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7 February 2011
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Interviews | Andre Bormanis
Please State the Nature of the Medical Emergency

You invented something called a kiloquad?

Picture The computer technology on Star Trek, as I mentioned earlier, is something that we�ve been careful about reining in. We don�t want our computers to be more intelligent than our characters, but we also don�t want them to look terribly backward when people are watching the show in five, ten or fifteen years.

It�s possible that computers that are sitting on your desk will have an extraordinary memory capacity - a gigabyte, two gigabytes, ten gigabytes of data on a single drive. When we started getting scripts where we were asked to put a number on the amount of memory in a computer storage module, Michael Kuter decided that it would be a bad idea if we said, 50 gigabytes, and tried to portray that as an extraordinary amount of information from a very advanced 24th Century computer when, in fact, your palm pilot has that much storage capacity five or ten years down the road. So we decided the word 'quad' - I believe Mike invented that. Kiloquad, megaquad, gigaquad. The quad is sort of a logical extension of byte.

I asked Mike when I first read that term; 'Well how many bytes in a quad?' And he said; 'We will never decide that. We will never say it�s four bytes to a quad because otherwise our computers will look that much more primitive when we talk about their memory capacity.'

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