Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Tue Apr 28, 2015 11:28 pm

I see that Brian is ignoring the "Enemy Within" phaser event brought up to him by Starshipdown that would be a major game changer in the first part.

In fairness, in the latest commentary Brian is being reasonable in the latest exchange with Starshipdown in realizing he'd missed the whole gyroscopic stabilized phaser rifle bit from DS9's "Return to Grace" which he admits is a game changer since such a thing could compensate for the limitations of a typical hand held pistol weapon (though there are other factors about phasers he missed or ignores that also are in play here).
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Wed Apr 29, 2015 11:44 pm

I wouldn't say he was too reasonable, what with his all-caps shouting at Starshipdown, references to his "bullshit", fanaticism, et cetera. He even got in a direct dig at this forum, which was fun.

But, he did at least acknowledge evidence, which is an improvement.

Who is Starshipdown, anyway?

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Thu Apr 30, 2015 2:21 am

2046 wrote:I wouldn't say he was too reasonable, what with his all-caps shouting at Starshipdown, references to his "bullshit", fanaticism, et cetera. He even got in a direct dig at this forum, which was fun.

But, he did at least acknowledge evidence, which is an improvement.
Yes, that was hilarious to read along with Brian's old worn out bit about how mean we are to him and his claim that we don't watch his crappy overlong videos is a hoot, especially the one about 359 not watching them when in this very thread's OP 359 provides an exhaustive list of quotes with precise time indexes from the case study and rebuts each one!

Methinks Brian doth not read our forum and only gets a second hand distorted account from Tyralak or maybe Ted Collins.


2046 wrote:Who is Starshipdown, anyway?
I dunno. I thought he (she?) was Darth Spock for a while. But I guess not. Apparently one of our many lurkers. I'm so glad to see people are starting find this forum and make use of it as a resource for the VS debates. I'm now beginning to wonder if Rom Lokken of Gizmodo is also a lurker disciple of ours.His points in his article closely mirror ours and especially those of your ST-v-SW.Net site.

Anyway, Starshipdown is doing a wonderful job hitting home runs off of Brian every time, and seeing Brian have a meltdown over it is fast becoming a guilty pleasure. Am I so evil, Robert for doing so? :-D
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:07 pm

By his own claimed standard, he would ignore that and focus on your arguments. In reality, however, he would say you are an "obsessed" "pansy" that must be "full of hate", "Mike Disco", you "fanatic" spouting "bullshit".

With that in mind, I have no problem with your touch of schadenfreude ... and as seen, you do try to give him credit when you think credit is due.

Y'know, I don't think I'd mind him half as much if he'd just be an honest jackass instead of trying to pretend he is above such things and that somehow SFJ is a haven of evil a la SDN back in the day. The remaining half would involve him being at least halfway honest with his analyses. If he could get some progress on those fronts he'd be alright. Probably still wrong, but alright.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Thu Apr 30, 2015 9:10 pm

It looks like the discussion between Starshipdown and Brian is over with Brian aving done his usual fleeing in the face of strong evidence and arguments by essentially claiming "You're not following my rules and you don't watch my videos!" tired nonsense, even though Starshipdown seems to understand them quite well and calls Brian out rightly for twisting his own standards as well pointing out beforehand what is wrong with them.

Starshipdown even referenced the use of the TNG tech manual and ICS, and he doesn't like it. Brian then whines that he's got a video on the ICS and runs away.

What's amazing is that through all of this Brian never really once addresses Starshipdown's evidence! Nothing on the phaser blasting the casing in "The Enemy Within", nothing about the range evidence from "Arena", and so on. The only acknowledgement Brian gives during that whole mess is to the gyro stabilization quote from DS9's "Return to Grace". But then it seems Brian tried to avoid that by never bringing it up again.

Perhaps to avoid some trouble in his little echo chamber group?
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Fri May 01, 2015 2:48 pm

Well, as far as the gyroscopic stabilization, he has put out another video where he rejects it in regards to hand phasers. But I had already noted the fact that the exceptionally straight non wiggly lines drawn by phasers when cutting slowly strongly implies gyros on the hand phasers.

In any case, Brian has attempted to suggest that sense StarshipDown has used the power of phasers and the existence of personal force fields to suggest that tanks as often used (e.g. sitting somewhere) are obsolete in those roles, that Trekkies claim tanks and other large weapons systems are useless. This has led him to perform the peculiar maneuver of comparing Gorn disruptors to B-52 bombers, as well as comparing 660 kilogram two-foot-wide Scud missile warheads to tennis-ball photon grenades, and finding Trek comparing unfavorably. This is akin to comparing a Napoleonic cannon to an M-16 and dissing the latter.

In other words, by misunderstanding and misrepresenting a point, he's ventured off into even more of his own absurdity.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Fri May 01, 2015 5:33 pm

I've only been able to give his latest bit a precursory listening to, but from what I've heard and comparing what was said in his exchange with Starshipdown, all I have to say is "wow". Just... wow.

As I understand SSD's argument to Brian before it all ended is that he was asking Brian what he thought was more likely;

- Does the Federation have really kick-ass weapons that render all armored vehicles, even TNG-era tech obsolete, or....

