FNN Edition 4

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Tips for Federation Space

Tips for Federation Space
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20808.01

Federation Space has been around for a long time and every player on the site has been involved for a different amount of time. Everyone has some tips for how to best enjoy our little slice of heaven that most of us couldn’t imagine living without. I asked a number of our fellow FedSpacers “If you could give your fellow players, new or old, a tip or two about playing on FedSpace what would that be? It can be a website with good info, a guideline, etc. anything you want to tell them.” Here are their answers.

Ben, also known as Captain Treborn answers: It would have to be to go to their ships with the right frame of mind. FedSpace is all about playing the game, and that game is role playing, interacting with other players and above all else having fun! The site isn't a place for power gamers and those who want to advance at all costs.

Melissa, also known as Commander Yvette answers: The number one tip is to have fun! If you aren’t having fun, something needs to change, whether it is the ship you are posting on or the character you are posting with. If you need to take a demotion to switch ships or characters, it is worth it if you can have fun again. Believe me, I’ve done it! I would also suggest that you use the wiki! It is there for a reason, but I see a lot of people ask questions that can be answered on the wiki. It has a wealth of information. Use it!

Dave, also known as Lt[jg] Zenteal answers: Read the information provided on the site to learn the different parts of medical and ships and techno babble so when you try to post say, in engineering, and you try to describe something you won’t look foolish. Another tool I use is the startrek.com web site. Their library is impressive.

Sam, also known as LCdr Ander answers: My favorite website for information is ditl.org. But lately, I have found the FedSpace wiki to be very informative. I think my best piece of advice would be to make friends with others. FedSpace is a great website to meet new friends from all over the world, keep yourself open to that!

Morgan, also known as Lt Seymour answers: People may find padding out posts hard and on a site like FS where some players are churning out essays for posts it can be daunting, but a tip I learned from when I started role playing online was to describe everything your character is experiencing at that moment. This can be emotions, sights, smells, etc. Also it can add a different angle onto your character as helps build your character's history as well.

Perry, also known as Cmdr Grant answers: No matter what happens, make sure you have fun on Federation Space. If you feel like you aren't having fun, then you should think about what would make it more fun for you. Talk to your fellow players, your FO, your CO. Just have fun. If you aren't having fun, then you shouldn't be here.

Paul, also known as Lt Hicks answers: The main tip for playing on FedSpace is to enjoy it and have fun. The technical side of things is secondary. True, we have to be accurate with our techno babble, otherwise the story would lose all credibility, but that’s not the most important thing. If we were watching Dr. Crusher and she told us she was using some drug or other, then we probably wouldn’t even question what she was saying. What's important is the story surrounding it. That being said, as I said before, we do need to be credible. I find the general internet is good for medical research and then Memory Alpha and our very own wiki is good for FedSpace era treatments.

Elisa, also known as Capt Godard answers: I would say to pay care to the spelling and writing. It's the way to communicate. The better it is, the better the message sent is going to be read (with joy) and understood.

Alex, also known as Lt[jg] Kapetanaki answers: It is much better describing feelings and events than writing "thoughts". Thoughts are "hidden" and can not make people interact. On the other hand describing that you are sitting keeping your head into both your hands you display sadness or despair making other players to see this and maybe someone can approach to sit with you for conversation. Another tip is to make sure the frequency of your posts matches with the ship you are on, the mission, etc. You don’t want to post too often nor do you wan to post too infrequently.

Michael, also known as Mid Thermopolis answers: Use a spellcheck! I can’t stress that enough. Also, to improve writing it helps to go through the five senses and see if you can add anything to the post to enhance it. I also rent the episodes from Netflix to pickup nuances of certain character and techno babble.

