key probably ought to be to integrate all of the darker impulses into a constructive way of life, rather than to pretend they're not there. Right or wrong, TOS seems to frequently argue for the Kirk way of life, which is passionate but logical, adventurous but humane. In Voyager Janeway basically refers to this crew as cowboys, and from the perspective of TOS it seems like the idea is being put forward that anything shy of having the gusto of cowboys is selling humanity short.
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Peter G.
Tue, Feb 21, 2017, 11:25am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Drumhead

I'll say one thing about this episode which never occurred to me in all the years I've been rewatching the series: they clearly meant for this episode to be part of a larger Romulan arc that they'd been building towards during season 4. As much as we think that DS9 initiated the long arc, the TNG writers were keen to do it despite being prevented by the network, and in S4 they did get in some building continuity. The arc traces back to "Sins of the Father", and in S4 goes something like this:

"Reunion" - Introducing internal Klingon tensions.

"Data's Day" - Bringing the Romulans into the picture as being up to something (we'll omit "Future Imperfect" as counting).

"The Drumhead" - Reintroducing the idea of a Romulan scare, and in the process subtly implying that Satie believed in the possibility of Klingons and Romulans conspiring together. To our knowledge this hadn't happened since TOS when they shared technology with each other.

"The Mind's Eye" - Bringing to the forefront that the Romulans are up to no good. And I had completely forgotten until I watched this again the other week that Sela makes her first shadowy appearance at the end of this one.

"Redemption" - Where it all comes together.

To have five separate episodes in a season all leading towards the cliffhanger finale is pretty darn good considering they had to slip it in, most likely under the network's noses. From that standpoint I'll forgive some of the details in "The Drumhead" that don't add up to that much, because I can see now that as an arc they were using it to put certain ideas in our heads about wondering what the Klingons and Romulans were up to. The fact of the matter is that the way the script dealt with Tarsis wasn't very compelling in terms of us actually considering he might actually be guilty of something, and so Satie being wrong ended up overshadowing the legitimate concern about Romulan interference, which I think should have been written in better.
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Peter G.
Sat, Feb 18, 2017, 10:14am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S2: Peak Performance

@ Cajun,

We're talking about the 24th century. What makes you think the game wasn't designed specifically to make it impossible to use brute force searching? That would most likely be the primary design factor in creating a game meant to be played at high levels in the future - make sure computers aren't good at it.
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Peter G.
Fri, Feb 17, 2017, 9:38am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: It's Only a Paper Moon

@ Caedus,

So, what you'd prefer is a series where there is no personal risk to any crew members and Starfleet is made out to be a pleasure cruise where everyone is always happy? This episode is fundamentally about how "risk is our business" and that sometimes the optimistic dream of serving in Starfleet will come with dangers and negative repercussions. Even if 24th century science could furnish a perfectly functional robotic leg replacement, that doesn't mean there would be no psychological trauma in knowing you've lost your real leg. Plus what Nog went through on AR-558 would be enough to traumatize someone anyhow. And what technology would you like to have seen "deal with" Nog's psychological distress? Why not just have technology 'deal with' all kinds of distress, like in "Brave New World" and no one would ever be upset again?
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Peter G.
Wed, Feb 15, 2017, 10:24am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Most Toys

@ Chrome,

I think it's in this episode, but it could be in another one as I've watched a few of them lately - someone asks Data point blank if he's ever killed before and he says no. I think it might be Fajo who asked him. I assume the implication was about killing with his own hands, as he's obviously contributed to killing by manning ops during ship-to-ship battles.
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Peter G.
Wed, Feb 15, 2017, 10:01am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Most Toys

Thanks, William, that is the sort of thing I was hinting at but you said it clearly. Considering what we've seen Data capable of doing, such as in "Brothers" for instance, he is not only a security risk but actually a clear and present danger at all times *unless* he can be trusted in so unimpeachable a manner that there is no cause whatsoever for doubt. No other person on the Enterprise would be able to take over the ship without opposition, fly it himself, and lock everyone else out in the meantime. If there was even a shred of a doubt about Data being completely 'tamed' I can't imagine they'd be able to tolerate that kind of threat potential from a single crew member. But instead we see in the series how many times the safety of the entire ship is left in Data's hands in certain circumstances; so much so that their trust in him appears to be unshakeable and complete. Knowing that his programming now allowed for preemptive killing "for a good cause" might cause them to re-assess how much latitude to give him in the future, and that's not even getting into the mundane fact of his enormous physical strength.