- Does the Federation have tanks and other armored fighting vehicles since other equal tech powers do.


I mean, how hard is that to understand?

But what I get the impression of is that Brian is lashing out wildly at his critics, rather than admit that he might actually be wrong, or someone else has a better interpretation of the evidence.
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Sat May 02, 2015 4:05 pm

Better said, yes. In other words, there are two points:

Phaser > 20th Century tank in certain roles

And

Parity suggests the Federation should have 24th Century ground war vehicles as do their neighbors

Brian is confounding the two to create a strawman contradiction wherein the Federation is beyond tanks but is also said to have them, which was not what was suggested.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Firmus Piett » Sat May 02, 2015 4:46 pm

Image


A little off topic but I have to admit, especially after re-watching the original series, that I do feel that phasers should be considered more potent than blasters (max settings).

Because it doesn't matter what category we look at, vs organic, rock, walls, or metal, phasers have demonstrated the ability to destroy greater sums of mass (usually seems like a multiple). I don't think they are hundreds of times more powerful or anything like that, or compare to tank cannons, but more powerful nonetheless. Phaser resistant animals and materials must just be very well armoured.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Sat May 02, 2015 8:02 pm

I definitely agree there, Firmus. I think you've hit on the primary difference in combat philosophy between the United Federation of Planets and the Galactic Empire; the Federation goes for a more complex, high-tech, high-versatility, hand weapon whereas the Empire has powerful hand weapons, but they have a different weapons with different hitting power (pistols, rifles, launchers, tripod mounted cannons, etc, like we do in real life, and perhaps more rugged at the cost of versatility.
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Sun May 03, 2015 5:23 pm

Why Vince, I tip my hat. No offense, but I would've expected you to follow Young's reasoning and declare 23rd Century weapons more powerful. Keep this up and I'll have to stop referring to you as Clonetrooper Vince and apologize.

Young's argument is that Starfleet of the 24th Century intentionally reduced the firepower of phasers, using as a model the modern reduction of battle rifle calibers from the WW1 and WW2 .30-06 (7.62x63mm) to a brief flirtation with 7.62 NATO (.308ish, 7.62x51mm) to today's 5.56 NATO (.223, or 5.56x39mm).

However, his argument rather ignores the rationales behind the reduction, and the fact of the 20th Century being a very transitional period for weapons. Circa 1900 is when most militaries were discovering the benefits of pointy bullets instead of round-nosed, for instance.

To summarize what follows, the modern philosophy is more rounds headed toward the enemy, which hardly applies to a beam weapon.

To expand this further:

If you have no idea about real firearms through history, start with a primer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXh4Qhmt3xA

These are the battle rifles, not the height of technology ... it is the height of economical, mass-produced technology. The WW1-era BAR was a full-auto-capable magazine-fed twenty-pound .30-06 slinger, but too expensive to hand out like candy. Over a short time, however, we have reached a point where lightweight BAR-esque weapons are plausible for all.

1. Capacity

The M1 Garand dominated WW2 insofar as default infantry rifles because it was a semi-automatic -- a shot each trigger pull -- facing mostly bolt-action rifles where you have to load a new cartridge by manipulating a handle between each shot. Sure, it is possible to work a bolt-action fairly quickly, but not as quickly as you can fire a semi-auto burst, and certainly not after several minutes of sustained combat.

When it comes to a bolt-action, the speed of working the bolt is such that there is no real difference between a .22LR and a .30-06, so you might as well whack the shit out of the other guy if you hit him at the cost of reloading with a fresh clip (in the Garand's case) more often. Reloading only takes a small amount of time compared to your slow rate of fire.

But with semi-auto and full-auto, the game changes. Magazine or clip capacity suddenly is more of a determining factor of your sustained rate of fire, and since you can fire more often you need to carry more spare rounds. The Garand had 8-round clips, the M-16 usually has 30-round magazines.

2. Recoil

Less powder, as seen in the 12mm reduction of the 7.62s, means less bullet velocity, and thus less recoil hitting the shooter's shoulder. A less massive bullet, however, like the .223 allows even less powder and less recoil at similar bullet velocity.

The .30-06 is considered to be near the upper limit of comfortable recoil.

This has corollaries:

A. Gun weight

A heavy gun lessens felt recoil because the mass of the gun doesn't move as fast. Firing a lighter bullet with less recoil thus means your battle rifles need not be as heavy. Heavy equals slower, more tired dudes in an increasingly mobile force.

The Garand, for example, is a heavy SOB by modern standards.

B. Follow-up

Less recoil equates with better follow-up, all other aspects of gun design being equal. (I say that because there are other ways to deal with recoil, such as center of mass changes and even weird stuff, but that's a bit outside my scope at the moment, no pun intended.)

If you have an arm cannon chambered for 2-bore (1, 2) and an identical one chambered to .22LR, for instance, you can fire on the same point at greater rate with the .22, because while you are still dusting off your ass and nursing your sore shoulder after landing on your back with your arm cannon pointed at the sky, the gentle .22 has gotten back on target like six times and is entirely bored.

And of course, an old bolt-action sucks for this purpose, because you're off the trigger messing around with a separate doodad rather than getting back on target.

3. Damage

The 5.56 at certain barrel twist rates was thought to be a great tumbling round upon contact, flipping end over end and thus doing more damage to meaty targets. In other words, despite being smaller, it was believed to be punching well above its weight class.

A 7.62 poking a straight wound 7.62mm wound channel and going out the other side might lose a certain amount of energy in the meatbag, but a tumbling 5.56 would be similarly effective in delivering energy to the target, in other words. That was the theory, anyway.

Conclusion

So basically the idea was more shots with similar damage potential, better-handling guns, and more spare ammo, even if the pure KE-per-second is a bit less. So of those many points which led to the 5.56 (ignoring here the fact that many folks want a move to the Grendel and other 6 or 6.5mm rounds), what conclusions can we draw about phasers?

Well, the thing is, approximately zero of the above have any relevance in the world of phasers. It is possible to make up some different possible technobabble reasons, but most of them are silly.

So, too, is Brian's argument.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Sun May 03, 2015 5:47 pm

Mike DiCenso wrote: perhaps more rugged at the cost of versatility.
I actually would favor the SW philosophy if that were so.

1. Modern police pistol training emphasizes training for maximum adrenaline and fight-or-flight reactions, including the potential for tunnel vision, the loss of fine motor control, and general lack of reasoning faculties (e.g. the North Hollywood shootout officers picking up spent brass because that is what they did in training).

So for pistols, they train to rack the slide with the whole palm rather than pinch the back grip area, under the thinking that the loss of fine motor control will result in 'monkey-hands'.

Tapping little buttons seems less useful in that frame of reference than messing with the big fat switch on the carbine.

2. Modern American military design doctrine emphasizes technology over simplicity and numbers, just as the Nazis did. This misses the fact that our best weapons have been simple and robust, like the Garand, the Sherman, and the A-10, even if they were a little more complicated in some cases.

So, we end up with mistakes like the F-35 being favored over the A-10.

The phaser is a great multi-purpose Swiss Army Knife, a good weapon for explorers who might have to heat up their coffee, do surgery, and vaporize a wall with the same tool. But if a blaster could out-do it in the context of modern military acceptance tests (sand, water, extreme temps) plus additional torture tests we can dream up (drop, crush, radiation, technobabble fields), I would go blaster every time on the battlefield.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Mon May 04, 2015 3:41 am

I am observing the comments on that peculiar "Apache vs. Gorn" video, and hats off to Darth Spock for pulling some 359-esque mindreading of points I want to make.

He slipped loose from the example you gave, but your point ... damnably hard to argue due to his use of textless video ... is quite valid. I refer to his frequent "we can assume they have X / it's a galactic civilization" argument for SW forces to have everything whereas Trek cannot have anything unless it is showcased for an entire season with specs described on-screen twice.

I give Star Wars the benefit of the doubt, within reason, and Star Trek less so, to avoid the appearance of bias. (I catch shit about it from time to time in feedback from rabid Trekkies, though not as much shit as I catch from rabid Warsies for not accepting yottaton holdout/pocket blasters.)

An example was starbases ... until TCW, their existence was not proven in SW, but they made sense. Were I Brian, I'd have denied them, rather than assumed them.

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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by Mike DiCenso » Mon May 04, 2015 9:12 pm

2046 wrote:I am observing the comments on that peculiar "Apache vs. Gorn" video, and hats off to Darth Spock for pulling some 359-esque mindreading of points I want to make.

He slipped loose from the example you gave, but your point ... damnably hard to argue due to his use of textless video ... is quite valid. I refer to his frequent "we can assume they have X / it's a galactic civilization" argument for SW forces to have everything whereas Trek cannot have anything unless it is showcased for an entire season with specs described on-screen twice.
Brian is hardly the only, much less the worst of the offenders who use that old canard, but offend with it, he does. He gets away with it precisely because he uses a textless medium that makes it difficult to catch that, and he does not openly ad hominem in the crude and vulgar manner of his old Warsie chums.
2046 wrote:I give Star Wars the benefit of the doubt, within reason, and Star Trek less so, to avoid the appearance of bias. (I catch shit about it from time to time in feedback from rabid Trekkies, though not as much shit as I catch from rabid Warsies for not accepting yottaton holdout/pocket blasters.)

An example was starbases ... until TCW, their existence was not proven in SW, but they made sense. Were I Brian, I'd have denied them, rather than assumed them.
I always assumed SW had similar outposts, especially since from the first movie Han specifically says "There aren't any bases around here. Where did it come from?"

What form such bases had were not seen until TCW (and now Rebels), but the Imperial equivalent of a Starbase being ground facilities, not just space stations is hardly all that different from the Federation's since we saw planetside facilities as well as orbital ones.
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Re: Review of scifights.net Phasers Case Study

Post by 2046 » Tue May 05, 2015 11:26 am

Ah, sorry, I was referring to middle-of-nowhere facilities and not even thinking of orbital ones, but either way your point is well made. I suppose I had always assumed Han was referring to Imperial ground bases on or near Alderaan, a la what we now see on Lothal in Rebels.

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