Luke, also known as Lt Quest answers: Make friends! MSN is a good bet for this. Yes all the rumors and mud-slinging comes with instant messaging programs, but even that can be fun, and even if its not, the better friendships you can establish by talking to others in real time is definitely worth it. Also, don't over-reach. It’s far easier to apply to and accept some sort of position, be it a rank, a GM or a position at the academy, than it is to step down. Not because they will try to keep hold of you, but because you'll feel an obligation to keep at it - that plus its fun/addictive. Lastly, if you need to - take a break! Several people have gone away for many months if not years, and returned fresh and rejuvenated. I've been gone for a couple of months now, and writing this has made me realize that while the break has been welcome, I miss FedSpace and look forward to returning in the near future!

Star Fleet News

Star Fleet Headlines

Federation Forces Defeat Romulans in Costly Battle

FNN Managing Editor
Stardate 20808.01

STARBASE 157 – Ships from Star Fleet’s 1st and 2nd Battle Groups – including the Enterprise, Dauntlesss, Gettysburg, Ticonderoga, and Sheridan – engaged Romulan forces near the Acamar system at Starbase 157 yesterday.

After intense blows were exchanged and heavy losses sustained on both sides, Star Fleet managed to drive the invasion force back to Romulan space. There were unconfirmed reports of spatial and even temporal anomalies in the vicinity, but officials at Star Fleet Command were unavailable for comment.

Hours previous to the battle, Romulan strike teams dealt a crippling blow to Federation defenses in the sector by destroying a Federation ship and Starbase 234.

Star Fleet Academy Applications Tripled in Past Two Months

FNN Managing Editor
Stardate 20808.01

SAN FRANCISCO, USA - On Stardate 20806.01, FNN reported that the Star Fleet Academy was facing a shortage of applicants and graduates while the Federation was on the brink of war with the Romulan Empire. New data released by Star Fleet Personnel Command shows a dramatically different situation.

According to the report, the Academy has seen nearly three times the number of applicants since the Federation declared war. However, not all of those applicants end up being admitted or even graduating.

“The graduation rate has increased with this significant new rise in applications,” said Captain Paul Kilbourne, the Academy’s Commandant, “but it has not surpassed levels previously seen two or three years ago.”

Still, it is good news at Star Fleet Command. And at a time when the Federation desperately needs good news, they are sure to welcome this.


War, what is it good for?
Opinion / Editorial
Stardate 20808.01

War? What is it good for? Absolutely nothing! This is the motto for a new group of Federation citizens who have bound together. We call ourselves the “Citizens For Peace”. Recently the Federation President declared war. We, as Citizens, are not ready to die because the President doesn’t like Romulans! Our sons and daughters, our nieces and nephews, or aunts, sisters, parents are on those ships. They are giving their lives because they have no choice. Well, it is our responsibility to be their voice!

Citizens for Peace has several million members on 17 different planets throughout the Federation, and our numbers are rising on a daily basis since the declaration of war. We are a watch group and we send out daily tallies of the death count from this senseless war. Our latest number showed a death toll of 3,294 Federation Officers and Citizens. Those families are deep in mourning for the deaths that could have been prevented!

In 7 days, at exactly 1200 hours, we will be massing in front of the Presidents office. Those that can’t travel should meet in front of their respective Federation offices. We are hoping to gather enough people to make it the largest peaceful protest to ever take place in the Federation!

The CFP members believe that the Federation entered the war wrongly. We feel that the Federation should have entered negotiations before opening fire. We believe that the Federation acted rashly without concern for the health of its citizens. In addition, we are calling for their members to speak with their respective governments to open negotiations for possibly leaving the Federation.

If you are against this war, against your family and loved ones dying senselessly, against the President acting without proper foresight then meet up with us at the Protests! We will see you there!

Why We Fight
FNN Managing Editor
Stardate 20808.01

“All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.” – Edmund Burke

As the initial shock of the Romulan attacks has begun to wear off, and realization that we may be in for another long-scale conflict with the Romulans sets in, some Federation citizens have already grown weary with the war.

