Talk:Stardate

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Relativity[edit]

Oh no, not again this relativity myth! Please understand the Theory of relativty first before claiming such nonsense. Adding a section to disspell it, which should be the job of an encyclopedia rather than spreading it. 84.57.72.54 21:32, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Just because you don't like the explanation, does not mean it should be removed from an encyclopedia. Star Trek is fiction. If the author wishes to use fictitious science to extract dates, that's the author's prerogative and should be discussed in the article. I am, however, open to a sentence that explains the difference between Gene's Relativity and Einstein's.

Jmgariepy (talk) 02:21, 21 March 2010 (UTC)

"Stardate discrepancies are due to relativistic effects"[edit]

It seems wrong to refer to the incorrect "stardate discrepancies are due to relativistic effects" explanation as "[urban legend]", since there's nothing particularly legendary about it. There's no story, plot, or characters -- it's just an incorrect explanation. Matthew Miller 20:02, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

OK, I was using urban legend in an informal sense. The only "legendary" thing about it seems to be that it keeps popping up again. But we agree it's an incorrect explanation (and, as I may add, only from fans; AFAIK, this was never officially claimed or even hinted at). WP can explain this myth, without claiming other myths as fact. 84.57.80.62 20:39, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
This woulbe be in either ways classified as fancruft. Wikipedia is not also the place to lift or fight fancruft urban legends. See in WP:NOT --Jestix 21:33, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
BTW: recently some days ago for example the german wikipedia deleted "Stardate (Startrek)" alltogheter because consisting just of fancruft, meaning containg information nobody might be interested in, until he is a *real* startrek fan. --Jestix 21:40, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
Where does WP:NOT say anything about not clarifying myths or common misconceptions? Also, ISTM that they are common enough, also outside of die-hard fans, to be worth addressing, if only by saying "What Stardates are not ..." 84.57.83.168 02:10, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
First of all Wikipedia:No original research, as nobody really seams to know anything really concrete about stardates most of this is speculation. These sepculations about stardates are cleary Fanfiction. This also regards: Wp:not#Wikipedia_is_not_a_crystal_ball
Additionally according to Wikipedia:Notability (fiction) I challenge the notabilty of stardates at all, as they do not have any "major" function in the series and it just some more or less random number the captains say when they talk to their logs. --Jestix 07:34, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
Full ack WRT no OR, as I've been saying all the time. However, stating that there is no systematic isn't OR, as well as e.g. the quotes (Roddenberry, Moore, Guide) which essentially confirm this. They might not be major, but apparently common enough that people keep wondering or fantasizing about them. Perhaps it should be merged into another article with redirect. The main Star Trek article isn't suitable, but perhaps another article with minor ST topics. 84.57.84.50 22:41, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

DL54020 changing the article[edit]

DL54020, while this is a wiki, and you have every right in the world to edit articles, the version you keep changing it to violates the Manual of Style guidelines. You keep changing it to say how stardates are used in Star Trek without first explaining what stardates are. This is mandatory requirement for a Wikipedia article. You must state A is a B and then you can go onto say more about A.

Furthermore, however, you immediately start pooping on stardates and stating how much they suck. This is completely POV and counter to Wikipedia's NPOV policy. Plus, you don't cite any of your statements: you just give them and expect everyone to take them at face value. If you have a valid point, you should be able to find some references that back up the prose.

And a criticism of the system shouldn't be the first thing the reader sees. If you want to put your stuff (properly cited, of course) in a "criticism" section, that's fine. But don't start the article by ranting about it. Please don't just revert the article again—address these issues before adding your stuff to the article again. Please discuss any concerns or questions here—that's what this page is for. — Frecklefoot | Talk 20:22, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Let's not confuse style with substance[edit]

I've clarified the opening statement to state what stardates are, and I've tried to rewrite points that might be perceived as criticism, but the wording is very important here. Saying that stardates are a dating convention invites the implication that it's a simple calendar that can be converted into other calendars. Therefore I've said it's a means of specifying absolute dates, which is consistent with what we see in the show. We don't want to make any unwarranted statements.

