Star Trek tech features that logically should exist but didn't seem to

That actually was my original point.
What I was saying was that just having windows and seeing dots of light is pointless. But, at the same time, feeling continuously indoors for years is also not good for sanity.

So, my opinion is that you’d have fake windows where you’d show some fancy VR outside of flying through the sky in Vulcan or whatever, only periodically switching back to what’s really out there.

We could consider it a hijack though; it’s something which is true for any scifi featuring long (or endless) missions, not just Star Trek, but would never be shown in fiction for various reasons.

Ah, I misunderstood. Yeah, giving people something to look at is important. We just watched Hunt For Red October over and over again. It was always good for a laugh.

It could be interesting to take this to another thread as an actual poll. “If you’re spending an extended period on a spaceship, would you prefer to have (a) actual windows even if there’s nothing outside but void, purely for the psychological value of feeling like you know where you are, (b) simulated windows that show planets or astronomical features, giving you that sense of psychological context while actually being fake, or (c) windows installed only in dedicated viewing areas and for practical/functional purposes, with regular everyday spaces made to feel like generic interiors with no option to look outside?”

(I would answer A. I’d like to contemplate the void.)

Given the theme of this thread, I should say that I don’t remember if we had Wrath of Khan or ST IV:The One With The Whales onboard (it goes without saying that two months underwater is not enough time to make anybody desperate enough to watch ST I or ST IIII).

ST I is an underrated movie. If you saw it when you were young, give it another try as a grownup.

I’d like to contemplate the void too, but not every day for 10 years or whatever. So maybe switchable is a good option.
So you have daylight streaming in and an alpine scene outside today, but press the big red button under the window and you see the terrifying, endless void that is really out there. :slight_smile:

I suspect the real-world implementation (in a hypothetical distant future where this is a practical concern) will be exactly that, a screen which can show whatever the user specifies. This has two advantages besides serving the resident’s preference: it works for interior cabins which don’t have an external-hull window option, and it eliminates the structural weak point a window represents.

Why don’t any of the windows have curtains? Seeing the stars streaking past isn’t good when you’re trying to sleep. And sometimes you’re going to be close to a star, with bright light shining through.

Why think a window is a structural weak point? It’s transparent aluminium, as strong as the rest of the hull.

That’s my vote. As an engineer, I don’t want weak points in my hull. I like the idea of a dedicated recroom, or even bar, with big windows. Good for just going to stare at the planet of the week, or some wispy nebula, or to go on a date. The room can be sealed off in the event of loss of structural integrity.* Sorry if you were in there at the time, though.

*yes, yes, any window, door, sensor access, can be protected by the oft-mentioned “structural integrity fields”, but what if they fail at the most inopportune (but dramatic!) time?

It had better not be! The hull of starships is supposed to be some mysterious “trititanium” (which I guess is a transuranic analog of titanium, but stable, not radioactive. Most likely very strong. Probably down the periodic chart from unobtanium.). I can’t imagine regular ol’ aluminum can take the stresses, not to mention phaser fire, disruptors or photon torpedos. Aluminum windows would pop out at the first blast.

It’s not aluminum. It’s transparent aluminum, which is a molecule of a bunch of elements, despite the name.

I don’t want to start a big digression of ST “fantasy tech”, (that way lies madness!) but Wikipedia quotes:

The substance is described as being as transparent as glass while possessing the strength and density of high-grade aluminum.

Sounds like aluminum, that is, weaker than titanium, tri- or normal. You explode a photom torpedo 100 yards from the hull and your windows will be puddles.

OTOH, memory alpha says that’s what starship windows are actually made of, so maybe they have “structural integrity fields” protecting the windows after all. Or, a wizard did it. :slight_smile:

I’d want a 3D phased-array surface covering every wall, so I could just say ‘Alexa, Computer, show me the view outside the ship’ or ‘show me Jupiter as seen from Io’ or ‘Show me the view from Mt Blanc’ or ‘Show me Blackpool Beach on a sunny day’. The interior of the ship could be covered in the same stuff that forms the viewscreen in on the bridge, so you could just call up any view you want. This could help to reduce the inevitable feelings of claustrophobia in a tin can, many light-years from any other habitable location.

Short of making the entire ship just one big holodeck, that is.

If the ship’s unshielded the whole vessel should be vaporized, anyway. Again, there’s no consistency there.

I mean, if a ship doesn’t have its shields up, the weapons we have NOW should be able to blow up the Enterprise.

The ships seem kind of designed that way anyway. Enterprise-D, especially, is incredibly comfortable. It’s much larger in terms of living space than it needs to be for the size of the crew, it’s brightly lit, spacious, comfortably decorated, and has considerable space devoted to recreation, exercise, and the like. One would have to presume everything down to the wavelength of the light fixtures in your quarters has been set to the perfect ideal for your particular species.

Such a change from the Kirk-era starships. Hallways like a 1966 Holiday Inn. Hardly a scrap of artwork to be seen. I guess the pop culture of 2266 was a revival of Sparta. “Tonight’s film in the rec room will be “300”. Tomorrow’s will be “300”. Saturday there will be a double feature of “Troy” and “Spartacus”. That is all.”

Transparent aluminum was invented in the late 20th century, laddie. Surely TransTriTiTan™ isn’t beyond the capabilities of the 24th.

I dunno, I think a couple episodes have implied that the Enterprise is roughing it; that it’s a compromise between comfort and operational capability. Sure, it looks pretty sweet from an early 21st century human’s point of view, but for someone growing up in a 24th century post-scarcity society, it’s living in a washing machine.

(Of course in real life, the ludicrous force required to push matter to speeds close to c may always severely limit how big we make our ships. But within the logic of the show, it seems it’s far less of a concern, particularly WRT warping).

That’s because with warping, you never need to get the ship anywhere near the speed of light, just the speed of plot. One does have to wonder what would happen, though, if you engaged the warp drive without a directional vector. Would you just drop out of the normal universe and just sit there? Seems like that would be the ultimate defensive tool.

Apparently it’s all turbolift space in there.