And thus, as is always with democracies, the beginning of an anti-war movement is born. Some ask why we didn’t end the war a long time ago when we had the chance. Some want to know why we are “meddling” in the affairs of another government. And still others wonder if the Federation government was truly transparent about its reasons for going to war. After all, they say, it only took the Federation Council 23 minutes to issue a declaration of war: extremely fast even by modern standards.

But there will always be those who say things like that no matter what. I’m sure there were quite a few people upset about the Dominion War, even when faced with such a tangible evil.

Similarly, this war is about defending liberties and securing freedom and peace for the entire quadrant. The Romulan government has long been an abuser of basic universal rights and attacked Federation forces without provocation.

There comes a time when words fail, when evil regimes must be opposed by force. Some in the anti-war movement would have you believe that all wars can be stopped with diplomacy. Would diplomacy have been able to stop the Nazis in World War II or the Eastern Coalition in World War III?

Maybe. But one thing is for sure: those evil regimes were defeated because there were leaders in the world who had the courage to stand up and oppose that evil. That’s why the Federation Council, which is charged with the daunting responsibility of declaring war when necessary, felt they had to act.

That’s not to say that those in our government, or our fighting men and women are “war hawks”. Far from it; I believe that there is no one more anti-war than the soldier on the ground who has to put his or her life on the line. Yet when you talk to our military members, which I have, they understand the great sacrifices they have to make for the Federation. And, moreover, they are ready and willing to defend the values and liberties we hold so dear.

A famous American general once said: “Any soldier worth his salt should be anti-war. And yet there are still things worth fighting for.”

As the Federation remains a beacon of hope in the galaxy those words mean more, now than ever.

FedSpace News

20 Questions

Lieutenant Junior Grade Jaden Hawk
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20808.01

This month we get to learn more about Shane Lind, currently playing Lt[JG] Jaden Hawk the Chief Medical Officer on the USS Dauntless and playing a character on the Shadowhawk for Opposing Forces.

Age, Sex, Location?
35, male, St. Joe, Arkansas

When did you start playing on FedSpace?
Last August

What brought you to FedSpace?
Well, I have always been a huge Star Trek fan, and have played just about all of the PC ST games. I was interested in a ST role playing game on the Internet so I decided to join. My only regret is that I didn't find FedSpace sooner than I did.

Tell me a little about the process of developing your character.
Being my first role playing game, I thought I should develop a character that had a bit of me but also several things that are different. I wanted him to be basically a good guy but not perfect. So someone who has flaws and problems just like most people. Since it is my first RP game, I decided I should start with a race that I knew a lot about, so I chose human. As for department, my first choice had been tactical, I think security my second and medical my third. I am very happy that I ended up with medical. I have such a great experience within the department. I would also like to add that the medical resources section before and now on the Wiki is a great source of information and I use it quite a lot.

How has your character developed differently than what you had planned?
It seems he always has to deal with the unexpected. He first transferred to the Yeager, then that crew transferred to Sierra-18. He then transferred to the Dauntless, became the CMO, just seems his life is constantly changing.

So far, what is your favorite part about being a member of FedSpace?
I think it is getting to know so many people from not only across the US, but really the world. It is wonderful to see so many people who have the same passion for ST as I do.

If you were president for a day, what would you change?
I would make it that a diplomat/ambassador could be a department that one could choose for there PC, I think it would be an interesting role and several interesting missions could be made for it

If you could name your own ship, what would you name it and why?
The USS Ranger because, in real life, I am a Park Ranger.

What do you spend your time outside of FedSpace doing?
Other than work, I fish, hike, camp, read and watch Star Trek

What is your favorite star trek series?
The Next Generation, followed very closely or maybe tied with DS-9

If you watched the movies, which one was your favorite?
The Wrath of Khannnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn!

Who is your favorite character in the shows and why?
Wesley Crusher lol Just Kidding..... I think Chief Miles O'Brien. At first he was a minor character, then he moved up so to speak. Most of us focus on the Officers, but the enlisted personnel do the grunt work and he was always there when they needed a go to guy. Plus he brought something real to all the characters.

