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12 Scientific Inaccuracies in Star Trek: Into Darkness

Vulcan Mind-Meld

The Movie: Again, another Star Trek standby: Spock is mind-melding all over the place. He puts his fingers on someone's head and "poof," knows their thoughts!

Real Life: We don't get how thoughts could possibly be detected through finger tips. When you experience an emotion, your brain is executing an incredibly complex ballet of chemical reactions. Your senses are bringing in information about your situation, which is interpreted by the supercomputer that is your cerebral cortex, which in turn tells the rest of your body how to react to your surroundings. The intricacy of it all is mind-blowing (hardy har). Billions of bits of information are at play during a moment that may seem simple to you, like the excitement of a roller-coaster turn, or the empathy you have for a friend going through a hard time.

Oh, but Spock can just magically glean everything from touching a person's head? What, are his finger tips made of unobtainium or some other crazy, made-up substance? Also, does anyone else find it weird that the species with the most disdain for emotion is the one with empath powers? I'm not saying I don't find the contrast interesting but did I miss the episode where Spock sat us down and explained how that works? And let us touch his pretty ears?

Tags: movies, science, slideshows, star trek, chris pine, nasa, star trek into darkness

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Becky Ferreira

Becky Ferreira is a writer, performer, and raptor based in New York.

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