> The best explanation I read about Stardates was convaluted. It has to do
> with date and time, position in space and they started using it in the
> original series, without any definitive markers, so the writer's just
> "winged" it, so to speak. I am writing a Trek piece, (unofficially) and
> have put the last two digits of the year first: year 2285 becomes 85, month
> November, becomes 8511. Date 16th, becomes 8511.16. I know this isn't the
> correct formula, but it helps me keep my timeline straight in my head. :-P
> It is my understanding the writer's had some kind of formula for TNG --- I
> believe they divided it into seasons, starting with a certain set of numbers
> with the very first season and then continued on from there. I think they
> were, at least, more consistent. But then again, it helps when you have a
If you want a properly scientific (though non-Canon) explanation of TOS
stardates, there is none better (IMHO) than Andrew Main's investigation on
the Star Trek Archive, here:
This is very convoluted, but then, what explanation would not be when no
system was ever created for the show's writers at the time?
Basically the stardate rates change. During TOS, 5 stardates = 1 Earth day.
For TMP, 0.1 stardates = 1 Earth day. For STII onwards, 0.5 stardates = 1
Earth day. Changeover dates are calculated to give closest approximations
for established years of events and movies. I love this system, and I wrote
a program to convert stardates according to this. It's the system I still
use today. :)
The TNG stardates are very simple. 1000 stardates = 1 Earth Year (or 1 TNG
Season), which gives about 2.74 stardates = 1 Earth day. Backtracking from
the first episode has the TNG stardates starting on 1st January 2323. So,
either there was more than one issue of stardates, or there was a blending
of them between TOS and TNG.
Go read the site, it is very informative. He clearly put a lot of work into
The YYMM.DD format for stadates is a good handy mnemonic for quick and dirty
rough timeline placements. It does however miss out a whole raft of numbers.
:) On the other side, Star Trek V would not have happened, unless there is a
45th month. :D
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