What piece of Star Trek Technology would you most like to see today?
I would like to see the replicator. How great would that be?

What was it about Star Trek that made you fall in love with the show?
Because it gives us hope for the future, that we can live in racial harmony, solve our problems and look to explore the unknown.

What FedSpace person would you most like to meet in real life?
CMO Callum Hicks of Sierra-18. He was my first DH and he helped me a lot when I first joined FS. Plus, we got to know each other via FS and he seems like a cool guy.

What FedSpace character would you most like to meet in real life?
My current CO, Dan Wueste. Because, he seems to be a man who has been through the ranks, a veteran of war, and he is a good leader, Jaden could learn a lot from him

How do you feel about the site-wide War plot?
Personally I like it, however I can understand those who do not wish to participate in it and I am glad that the President and other senior members recognized that and allowed for a non-war plot line with the Exploration Fleet.

What is in your FedSpace future, for yourself and for your character?
I plan to stay with FedSpace until I die or for some crazy, unlikely reason it shuts down. As far as my character Jaden, who knows what the future holds? He will continue to serve Star Fleet and go wherever they need him.

If there was one thing you would want everyone to know about you, what would that be?
That joining FedSpace has been a highlight of my life.

Thanks to Shane for granting us the time for this interview. If you are interested in being interviewed, please send an email to Vernon Ignoffo at the.cute.birl@gmail.com.

RAdm Joseph Daher
Stardate 20808.01

1. How did you first get involved in the site?
Then Ensign Ariana Lacey (now Cdr Aloysia Yvette) told me about the site on a startrek.com chat forum in mid-2002. I decided to check it out and got hooked, and here I am five years later.

2. Who, other than yourself, would you say has had the biggest influence on your character?
I would have to say that Dan Wueste has had the biggest influence on my character, both in-game and out-of-game. As my first CO, he was responsible for much of the way my character developed, as well as helping me to become a better writer in general.

3. How, if at all, has your characters development differed from what you first imagined?
How much time do you have for me to answer this question? I certainly never imagined I’d be a Group Commander right now. I’ve always had command aspirations because I like to work with other people, but I didn’t think my character would be this involved in the site. I’m very pleased with the way everything turned out though.

4. Could you sum up your character in just a few words?
How few? Man, this is a hard one. I don’t think I can sum him up in a few words, but I can describe some of his qualities: hard-working, no-nonsense, but still likeable, loyal, and honest.

5. Do you really believe there is intelligent life somewhere, out there?
I do. I find it hard to believe in the vastness that is the universe that we are the only intelligent species. Do I believe in little green men and flying saucers though? No. Hopefully someday we will be able to expand our knowledge and reach beyond our solar system and perhaps even make contact with another species among the stars.

6. Which of the televised Star Trek series is your favorite and why?
I’ve watched every series and Deep Space Nine is my clear favorite (with TNG a close second). Being a realist, I like the fact that DS9 moved away from the perfect, idyllic, and utopian characteristics that were prevalent in the previous series while still retaining the values and morals of the Federation (mostly, anyway).

I think that the Federation and Star Fleet are generally, good and honest, but that doesn’t mean that the rest of the universe is. Deep Space Nine explored the dark side of Star Trek and the Dominion War arc was one of the best plots in my opinion.

7. Which are your favorite characters from each series and why?
From TOS I’d have to pick Kirk. How could you NOT like one of the most famous officers in Star Fleet history? Whether it was because he always got the girl, had crazy judo karate moves, or the acting was just so bad it was funny, I don’t know. But Kirk is my hands-down favorite from the Original Series.

With TNG I’m just going to exclude Captain Picard right away, because he is just so awesome. My second-favorite character then would be Data. I don’t know what it is about the android that makes him so like-able, but he was just amazing. I enjoyed his quest to understand humanity and that character backstory was the true essence of what Gene Rodenberry wanted Star Trek to capture.

