The Star Trek Failure Generator
May 5, 2009 6:31 PM   Subscribe

The Star Trek Failure Generator pokes fun at the technobabble the franchise is so famous for. Click the button to get a random Star Trek style problem ("The polarized subinterlink is unstable!") and its corresponding fix ("Trim the gravitational psi-wave with terminium warp control!"). Great for finding out what to do when your beresium impeller is collapsing, as well as just having a bit of a chuckle.
posted by Effigy2000 (66 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
I always just reverse the polarity. Solves everything.
posted by jfrancis at 6:46 PM on May 5, 2009 [7 favorites]


1997 2.0
posted by DU at 6:53 PM on May 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


Back in the day we used to play the Start Trek Next Gen drinking game.

Requirements - bottle of spirits, three or more nerds, videos of the show

Rules - Pick a well utilised character - example Geordie or Deana

If Gerodie says anything with the words: "Level Three Diagnostic", "Visor", "Re route", "Sensor","Tacheon" - skull

If Deanna says anything with the words "Empathy", "Feeling", "Sensing", "Counseling" etc - skull
posted by mattoxic at 6:54 PM on May 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


Pfft! Reverse the polarity indeed. That might fly on alternate universe Enterprise NX-01, but on a real starship. Snort!
posted by Mister_A at 6:55 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Deanna was cute but I couldn't stand her psychobabble. I always wished she would take her top off. I am a bad person.
posted by Mister_A at 6:57 PM on May 5, 2009 [7 favorites]


I like how your FPP description was sufficient for me to not have to bother going there.
posted by davejay at 6:57 PM on May 5, 2009


Man, I can't wait until Navelgazer finds this.

(the sad part is that he's kinda right)
posted by Afroblanco at 6:58 PM on May 5, 2009


I always just reverse the polarity. Solves everything.

On the newer ships, you have to reroute the main deflector array through the EPS conduits.
posted by cribcage at 6:58 PM on May 5, 2009 [8 favorites]


Add in boosting of the confinement beams.

It needed doing so often that one wonders why they didn't just pre-boost.
posted by selenized at 6:59 PM on May 5, 2009


Wow, i borked my joke up there. Either insert the word "not" after the word "but", or balance the boridium cell with docking subspace coils! Whatever you think is best.
posted by Mister_A at 7:00 PM on May 5, 2009


It's telling that the technology in the Backyardigans' Garbage Trek episode is much more believable than that of any Star Trek episode.
posted by signal at 7:06 PM on May 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Like a balloon! And... something bad happens!"
posted by Greg Nog at 7:08 PM on May 5, 2009


I enjoyed The Onion's piss-take this week.

(links to video)
posted by Bookhouse at 7:09 PM on May 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was Rick Berman.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:12 PM on May 5, 2009 [33 favorites]


It always amused me how any problem that involved offensive action (mostly TNG stuff, though) ended up being all sensor array reconfigurations or dish reconfigurations, yet it ALWAYS took them t-3% to think of it.

Surely, in a world of logic, only the first time would it take you that long? Next time: First port of call is "It's t-99%, so what reconfigurations would fix this, until we get a full time maxi-configurable array on line?"
posted by Brockles at 7:12 PM on May 5, 2009


I wish the answer was, at least once, something like, "Captain Kirk unplugged the main deflector array so he could plug in his blow-dryer," or something.
posted by Mister_A at 7:15 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was Rick Berman.

No, Brannon Braga.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 7:17 PM on May 5, 2009 [4 favorites]


I like how they had that robot.
posted by ND¢ at 7:20 PM on May 5, 2009


Yea, he was all like beep boop bop bop ! That robot fuckin' kicked ass! And then he saved 'em from getting crushed! And his best friend is that gay dude! Yeaaa!
posted by Mister_A at 7:21 PM on May 5, 2009


I love love technobabble.
posted by niccolo at 7:41 PM on May 5, 2009


It's obvious that the worst piece of crap on the Enterprise was the original transporter. Just once when it was breaking down I wish they had to make a call to 'Brian' in customer service in Bangalore. "Good day Mr. Scott. Are you sure the transporter is plugged in?"
posted by digsrus at 7:42 PM on May 5, 2009 [3 favorites]




Pope Guilty - I love that song so very, very much.

That is all.
posted by HostBryan at 7:50 PM on May 5, 2009


"I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was Rick Berman."
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:12 PM on May 6

"No, Brannon Braga."
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:17 PM on May 6

Kids! Kids! You're both right.
posted by Effigy2000 at 7:54 PM on May 5, 2009 [11 favorites]


On the newer ships, you have to reroute the main deflector array through the EPS conduits.

Wouldn't we have to take the plasma relays off line for that?
posted by Avelwood at 8:14 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Probably. We could compensate by using a hypospray to inject the gel packs.
posted by cribcage at 8:26 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Faint of Butt: "I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was Rick Berman."
PhoBWanKenobi: "No, Brannon Braga."
Effigy2000: Kids! Kids! You're both right.

