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Episode 46: “Silicon Valley Avatar”

Written by “Krenim”

Published November 30, 2001

Tasha Yar strolled through the hallways of the Relativity with a big smile on her face. She stopped when she saw Damar and Xaronna, also quite gleeful, working on something. “Well, what are you two working on?”

Xaronna put down her tools. “Starfleet R&D is going to release a new version of TCARS.”

TCARS?”

“Yeah, that’s our computer’s operating system. Anyway, we’re preparing the computer for the upgrade.”

“And that’s why you’re all excited?”

“Sure! You don’t find an upgrade exciting?”

“No. Nor does anyone who has a life.”

“Then why are you so happy?”

“Because I’ve been asked to speak to the ship’s schoolchildren today.”

Damar stopped working. “Wait... There’s a school onboard?”

“Yeah. You’re surprised? We’ve got everything else onboard.”

“Then why have I never seen any children around?”

“The same reason why we never see any of the crew who isn’t part of the senior staff or a recurring guest star: Because they’re all nameless extras.”

“And this school invited you to be a speaker?”

“Yes. Why shouldn’t they?”

“Well, why should they ask you when they could have asked me?”

“And what would you talk about?”

“Well, I was ruler of the Cardassian Union for about a year and a half! I’m a historical figure, for crying out loud!”

“Well, Mr. Historical Figure, I guess children find me much more interesting than you. Ha ha!”

And with that, Yar continued her walk. Damar continued to fume for a minute, then a huge smile spread across his face. He leapt to his feet and shouted, “That’s it! That’s it!”

Xaronna looked up at him. “What’s it?”

“My new running joke!”

“Oh?”

“Yes! In every episode, I’ll try pathetically to be interesting enough to be invited to speak to the ship’s children!”

“You know what... That might just work.”

And so, Damar began plotting his first wacky scheme to be more interesting...


Minutes later, Yar arrived at the Relativity’s school. The teacher shook her hand. “Welcome to The School Named After Captain Braxton, the Greatest Captain That Ever Lived.”

“That is a really long and really stupid name. Let me guess... The captain’s idea?”

“Yup. Anyway, you’re here a bit early. Could you wait a few minutes while I finish up today’s history lesson?”

“Sure, Miss... Uh, what’s your name?”

“Oh, I don’t have a name yet. The script just refers to me as ‘Teacher.’ I suppose if I manage to become a recurring character, I’ll get a name. But for now, I’m just ‘Teacher.’”

Yar shrugged and stood off to the side. ‘Teacher’ turned to the class. “Anyway, by the 2040’s, Bill Gates had basically become de facto ruler of the world. He was the richest man who had ever lived, and controlled all information. Then, he mysteriously vanished. To this day, no one knows what happened to Bill Gates...”


Meanwhile, at the Daystrom Institute on Earth, hundreds of nerdly Federation programmers rushed to put the finishing touches on the new TCARS. Suddenly, the entire building began shaking. One of the programmers asked, “What is that?”

Another programmer said, “Maybe we should look out a window and see.”

“You mean look outside? Where there’s scary stuff like nature?”

“I know, I know... We all know the outside is frightening, but we should see what’s going on.”

So, the blinds on one of the windows were drawn. The programmers cringed and hissed at the natural illumination. Once their eyes adjusted, they were aghast. One of them pointed outside and asked, “What is that?”

“I think it’s called the ‘Sun.’”

“Oh... Well, it looks like the Crystalline Entity is next to this ‘Sun’ thing.”

“The Crystalline Entity? I thought it was destroyed centuries ago...”

“Apparently not. Furthermore, it’s headed this way.”

“Perhaps we should run away.”

“You mean outside?”

“I know it’s a radical concept, but I don’t think it would be wise for us to be here when that thing gets here.”

So, the Federation programmers ventured out into the final frontier that was ‘outside.’ It turned out to be a wise gamble, for the Crystalline Entity stopped above the Daystrom Institute and then promptly blew it up. It then zoomed back into space...


“Captain’s Log: Reports have come in that the Crystalline Entity has destroyed the Daystrom Institute. Wait a minute... Ducane, shouldn’t the Crystalline Entity be dead?”

“Yes, sir. It should be.”

“Well, the entire Federation is on high alert now. Of course, I know we’re going to be the ones to run into the Crystalline Entity, because it’s our show.”

Dax checked her console, which had started to beep. “Captain, I’ve picked up the Crystalline Entity on long-range sensors. It’s on an intercept course.”