The idea is also not to criticize writers (even if that's what you perceived from the style), but rather to make it clear that they deliberately let stardates be undefined and therefore created a complex onscreen system that is a canonical part of the show--not a huge blooper across dozens of episodes. Yes, they are more complex than a planetary calendar system needs to be -- if that is not immediately obvious, you can look up Julian dates and realize that a planetary calendar system can work with a day count if necessary. Yes, the Gregorian calendar is used without ill effects in Enterprise. I'm being extremely careful not to speculate on exactly why stardates behave the way they do, but it's important to avoid the incorrect perception that stardates are supposed to be a day count or even an extremely irregular, yet still normal planetary calendar (why would an advanced society create such a complex planetary calendar?) and the writers just made tons and tons of errors over the years, and if you're deriving conversion algorithms you're just supposed to ignore a number of datapoints which don't fit.

The truth is that they let stardates be random (I'm saying this without criticism), and thus created an onscreen, canonical system which is more complex than a planetary calendar, which only partially replaces a Gregorian calendar, and all of that for unknown reasons. I'm not sure what references you're looking for in particular, but I've tried to make sure that all the statements are supported by evidence in a lot of episodes and backstage references by writers. DL54020 23:11, 5 January 2007 (UTC)DL54020

My biggest point still stands. Reading your reply above, you introduce a great deal of original research, forbidden here on Wikipedia. If you can produce references for your assertions, then they're fine to appear in the article. Otherwise, it is all original research and not suitable for an article.
I won't revert it again (there is the 3 revert rule to keep in mind), but you really need to try to conform to Wikipedia's quality standards. For example, one very simple device you overlooked is bolding the subject of the article like this. Look at your talk page for some links helpful for new editors. — Frecklefoot | Talk 18:57, 6 January 2007 (UTC)
As for the style, I see that there are people quickly adding links and making such minor fixes, so I choose not to focus on that aspect too much, although I do try to make sure the basics are there (for instance I'd added links to the Julian day number). As for the signature, what's the point of requiring everyone to sign their names, but not enforcing the requirement in software? Especially since the software later actually does enforce it by saying that the unsigned comment was added by me. Why not just make it automatic, the way all forum software has done since the age of the newsgroups?—The preceding unsigned comment was added by DL54020 (talkcontribs) 20:14, 6 January 2007 (UTC).
There are efforts on wikipedia, to make discussions to forum like, like you explained it. It was one of the 2 Summer of Code Projects 2006, but don't know what happened to it see at [meta.wikipedia.org]. The way it is now has historical reasons, when wikipedia started programmers concentrated on making an encyopedia, and the software therfore, and did not put much energy into extra discussions. The quick and simple way, was to treat discussions like normal wikipedia pages in software. However what once was an necessity for limited ressource now has become already a religion for some ;) For the software in wikidiscussions its not easy to autosign, since it doenst know where to. The "The preceding unsigned comment was added by ..." signature, was not done automatically by software, but a fellow wikipedian.--19:45, 9 January 2007 (UTC)
However, this is of little consequence since I can no longer be involved due to this "original reserch" policy, and you can delete everything but the backstage section (funny the length of time the "observed stardate properties" section has remained, even though you won't find an official source with that information--that's because the statements are obviously true to anyone who has seen a lot of Star Trek). Fan-fiction theories are definitely not reliable sources, neither are statements in the novels, so one could only reproduce the theory by Gene Roddenberry, basically, which is inconsistent with the show. My time would be better spent publishing original research with such "groundbreaking" statements as "stardates, which decrease with time or increase with time at different rates, are much too complex to be a planetary calendar". —The preceding unsigned comment was added by DL54020 (talkcontribs) 20:14, 6 January 2007 (UTC).

The purpose of stardates[edit]

If you think this deleted paragraph got any *real* information, please tell us here. (instead of just reverting all the time) --Jestix 07:58, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

The paragraph is saying what stardates are not. It must not speculate on what they are, since speculation doesn't belong here. Also, you keep confusing out-of-universe and in-universe observations. In-universe, Tasha Yar dies. Out-of-universe, the actress leaves the show. In-universe, stardates are used for a reason -- the characters don't make them up. Out-of-universe, the writers make them up. The second half of the page is out-of-universe, the first half is in-universe. Some Sherlock Holmes stories are set in the late 19th century -- you can't say that they are not set in the late 19th century because the stories are fictional. Stardates are used for a reason in-universe.

