Xindi Premonition

Written by Nexcerpt on October 20th, 2010 in Life & Lessons.
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I sense the appeal of creating the National Ignition Facility, seen here in a Boston.com Big Picture series on construction of NIF. I really do. The more we learn (even if fewer and fewer of us understand it) the better our chances of solving really big problems.

And, I appreciate that technology evolves along its own paths, and according to (relatively) universal laws that (apparently) persist over time. I really do. The more we experiment (even if fewer and fewer of us are involved) the better we become at designing and implementing the solutions.

But, there’s something disconcerting about the physical design of this project, focused on “creating a miniature star on Earth… the goal of the National Ignition Facility (NIF), home to the world’s largest and highest-energy laser in Livermore, California.”

In comments posted to the Boston.com pics, native fear is evident in the form of suggestions that this is either the biggest waste of money ever, or a step toward the end of the world.

Some of this fear may stem from our awareness of how reality mimics science fiction, or vice versa. A dozen parallels to NIF come to mind, from themes in the newest Spiderman films, to the oldest Jules Verne stores. But… the similarities here give me the creeps!

The target chamber into which 192 lasers will fire at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

2010: NIF Ignition Target Chamber

2010: NIF Ignition Target Chamber

The Xindi prototype weapon that kills seven million humans in an unprovoked attack on Earth in season three of Star Trek Enterprise.

2153: Xindi Prototype Weapon

How would you tell the two apart? Other than the enormous Florida-decimating Kemosite-driven ray?

2153: Xindi Prototype Destroys Florida

2153: Xindi Prototype Destroys Florida

Two recommendations to Lawrence Livermore Labs, and other technology leaders:

1: When building one facility with 192 giant laser beams, do not borrow design features from annihilation devices from the future.

2. When scoring video promoting a facility with 192 giant laser beams, do not borrow motifs or theme music from The Exorcist.

I will attempt to limit Star Trek postings and Mike Oldfield references to one per month, each.

One Response to “Xindi Premonition”

  1. [...] and least dangerous. (I also wonder about whether the designer of that logo ever heard of the Xindi in Star Trek Enterprise. Merging the image of the Xindi weapon and an apparently shattered Earth seems… [...]



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