In DS9, although I really liked Sisko, Chief O’Brien was my favorite character. He was the best recurring guest on TNG and I was glad they expanded on his character in DS9 by adding him to the regular cast. It was good to see an enlisted man in the main credits for a change.

Now Voyager, that’s easy: Seven of Nine of course. LOL. Just kidding. My favorite character of this series was Tuvok; the interactions between him and Neelix were priceless.

I was upset when Enterprise was cancelled, not just because there were no more new Star Treks on the air, but also because I think the show really improved in its 4th season when Manny Coto took over. I really liked how he explored the augments, the ridgeless Klingons, the beginning of the Federation and the Earth-Romulan wars. My favorite character from this series is Commander Tucker. His comic relief was one of the best things about the show.

8. Do you have a favorite moment or scenario your character has been involved in?
The holodeck fight between Daher and Captain Lorien on the Gettysburg has gone done in Fed Space history, and I thoroughly enjoyed posting with him even though our characters were trying to beat each other up.

9.In your opinion, what makes a really good post?
To me, a good post is one that is so descriptive that the reader actually feels like they’re watching a TV show instead of reading a computer screen. Proper spelling and grammar are key to making it easy for the reader to understand, but descriptions are what really make up the posts.

10.What advice would you give to our newer players who might be hoping for a Command within the site someday?
The best thing they can do if they hope to be in command one day is to get actively involved in the site early. And by that I mean try to post more than the minimum two times per week, help out other players in your department, ask your CO if you can create an NPC to help out some other department on the ship. All of these things show that you have the ability to be an effective command officer.

The main idea is to distinguish themselves from the rest of the players on the site. We have 100+ players on Fed Space and very few DH, FO, and CO positions that become available during the year. If they do that, when a position does become available, other command officers will be more likely to remember them and what they’ve done.

11. Which characteristics do you feel you have in common with your character?
I was feeling pretty unoriginal when I created my character. He is basically who I would be if I were 20 years older and serving in Star Fleet. We share almost everything right down to the love of soccer and our home city.

12. If you were President for a day, what would you change about Federation Space?
Well, I’d seize control of Star Fleet, expel all the Federation officials, and then declare myself Emperor of course.

Seriously though, I think the site is big enough to handle the addition of another PC ship so I’d like to see another one commissioned, or have the Titan recomissioned.

13. What is it like to be a commanding officer? What are the biggest challenges you face? Are there any rewards?
Being a CO is quite different from just being a regular player or even a DH or FO, which is why some people don’t like the command roles. Not only do you have to post often (hopefully much more than twice a week so you don’t hold up a mission) you also have to deal with ALL of the other aspects of your ship and crew: discipline, updating the site pages, keeping your crew happy and involved, working with GMs, etc.

Usually the biggest challenge of being a CO is time-management. It’s even harder being a GC, where I’m responsible for three ships under my command. And being a full-time student and having a part-time job, doesn’t make it easy. There’s a lot more to being a CO than filling out a point chart at the end of the month.

The rewards, however, are great. I love seeing my crew and the others in my Battle Group do well. And being able to help them when I can, makes the whole thing worthwhile. I like my officers to know that I will try to answer or address any questions or comments they have. And I try to make myself as available as possible.

14. Where did you get the idea for your character?
As I stated in question #11, my character is basically based off of myself. But when I create NPCs I sometimes base their characteristics or personality on friends and acquaintances.

15. What do you like to do when you aren't playing Federation Space?
Well most of my week is consumed by school, work, or any of the numerous extra-curricular activities I’m involved in. When I’m not doing any of that and I’m not on Fed Space, I like to hang out with my friends, go the movies, go to Bourbon Street; basically normal stuff. The good thing about living in New Orleans is that there is ALWAYS something to do. It’s really hard to be bored in this city.

16. What is your favorite movie of all time? Why?
There are a lot of movies that come to mind when I see this question, but if I had to pick one, it’d have to be “Full Metal Jacket.” One of the great things about this movie is R. Lee Ermey’s performance as Gunny Hartman.

