My Favorite Trek: Heather Meadows

Not only is this the latest edition of My Favorite Trek, but it’s also announcement time: Commodore Heather Meadows hereby joins us today as our new Director of Media. Her main responsibilities will be My Favorite Trek interviews and other blog & media content. She has a long and distinguished simming career, frequently filling roles similar to this, that goes back two decades now. Without any further ado, let’s meet Commodore Heather Meadows…

Name: Heather Meadows
Rank: Commodore
Sim: N/A
Position: Director of Media
Other Characters: Lieutenant Tosh Tarkin of the USS Eminence

Favorite Star Trek episode? It is incredibly difficult to narrow Star Trek down to one favorite episode. However, I will go with “Measure of a Man” from Star Trek: The Next Generation’s second season.
Why? The writer of this episode is Melinda Snodgrass, an accomplished science fiction author, but has a background in law. She earned her Juris Doctor from University of Mexico School of Law. Snodgrass’ knowledge of law applied to the science fiction setting of Gene Rodenberry’s 24th century brings about a thorough discussion of morality, ethics, and what constitutes sentient life.
Favorite Star Trek series? Alas, a continuation of a predicament that places a fan in a tug-of-war within a wonderful franchise. Star Trek: The Next Generation has the best cast, but my personal favorite is Star Trek: Voyager.
Why? When measuring each series and comparing/contrasting them, Star Trek: Voyager edges out the others for me on a personal level because the premise was good, the pilot was interesting, and the first season was solid. Where other series needed time to grow and develop (surpassing Voyager even), Voyager as a series did not need to go through the same growing pains.
Favorite Star Trek film? This would be Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home for me.
Why? This is probably one of the more divisive films because of the plot and humor. I, however, greatly enjoy both the plot and the infusion of humor throughout the movie. The 1980s was a quirky time and having Kirk and the crew travel back to this period of time in Earth’s history worked out well because the actors were contemporary during the time. This made for sharper writing than having them sent back to say the 1880s. Environmental conversation is also something that is very important to me, and that is essentially at the core of this film.
Favorite Star Trek Captain? Most people have the ongoing battle of Kirk or Picard, but mine is actually a struggle between Picard or Janeway. Any given day, it could go either way for me, but I will go with Captain Kathryn Janeway. She adjusted to the situation that she found herself in, and part of that adjustment meant being more than just the Captain – Janeway had to become softer and more integrated with her crew, especially because there’s a huge difference between a Galaxy class starship and an Intrepid class.

  • What year did you start simming? I started simming in 2002 which does indeed feel like a million years ago because things were different back then.
  • What sim was it? It was Dowding Station, a space station sim and it was not part of a fleet. I actually spent about eight or nine years, strictly on the independent scene before setting foot in a fleet.
  • What keeps you simming today? I actually don’t write (simming) as much these days, but I do keep involved with the simming community. I stay involved because I like being a mentor and helping new COs (Game Managers) find their confidence and get into their groove.
  • Favorite non-simming hobby? I actually am a bit Neelix myself. I enjoy cooking and baking (hate the cleaning) and experimenting with recipes.
  • Favorite non-Trek series? That would probably be Buffy the Vampire Slayer because it’s a relatively timeless piece that has embedded itself into pop culture, and it is a series that any writer, director, or producer could learn a lot from.
  • Favorite non-Trek film? North by Northwest because I love James Bond, and though this is not a ‘Bond Film’ it still has the feel of one, and it is a well written film. It certainly is rightfully a classic.
  • Favorite book (fiction or non)? I’m going to give a quick shoutout to Nightshade, a Star Trek novel by Laurell K. Hamilton because Star Trek books do not get enough attention. However, because I am a literary geek, Frankenstein by Marry Shelly is my favorite book.
  • Favorite video game? I really don’t do gamming aside from auto racing games and such. Though I thoroughly enjoyed the Uncharted series and Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order.
  • Favorite musician or band? The Cranberries (Yes, the band known for “Linger” and “Zombie”) as I loved the Singer (she passed away a few years ago) and the band had a lot of gems of songs that weren’t hits or singles.
  • Favorite superhero? Nightcrawler from the X-Men.
  • If you could have any super power, what would it be? I would take telepathy though it would literally be a headache. The ability to know what people are truly thinking is alluring as you’d get them in their truest form.
  • Favorite sport? I’m an auto racing and motorsports person. Be that Formula 1, IndyCar, or NASCAR.
  • Favorite team? Team Penske
  • Favorite food? Pretty much all of it though I am fond of Tacos, Pide, and Malai Kofta.
  • Coke or Pepsi? I reject your binary cola thinking and insert my own. Royal Crown (RC Cola). However, I am less of a ‘cola’ person and more of a: Moxie, Dr. Pepper, birch beer, root beer, sarsaparilla, and cream soda person.
  • Lennon or McCartney? Let’s just say I am not a Beatles person.
  • Jordan or LeBron? Basketball – Nope.
  • Star Trek or Star Wars? Star Trek because it was less action and more philosophical.