Also, the person who made the textual corrections completely screwed up the titles -- they begin with a lowercase letter. If you check the Star Trek Encyclopedia, you'll see that stardates are spelled lowercase -- it's a mundane, common term, same as calendar date. The easiest way to fix that is to revert back -- if the person can actually finish the job of "correcting" the text, I'm not going to revert.

82.202.0.96 19:40, 21 February 2007 (UTC)82

This paragraph doesn't nevertheless add anything to the topic. Look Roddenberry never thought deeply into what stardates are about. Really its just that he thought they sound cool... On the 1st season it was really random. Do you get that? The storrytellers did them random! Point. Next seasons they changes the system from season to season. So in the later seasons the 1 stardate = 1 day is pretty common. But additionally storryteller just made errors. Now what you guys to try, is to see something "in universe" that is not there. The startrek universe doesn't have anything that the storrytellers and creators did not put inside. There is no continous system behind stardates, it just changes over seasons. There is no deeper sense in it. To constuct it is soooo complicated, that it makes any sense we just get, is a) wrong b) even if true, its original research, therefore unfit here. Its the very same with ever changing of warp speeds meaning how much lightyears are traveled per hour at warp X. It constantly changes between the seasons and even within. But maybe its just so complicated no human in this universe sees the deeper system. *rollseyes*--Jestix 20:06, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Of taken from above: but rather to collect solid observations and create the simplest theory to fit those observations.

Even if you can do something, wikipedia is NOT your place. Wikipedia does not host creation of any new theories, as wikipedia does not do original research. I hope this is now cleared. --Jestix 20:46, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

If you had actually bothered to check the result of that discussion you quoted, you would have noticed that in response to that discussion I had removed theories and replaced them with simple observations, which ended up sticking to this date without objections. The Purpose paragraph likewise isn't speculation, it's saying what stardates are not. It's not trying to guess what they are. It says they are too complex to be a planetary calendar. That is a mathematical fact. Therefore, historically, all Earth calendars have been simpler than stardates.

Also, what gives you the right to declare that stardates are irrational and shall not be examined? A lot of people had declared that Klingon foreheads are irrational, saying the makeup changed, yet "Enterprise" eventually explained them the show. You have no basis for declaring that some subjects must not be addressed, because you don't know what will happen in the future. And explaining stardates is actually not what I'm trying to do here, since that would be theorizing. Therefore, this page is only stating verifiable observations.

How is it speculation or a theory for someone to state that stardates are much too complex to be a planetary calendar? Planetary calendars, especially those of an advanced society, do not need to have dates go up and down in an unpredictable fashion. They just need to increase with regularity. Therefore, stardates really are much too complex to be a simple planetary calendar. That's a mathematical fact. One possibility eliminated, without stating what stardates really are, which would be speculation at this point. 82.202.0.96 21:40, 21 February 2007 (UTC)82

you have no basis for declaring that some subjects must not be addressed, because you don't know what will happen in the future.

I *have* an basis for declaring things that must not be addressed on wikipedia! If something extraordinary happens in future, you can still add it to wikipedia. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia an therefore does not do orginal research. Nor does it add things that *might* become notworthy, it adds things *when* they become noteworthy.--Jestix 22:00, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

It is absolutely noteworthy that stardates are not a simple calendar. A lot of people have been trying to convert them with simplistic formulas, and it's important to say that that's not possible.

How about tring to say it in a non-bloated sentence, just like you did now? --Jestix 22:37, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

How is it speculation or a theory for someone to state that stardates are much too complex to be a planetary calendar? Planetary calendars, especially those of an advanced society, do not need to have dates go up and down in an unpredictable fashion. This is absolut total specualtion. This article does not address theories what calendars future societies might use. It adreses some fancy markup in a fiction series called startrek. --Jestix 22:00, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

I'm talking about Star Trek societies, not hypothetical societies. Star Trek societies live on planets orbiting suns. Have you actually seen the planets in Star Trek? They orbit their suns. There are no tachyon fields altering time around them on a regular basis. Vulcan, Andor, Romulus, etc, etc. They adhere to laws of physics.

