It was a little while ago that we saw it but I thought I would put down a few words about my impression of the latest installment in this venerable enterprise.

In general terms, FANTASTIC, in particular the casting which was largely excellent. Spock, Kirk and McCoy were brilliant but I was less convinced by Chekhov and very underwhelmed by Scotty, which is a shame because I’m a fan of Simon Pegg but unfortunately he just didn’t come across as a convincing engineer, more of a slightly inept engineering student.

I did like what they did visually and its nice to see a slow move away from the old trek look of ‘ships on a sea’ to a more realistic vision of three dimensional space where there is no ‘up’ or ‘down’, something the new Battlestar Galactica captured superbly.  The general realism of the effects and the sense of scale were impressive as well.

There is a scene near the start where young Kirk is driving across the desert and we can see the hint of massive architecture looming in the hazy background, I did like this but its a shame the architecture was so … well … dull!

The inside of the Enterprise was interesting and not entirely satisfying.  I like the bridge, all modern and, as a reviewer pit it ‘ipod-esq’ but then in another part of the ship I swear I saw large steel girders with rivets … Victorian ship building technology just didn’t quite seem to fit with the high-tech setting and I would have expected to see something like a carbon fiber or bonded aluminum superstructure on a high tech starship.  The engine room was a bit unconvincing as well.  The seemed to have just filled it with futuristic looking pipework that wormed around the floor for no apparent reason, apart from as a prop for a weak comedy moment, again they seemed to be going for a Victorian style cavernous ships boiler room when I would have expected, at the very least, for the engineers to be working in a very advanced control room, something like what you would see in a nuclear power plant.

There were a few problems with the plot details, in particular when Scotty beams himself and Kirk onto the enterprise what ought to have been hours after it warped away but this and the niggles about the nerdy aspects of star ship design are minor and I generally thought it was an excellent film and a very interesting way to ‘re-boot’ the franchise with what is quite a daring piece of time travel storylining.

I’m looking forward to the next one.

Advertisements

I did get on the TV after all but only in the background of a shot – I’m driving a robot around with a joystick.

You can see it here. The relevant bit starts about 34 minutes in.

I ought to add that this video will disappear and be replaced by the latest edition of the show on Sunday the 21st.

Just spend the afternoon organising for an interview with the BBC.  HSBC recently released a ‘Future Business’ report that claimed that Brighton would be a future technology super-city and that robots would be a key technology for the UK economy. So I get to stand in front of a camera and talk about robots for the Politics Show in our region.

Cool? Possibly, but also anxiety generating and I need to look smart so my wife has demanded that I submit to her will and come shopping for a new outfit. I need to start charging batteries so I can show them some robots as well.

As is the way with media interviews I expect that lots of time and effort preparing and talking will result in a few seconds of screen time. Now the big question is what my work title should be. As I don’t have my PhD yet I won’t be Dr but I could be ‘Researcher’ or perhaps ‘Robotics Engineer’.

I quite like the idea of being called a ‘Robot Scientist’ because some people might take it to mean that I am a robot who is a scientist.

Now where did I leave that tinfoil hat …