Info

Meta Treks: A Star Trek Philosophy Podcast

Meta Treks is a Trek.fm podcast dedicated to a deep examination of the philosophical ideas found in Star Trek. In each episode, Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison take you on a fascinating journey into the inner workings of Star Trek storytelling, deeper into subspace than you've ever traveled before.
RSS Feed Subscribe in Apple Podcasts
Meta Treks: A Star Trek Philosophy Podcast
2018
July
May
April
March


2017
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2015
December
November
October


Categories

All Episodes
Archives
Categories
Now displaying: Category: philosophy of technology
Jul 3, 2017
Pen Pals.  

When Lt. Commander Data contacts a girl named "Sarjenka" from a pre-warp civilization in distress on his 24th-century space ham radio, it leads to a super-secret philosophical discussion about the nature of the Prime Directive in Captain Picard's quarters. Should the Prime Directive be interpreted strictly or loosely? How should Starfleet officers weigh the high-stakes, life-or-death consequences for an entire civilization against their responsibility and oath to uphold the Prime Directive? Would interpreting Sarjenka's "whisper in the dark" as a formal request for help count as "sophistry," as Captain Picard claims? And what role do friendships and emotions play in determining moral obligation in light of the Prime Directive?  

In this episode of Meta Treks, hosts Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison discuss the second-season episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, "Pen Pals." But this is episode 73 of Meta Treks, and the number 73 has a very special meaning in Morse code in ham radio circles: "Best regards." Because Zachary himself has been a third-generation licensed ham radio operator since he was just a tad older than Sarjenka, this episode of Meta Treks debates the role and responsibilities of radio communication in the Star Trek universe, whether that newfangled subspace radio or good old-fashioned RF. Zachary and Mike also discuss Wesley Crusher's first command and what it means to have "command presence."  

Chapters 
Intro (00:01:35) 
Initial Thought on Pen Pals from TNG Season 2 (00:03:29) 
The Ham Radio Connection (00:07:50) 
Unusually High Stakes and the Philosophical Debate (00:17:14) 
"Obligations that go beyond duty..." (00:22:05) 
The Individual Positions of the Crew in the Debate (00:25:43) 
Worf Takes the Kantian Position (00:27:01) 
Picard's Argument for Causal Determinism (0029:59) 
Line Drawing Problem (00:35:28) 
Making the Decision: Command Presence and the Nature of Command (00:42:10) 
Principles vs. Consequences (00:49:07) 
Wesley's First Command (00:50:57) 
Riker's Advice: What Would Picard Do (00:59:17) 
Regulation and Communication (01:00:29) 
Subspace QSL Cards and Q Codes (01:03:31) 
Closing (01:07:33)  

Hosts 
Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison  

Production 
Mike Morrison (Editor) Zachary Fruhling (Producer) C Bryan Jones (Executive Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Ken Tripp (Executive Producer) Patrick Devlin (Associate Producer) Kay Shaw (Associate Producer) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) Brandon-Shea Mutala (Patreon Manager)
May 9, 2016

The Industrial Design Philosophy of Star Trek. 

The tools, manufactured objects, and environments in Star Trek have many influences: futurism, minimalism, mid-century modernism, ergonomics, and transhumanism, to name a few. In this episode of Meta Treks, hosts Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison examine the industrial design philosophy of Star Trek. From its technological and social progressivism to its roots in 1960s counterculture, Zachary and Mike explore the implicit values and assumptions behind the industrial design philosophy of Star Trek. Zachary and Mike also debate the transformative potential of technology and its influence on the relationship between leisure and labor, both in the Star Trek universe and for us today. 

Chapters
Welcome to Episode 27 (00:01:08)
Initial Thoughts (00:01:54)
The Original Series - Design Philosophy and Technological Progressiveness (00:04:14)
The Next Generation - User-friendliness and the Transformative Power of Technology (00:07:55)
From TOS to TNG - From Jelly Beans to Touch Screens (00:12:42)
The Whole Earth Catalog - 1960s Counterculture, Tools, and Technology (00:15:05)
The Amplification Effect of Technology - The U.S.S. Bicycle (00:16:24)
From Communes to Online Communities to Starship Crews (00:20:17)
Can Technology Transform the Human Condition? (00:21:13)
Okudagram Funny Cat Videos (00:40:57)
Using Tools to Change Your Life, and the World (00:42:51)
Painting, Classical Music, and Shakespeare - The Liberal Arts in Star Trek (00:44:34)
24th Century Design - Flying a Starship Laying Down (00:50:34)
Learning about Cultural Values from Designed Objects (00:52:24)
Designed Objects in Star Trek (00:58:21)
Uniquely Voyager Design? (01:04:06)
Final Thoughts (01:12:38)

Hosts
Zachary Fruhling and Mike Morrison 

Production
Dennis Castello (Editor and Producer) Norman C. Lao (Executive Producer) C Bryan Jones (Executive Producer) Matthew Rushing (Executive Producer) Charlynn Schmiedt (Executive Producer) Patrick Devlin (Associate Producer) Will Nguyen (Content Manager) Richard Marquez (Production Manager) 

Send us your feedback!
Twitter: @trekfm 
Facebook: http://facebook.com/trekfm 
Voicemail: http://www.speakpipe.com/trekfm 
Contact Form: http://www.trek.fm/contact 
Visit the Trek.fm website at http://www.trek.fm/ 
Subscribe in iTunes: http://itunes.com/trekfm 

Support the Network!
Become a Trek.fm Patron on Patreon and help us keep Star Trek talk coming every week. We have great perks for you at http://patreon.com/trekfm 

1