17. What is your favorite book of all time? Why?
My favorite book of all time would have to be Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None.” I love to read crime/mystery novels and this one by the “queen of crime” was what got me started on those types of books. If you’re interested in that genre, and haven’t read any of her novels, I highly recommend it.

18. What kind of music do you like? Who are your favorites?
I pretty much listen to anything from rap/hip-hop to country music and everything in between. Right now my two favorite artists are Lupe Fiasco (“The Instrumental”, “Kick, Push”, “Superstar”) and Finger Eleven (“Paralyzer”).

19. If you could make your own ST series, what would it be?
I don’t know about everyone else, but I think we should make “Fed Space” into a ST series. Who’s got Paramount’s number?

20. If you had free reign to command any ship in the fleet, what would it be, and why?
I’d command the Ticonderoga of course. I couldn’t ask for a better ship and crew. I’m honored to serve as their Captain and I hope I can do so for a long time to come.

Trek News

Trek Headlines

STO Back from the Dead

Stardate 20808.01

Just when it was starting to look like a lost cause, Star Trek Online comes back from the dead. Announced at the end of last month, Cryptic Studios has secured the global rights license for STO. Star Trek Online is he much anticipated Massive Multiplayer Online RPG (MMORPG). Originally in 2004 the rights to Star Trek Online were issued to Perpetual Entertainment. However in 2007 Perpetual suffered several shake-ups in the company, including a lawsuit from their public relations company. In January 2008, Perpetual announced that they would cease production on Star Trek Online and that the rights would be transferred to another company.

Now that the rights have been officially transferred, speculation as to what game play will be like has been somewhat vague. Will it stay similar to what Perpetual announces, or will it go in a different direction? Already on the official website it states that players will be able to command their own Star Fleet vessels and will have the ability to beam down to various planets to interact with people there. Cryptic has already released several screenshots which are available for viewing on the official Star Trek Online website.

This news comes just in time for the Las Vegas Star Trek Convention, where Cryptic plans to release footage of game play. So if you’re in Vegas in time for the Con, be sure to check it out. And if you’re not Cryptic is offering a live webcast of the footage as well.

Movie News

Posters Released
Stardate 20808.01

More images have been released for the upcoming Star Trek movie. However these ones are official images, released for San Diego Comic Con. The images are in the form of four movie posters that attendees of the Con will be receiving. Each poster has a different character image including Chris Pine as Captain Kirk, Zachary Quinto as Spock, Zoe Saldana as Uhura, and Eric Bana as the film’s bad guy Nero. The four posters can be combined to create one larger poster of the Star Fleet insignia.

For those of us who won’t be attending the San Diego Comic Con, the Star Trek Movie website also has the posters available for download as desktop wallpapers or instant messenger icons. Unfortunately, the effect of having all four together isn’t available on their website.

Oh yeah, and check out the character’s eyes...


Book Review: Daedalus

AUTHOR: Dave Stern
PAGES: 344
SERIES: Enterprise
REVIEWER: Rachel Christie
RATING: 3.5/5

October 5, 2140. After a half-dozen years of research and testing, Star Fleet prepares to launch its first warp 5 vessel -- Daedalus. Propelled by a radical new engine designed by Earth's most brilliant warp field theorist, Victor Brodesser, the new ship will at last put the stars within mankind's reach.

But on the eve of her maiden voyage, a maintenance engineer, Ensign Charles Tucker III -- "Trip" to his friends -- discovers a flaw in Daedalus's design. When he confronts Brodesser, the scientist -- as charismatic as he is brilliant -- eases Trip's concerns. The ship launches on schedule, and as Trip watches in horror, it explodes in a catastrophic ion cascade reaction, killing all aboard.

