FNN Edition 6

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Star Fleet News

Star Fleet Headlines

Star Fleet Academy Released Distance-Ed Courses

Opinions Editor
Stardate 20810.01

Star Fleet Academy has released some free distance education courses for officers and enlisted personnel who wish to broaden their horizons. Having well-rounded professionals is important in any time, but especially in wartimes. Some of the classes being offered include:

Command 302: Wining in No-Win Situations This course focuses on the innate ability for Captains to create a path where none seemed to exist. Guest speakers, lectures, historical references and case studies will be presented. Group discussions will take place when possible.

Communications 101: Opening Hailing Frequencies Through surveys and statistical studies Star Fleet has found several instances of communication problems resulting from frequency malfunctions. This will be a basic course in opening hailing frequencies, clearing up static, enhancing signals, and patching signals through to various locations. Prior engineering or operations knowledge is not needed for success in this course.

Space Law 206: Avoiding Court-Martial With the war in full swing, many people may be tempted to do the unethical thing to spin the outcome in their favor. This is a remedial course offered to remind people of some of the basic tenants of our ethics system to ensure compliance at all times. Case studies will be provided to discuss difficult situations that can arise while serving in Star Fleet.

Navigation 101: Standard Orbits Many times during your career you may need to take the con and enter a standard orbit. Although this skill is taught in a basic navigation course, it is worth repeating every few years so as not to get rusty. Holodeck simulations involving many common errors and problems will be used.

Philosophy 203: Why All Major Systems Fail at the Same Time This course will dive into the philosophic reasons behind some of the phenomenon many of our ships and stations face. Major System Failure seems a common occurrence, along with console explosions, deck plating failures, turbolift malfunctions and more. These systems tend to fail during inopportune moments and to a degree higher than other items that could fail.

You can find out more information by contacting Star Fleet Academy.

International Arts Dealer Missing

Fleet News Editor
Stardate 20810.01

Michael Swanson, the forty-year-old human arts dealer based out of Norva III was reported missing early last week. Swanson, who quickly rose to fame in the art industry at a young age, was last known to be meeting a group of Democratic Romulans to make a sale when he was reported missing.

Swanson was traveling with his wife Sera, who has known Romulan symphonizing ties. The location of both still remain unknown and authorities in charge of their search only had the following to say: “We currently have no leads as the Romulan’s there were suppose to be meeting were apparently using false identification.”

Some speculation has been raised if this is the dealing of the Romulan Star Empire, which remains at war with the United Federation of Planets.


An Apple A Day
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20810.01

Everyone has heard that old adage, an apple a day keeps the doctor away. However, it seems in Star Fleet that the saying should change to "A pip a day keeps the doctor away". Captains are responsible for their crew, their mental and psychical states, their ability to do their jobs to the best of their abilities, and their lives. Most Captains lead by example, often heard saying things like "I would never ask my crew to do anything I wouldn't do" or "I would lead my crew into battle personally". Somehow, when one receives that pip, that promotion to Captain, they get a fear of Sickbay along with it. Is it that the CMO has the power to remove them from duty? I don't think so, the CMO has the power to remove ANYONE from duty, anyone they feel is harmful to themselves or the crew. So, what is it that keeps Captains from leading by example? Looking at a list of all the active captains in Star Fleet, less than 18% are current with their medical exams! There are even 3 Captains currently serving who are more than FIVE years late on their annual checkup. Granted, Captains get their fair share of bumps and bruises, and can end up in sickbay to get patched up, but these patches are not meant to replace their annual physical. This is an issue that needs to be looked into. Just what are these Captains afraid of? Perhaps those evil parasitic Trill cousins have taken over their brains and don't wish to be discovered? Whatever the case, I think it is time Captains bit the bullet and reported to sickbay every year.

Travel the Galaxy

Tourism Slogans
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20810.01

Here are some travel slogans collected by our Opinions Editor during his travels for the Federation News Network.

Betazed: We know you want to come here!

In the Demilitarised Zone Colonies, there's never a dull moment!

Ski for your life on Rura Penthe!

Nimbus III: Fan-dance capital of the Quadrant!

Visit Vulcan.

Cardassia Prime, where the trains run on time.