I understand we've all banned ST:VOY from our memories but I'd like to throw Jeri Taylor into the ring.
posted by cranberrymonger at 8:31 PM on May 5, 2009


Probably. We could compensate by using a hypospray to inject the gel packs.

Don't make me crawl down that Jefferies tube and recalibrate your phase inverter!
posted by Avelwood at 8:34 PM on May 5, 2009


If they exposed an API, this would do wonders for error messages.
posted by headlessagnew at 8:34 PM on May 5, 2009


Instruction Manuals for the USS Enterprise

(funnier (IMO), and coincidentally posted today on Cracked)
posted by Flashman at 8:40 PM on May 5, 2009 [3 favorites]


Does it have a Voyager mode where everything is holograms?
posted by Artw at 8:48 PM on May 5, 2009


Damn you all. Now I'm watching TNG all night. *shakes fist*
posted by Avelwood at 9:12 PM on May 5, 2009


I always just reverse the polarity. Solves everything.

Of the neutron flow?
posted by punchdrunkhistory at 9:36 PM on May 5, 2009


For whatever reason i caught a couple of early TNG epsiodes on Sci Fi last night. Oh dear - they had not aged well.
posted by Artw at 9:48 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


For whatever reason i caught a couple of early TNG epsiodes on Sci Fi last night. Oh dear - they had not aged well.

FAIL. In earlier episodes they would have been younger, not older.
posted by troybob at 9:53 PM on May 5, 2009


Pretty sure he meant the show and not the people.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:06 PM on May 5, 2009


Also, EVERY GODDAMN TIME I happen to be near a TV with TNG showing, EVERY GODDAMN TIME it's the Locutus of Borg episode. I understand TNG is a pretty good show, but as far as I can tell all that ever happens is Picard getting turned into a Borg. You'd think they'd develop safeguards after awhile.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:08 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


Pretty sure he meant the show and not the people.

Pretty sure he knew that.
posted by crossoverman at 10:22 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


I always just reverse the polarity

Yeah, but that's still only legal in, like, four states now.
posted by Cyrano at 10:30 PM on May 5, 2009 [2 favorites]


Looks like a plasma conduit cut out in junction seventeen... I'll keep you posted.
posted by Avelwood at 11:03 PM on May 5, 2009


Pretty sure he knew that.

Pretty sure he doesn't care.
posted by mazola at 11:26 PM on May 5, 2009


I saw the new Star Trek movie last night at a paramount preview in Chicago. (Roger Ebert was there) It is a really good movie, and a great one if you know the old series. It follows Kirk and Spock from childhood til before the start of the TV series. There are ton's of references to the old series and the characters of the crew members are spot on. Young Kirk, Spock, Bones, Checkov, Scotty, Ohura (who is a total babe in the movie) and even Wesley Chrusher, ehm no Wesley. The kid that plays 20 year old James T. Kirk is the best actor that has been in a Star Trek movie if you don't consider Ricardo Montalban! He's the he James Dean of Trek. The effects are amazing. The story which we mostly already know is very well written. There's time travel, black holes, red matter and a really cool motorcycle. We find out what happened to Kirk's mother and father, Spock's parents and his race. Lenard Nimoy plays time traveled Spock in a plot twist that kinda works but will give you chills none the less. Captain Pike is a father figure for young Kirk and just about a main character as well. Four stars!
Mail me if you want more details, I didn't want to spoil it for anyone.
posted by lee at 11:57 PM on May 5, 2009 [1 favorite]


The kid that plays 20 year old James T. Kirk is the best actor that has been in a Star Trek movie if you don't consider Ricardo Montalban!

Yes, I'm sure he's better than Patrick Stewart, Christopher Plummer, Malcolm McDowell, Leonard Nimoy, Brock Peters, David Warner, James Cromwell, F Murray Abraham, Anthony Zerbe...
posted by crossoverman at 1:35 AM on May 6, 2009 [2 favorites]


And dont forget William Shatner!
posted by the cuban at 2:19 AM on May 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yes, Shat's the Best!!!
posted by Pendragon at 3:37 AM on May 6, 2009


But don't remember Sean Kenney
posted by hal9k at 3:44 AM on May 6, 2009


It's telling that the technology in the Backyardigans' Garbage Trek episode is much more believable than that of any Star Trek episode.
posted by signal


A favorite was not sufficient for this comment. Just had to repeat it here and thank you for my first laugh of the day.
posted by marxchivist at 4:25 AM on May 6, 2009


Every time the damned EPS conduits blow/fail/have to be re-routed, I want to scream "Well, waddaya expect? They're fracking Postscript!!!
posted by Thorzdad at 5:26 AM on May 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


You know what else always bothered me on TNG? They were always beaming over to some hostile, unknown environment—like a Borg cube—with their phasers velcroed to their hips, but as soon as they'd materialize they'd all whip their guns off and start waving them around like crazy. Worf must have done that a dozen times.