Rank the Trek TV shows from best to worst. VOY / TNG / DSN / ENT / TOS / PIC / DSC
Rank the Trek movies from best to worst. TVH / FC / TUC / TWOK / I / G / TSFS / N / TFF / ID / B / TMP / ST (2009)
Was this too many questions? Not at all. It was a nice opportunity for people to get dome insight into me from a Trek perspective. I welcome any questions they may have.

Let’s all give Commodore Meadows a warm welcome!

Hall of Fame Amendment IV

The fourth amendment to the Independence Fleet Hall of Fame here hereby approved after a vote of 10 ballots for, 0 against, and 2 abstentions. The main change is reducing the maximum number of annual inductions from the standard process from five to three, and from the Veterans Committee from three to two. It also clarifies that future amendments can’t be voted on during May, June, or July so as to not interfere with the election process. These changes were primary driven by feedback from the voters this past year.

I don’t anticipate this resulting in any major changes practically, but it should help us focus our efforts moving forward. Speaking of forward, I’m already looking toward inducting a new group of outstanding individuals next year on our 21st anniversary to join the current 33 inductees.

You can see more about the Hall of Fame here or read the updated HoF Charter here.

October News Updates

Three quick news items for everyone:

  • Rear Admiral Bolak has resigned his position as IDF’s Director of Media due to time constraints. His last official day will be October 31st. I would like to personally thank Bolak for all of his hard work and the many contributions he has made to the fleet, especially the My Favorite Trek and Captain’s Chair interviews.
  • This year’s Simming Fall Festival will happen on November 13th. It will be hosted by our friends over at 5th Fleet. As always, we look forward to supporting 5th Fleet and engaging with the rest of the simming community at FallFest.
  • As everyone knows, we celebrated our 20th Anniversary earlier this year. What you might not know is that several other fleets also marked significant anniversary milestones in 2021. You can read more about a few of them over on the Ongoing Worlds Blog. Speaking of milestones, yesterday was the 11-year anniversary of the launch of the award-winning USS Sunfire-D.

SciWorld 2021

Join us this Saturday, June 12th, at 11:30 AM EDT (-4) / 4:30 pm BST (+1) for the 2021 SciWorld Online Convention. Chair Aurther Winters, Fleet XO Ken Gillis, and many others have put in a lot of hours to make this an extra special event this year. After the 11:30 opening ceremony, we have seven hours of provocative discussions, interactive trivia games, and live role playing planned.

Since we’re this year’s host, you get a sneak peak at the official opening ceremony video:

This will be the 19th SciWorld, and the third hosted by IDF. The first SciWorld was held all the way back in 1999. And just to see how far we’ve come over the years, here’s the opening video from the first modern SciWorld, which we hosted in 2011:

See you this Saturday at SciWorld XIX!

USS Sunfire & USS Liberty Sim Swap

We know this is crazy, but basically the crews are trading ships: USS Sunfire CO Captain Sandy “Ghost” Shannon & crew and USS Liberty CO Captain Rhenora Kaylen & crew are permanently swapping ships.

Wait, what?

Over the last week, each crewmember added their character to the other sim. Then today, the two Captains published joint genesis posts on each sim: Here’s the Sunfire’s & here’s the Liberty’s. Crewmembers are free to participate on both sims for the remainder of the missions, which will be wrapped up before the end of the month. At that time, legacy Liberty members will have their characters deactivated as they continue on the Sunfire, and legacy Sunfire members will have their characters deactivated as they continue on the Liberty.

Why do this?

Both sims have tremendous histories here at IDF. In fact, IDF was born out of the original Sunfire, and it was one of our three launch sims back in July 2001. Shortly thereafter, the Liberty was our first expansion sim on August 1, 2001. The current registry numbers hark back to those early days. When we relaunched both sims last year, circumstances led to the Liberty crew largely consisting of players from the last incarnation of the Sunfire. They’re simply going home now. And fortunately, the crew of the Sunfire are good enough sports to play along.