I grant that it would still have been in character for Data to have pulled the trigger and then put himself on report for it (he's taken himself off-duty before for doubting himself), but in context of his 'mental' process after shooting Fajo I think they were trying to show that his general moral guidelines had just undergone a significant shift, of which lying was a glaring sign.
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Peter G.
Wed, Feb 15, 2017, 2:06am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Most Toys

I mostly agree that "trying to avoid getting kicked out of Starfleet" is a little thin, even though I do think it's plausible. Mostly I think the effect of the scene in the transporter room is to be ominous and cast Data in a threatening light. I think the idea is more to show he isn't as innocent as we think, since his programming can make deadly determinations just as easily as friendly ones. It's quite Asimovian in that sense.

DLPB, I wasn't arguing that Data did the wrong thing, or even that he episode suggested he did. But his ethical subroutines may well have noted that although it was his *most* ethical action possible that it was still, on the whole, unethical on an absolute scale. Our conclusion may well be that he did the right thing, but Data's standards are somewhat different and he may have concluded that he was cornered into doing a bad thing, and that his integrity was compromised as a result.

Skeptical, the only thing to bear in mind about a jury is that the standards in the 24th century might not be what our modern common sense tells us. Killing an alien life form to save yourself may well be a more shady proposition than the simple 'self-defense' argument is for us now. And also, even if we fully grant that Data had no choice but to use lethal force, he could have literally walked up to Fajo and snapped his neck with no possibility for Fajo to prevent it or defend himself. But instead Data used a torturous weapon. I expect the reason for that wasn't to torture him, but rather to guarantee that he actually died, compared to a physical injury such as crushing his head which perhaps he could somehow survive. But even so, a Federation jury might well condemn the use of forbidden weapons under any circumstances whatsoever.

But yeah, I'd still be content to conclude that Data's lie is a sign that his ethical programming has just branched out into a new territory and that he's not quite the same android he was before; especially not after his final ominous like to Fajo. The 'sinister' element introduced here is, of course, dropped in any subsequent episodes, but I think feel like it's a cool bit to watch.
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Peter G.
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 12:39pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Most Toys

I suppose it's ambiguous, but at the time when he shot, Data was in no direct danger of harm, and could theoretically have attempted non-lethal means of subduing Fajo. Instead it appeared that Data chose that the only way to ensure Fajo never harmed others again was to kill him. The "this" in question when Data said "I cannot allow this to continue" seems to me to mean not only Data being held prisoner, but in fact Fajo's criminal exploits in general. Shooting the disruptor reads to me less as a means to escape, and more as an execution. And yes, I think Starfleet would court martial someone who decides to summarily execute someone.
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Peter G.
Tue, Feb 14, 2017, 10:52am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: The Most Toys

Now that we're on the subject of Asimov, I'm thinking of a particular robot story where Dr. Calvin was brought in to locate a 'malfunctioning' robot, who was in effect trying to avoid being caught. The story highlighted the fact that a robot could develop the ability to lie under the right circumstances and if it served some purpose that conformed to more fundamental laws. Maybe that's what happened here: Data decided that if he told the truth he'd be kicked out of Starfleet, in which case people he could save in the future would die due to his absence. To save them he'd have to lie in order to be able to keep serving. This is hardly even hypothetical, as Data had single-handedly saved the Enterprise many times over by this point.
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