Risa: Bring your Horgon

If you don't have a good time on the Klingon Homeworld, we'll kick the crap out of you!

Come to the Omarian Nebula: Thirty-million gallons of Founders can't be wrong!

Romulus: Everything you've heard about us is Jolan Tru!

FedSpace News

20 Questions

Ensign Etin Maket
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20810.01

This month we get to learn more about Carrie Mansfield, currently playing Ensign Etin Maket on the Sheridan.

Age, Sex, Location?
26, Female, Los Angeles.

When did you start playing on FedSpace?
April 2008.

What brought you to FedSpace?
I had a friend who joined at the time and kept asking me to join. Obviously, I gave in.

Tell me a little about the process of developing your character.
I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted from the outside. I wanted to play a Cardassian, because I've always been fascinated by the race. I was a science geek before switching to history, so choosing the department was easy. I also knew that I wanted him to come from a relatively happy and definitely stable home life on the homeworld. The only way I could get everything I wanted--and yet still make it into FedSpace--was to make him male. By making Maket a male, he fell outside the state (and thus by extension, societal) expectations that men go into fields like tactical and security and command while women handled the sciences. His motivation is partly to devote himself to research that he does enjoy doing--and part to spite the government, to show them what they're missing. Star Fleet appeared to give him the best resources to do that, so here he is.

Do you think it is easier or more difficult to play someone who has a different gender?
I guess I've never really thought about it. I've almost always cross-played. I come primarily from fandom games with canon characters, where those I liked to play happen to be male. I suppose going female to male isn't that hard. There are some things that are a bit harder for me, because I simply don't think that way. For instance, in one recent subplot, Maket wasn't enjoying another character's...assets because I don't think to stare at a woman's chest. Aside from small things like that (which honestly aren't that much a factor during missions anyway) I don't think playing a different gender isn't too much a challenge.

What makes a good Ship/Station?
Hm. A good ship is one where everyone plays for the advancement of the mission, with the good of the ship first and foremost in their mind. This means giving everyone a chance to contribute, a chance to shine--or to royally screw up. A good ship encourages creativity and participation in meaningful ways. I'd rather be on a slightly slower ship with a lot of good plot-and-character advancing posts, then one that goes whiz-bang fast, but most of the posts are fluff.

What would you most like to do on the site?
I kind of like to try it all, to be honest. Being an AI appeals because there's always something to be said for mentoring new players and helping the site grow by bringing on good players. Being a GM would be fun, because when is the chance to be evil *not* fun? Command could be interesting too, though I'm not sure that I'd be fully suited for it, at least not for a while yet.

What do you see as some goals for the future of your character?
First and foremost, I'd like him to become CSO, because then he'd have more command over the labs and could bum more lab space for the research he'll eventually find the time to complete. I'd also like the opportunity to develop the relationship between him and his father--and the consequences of a Gul having a son in Star Fleet would bring to his family (aside from a mother who has already lost her position).

So far, what is your favorite part about being a member of FedSpace?
Fedspace has a good group of players, and is blissfully free of drama...or at least, as free of drama as a game can get. The Darwin incident wasn't pretty perhaps, but given how long the site has been around, the infrequency of such events is a good thing, and I think it was dealt with in a quick manner before things could really get ugly. I've seen a few games torn apart by OOC fighting, so I definitely have increased respect for games where everyone is chill.

If you were President for a day, what would you change?
I'm honestly not sure, because I don't know if I've been around long enough to have a solid opinion of the kind of change I'd like to make. I'd probably get all spelling crazy on people though, because for a site that insists on good spelling and grammar during training, there are number of people with really obvious typos and it drives me insane. Firefox has a built in spell-check! Get it! Use it!

If you could name your own ship, what would you name it?
Pretty simple. I'd want to name a ship after Julius Caesar. He always was my favorite general in history.

What was it about star trek that made you like it?
My parents always watched the show--and always tried to get me into it. Deep Space Nine was the big one for me. I liked how the well, stationary nature of the station allowed for the bigger plot arcs to develop (like the Dominion War) to not only develop from the beginning, but to see it through its full course--not just dropping in to check on it.

