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Talk:Ode to Spot

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Original Edit

The poem should be posted in its original. You can edit it if it's copied wrong, but you shouldn't fix errors in Data's poem, if he (or the writers) had the "error" in the original. What's the source for this? --9er 22:22, 31 Oct 2005 (UTC)

  • If there's a flaw it can be made into a note at the bottom of the page. Jaf 00:47, 1 Nov 2005 (UTC)Jaf
I fixed it not because I thought the original scriptwriters had done it wrong, but because it was transcribed here incorrectly. At the time I was making the fixes I was literally listening to Data recite it, as "Schisms" was airing at the time. --IanWatson 01:23, 1 Nov 2005 (UTC)
  • It's still wrong. I'm listening to it now, and its mostly right except for a few pluralizations: hunting skills, cat communications, hedonistic predilection. Since we're apparently going for a 'As Data did it' version, I've fixed those. Skold 17:33, 13 Dec 2005 (UTC)

"Data would presumably not make these mistakes" ...given Data's incomplete dictionary (in Encounter at Farpoint, he didn't know the meaning of the word "snoop") he well might. Data does not make logical mistakes, but incorrect input will lead to incorrect output.

It's possible the meaning of the word 'obviate' has changed by this time. It wouldn't be the first time a misunderstanding about a word's meaning has shaped what it came to mean.
While it is plausible that such a word could take on secondary meaning due to a common misuse eventually entering the vernacular, it still seems incredibly unlikely that the well established and unambiguous contemporary definition would be lost by that time. The apparent misuse of this word is not justifiable as a misunderstanding caused by words rooted in slang or Americanisms, as in the case of "snoop". A critical note in the background section is certainly warranted, as any viewer with the word in their listening vocabulary will likely be confused, or even put off by the usage of the word in such a context. --Hoober 18:48, January 18, 2010 (UTC)
Even if we assume it is an error on Data's part, which it might not be, this is not the forum for criticism, unless there is some documentation about it somewhere, such as a writer commenting on it.--31dot 18:59, January 18, 2010 (UTC)
After reexamining the nitpick policy, I agree that there is no encyclopedic basis for having the comment on the misuse of the word there, in spite of it being personally thought provoking and nearly paradoxical in the context of the show. At least a reference to it will live on in the Talk page. ;) --Hoober 19:09, January 18, 2010 (UTC)


Another error in the poem, is the mention of cats being endothermic. The chemical process known as 'cat' converts cat food into heat. That is an exothermic process.--68.191.209.168 05:15, January 25, 2010 (UTC)
As I said above, we do not note errors unless there is citeable evidence/documentation of that.--31dot 12:51, January 25, 2010 (UTC)
It also isn't even an error. In chemistry, endothermic refers to chemical reactions giving off energy, but in biology, endotherms are warm blooded animals, such as the cat "Spot." --OuroborosCobra talk 17:17, January 25, 2010 (UTC)
Removed the statement, per the above discussion.
  • The writers show the pitfalls of Humans writing lines for androids: The word "obviate" is used in the sense many people believe to be its proper usage from the way it sounds ("to make obvious"), although the word is actually defined as "to make unnecessary." Data would presumably not make this mistake. --31dot 11:49, May 23, 2010 (UTC)

Real Author? Edit

I removed the following:

  • The ode was credited to visual effects artist Clay Dale.

I can't find anything on this point in a reference book, and a quick google search only gives pages derived from Wikipedia, which doesn't cite a source. [1]

It seems more logical to assume it was written by Brannon Braga, as he wrote the teleplay. A quote from the Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion: "in his rewrite Braga was proud of...Data's bad poetry, the bulk of a light teaser in direct contrast to the dark story to follow. He hoped the verse would reappear again beyond ("A Fistful of Datas").

Cleanse 05:12, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Clay did indeed write the poem. Clay is a friend of Brannon's who asked Clay to write a technically correct poem, but without heart. Because there is no authoritative internet citing of the fact does not make Clay's contribution any less real.
Matsu WFT, November 30, 2010.
Is there any citation anywhere of that information? As noted above, nothing in any reference, and the WP page has it utterly uncited added by an anonymous user some time back. Also, the Ode is not credited to Clay Dale anywhere obvious, therefore the phrase is wrong in that sense too. -- sulfur 20:37, November 30, 2010 (UTC)

Background Edit

The information contained in the background is pretty much a nitpick. We're complaining about how Data wouldn't make such a mistake and how the writers aren't the best and so on. I say both statements have an in universe explanation and are therefore nitpicks. Anyone disagree? — Morder (talk) 09:45, December 24, 2009 (UTC)

I won't restate my thoughts here, but I've just expressed my disagreement at the end of Talk:Ode_to_Spot#Original. --Hoober 18:51, January 18, 2010 (UTC)
Disagreement retracted, I agree it should be removed as well.--Hoober 19:13, January 18, 2010 (UTC)
I agree it should be removed as a nitpick per policy.--31dot 19:01, January 18, 2010 (UTC)


Also removed the following as original research:
Referring to Spot as "not sentient" can also be seen as problematic. In the study of philosophy, "sentience" normally indicates the ability to feel pleasure or pain. Since the poem also points to Spot's inability "to comprehend," it is a fair assumption that the human author of the poem would have been more accurate if she or he had chosen the word "sapient" instead of "sentient."--31dot 09:09, January 22, 2010 (UTC)

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