Well there are double-sun planets. So especially you siad this is a "mathametican"
It says they are too complex to be a planetary calendar. That is a mathematical fact well it is not. There are often extraordinary things in startrek, so why not a 7 sun planet system? Its defintely not a mathematical fact. Its just YOUR observation about the planet system YOU have seen, and you say it cannot be a planetary system. --Jestix 22:37, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Is it? It might be the calender of a planet swinging around 7 suns, where this seven-solar system is hold stable with tachyon emitting stabilator appliances.... --Jestix 22:00, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

It could be. Nobody would hold it against me for saying what I said because things you described are so inconsistent with our knowledge of astrophysics and physics of all planets observed thus far that I would be perfectly justified in saying it's not a planetary calendar given the understanding of a planet in the English language.

Look telling what it everything is NOT, does not add anything valuable to the topic. Its also not a system used to cook eggs, its not a system to calculate woman periods, its not a system my cat uses to determine her food times, its not a system of a moon, its not a system of an astroid, its not a system of a black hole, its not.... Well can I add this everything to the article? It are facts after all.--Jestix 22:00, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Again, you're completely blowing things out of proportion. I'm saying it's not a simple calendar. I'm not stating what they are obviously not, I'm stating that which is not as obvious to countless people trying to convert them with simplistic formulas.

Therefore, this page is only stating verifiable observations.

No. This page is about stating verifiable, NOTEWORTHY obversations. Please read some wikipedia basis guidelines. --Jestix 22:07, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

It is absolutely noteworthy that stardates are not a simple calendar. It responsibly shuts down all attempts to come up with simplistic stardate converters.

Work on a simple version of this propostion then. The way it is now is just not encyclopedic style... and its just a heavily bloated proposition that could be done in one simple sentence. This way its just "much too complex to be ..." .. anything of use. --Jestix 22:31, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Oh an please sign your posts! and PLEASE use ':' to make insertion, this is not readable so :( --Jestix 22:37, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
To summ it up, the wording "is much to complex to"... implies that there is a hidden deeper sense in the stardates just not viewable by us, where there isn't. Just try to say, attempts to make any deeper sense into stardates has been proofen futile. :) --Jestix 22:40, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
there is no "in-universe" reason that isn't original research, again don't put more into the subject than there is. The storytellers didn't put much thought into it, and thats it. sigh. --Jestix 07:56, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Use in Tcl[edit]

The Tcl programming language includes a stardate formatter for times. It is probably not accurate according to any scheme; it exists as a joke and (as I understand it) for testing certain gnarly aspects of date handling. -- Donal Fellows (talk) 09:36, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

Problems with the article[edit]

The article isn't so bad as to warrant such sweeping warnings at the top. If you see an unfounded assertion or original research, please point it out in the text of the article. The point of this article should be to collect as many tiny facts about stardates as possible in order to illuminate aspects of their usage. For example, collecting as many "offbeat" TNG stardate samples as possible is useful in hammering home the idea that not even TNG stardates can be predicted using a stardate calculator. PointDread (talk) 14:50, 17 May 2008 (UTC)

Although this comment precedes the date of the current warning at the top of the article, I just read it, and it is, in fact, brimming with original research. This article would be 1/3 of the size were all the non-cited and OR phrases omitted. – Kerαunoςcopiagalaxies 23:18, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Just checking...[edit]

"One hour aboard the USS Enterprise at different times may equal as little as three Earth hours" seems a strange thing to say. If he'd said "One year... it would make more sense. 81.158.2.171 (talk) 18:45, 29 July 2009 (UTC)

That line's been around that long? Blehhh... but I don't know what the canonical value should be. — LlywelynII 23:55, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

Calculating a Stardate[edit]