Who is(are) your favorite character(s)?
Easily Garak and Bashir. Bashir because it was fascinating watching him be so damn smart, but still so naive in many ways....and gradually begin to shed them (even though he never lost it completely). I also enjoyed Garak because you never fully knew what was going on with him. His pragmatism was also really appealing. "In the Pale Moonlight" was a perfect example of how Star Fleet morals aren't always the best, especially in time of war. Sometimes you gotta get your hands dirty to get the job done--and Garak was willing to do that.

What piece of StarTrek Technology would you most like to see today?
As awesome as transporters would be, I'd like to see med tech in the real world, things like dermal regenerators. I think they'd bring the most positive impact to the world as we stand now. Along those lines, there was an article up on ZDnet talking about comm-badge like devices have saved 4000 hours of emergency room staffers from having to find ways to communicate with each other. That time can now be spent with patients, which is great.

What do you spend your time outside of FedSpace doing?
I'm still a pretty avid reader, picking up odd ball books when I can find the time. I also admit to being a tiny bit of a girl gamer. Final Fantasy IV DS is taking up more time than I care to admit. I'm pushing paper at the moment. Finished by B.A. in history last December.

What person would you most like to meet in real life?
Ack. >.< Evil question. So instead, I'm going to cheat and say I'd rather do a gathering where I can (even if briefly) meet a bunch instead of picking a single person.

What character would you most like to meet in real life?
El Presidente. Running Star Fleet can't be easy and it'd be fun to pick his brain.

Who has had the most influence on your life and why?
Saved the tough questions for the end, didn't you? I guess I'd have to say Dr. Kennedy, my science teacher in 10/11th grade. She was incredibly smart (BA Chem w/ minor in pre-1812 US history, MS in Bio, PhD. in Statistics and Childhood learning), she was geeky (she made it a point to wear one thing Disney--from a watch to a skirt each day) and she didn't take shit, yet she was incredibly nice and funny if you got to know her. I saw in her what I think women can and should be. One of my favorite memories from high school is my 11th grade history teacher admitting that he was scared of her (She was also 5'9 and not super skinny, so she had quite the presence to her too).

If you could have any super power what would it be?
You know, I've never had a good answer to this. Flying would be kind of cool, but then you have to worry about some jealous asshole with a gun trying to knock you down (or hell, doesn't even have to be a jealous person, just someone scared!) *Selective* telepathy might be interesting, but do most people really think stuff worth hearing, and you really want to know what your coworkers think about you? I think I'd go for invisibility.

If there was something you would want everyone to know about you, what would that be?
I am a major trivia geek, and can remember the most random facts. I even passed the audition test for College Jeopardy once (though I didn't make it on because it was filmed in LA that year I didn't attend USC/UCLA, but I'm not bitter about that ;))

Thanks to Carrie Mansfield 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.

Star Trek News

Trek Headlines

Today is going to be a Sick Day…

Stardate 20810.01

The alarm clock goes off first thing in the morning and as you get out of bed you realize that your head feels like someone decided to fill it with bricks while you were sleeping. In other words, you’re now sick - Congratulations. It’s definitely that time of year, when flu bugs and colds make their rounds and if you haven’t gotten it yet and aren’t careful: lucky you, you’re next in line. In fact, as I write this every member of the FNN team is sick with something. You pump yourself full of medicine in hopes of functioning, but you soon realize that today is going to be a sick day.

Sure, you could spend the entire day sulking in bed, but why not turn your Sick Day into a Trek Day? Here is a list of Trek things you can do while curled up in bed:

  • My top choice, and the most obvious, is to catch up on all things FedSpace! Take the time to check out what’s happening on the other ships on the site. As much as one would like, sometimes it’s tough to follow all the things that are going on in the Fleet. Who knows when another ship makes a discovery that might affect your own character? If you own a laptop, then you don’t even have to get out of the coziness of your bed to catch up on FedSpace news!
  • This is a great chance to spend time working on your Primary Character. Take the time to clean up your character’s history by adding any important events that have taken place in your character’s life since they graduated from the Academy. Has your PC accomplished one of their short-term goals? What about long term goals? If so, give them new ones.
  • Have a Trek marathon! Throw in a DVD or two of your favourite Star Trek episodes or movies. Not only will it help pass the time, but also will serve as a good refresher for Star Trek history. Grab some of your favourite comfort food that makes you feel better (my choice: chocolate ice cream), and just vedge.
    • Another version of this suggestion is to watch a lineup of the funniest episodes, because as the old axiom says, “Laughter is the best medicine!” My recommendations are from TNG: Naked Now, DS9: Little Green Men, and VOY: Bride of Chaotica.
    • An interesting take on the Star Trek marathon, as suggested by Commander Tregelen, is to choose a series and then watch it chronologically reversed! Start with Episode 22, then 21, then 20…
  • Re-read Federation Space’s Constitution. Yeah, so you read it back in the Academy. But it’s always a good refresher to go back and take a look at it. When you were in the Academy some of the rules might not have made sense to you (but who ever admits that?) or you might have gotten fuzzy on the details of some of the rules since you graduated, so now that you’ve been on the site for a while you’ll have a different perspective on things and the details will be refreshed for you. (As a side note, the Constitution is currently being revised, so keep an eye out for further announcements from the President).
  • And last but not least, curl up with a good Trek book. A quick Google search will reveal that there are thousands of Star Trek books on the market. These are always good to keep on hand for Sick Days, because nothing beats curling up under a large blanket with a cup of hot chocolate and a good book. There are Star Trek books out there for everyone, from The Original Series lovers to those who like to read about the travels of the Corps of Engineers. While not necessarily Star Trek canon, they’re still fun to read and might serve as an inspiration. If you plan ahead, you can raid your local thrift store and find stacks of older Trek books for 25 cents apiece.

Get well soon!

Movie News

Cameo news and Kirk’s Resurrection
Stardate 20810.01

We already know that Leonard Nemoy will be reprising his role as Spock in the upcoming Star Trek film. Since the news was released months ago when casting started, there was a plethora of rumors as to who else might be making a cameo appearance J.J. Abrams reboot of the series.

One actor who was offered a role but turned it down, was Ricky Gervais, creator of The Office. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Gervais admitted that he was never really a big Trek fan, and would have felt guilty taking the part just to help his career. He added that he’s “not trying to be a film star. I don't care if I never do another film again. I can create my own material and I've got to remember that. As exciting as it is to be a film star, it means nothing to me.”

Another actor who is confirmed not to be making a cameo in the film, and one that surprised many fans, is William Shatner. Abrams has been quoted as saying that a scene was scripted out for a flashback scene with Captain James T Kirk in it, however the scene was cut because it didn’t feel right due to Kirk’s death during Star Trek: Generations. The writer’s for Abrams’ Trek had difficulty with explaining the resurrection. Also according to Abrams, Shatner didn’t want to be in a film that didn’t focus on Kirk.

In his video blog, The Shatner Project, William Shatner replied to Abrams comments saying that “Nobody ever came to me and said, we have a cameo. Maybe you wrote it and it never presented itself to me.” Shatner goes on to explain that he would have loved to be in the film, and hopes that if Abrams goes on to make a second Star Trek film that maybe he could be in that one.

Shatner even went so far to help Abrams out with a suggestion on how to resurrect Captain Kirk. Citing a previous example used in one of his books, Shatner suggested using “the hovery machine”, also known as a transporter. According to Kirk, “You get the machine […] where you suck in the air with the molecules of where Captain Kirk hovers and you reassemble from the molecular structure and you throw the switch on the right […] Then you throw the one on the left and out comes Captain Kirk reassembled.”

Whether or not Shatner’s transporter resurrection method will work, or whether or not we see another Star Trek film, will depend on how well the first film does in the box office. Star Trek hits theaters May 8th, 2009.

Read more or watch William Shatner's video blog.


Book: Star Trek: Dark Victory

Star Trek: Dark Victory
AUTHOR: William Shatner
PAGES: 303
Reviewer: Rachel Christie

The Mirror Universe is a dark and twisted reflection of our own, where all that is noble and compassionate is instead cruel and barbaric. Now our universe has been invaded by the other reality's most feared tyrant: the dreaded Emperor Tiberius, the Mirror Universe counterpart of James T. Kirk. Just as Kirk survived his own era to live into the 24th century, so has Tiberius returned from the past to menace a new generation of Star Fleet heroes.

And only Kirk can stop him.