Thirteen years pass. Still haunted by memories of that disaster, Trip now serves as chief engineer aboard Enterprise. When a freak explosion cripples his vessel, leaving her helpless before a surprise attack, Trip is forced to abandon his ship -- and his shipmates. As he is on the verge of mounting a desperate rescue attempt, however, a shocking turn of events forces him to confront the ghosts of Daedalus one final time.

All in all I enjoyed this book. It was one of those reads that grabs you from the beginning, because it starts almost right off the hop with action. The pacing of it is also very good. Even during the more slow scenes, where there isn’t a lot of action taking place, the story evolves in a way that you can’t put it down. There is also a twist at the end which, despite the fact that you’re expecting –something- shocking to happen, is not exactly what I was expecting. This makes for a great read because it draws you in so much. Usually I hate books that are part of a series and requires you to read the entire series for anything to come to a conclusion, but because this book is so well written that I can easily look past that (plus it’s only a series of two books, which is a bonus!). This book is also a very easy read, one that anyone would be able to pickup and enjoy.

One of the things that irked me in this book is that it’s very Trip Tucker centric. While the author does a very good job in developing this character through the course of the book as Trip is confronted with each situation brought to him, it would be nice to see similar development of other characters. Granted, this book is –supposed- to involve Trip the most because it involves his work on the Daedalus project so one has to expect it to mostly focus on him. It just seems to me that this book discounts the other characters. Hoshi Sato is with Tucker for much of this book, and yet we hardly see her or much of the character relationship between her and Tucker.

One last note is that the publisher in me caught a few typos – but hey, nobody’s perfect!

All in all I enjoyed this book very much! Definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a summer read.

Joke of the Month

Star Trek TNG Meets Microsoft
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20808.01

Picard: Mr. LaForge, have you had any success with your attempts at finding a weakness in the Borg? And Mr. Data, have you been able to access their command pathways?
Geordi: Yes, Captain. In fact, we found the answer by searching through our archives on late Twentieth-century computing technology.

Geordi presses a key, and a logo appears on the computer screen.
Riker: [puzzled] What the hell is Microsoft?
Data: [turns to explain] Allow me to explain. We will send this program, for some reason called Windows, through the Borg command pathways. Once inside their root command unit, it will begin consuming system resources at an unstoppable rate.
Picard: But the Borg have the ability to adapt. Won't they alter their processing systems to increase their storage capacity?
Data: Yes, Captain. But when Windows detects this, it creates a new version of itself known as an upgrade. The use of resources increases exponentially with each iteration. The Borg will not be able to adapt quickly enough. Eventually all of their processing ability will be taken over and none will be available for their normal operational functions.
Picard: Excellent work. This is even better than that unsolvable geometric shape idea.

. . . . 15 Minutes Later . . .
Data: Captain, we have successfully installed the Windows in the Borg's command unit. As expected, it immediately consumed 85% of all available resources. However, we have not received any confirmation of the expected upgrade.
Geordi: Our scanners have picked up an increase in Borg storage and CPU capacity, but we still have no indication of an upgrade to compensate for their increase.
Picard: Data, scan the history banks again and determine if there is something we have missed.
Data: Sir, I believe there is a reason for the failure in the upgrade. Apparently the Borg have circumvented that part of the plan by not sending in their registration cards.
Riker: Captain, we have no choice. Requesting permission to begin emergency escape sequence 3F!
Geordi: [excited] Wait, Captain! Their CPU capacity has suddenly dropped to 0% !
Picard: Data, what do your scanners show?
Data: [studying displays] Apparently the Borg have found the internal Windows module named Solitaire, and it has used up all available CPU capacity.
Picard: Lets wait and see how long this Solitaire can reduce their functionality.

. . . . Two Hours Pass . . .
Riker: Geordi, what is the status of the Borg?
Geordi: As expected, the Borg are attempting to re-engineer to compensate for increased CPU and storage demands, but each time they successfully increase resources I have setup our closest deep space monitor beacon to transmit more Windows modules from something called the Microsoft Fun-Pack.
Picard: How much time will that buy us?
Data: Current Borg solution rates allow me to predict an interest time span of 6 more hours.
Geordi: Captain, another vessel has entered our sector.
Picard: Identify.
Data: It appears to have markings very similar to the Microsoft logo...