Was there some transporter protocol they couldn't override which wouldn't allow a phaser in the "ON" position to beam out? Phase rifles didn't seem to be a problem. Jeez, I mean, install a switch, or something.
posted by steef at 6:24 AM on May 6, 2009



I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was Rick Berman

I thought the Star Trek Failure Generator was odd numbers.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:45 AM on May 6, 2009


You know I just watched the first generations movie and I had data's little Life Forms song stuck in my head. For the first time in a while it wasn't there and now this post brought it back. Thank Metafilter! jerks.... J/k this post is cool!
posted by Mastercheddaar at 6:56 AM on May 6, 2009


What they needed was a Vagoda coil. Those coils never die.
posted by juiceCake at 7:08 AM on May 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


They were always beaming over to some hostile, unknown environment...

Actually, I thought they spent too much time on the ship in TNG. There's a happy medium somewhere between (1) making a space version of Love Boat, and (2) super-gluing the characters to a planet to the point where you forget it's supposed to be a space show, a la BSG's "New Caprica" storyline.

But yeah, they had phaser issues. Like, if you've gone to the trouble of having a "stun" setting, why are you always trying to hold dangerous enemies at bay and hoping they won't escape on you? There's one episode where they spend 40 minutes chasing this elite soldier through every nook and cranny on the ship. He attacks a dozen people and escapes custody repeatedly. Finally Worf comes up behind him in a storage bay, announces himself ("Don't move!"), and stands there pointing a phaser. Like he's waiting patiently for the guy to escape, because he knows the writers need his assist.
posted by cribcage at 7:14 AM on May 6, 2009


Yes, I'm sure he's better than Patrick Stewart, Christopher Plummer, Malcolm McDowell, Leonard Nimoy, Brock Peters, David Warner, James Cromwell, F Murray Abraham, Anthony Zerbe...

And for that matter, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Bruce Greenwood, Eric Bana, Winona Ryder... okay, probably better than Winona Ryder.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:21 AM on May 6, 2009


Uhura (who is a total babe in the movie)
correction: total babe 24-7
posted by debbie_ann at 8:29 AM on May 6, 2009


Like, if you've gone to the trouble of having a "stun" setting, why are you always trying to hold dangerous enemies at bay and hoping they won't escape on you?

This is why cops taze everyone they meet.
posted by Artw at 8:40 AM on May 6, 2009


It probably didn't help that the TNGs I caught lately didn't even have any phaser waving, just lots of dull talkyness with an energy being type creature (dull) that could do absolutely anything (even duller) disguised as a dull old man in one, and lots of wibbling about the prime directive (AKA the dullness directive) and whether or not to rescue a scientist from a mega-dull primitive culture in the other. Oh, and that last one was not only dull, but had levels of smug that went through the roof.
posted by Artw at 10:39 AM on May 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


What I loved about the original concept of Star Trek was that the writers had the both the moral construct of the necessity for the Prime Directive, and an utter disregard for the consequences of having Kirk break it in each new episode.

I imagine the writers held contests, paying good money for whoever came up with the most far-fetched reason for him to ignore the Prime Directive that week.

Outcome: glorious scenes of Shatner speechifying and rolling in the dirt (with torn shirt and bloodied lip) while attractive and admiring alien/yeoman crew member looks on rapturously.
posted by misha at 11:50 AM on May 6, 2009


I'm really sorry to do this to you folks. Star Trekkin

Warning ear worm may be difficult to destroy.
posted by fontophilic at 12:31 PM on May 6, 2009


We look for things. We look for things to make us go.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 1:39 PM on May 6, 2009 [2 favorites]


Metafilter is smart.
posted by johnj at 2:48 PM on May 6, 2009


And for that matter, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Bruce Greenwood, Eric Bana, Winona Ryder... okay, probably better than Winona Ryder.

Agreed. But regardless, I don't want Chris Pine to be a good actor. He's playing James Tiberius Kirk, I want him to be a ham. If we suddenly have a good actor playing Kirk, I don't know how I'll be able to cope.
posted by crossoverman at 4:36 PM on May 6, 2009


It is a really good movie, and a great one if you know the old series. [...] The effects are amazing. The story which we mostly already know is very well written. There's time travel

No Star Trek story with time travel is a good story.
posted by winna at 5:04 PM on May 6, 2009


If I like this one I'll certainly be hoping for a sequel with no fucking time travel.
posted by Artw at 5:07 PM on May 6, 2009


No Star Trek story with time travel is a good story.

- City on the Edge of Forever
- Star Trek IV
- Yesterday's Enterprise
- Past Tense
- The Visitor
- Trials and Tribble-ations

Yeah, they were all fucking terrible.
posted by crossoverman at 7:24 PM on May 6, 2009 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I especially liked ST:IV. That's a good example of how to blend drama with silly comedy. (Contrast a bad example of the same: Batman & Robin.)
posted by cribcage at 7:54 PM on May 6, 2009


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