With Spock, McCoy, and Scotty at his side, and teamed with Jean-Luc Picard and the valiant crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701, Kirk is propelled into his most personal and dangerous mission yet as he fights to uncover the secret of Tiberius' return and learn the terrible truth behind the madman's nightmarish plans for the Federation.

But how can he defeat an enemy who knows Kirk's mind as well as he knows his own?

There's only one word to describe this book: garbage. Probably not the best way to start off a review, but it's true. I have never, in all the Trek books that I have read, come across one this miserable.

Kirk and Tiberius (Kirk from the Mirror Universe) are the protagonist and antagonist characters respectively. And while any Original Series book tends to highlight Kirk’s ego, I’ve never seen it done to a degree where the background and personality of other characters from Trek canon is completely ignored. Both Picard and Janeway are in this book, and as we know are highly respected Captain who – no matter how much they might have respected Captain Kirk – wouldn’t take crap from him. Yet Kirk comes forward 100 years in time, and starts telling them that they’re wrong, he’s right, no matter out of the loops he is. I realize that Kirk is cocky, so one would expect him to say the things he does… but Picard and Janeway wouldn’t take the way he treats them.

I also didn’t like this book because of the fact it appears to be apart of a series. Typically, any books that are part of a series state right on it that it is (ie: Star Fleet Corps of Engineers Book 1). I tend to avoid reading series books unless it’s something that I think I’m really going to enjoy. This book had no indication that it was part of a series. With series books, the author tries to do a bit of a summary in the first chapter or two, in case the reader is someone new to the series or if it’s been a while since the reader has read the previous book – this way, the reader is brought up to date quickly with all that has happened earlier. This book doesn’t do that: it drops you right into what’s going on, and assumes you already know what happened. When I started reading, I was completely lost. There were new characters, without any indication of who they were or their attachments to people. How did Kirk and Tiberius get to the 24th Century in the first place? When did it happen? There is only a vague indication of how they jump between universes, and that doesn’t happen until the last few chapters.

On the series note, this book didn’t even come to a little short of ending. There were no threads tied up. I know that with series books, author’s do this to keep the reader wanting the next book in the series – but never do they leave the author dissatisfied. With series books there’s always some sort of conclusion, usually a side story that has come to a close. That way the reader comes away from the book with some satisfaction that an end has been reached. This gives the reader some piece of mind that reader the book was worthwhile. But to not wrap anything up? This tells me that the next book probably won’t come to any conclusion either.

I always try to find something positive to say when I’m reviewing a book. I admit, this book did start to get interesting with the introduction of Doctor M'Benga and the conspiracy she faces. In her frustrated state, you really begin to feel for her. The way the mystery loops back into the main plot helps to keep this book from making me want to stop reading it and throw it in the garbage.

So on a final note: don’t buy this book. Don’t even read it from the library. It’s definitely not worth your time.

Joke of the Month

Top 10 signs you're at a bad Trek convention
Opinions Editor
Stardate 20810.01

Top 10 signs you're at a bad Trek convention (from Letterman)
10. It's being held in the parking lot of a 7-Eleven
9. When you count the fake Spock ears in the room, you come up with an odd number
8. Ben and Jerry's unveils a weird-tasting new flavor called 'Roddenberry'
7. Dorks with "Moe" haircuts keep wandering in from the Three Stooges convention down the hall
6. So-called starship Enterprise looks a lot like an RV wrapped in papier-mâché
5. By the time you get there, they've already run out of "Spockwiches"
4. The keynote speaker is William Shatner's hairpiece
3. The hookers all look like Klingons
2. You keep running into a guy with no pants who wants to show you his phaser
1. Someone yells "Beam me up, Skippy!"

Science News

Astronomy Picture of the Month


Shuttle assembly building, Kennedy Space Centre, Florida. The largest one story building in the world. The blue square in the flag is the size of 16 regulation NBA basketball courts, the stars are 6 feet from tip to tip, and the strips were as wide as a tour bus.
PHOTO CREDIT: Rachel Christie

Science News

Snow falling on… Mars?!
Stardate 20810.01

For your next snow holiday, instead of going up north or to your favourite snow destination, why not consider Mars? Well, perhaps not until we manage to get people to the red planet with relative ease, but at least you’ll know the snow part is there.