[over the speakers] This is admiral Bill Gates of the Microsoft flagship MONOPOLY. We have positive confirmation of unregistered software in this sector. Surrender all assets and we can avoid any trouble. You have 10 seconds to comply.
Data: The alien ship has just opened its forward hatches and released thousands of humanoid-shaped objects.
Picard: Magnify forward viewer on the alien craft!
Riker: My God, captain! Those are human beings floating straight toward the Borg ship - with no life support suits! How can they survive the tortures of deep space?!
Data: I do not believe that those are humans, sir. If you will look closer I believe you will see that they are carrying something recognized by twenty-first century man as doeskin leather briefcases, and wearing Armani suits.

Riker and Picard, together [horrified]: Lawyers!!
Geordi: It can't be. All the Lawyers were rounded up and sent hurtling into the sun in 2017 during the Great Awakening.
Data: True, but apparently some must have survived.
Riker: They have surrounded the Borg ship and are covering it with all types of papers.
Data: I believe that is known in ancient vernacular as red tape. It often proves fatal.
Riker: They're tearing the Borg to pieces!
Picard: Turn the monitors off, Data, I cant bear to watch. Even the Borg doesn't deserve such a gruesome death!

Science News

Astronomy Picture of the Month
FNN August Pic .jpg
Mars Panorama. PHOTO CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University Arizona/Texas A&M University

Science News

Ancient calendar has Olympic implications...
Stardate 20808.01

A mechanized calendar, that can predict with accuracy every four years when the Olympics will be held. Seems like something an Olympic host city would put up to count down the time until the Olympics will happen in their town. But this clock was actually used by the Greeks, constructed approximately 140 to 100 BCE. The clock, called the Antikythera Mechanism, was found in 1901 when it was retrieved off of a shipwreck off the coast of the Greek island of Antikythera.

Using a three dimensional x-ray machine, scientists were able to finally read the inscription on the clock to determine that the clock predicted not only solar and lunar eclipses, but also the four-year cycle when the Olympics would take place and the location it should happen.

Technology as advanced as the Antikythera Mechanism would not be used again until the appearance of clocks in the medieval cathedrals.

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Astronomy News

New lake found!
Stardate 20808.01

In July, Scientists were able to confirm at last that there’s a liquid lake out there – on Saturn’s moon Titan to be exact. Observed by NASA’s spacecraft Cassini was able to finally determine the composition of one of the major lakes aboard the moon. Named Lacus Ontario due to its nearness in size to North America’s Lake Ontario, the lake is composed of ethane and several liquid hydrocarbons. This means that Titan now ranks with Earth as the only two special bodies in our Solar System to have liquid on its surface. Due to the various particles that make up Titan’s atmosphere, it has proven difficult for Cassini to detect the moon’s landscape. Cassini has also been able to prove that this liquid evaporates, and rains down into various streams and capillaries that feed the lake. NASA plans to keep Cassini near Titan, mapping out the rest of the geography around the moon’s north pole and watching the seasonal changes of Lacus Ontario.

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This Month in Astronomy History

Voyager I & II
Stardate 20808.01

This edition of the FNN features a new column, 'This Month in Astronomy History' where we'll take a look at the important milestones in astronomy and space exploration that happened in that month!

[Launch of the Voyager Missons]
Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 are launched. These robotic space probes will go on to explore and study our Solar System more indepth. They will meet up with Jupiter in 1979, and Saturn in 1980. Both probes have outlasted their original intended lifespans. Both Voyager probes are currently studying what is beyond the Solar System's Kuiper belt, determining the boundaries of our System and beyond. They are both expected to continue transmitting information beyond 2025, 46 years after the probes were initially launched.