Star Trek: Discovery’s Greatest Science Moments Rethink What It Means To Be Alive
“While most of the famous aliens encountered by Federation crews have been humanoid — including Klingons, Vulcans, Romulans, Ferengi, and Cardassians — there have been notable exceptions. The vampire cloud of The Original Series, the crystalline entity of The Next Generation, the changelings of Deep Space 9 and many others have challenged our conventional notions of what intelligence or life might look like. Now that we’re in the late 2010s, science has advanced tremendously, and so has our imagination for what might be possible.”
It’s pretty easy to point to the new Star Trek series and criticize the science they’ve gotten wrong, oversimplified, misinterpreted, or simply ignored. That’s something, honestly, you could do for any science fiction series if you tried hard enough. But there are a few things about science that Star Trek gets right, and one in particular that it’s breaking new ground in: how life, and intelligent life in particular, might be vastly different from what we expect. Other depictions of intelligence in alien species have focused on two types almost exclusively: human-like, autonomous, chemical-based beings, and artificially intelligent robot-like beings. But what if there were organic pathways and mechanisms out there that went far beyond what we presently understand, where quantum entanglement across galactic scales dominated or even non-matter-based life forms existed? Sure, it sounds like pure fiction today, but being open to these possibilities is vital.