In January of 2003, ST-v-SW.Net was featured as "Awful Link of the Day" by SomethingAwful.com, after having been submitted by a Vs. Debater unhappy about the AT-ST calcs. SomethingAwful thus went off on the entire Star Trek vs. Star Wars debate concept, with my new site getting top billing . . . thereby becoming the whipping boy for geeks everywhere. :-)
Some of my opponents tried to spin it into a site-specific attack not directed at the Vs. Debates in general, forgetting Horatius: "Why are you laughing? Change the name and the story is about you."
A few opponents did make note of this, however. One said "we're all guilty", while another fellow complained about all the free publicity, and pointed out the fact that once all the comments which one could direct against the general Vs. Community were removed (including those revolving around how crazy someone would have to be to engage in such a topic), there wasn't much left of value to the opposition. As the fellow put it, "This is a sad day for SD.net and a victory for Darkstar (though he might not realize it)."
In fact, I had realized it, both because I was bemused by the whole thing, and because of the following example feedbacks from the event.
Naturally, some of the 53 Feedback responses which I received in the two days of the SomethingAwful link's visibility fit right in line with the general idea that the Vs. Debate (and its methodology) is a crazy notion:
Comment: You do understand that these are films, fantasy????
((Gasp!) What an astonishing revelation!)
Comment: OMG TEH MILLINEUM FALKON IS FASTAR THAN TEH ENTARPRISE!!1 AND QUI GONNS PENIS IS LARGER BECAUSE HE WAS ABLE TO WALK FROM FRAME 232 to 239 IN LESS THAN 2 SECONDS~!!!1 WOWSAS THAT SI VERY USEFUL INFORMATION FOR TEH FUTAUR!!1
(I guess the Bertrand Russell "useless knowledge" quote went right over his head.)
Comment: Dear dear god, i am a fan of the star wars movies, i do watch star trek every now and then. but geez christ, why cant you just watch the show/movies' and be happy wif what they are!
Comment: You need to check out www.goatse.cx for soem great Star-Wars action!
(For those of you who don't know, do not go to that site. Ever. I made that mistake a long time ago.)
Comment: I am baffled by why anyone would do something like this. Honestly, who cares about this "phaser/blaster/lghtsaber" nonsense in the first place? None of it is real, none of it is the LEAST bit feasible, why bother nitpicking details on fictional events?
Comment: this is easily the most worthless site i have ever been to. ever. the whole basis of this argument is garbage. the fact that you use actual mathematics to determine situations, simply horrific.
Comment: Please, for both your sake and the rest of the world's... move on, and DO SOMETHING with your life... this is just sad.
Comment: you cant take frames from a movie or tv show to determine speed of a craft in space, more than likely teh scenes were shot to give the audience watching for entertainment a view of whats happening. they were NOT shot to represent speeds.
Comment: Sweet merciful baby Jesus! ... I mean, at least that energy and obsessive-compulsion is going to something benign, not destructive or harmful (better this than drinking in the 7-11 parking lot and smacking your kids around).
(Actually, this one is kinda neutral.)
Then there was some feedback which was absolutely senseless:
Comment: Geet it up ya, ya BAM!!!
Comment: The Jan. 14 news update...at least Poe was talented. Star Trek and Star Wars are overrated, fairly simple movies with an inexplicable cult following. Goths aren't any better, but appreciating something like Poe certainly beats...comparing one fictional weapon to another.
(Yep, that's right. He assumed that by "Poe", I meant "Edgar Allen", as opposed to "Wayne". Wonder who (or what) he thought I meant when I said "Wong"? Hmm . . . might not want to know.)
(Why thank you. Those insightful feedbacks settle everything.)
I also got some feedback from a person who evidently didn't find being "Awful Link of the Day" as amusing as I did, and is fighting back:
Comment: The following is a general E-mail contains very helpful information to combat a potential terror attack from somethingawful.com, and any part, or none of the following may pertain to you.
If you're wondering why there's so many hate mails coming your way, and why your message boards and/or guestbooks are flooded with hateful words and pornography, perhaps I can tell you why.
Your site was featured as "Awful Link of the Day" at somethingawful.com
Lowtax, SA owner, uses ALOD to launch terror attacks against "lesser" quality web sites, in attempt to either intimidate webmaster, or to get sites to shut down for good, in which case, both have happened over time.
Recently, He has attacked over 75 sites in 3 days, and sucessfully shut down most of them, due to bandwidth limits.
Thought this would be something to bring to your attention.
If you have questions, I'm sure Lowtax would love to hear from you at:
STOP THE TERROR! Here's SA'a "hosting" E-mail addresses you can write to, in hopes of shutting down the site, among other helpful links below:
Tasam.com: E-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org <---provides domain name.
email@example.com <---- Actual Internet Provider
firstname.lastname@example.org <--- New ISP/ SA connection to the 'net.
email@example.com <----- Bought ads on SA.
SA's Economic Engines: Throw some sand into the pistons!
http://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_contact-general <--- Moneymaker for forums/main source of SA's income.
Of course, if the attack warrants the involvement of law enforcement, use this link to report them to the King's County Sheriff's Office, serving the Seattle area (where SA resides):
Remember, use it if it's TRULY NECESSARY!
Good luck, and from a terror victim to you, almost every ALOD wins in the end.
A few were generally neutral, though some were intrigued by some aspect of the site:
Comment: You're obviously good at math, make a career out of it.
Comment: Lots of effort in here!
Comment: ... All in all although i'm a B5er and not a Trekkie or Warsie i enjoyed your site and i also agree to some of your calc if not others- i have been a regular reader of Mike Wong's page and i can see that both sides are very biased about their sides. I do not believe that SW could steamroll the way we are told they can but i also don't believe the ST universe could stop them (20000 years as compaired to 400)sorry but no cigar.
Comment: I don't understand the motivation to argue about the intricacies of these works of FICTION...most of the details (i.e., stone axe used by Ewoks) are just inserted by the producer for the look or feel of a movie/show.
Comment: Holy shit.
The sheer level of nerdiness required to create this site is...astonishing. At best.
Don't worry, I'm not here to insult you...much. I'm sure everyone else will do that themselves. Besides, I have to respect the sheer amount of geekiness that went into creating this site, and I took a twisted pleasure in your 'Battle of Britian' reply at http://www.st-v-sw.net/BBdodgethis.html.
That said: do you have ANY idea what its like to touch a female? ;)
(Far too many, actually!)
Comment: While I was intrigued with your breakdown of the speed of the Millenium Falcon (I was actually brought to the sight with the thought that you were debating the horsepower, which I would love to see as well,) I would like to call an issue in to mind, which I know you have addressed, but only semi-correctly. Movie theatres show their films at the standard 24 FPS, NTSC plays at 30 fps, and PAL broadcasts at 25 fps. ... Also, another small consideration is that most PAL DVDs play 4% faster than NTSC DVDs. While this doesn't affect frame rate in any way, it does show everything moving that much faster. At any rate, nice job, don't enjoy the SW's bashing, but what the hey, everyone's entitled to their opinions. Nice job on the site construction, as well.
(Though 25fps is the reported speed of the vidcap I was able to acquire (I'm not in possession of capturing tech), there's no noticeable difference between it and the film. And, if there were, any difference could only benefit the conservative-ness I give toward that which relates to Star Wars . . . it would, in this case, make the Falcon faster.)
Comment: ... why dont you take all your data and create a Star Trek And Star Wars technical reference Site..that would be so cool ..just remember to leave out and real world comparasons please :)
(Er . . . okay. That would mean I could present everything with which a comparison could be made, without comparing . . . seems kind of pointless.)
But, much to my surprise and delight, some of those who followed the link were closet geeks like me, and they'd found something they'd been looking for here. In addition to several comments and offers of additional information, we have the following:
Comment: God bless you, every one of you.
Never again shall I be forced to compile a 20-odd page list of comparisons, statistics, equations and precedents just to debunk some random post to the effect of "The falk0n coud kick the enterprises @$$, it has 9r0t0n t0r93d03s!!1!!1".
Never again shall I labor over droves of episode transcripts and movie outtakes in order to pinpoint an off the cuff reference to a "parsec" being a unit of time.
Never again shall I have to explain the mathematical fundaments of a matter/antimmater reaction, for no better reason than to prove that they compare favorably to a wampa's throwing arm.
Above all, never again shall have to articulate why Mandalorian combat armor and two lines of dialogue do not a good character make! You hear that?!
I need a hobby.
(I was going to put this in the negative category, because I assumed he was being facetious . . . but based on the specifics about the armor (I never go into Fett's armor) and how he said the rest, I think he was indeed serious.)
Comment: I really like the site, good arguements for both sides.
Comment: Long time fan of Something Awful, however this page was really fun to read, and in a good way. I admit I myself have been known to try to calculate "geeky" things.
Comment: This is a great site. Not only is it easy to navigate, but I've found it interesting to read up the information you've posted here. I too am a fan of Star Trek and Star Wars, and its good to know that I'm not the only one out there who thinks about the subject. :D
(Certainly my most succinct respondent, with the possible exception of the guy who just said "bob". But, this one actually makes some sense.)
Comment: Thank you for such a kick ass site! This is the first time I've followed an ALotD and had a good time. I spent the last two days pouring over the site and am truly amazed by your devotion to the subject and your mastery of of the material. Hopefully you don't get too pissed off by all of the "OMFG u r fag0rt" feedback from the more cretinous readers of SA.
I too am a fan of both SW and ST, and have taken part in several RL debates (though none as richly detailed as yours). I love the Russel quote at the top of the site, too.
Comment: You are competely insane. keep up the good work.
Comment: Hi there! I really enjoyed your site
Comment: Dear sir:
Good sites lots of insight.
Comment: I'm glad to see that you have to confidence to go along with the joke, It says something that SA can't.
(It's not as if the revelation that this topic is geeky comes as a huge surprise!) :-)
Overall, about 50% of the feedback responses I received were either just positive feedback and/or people wanting to discuss or offer additional information on some particular aspects of technology or my pages. About 10% of the responses were senseless. The remaining 40% were of the "my god why would anyone engage in that topic?" sort, as seen above. The only site-specific feedback that was negative, naturally enough, came from an SD.Net denizen, who was upset that I'd linked to the horrendous site of the guy who submitted mine to SomethingAwful.com . . . obviously, he didn't comprehend the irony. (I guess you could count the framerate guy, too, but he was neutral overall.)
"This is a sad day for SD.net and a victory for Darkstar (though he might not realize it)."
Hehehe . . . indeed.
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