View Full Version : M-5 multitronic unit

12-22-2005, 11:07 AM
I want one!

The M-5 computer or the M-5 multitronic unit was created by Doctor Richard Daystrom. It utilized very sophisticated technology, probably similar to the Human neural network, and much more sophisticated than the duotronic computer commonly in use. According to Dr. Daystrom, the computer could think and reason like a human. He had used his own memory engrams as a model for the computer. Models M-1 through M-4 had been total failures.

M-5 was installed onboard the USS Enterprise in 2267 as a test for its capabilities. It was due to command and control the ship during several battle simulations, where up to four other starships would attack the Enterprise. Manned with only a skeleton crew, the computer was completely in charge of the ship.

The unit was located to main engineering, and tapped directly to ship's main power grid. When requiring more power, it would shut down unnecessary systems, including life support on decks without crewmembers.

During battle drills, the computer's self preservation instinct became dominant, resulting in the destruction of the robot ship Woden, and deaths of several hundred Starfleet officers when it destroyed the USS Excalibur.

The senior crew attempted to cut off the computer from the ship's controls, but M-5 rerouted command functions through new data lines, and kept sending false signals through the original ones. The computer could also generate a forcefield around itself, effectively preventing anyone from coming near to it.

Captain James T. Kirk made the computer self-destruct by asking it, is it right to kill another being. M-5 said that it was a crime against the laws of God, and deactivated itself. (TOS: "The Ultimate Computer")

The voice for the M-5 was played by James Doohan.


12-22-2005, 02:01 PM
If you have an interest in this sort of thing I would recommend "Digital Biology". I read it a few months ago and found it interesting, it is not technical but covers the ties between biology, evolution and computer models, including neural net, in an easy to understand language.


12-23-2005, 09:23 AM
Doctor Richard Daystrom (played by William Marshall) was one of the most influential human scientists of the 23rd Century. Daystrom who was born ca. 2219, was considered a genius in his day, and was compared to such minds as Albert Einstein, Kazanga and Sitar of Vulcan.

In 2243, at 24, Daystrom made the duotronic breakthrough that won him the Nobel and Zee-Magnees Prizes. However, he felt underappreciated by his peers and resented them for developing improvements based on his work that he felt were dismissed as accidents.

In response, he devoted his full vigor to the development of the multitronic computer system to create a successful artificial intelligence. This culminated in the M-5, a computer system sophisticated enough to smoothly control a starship by itself, possibly precluding the need for organic crews.

In 2268, during the test run with the system on the USS Enterprise, the M-5 started displaying erratic and violent behavior. This includes seizing control of nonessential systems, attacking the freighter, Woden, without provocation, reacting to war games with other starships with full strength attacks, jeopardizing 1,600 lives, and resisting efforts to be disconnected.

It was revealed that Daystrom's programming of the system used his own personality engrams as a model for the computer's personality, which included his psychological problems. Eventually, Daystrom had a nervous breakdown that required him to be subdued while M-5 was convinced that the death it caused required it to commit suicide.

Dr. Daystrom was committed to mental rehabilitation facility in 2268 after the incident.

The Daystrom Institute, one of the most prominent Federation research centers, is named after him, as well as the Daystrom Award.


12-23-2005, 10:36 AM
Someone, didn't spend enough time in the poolhall as a youth /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif