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Transporters

Written: 2000.06.13

Sensor jamming. They cannot transport without accurate sensor readings of the terrain that they will transport to. We therefore recommend that all ground units and armour units carry jamming equipment. Without accurate sensor readings it will be extremely dangerous for Federation troopers to transport behind our units. The replicated ("transported") troopers might materialize in mid-air and fall to their deaths, or they might materialize several metres below the ground surface, and die instantly.

(Alyeska here) Federation sensors can detect multiple things. They use more then just subspace sensors (whish there is no proof that SW can infact jam them). Even if they can't detect the range for transport with susbspace they can use visual sensors to determine range or detect gravity differences to find the location needed to transport soldiers.

More unsupported claims. Notice how, if in doubt, he assumes that immature Federation technology is always superior to well-established Imperial technology. Every unknown must always result in omnipotent ST technology and useless SW technology, eh? Typical of fanatical Trekkies. He also claims that they can use other tricks to accurately transport soldiers if their sensors are jammed, but he provides no evidence whatsoever for this claim. Light refraction and diffraction in the atmosphere makes the use of visual sensors a highly risky prospect at best, and reliance on immeasurably tiny gravity differences would be even more risky. A few feet here or there won't ordinarily make much difference, but with a transporter, it can mean the difference between life and death.

Notice that in Insurrection, the So'na were unable to transport the Ba'ku until they "tagged" them with some sort of transponder device, thus allowing the sensors to lock on in spite of the presence of certain mineral ores. If they could have transported them with visual sensors, they wouldn't have needed the tags. After all, it was pretty easy to see them ...

At this point, "Alyeska" tries to explain away an entire list of examples where transporters were easily disrupted. For each item in the list, he tries to claim that it was a very special situation and would never apply to SW, and he ignores the fact that it was no means a comprehensive list (I didn't even mention the Insurrection example). Gee, I was unaware that unique and special situations could be so common ...


In "Symbiosis" transporter functions were disrupted throughout an entire star system by solar flares in its star. This indicates that ambient EM radiation can easily disrupt transporters.

(Alyeska here) that was one star. There are thousands of types of stars with mulitple variables. And here is the clincher, to save the people on the freighters the Enterprise beamed them off. Further more the survivors were beamed back to their respective planets. Transporters were slightly disrupted on a ship with older transporters (more then once advances have been shown up to DS9). There is a big difference between making transportation slightly more time consuming and actually preventing it.

This is another outright deception. The Enterprise beamed some of the freighter's passengers off before it was destroyed. They were unable to beam them all off, and they barely got the handful that were saved. And this was extremely mild EM radiation (despite Alyeska's painfully obvious attempt to suggest that it must have been exceptional). Both planets were inhabitable by humanoids very similar to us (they breathed our air, ate our food, etc), thus eliminating the possibility that truly exceptional EM radiation was present.

"Symbiosis" showed that transporter functions can be disrupted even by extremely weak EM radiation. It stands to reason that they would be even more disrupted by significant EM radiation or deliberate jamming.


In "Ensigns of Command" ambient "hyperonic" radiation disrupted transporter operation and hand phaser operation, even though it was so weak that it apparently had no ionizing effects (settlers had actually adapted to the radiation and were suffering no ill effects from it, so it couldn't have been ionizing radiation).

(Alyeska here) incorrect, it was stated that a vacine of sorts had to be developed and that hundreds of settlers died before that was done

Yet another outright deception. He claims that my argument is "incorrect" but he does not produce any evidence to contradict the evidence. First and foremost, there was no vaccine. Some of the settlers simply developed a resistance, as I said. Furthremore, his argument is a transparent attempt to employ logical fallacies of composition, in which he hopes to sell the idea that "if one part of the argument is wrong, then all of it is wrong". In other words, he hopes to nit-pick an insignificant component of my statements and use that nit-pick to claim that the argument is therefore wrong in its entirety.

Besides, what difference does it make if they developed a vaccine or not? The point is that Federation transporters could not function on a planet whose environment was benign enough to support both human life and many forms of natural life. The fact that they had to adapt to it (either naturally or with help) doesn't change the fact that the environment was demonstrably not bathed in lethal ionizing radiation, and yet it stopped transporters.


In "Power Play", electrical storms in a planet's atmosphere prevented transporter operation. This indicates that low-level magnetic fields and electrical discharge can disrupt transporter function.

(Alyeska here) storms can varry greatly. There is a big difference between a snow storm and a thunder storm. Further more it has been shown more then one time that these events were very rare or that the storm had such force that it was imposible to beam and also hazardous for the crew even if they had beamed.

Do you notice how he has to explain away incident after incident after incident? Surely it would occur to any thinking person that all of these incidents add up to an obvious trend. In this case, he tries to explain yet another problem away, but his explanation sets a new record for desperation. He argues that it might have been a very violent storm, but he doesn't seem to realize that since several crewmen were able to survive on the surface without protective gear, there are strict limits to the severity of the storm. There are also limits on the chemical content of the atmosphere, which cannot differ too greatly from Earth's atmosphere if people were able to breathe it.

At this point he gets even more desperate: he employs circular logic, in which he notes that the storm must have been very powerful because it blocked the transporters. Why is it circular logic? Look carefully: his argument assumes the very thing that it's designed to prove: that storms must be very powerful in order to disrupt transporters. What a joke; this person's debating skills are nonexistent.


In ST6, a weak magnetic field protected the Klingon penal asteroid where Kirk and McCoy were being held prisoner. Kirk, McCoy, and a shape- shifter were able to walk out of this field effortlessly, but it still made transport impossible.

(Alyeska here) no where was it stated that the magnetic shield was weak. That was just an assumption.

Is that how this "Alyeska" person thinks? That anything which doesn't come from dialogue is an assumption? This explains a lot, both about his simple-minded way of interpreting dialogue and about his utter incompetence at interpreting observations. It doesn't matter if somebody says the magnetic shield is weak; as intelligent people, we try to use our brains to analyze the situation rather than mindlessly waiting for people to spell it out for us in dialogue.

If the shield was strong enough to resist bombardment, they would not have restricted it to transporter interdiction functions. They could have used it as an actual energy shield. Furthermore, they were able to walk through the shield without complications. Some have argued that it was an umbrella shield, but a starship could beam through an umbrella shield by orbiting the planet until it has a clear line of sight to the target. The only way to deal with this is to either make the umbrella shield a dome, or to project it all the way to the horizon. I theorize that it would be a dome.

The alternative (that the shield projected clear to the horizon) is unworkable because Kirk and McCoy couldn't possibly have walked out of it in a few hours. It would have to extend ten or more kilometres in every direction. I've lived in a northern climate all of my life, and I can tell you that when you're walking through knee-deep snow to avoid the path (especially when you're aging and overweight as Kirk was), you will not make good time even in mild weather (read: freezing temperatures). In extreme sub-zero conditions, you will do even worse.

The power behind that shield was enough to prevent beaming up, but not even capable of stopping planetary attack.

You just have to laugh when you read stuff like this. He claims that I'm only making an "assumption" and in his very next sentence, he inadvertently agrees with me that the shield had no power behind it!

Another item is that the shield prevented ships from beaming people OFF planet, but the Klingons were still able to beam DOWN to the planet.

Kirk, McCoy and the other prisoners walking to the entrance of the Klingon prison complexThis is an outright deception. We never saw anyone beam down to the planet. Look at the screenshot to the right: do you know what you're looking at? You're looking at Kirk, McCoy, and the rest of the prisoners walking through the barren landscape toward the entrance to the prison complex.

Yes, that's right. They're walking. But this raises a question, doesn'it it? If they were beamed down, why would they have to walk long distances through brutal conditions to reach the entrance? Why wouldn't they show up right in front of the entrance? Or inside the complex? Didn't this guy bother watching ST6 before making this ridiculous claim about the klingons beaming down?

In any case, what does this have to do with the fact that a shield which is useless against weapons can easily stop transporters? That's all I'm trying to establish; that transporters are easy to block. He has provided no evidence whatsoever to refute this fact.


Although Federation transporter technology represents a highly dangerous potential threat, it can be completely nullified through the use of sensor jamming and theatre shields.

(Alyeska here) Given the fact that there is no evidence supporting that SW shields can actually prevent phasers from slicing and dicing enemy targets it is totally posible to use a phaser beam to encircle a transporter beam and to beam people through shields. But then again shields may be of little use against transporters.

Yet another unsupported claim. After all, he's basically trying to suggest that phasers can pass effortlessly through SW shields. He phrases it the usual Trekkie idiot way: "there's no evidence that they can't". But that's idiotic, because there's no evidence that they can, either. In fact, not only is there no evidence that they can pass effortlessly through SW shields, but there's no evidence that they have any effect at all; should we therefore assume that they're totally useless against SW shields?

That's the problem with this sort of argument. It is phrased in such a manner that it's OK to assume that phasers will do their job, but it's not OK to assume that SW shields will do their job. Could I hear some actual reasoning to support this bizarre one-way assumption system?


Virtually all Federation cultist objections to these conclusions fall into one large category: "ignore the episodes; the TM says that they're more powerful than you think!". Unfortunately for Federation cultists, episodes cannot be ignored. At no time in the entire history of televised or filmed Star Trek ground combat has a hand phaser been shown destroying 650 cubic metres of rock. Not once! At numerous times, this capability would have been very useful and in fact would have given them an instant victory. And yet it wasn't used in "Rocks and Shoals", "The Siege of AR-588", and many other incidents when it would have easily given them instant victory.

(Alyeska here) as stated phasers have mulitple settings. The times they were used with power they used the setting that was desired. And as I stated earlier there have been episodes that show the phasers have power close to what the TM claims.

Ahh, more unsupported claims. Please, by all means, let him name the episodes in which we've seen hand phasers destroying thousands of cubic metres of rock per second. Please, let him produce some figures to show that they were in fact destroying thousands of cubic metres per second (since this person seems to one of those "mathematically challenged" Trekkies). And please, let him demonstrate that they have ever had any effectiveness against rock from a distance of more than a few metres (or didn't he notice that all of the "punch a hole through a rock wall" incidents occurred at extreme short range, of a couple of metres at most?).

He also invokes the standard Trekkie "multiple settings" mantra. It's a pathetic argument; it ignores the countless episodes (two of which I mentioned explicitly) in which the imaginary heavy-artillery settings of hand phasers would have easily given them instant victory and saved many lives. It ignores "The Vengeance Factor" in which we finally saw a confirmed level 16 phaser blast, and it didn't exactly shake our world.


The stock cultist objection to this fact is that the writers and producers will not depict phasers being as powerful "as they should be" for dramatic purposes. However, what "they should be" is irrelevant. What they are is all that matters, and in the canon episodes and films, they are powerful hand weapons but they are not capable of rearranging local geography as Federation cultists claim.

(Alyeska here) again, totally ignoring the fact that phasers have multiple settings.

Yes, yes, the "multiple settings" excuse. This is actually a strawman attack, because I didn't ignore it. In fact, I dealt specifically and repeatedly with it, by mentioning numerous incidents in which they were unable to cause these large-scale rock disintegration events even though it would have saved lives and given them instant victory. Anyone who has read my pages (or even the pieces of it which he quoted) can see that I have already addressed it and more importantly, he has utterly failed to respond. Instead, he merely repeats the original argument and ignores the rebuttal, almost as if he can give the argument validity through dint of sheer repetition.


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