I believe that the creators of ST meant for the star date to signify Sol or earth time in relation to distance of the destination using the light year as measurement of time but traveling much faster. For instance, star date 2300.07(23rd century and 7 months) plus distance to Proxima Centauri, 4.05 light years added to 2300.07 = 2304.12. star date is now 2304.12; Let's say you stay at P.C. for a year, that equals 2305.12; now you wanna go back to Sol, so you take 2305.12 and subtract 4.05 Light years = Sol star date 2301.07, of course adding a few of months to be precise. This is how I believe the star date is calculated. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Stargazer2oo (talkcontribs) 19:54, 31 March 2011 (UTC) --~~J. Rodriguez — Preceding unsigned comment added by Stargazer2oo (talkcontribs) 20:46, 31 March 2011 (UTC)

Rewrite[edit]

Since the article has been negatively tagged for so long, without a clear plan for what needs to be fixed, I've decided to rewrite it from scratch focusing primarily on behind-the-scenes information, since that kind of information does have solid references. I did that for the Memory Alpha article originally, although this article won't be a copy/paste of that one, being geared a little more toward the general reader. Still, it can be expanded with further detail as required. SD1312.4 (talk) 14:24, 25 June 2011 (UTC)

Star Trek Online dates correction[edit]

The article implies that the Star Trek Online dates are arbitrary. But, in fact they are not only a continuation of the Star Trek TNG system adjusted for the date of the game, but they are also calculated from the current date, plus 400 years. There are stardate calculators available that can infer a stardate from a given Gregorian calender date (which doesn't involve any of the calculations mentioned in the above message by stargazer2oo), which in itself may be worth mentioning. In a nutshell, extensive research can determine the apparent duration of a single stardate and then one can estimate the starting date of the system, which can then be used to calculate any gregorian date after the start date (it is a simple matter of counting the stardates linearly, no more fancy math then calculating a date in any standard calender). The calculator in STO works on a similar script. For example, today's date (adjusted by 400 years) is calculated to be 89559.7 by the game.-Jcwilder (talk) 04:03, 24 July 2012 (UTC)

I don't see the implication that they are arbitrary; just the opposite. The stardate was set for 2409 during the beta in 2009, and has progressed in real time since then. Yes, the virtual date is exactly 400 years after real time. It is clear that they are based on the same algorithm as the TNG stardates used by TrekGuide.com before it was changed last year. Stardates progress 1000 every 365.25 days, starting from 00:00 UTC on May 25, 2322. (1922, actually) I don't know what calculator you're using however, because it's off by 7 months. Check your logs in the game. It's actually 90166.12. STO Academy has a calculator which is off by less than a day. (My own matches the game exactly.) I will clarify the article, though. --Nike (talk) 05:05, 24 July 2012 (UTC) SD 90166.23

woops, I will try to remember that, I guess I assumed that all the calculators used the same base date, and I didn't want to log in to STO just to check the stardate, thanks for the tip. (I think the one I was using used the start date Jan 23, 2323). I guess it is more clear now, maybe I miss-read it yesterday because it didn't seem so. Maybe the appropriate calculating system is worth mentioning in the article?-Jcwilder (talk) 17:33, 24 July 2012 (UTC)

All the information necessary to calculate STO stardates is already in the article now. If you want me to go through the math, links and other research I've done, why don't you post a note on my talk page? We don't want to spam this page with personal discussion. --Nike (talk) 21:19, 24 July 2012 (UTC) SD 90168.09
My initial calculations worked out almost exactly, but new data shows the algorithm diverged a few minutes, so I changed the wording back to be less precise. My STO logs only go back a few weeks, so it might take a whole year to gather enough data points to reverse engineer the exact algorithm, unless I can get someone else's logs who's been playing longer. --Nike (talk) 07:36, 26 July 2012 (UTC) SD 90171.91

Problems in Star Trek Online section[edit]

I’m sorry for all the unsightly [citation needed] flags added to the Star Trek Online section, but it seemed to be full of claims that were either sourced from a fansite or weren’t even referenced at all in the cited source. And I think the “stardate 90000.00” claim was both trivial and WP:OR, even if a calculator on an official website (which it wasn’t) was used to do the OR. —Frungi (talk) 04:28, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