Earlier this month, scientists at York University discovered that snow falls on Mars. Using laser instruments aboard the Phoenix probe, they were able to determine that some of the clouds on the red planet contain ice crystals that are large enough to fall through the atmosphere as snow. The snow found on Mars is being called diamond dust, according to Professor Jim Whiteway, the lead scientist for this part of the Phoenix mission. This is because diamond dust snow is also found in the arctic, where cold, dry weather patters are the same found on Mars.

Scientists were happy to find the fluffy white stuff, because it adds another piece to the water on Mars planet. The Phoenix probe was launched in May of this year, and is expected to continue to relay date back to Earth until the end of November.

Read more.

Technology News

The original medical tricorder?
Stardate 20810.01

Scientists from the University of Leeds have made a step closer towards the development of a device similar to a tricorder. They have developed a biosensor technology that detects certain diseases in the body quickly, by using antibodies to check for molecules that are a marker for that disease. Says Dr Paul Millner, “We believe this to be the next generation diagnostic testing. We can now detect almost any analyte faster, cheaper and more easily than the current accepted testing methodology.” This new technique can detect a variety of diseases, such as prostate and ovarian cancer, stroke, multiple sclerosis, heart disease and fungal disease in a matter of 15 minutes or less. The researchers are also working on getting their sensor to detect for other diseases like tuberculosis and HIV.

Not only will this technology be quick to scan for diseases, but it will also be portable. The researchers are planning for this technology to be developed into a small hand held device about the size of a cell phone. A different sensor chip would be inserted into the device for each disease that would be tested for. It would be just as easy as using the current diabetes glucose testing kits or a pregnancy test.

The scientists working on the project are confident that this is only the beginning of using this type of biosensor technology. They believe that this technology could also be used for detecting herbicides or pesticides in water, or antibiotics in milk.

Read more.

Astronomy News

Saturn’s rings older than expected
Stardate 20810.01

According to scientists at the University of Colorado, the rings around the Solar System’s sixth planet, Saturn, may actually be older than previously thought. Due to the brightness and clean look to Saturn’s rings, scientists originally believed that the rings were approximately 100 million years old.

Using information retrieved from the Cassini spacecraft mission, researchers were able to simulate the collisions and erosion that takes place in the rings. "Because they are clumpy, the previous estimates of the mass of the rings are incorrect,” says Doctor Larry Eposito, "Both Cassini observations and theoretical calculations can allow the rings of Saturn to be billions of years old.”

Read more.

This Month in Astronomy History

Stardate 20810.01

Happy Birthday NASA!

On October 1st, 1958, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration begins operation in the United States. NASA’s mission is to "pioneer the future in space exploration, scientific discovery, and aeronautics research.” NASA does work in four main areas: Aeronautics, Exploration Systems, Science, and Space Operations. NASA’s notable achievements include being the first organization to have people walk on the Moon; it’s creation of a reusable spacecraft, the Space Shuttle; and in partnership between the United States, Russia, and 16 other nations, to create a permanent human presence in space on the International Space Station.

Read more.

FNN would like to extend Congratulations to everyone who was promoted, received an award, or graduated from Star Fleet Academy this month!

(Editor's Note: This page still in the process of being updated.)


Rank Ship
Med-ens.jpg Darin Calcant USS Sheridan, DD-4086
Eng-ltjg.jpg Vladimir Komoscov USS Enterprise, CV-07
Sci-lt.jpg Judith Tucker USS Gettysburg, BC-1863
Med-lcdr.jpg Joanna Ma USS Drake, CL-2509


No medals were awarded this month.

Role-Player of the Month

1st Special Operations Group

  • USS Enterprise - Lt[jg] Komoscov

1st Battle Group

  • USS Dauntless - None awarded
  • USS Gettysburg - Lt Tucker

2nd Battle Group

  • USS Ticonderoga - Lt[jg] Vixx
  • USS Sheridan - Lt McKenzie
  • SS Sierra-18 - Ens Rice

3rd Exploration Group

  • USS Drake - Cdr Mynx
  • USS Darwin - Cdr Trem
  • USS Copernicus - Lt[jg] Brooks

Opposing Forces

  • RIS Shadowhawk Þ erei'Erein l’Dartha

Academy Graduates