“Understood. Yar, raise shields and arm torpedoes. Dax, run a detailed scan of the Entity. Ducane, find me a good place to hide like the coward that I am.”

The Crystalline Entity continued to close on the Relativity. Dax continued to run scans. “Captain, the Entity is attempting to tap into our comm system.”

“That’s unacceptable, Dax! If it wants cable television, it can get its own subscription!”

“No, sir... I think it’s trying to communicate with us.”

“Oh.”

The viewscreen suddenly went from displaying deep space to showing someone’s face. Yar was aghast. “It’s... It’s... Bill Gates!”

Sure enough, Bill Gates was on the viewscreen. Braxton looked confused. Again. “Wait a minute, shouldn’t he be... No, I’m not going to finish that question. From now on, I’ll just assume no one ever dies on this show. Ever.”

Bill Gates began laughing. “Yes, Captain, after nine centuries, we meet again!”

“We meet again?”

Ducane whispered to his captain, “We replaced Starling with Gates in this timeline, sir. For heaven’s sake, it was only a few episodes ago...”

“That seems vaguely familiar. Anyway, what do you want, Gates?”

“I want to reward you for giving me access to your technology all those centuries ago, allowing me to become the richest man ever.”

“And how do you intend to do that?”

“I assume you’ve heard I blew up the Daystrom Institute.”

“I assume that you assume correctly. I probably heard of it, but I have trouble remembering these that happened more than five minutes ago. Who are you, again?”

“I’m Bill Gates!”

“Oh yeah...”

“Anyway, I did this to prevent the release of the new version of TCARS!”

“You fiend! Damar was really looking forward to that in a really pathetic way!”

Gates laughed evilly. “With TCARS out of the way, I can now introduce my own product, Windows 2895!”

“But it’s not 2895. At least, I don’t think it is.”

“I know that, but it just sounds more interesting with that date. Anyway, Windows 2895 has all the features of TCARS, but it causes your computer to slow down exponentially and crash several times a day!”

“There’s just one fatal flaw in your plan, Gates: I don’t want to use your new operating system! I like the current one just fine!”

“Resistance is futile, Captain! Everyone loves an upgrade! Eventually, you will bow to my will!”

Panicked, Braxton turned to Ducane. “Ducane, he’s right! I feel the overwhelming need to upgrade my computer using his new evil software!”

“You’ve got to fight him, sir!”

Ducane stood up, facing the viewscreen. “How is it that you’re still alive, Gates?”

“Well, I was getting pretty old when I detected a Crystalline Entity in orbit. I downloaded my brain into its silicon matrix.”

“Well, tell you what... Give us a few minutes to think about upgrading.”

“Very well. Gates out.”

Ducane turned to Braxton, who was trying very hard to resist the urge to upgrade. “Must resist urge to upgrade to evil operating system... Must resist urge to upgrade to evil operating system...”

“Sir, I’ve got a plan!”

“Excellent, Ducane! What is it?”

“Dax, set up a reverse polarity signal feedback inverter!”

Dax punched a few buttons. “Okay, it’s set up.”

“Captain, hail Gates and upgrade the computer.”

“Really?”

“Really.”

Gates’ face came back onscreen. Braxton sighed. “Okay, Gates, we’ll upgrade.”

“Bwahahaha! I knew you couldn’t resist! I’m initiating the download.”

A few minutes later, Gates smiled. “Download complete! Enjoy your super-slow computer!”

Ducane grinned back. “Enjoy it yourself, Gates! We set up a reverse polarity signal feedback inverter! You downloaded your program into your own silicon matrix, not our computer!”

Gates began to slow down. “Cccuuurrrssseee yyyooouuu, Dddduuucccaaannneee...”

With that, Gate’s face was replaced by a Blue Screen of Death.

Everyone cheered, except for Damar. Braxton noticed. “Why aren’t you cheering, Damar? We won!”

“Yeah, we won, but there won’t be any new version of TCARS.”

“Damar?”

“Yes?”

“You’re pathetic.”

And, as everyone began laughing at Damar’s patheticness, the Relativity soared off to another wacky misadventure...


UPN Promo:

They’ve been trapped
*Shot of the Excelsior*
Searching for home
*Shot of the Excelsior crew*
But now
*Shot of swirling vortex-thing*
Will their return
*Shot of Relativity approaching a damaged Excelsior*
Doom them all?
*Shot of Captain Braxton shining a flashlight on Evil Braxton*

Find out as Series ? presents...

Episode 47: “Fortyseventhspace”

This page was last modified on Wednesday, July 04, 2012.