Re: Borg... sounds Swedish (Review, Rants, Spoilers and Spe

Anders Sandberg (
Mon, 2 Jun 1997 13:23:05 +0200 (MET DST)

On Sat, 31 May 1997 wrote:

> Patrick Wilken writes:
> > Uggh! The Borg maybe interesting, but they certainly don't fit into my
> > Extropian future. They seem alot more like old-fashioned communists dressed
> > up with techno bondage gear than any great leap forward into
> > anarcho-capitalism.
> It surprises me that no one had brought this point up before. The
> Borg, I would think, can be viewed as the ultimate criminals. They
> steal not only physical objects, but the bodies of sentients and
> sentient minds as well.

This may partially be a plot device: with the Klingons on their side,
the Federation needs an enemy to make the show interesting. It is not
certain a real borganism would want to assimilate everything.

Actually, a real borganism might be very cautious about introducing
new units into itself. As the TV show demonstrates a borganism is
vulnerable to information infections (be they computer viruses or
memes), and just adding a new individual with no prior screening
could upset the internal structure of the borganism.

The Star Trek Borg seems to have solved the later problem by simply
turning all new units into standardized borgs, which still doesn't
seem to work entirely satisfactory (but they suffer from the Dalek
syndrome after all - if the enemy is too smart the show will be too
depressing for the average viewer).

Anders Sandberg Towards Ascension!
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y