The Register on alien spaceship designs
#1
In a quest for links and discussion, The Register has published a rather silly article lamenting the lack of proper design for alien spaceships. At one point they quote a NASA scientist (Geoffrey Landis) who is obviously not enough of a Trek fan to know where the Enterprise propulsion units are actually located (he mistakes the Warp cooling nacelles for engines). Of course, any real Trek fan knows that the Impulse Engines are separate from the Warp Drive anyway -- but the NASA myth that the Enterprise should be flying in loops has been around since the 1960s. Perhaps their inability to learn from their mistakes on the simple stuff is the real reason why our space program is foundering. There's just no excuse for such a lack of attention to detail over a span of decades.

The article is a retrospective of movie spaceship designs and really leaves a lot to be desired in terms of explaining why the various movies and TV shows went with the designs they did for their spaceships. I would have preferred less nit-picking and more historical information.

It's generally accepted that our theatricality is not going to reflect what real spaceships should look like. After all, TV and movie studios don't have thousands of engineers or the technology in place to design real interstellar spacecraft. It's going to be a while before they start to "get it right".

The article is intended to be a light-hearted poke-in-the-eye, I guess, at the entertainment industry. I feel more like it misses than hits.
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