Then maybe delete everything but the first line. But I think that just one cn flag for the whole paragraph would have been sufficient. --Nike (talk) 12:10, 12 January 2013 (UTC) SD 90637.00
I didn’t want to immediately remove information that may well be true and verifiable just because it was poorly sourced. Personal editing preference, I guess. You have a point about the CN flags, but I think what I did was insert them as I deleted poor refs. —Frungi (talk) 23:03, 13 January 2013 (UTC)

Article expansion and sourcing[edit]

The Memory Alpha article has sources and more thorough treatment where they're needed or wanted. Particularly, the current article doesn't even mention Julian days. — LlywelynII 23:58, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

It does now. The JD reference was one I discovered and posted on Memory Alpha recently. Most the articles there are probably more thorough than Wikipedia, because it's a Star Trek wiki, and WP is a general encyclopedia. That's why there's a link to it at the bottom of this article. Much of the minutiae would likely not be appropriate here. --Nike (talk) 12:27, 12 January 2013 (UTC) JD 2456305.0

Julian day[edit]

Please review the post at Star Trek Fact Check. Kellam only tried to fit the earliest stardates into the Julian system, unsuccessfully, but they didn't invent them. Peeples and Roddenberry did that for the pilot; while they may have been aware of the Julian system too, we don't have confirmation thereof. That is why I changed the wording to "may have been based". --SD1312.4 (talk) 16:58, 9 February 2014 (UTC)

Had you reviewed the STFC blog more carefully, yourself, it would have led you to the reference I added yesterday, which apparently you did not bother to check. STFC has a short quote that leaves out the full context. I included a link to the full documentary by Herb Solow and Bob Justman on YouTube, which shows Kellam de Forest stating that he suggested Julian days to Gene Roddenberry for the pilot, and that "he picked up on that and coined the term 'stardate'". That confirms the first source. That is two sources, one of which comes from three principles from the show, the other from Paramount. --Nike (talk) 23:11, 9 February 2014 (UTC)

I had actually seen that documentary, a while ago, but you're still pitting someone's personal recollection against the actual memos. They don't say ”The stardates in the script are inconsistent with what we discussed earlier“ — they introduce the Julian system under the assumption that the script writer Peeples never heard of it before. STFC therefore doubts the veracity of that documentary recollection and so do I. Please review STFC more carefully. --SD1312.4 (talk) 04:42, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

STFC states:
the archival evidence does indicate that the Julian day system was recommended by de Forest Research
The article says nothing about who first suggested Julian dates, so whether it was de Forest, Peeples or Roddenberry is irrelevant. It simply states that stardates were based upon Julian days. This is not contradicted by evidence at STFC. If by "memos" you refer to the de Forest Research report for the second pilot, what it shows is that KdF thought that "star dates" should be exactly the same as Julian Dates, and certainly does not contradict what he said. Your personal doubts, or those of some blogger, do not count as sources. We have two independent sources, one directly from a principle (as reported by two other principles) and the other from an authorized publication. Even if Peeples and Roddenberry did not get the idea from KdF, that does not mean that stardates were not based on Julian days, since they could have learned about them elsewhere. You are also neglecting another source, the Writers Guide:
1313.5 is twelve o'clock noon of one day and 1314.5 would be noon of the next day. Each percentage point is roughly equivalent to one-tenth of one day.
This is exactly how Julian dates work, which cannot be coincidence. If you have any specific source which directly contradicts the other sources, you should produce them. --Nike (talk)

When you say "the idea was based on the Julian day", it means you found full confirmation that Peeples/Roddenberry thought of the Julian day when deciding to use stardates, which you don't know. They could've come up with a day count independently. The wording would also work if the scriptwriters accepted the DKF suggestion to make them into JDs, but you don't know that either. Rather than make such a bold, confident statement at the beginning, it would be better simply to report that, yes, "the idea is similar to the JD". The detailed evidence can be reported in the main body. --SD1312.4 (talk) 04:18, 11 February 2014 (UTC)