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Thread: Is "The Doctor" sentient? Is Lt. Cmdr Data?

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    Moderator Neverfly's Avatar
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    Default Is "The Doctor" sentient? Is Lt. Cmdr Data?

    In the world of Nerd Trek, TPTB decided to draft tedious scripts describing the holographic character of "the Doctor" on Star Trek Voyager.
    The character was played by Robert Picardo, an excellent actor, but still a human being.
    In watching the show, we are expected to suspend some disbelief and merely accept that the holographic program mimics a living person so well as to include all the subtle little movements that human beings do that you would think would never occur to a hologram to do.
    But it raises some interesting questions... the writers didn't have to worry about really having A.I. on the show- they had an actor; fully capable of humanity in all its aspects.
    In so doing, they opened a can of worms with the nature of the Doctors sentience and what this meant for a federation producing Slave Drones in the form of holographic characters.
    Through all this... we can exclude "normal" holographic characters that are utilized on the holodeck, considering the Doc to be a Special Program like Vic Fontaine.

    NOPE.

    Because they dumbass writers also wrote scripts for "Fair Haven" and "Spirit Folk" in which characters demonstrated sentience above and beyond the usual depiction. You also have the episode, "Flesh and Blood."
    Once the writers got their chops around smart, self aware holograms, they just couldn't help themselves. What they did was essentially show that ANY hologram program can have the potential to be sentient, as long as some ridiculous malfunction occurs, or someone gets a little unethical with a PADD.

    The deeper question is; Are they Sentient at all, or merely mimicry?
    I have my own thoughts on it...
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    Default Re: Is "The Doctor" sentient? Is Lt. Cmdr Data?

    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    In the world of Nerd Trek, TPTB decided to draft tedious scripts describing the holographic character of "the Doctor" on Star Trek Voyager.

    Once the writers got their chops around smart, self aware holograms, they just couldn't help themselves. What they did was essentially show that ANY hologram program can have the potential to be sentient,

    The deeper question is; Are they Sentient at all, or merely mimicry?
    I have my own thoughts on it...
    This question reminds me of an alleged quote from the Dalai Lama when a person who was testing if he could influence a 0 or 1 random number generator machine asked the Dalai Lama if he thought such a machine was alive. The answer was …. It is, if you think it is.

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