How will these joint missions turn out?

I have no idea, but they’re sure to be wild as we’ve never attempted anything like this before!

With that said, as of today, Captain Rhenora Kaylen is now the Commanding Officer of the USS Sunfire, and Captain Sandy “Ghost” Shannon is now the Commanding Officer of the USS Liberty. Congratulations, Captains! May you continue to lead your sims to new heights!

May News Updates

All, here are three command news items to keep everyone up to date:

  • An audit of our blog revealed that we never announced both of these October 1, 2020 changes of command in this forum: Captain Akeno Misaki of the USS Wayfarer and Captain T’Brei Sheridan of the USS Sunfire.
  • Captain Sandy “Ghost” Shannon assumed command of the USS Sunfire on May 1, 2021. A special thanks to Captain Sheridan for leading the Sunfire for seven months.
  • Captain John Wells will assume command of the USS Eminence on June 1, 2021. A special thanks to Captain Polto for leading the Eminence over the last 11 months.

Congratulations, Captains!

Monthly Awards: March 2021

Sorry for the delay, but your IDF March winners are below:

Best Post (Single Author)

Lt. Sheeraashaa Genno
Chief Security Tactical Officer
USS Albion

For “The Short Straw”

Interesting format, and an even more interesting mystery to solve! Well done!

Best Post (Joint Post)

Capt. Rhenora Kaylen & CPO Remal Kajun
CO / C
USS Liberty

For “Contemplation”

Nice work here. Great turns of phrase, good character development, and excellent dialog. Captains are humans too, after all.


Funniest Post

 Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell & Lt. Anna These & CPO Sapphire
CSS / CMO / MaA
USS Liberty

For “I am Blue Sasha Fierce pt1”

You had me at backwards Klingon poetry…


Genesis

Capt. Aurther Winters
Commanding Officer
USS Chuck Norris

For “Truth and Consequences”

Great opening, and lots of directions to take this!


MVP

Lt.jg. Awal Kronnelti
Assistant Security/Tactical Officer
USS Chuck Norris

Lt.jg. Kronnelti was consistently excellent all month, coordinating joint posts, keeping the story moving, and leading the way in wrapping up our last mission. He nailed it!


Most Posts

Lt. Bonnie “Bon-Bon” Durnell
Computer Systems Specialist
USS Liberty

For writing 23 posts.


Most Improved

Lt.jg. Djon Zyngh
Chief Science Officer
USS Chuck Norris

Coming off his rookie month, Lt.jg. Zyngh took his writing and role playing to the next level, showing improved coordination with others and introducing several curveballs in the plot.


Rookie of the Month

Lt.jg. Steven McCloud
Chief Medical Officer
USS Chuck Norris

Joining mid-month, Lt.jg. McCloud is already simming like a veteran… it’s as is he’s been role playing for years!


Recruitment

None this month!


In other news, Captain Emmalyn Marcus assumed command of the USS Montana from Captain RS Harrison on April 1st. A special thanks to Captain Harrison for helping us get this sim off the ground, and best of of luck to Captain Marcus as she guides the ship to new heights! Marcus was the Montana’s XO prior to becoming CO.

=/\=INDEPENDENCE FLEET HOME PAGE=/\=

If you stumbled across our website last Thursday, you might have seen something a bit peculiar. In case you missed it, we’ve archived it here.

The prototypical 1990s simming webpage, complete with animated gifs, a repeating background, and way too many Admirals was the brainchild of our Fleet XO and Chief of Technology Ken Gillis. As most of you know, IDF didn’t actually exist back then as it was founded in 2001. However, some of our members today got their starts back in the 90’s.

As with our Super Space Command 3000 gag last year, we hope you enjoyed this too. Well done, Admiral Gillis!

All Aboard the USS Albion

Our newest sim, the USS Albion launched earlier this week on February 16th. If that date looks familiar, you have a good eye! The original USS Sunfire opened in Utopia Fleet on that date all the way back in the year 2000. The rest, as they say, is history! Speaking of history, this is Captain Dick Sprague’s 10th command in Independence Fleet, by far the most all-time.

While continuing the tradition and legacy of IDF’s USS Avalon series of sims, the Albion seeks to capture the original theme and feel of that original USS Sunfire. As such, this is an open role playing game that uses script format. All potential players are highly encouraged to read the Albion’s Sim page before joining to ensure they know exactly what they’re getting into. It may be different, but it’s a lot of fun.

USS AlbionNCC-3020
Format: ScriptEra: TNG/DSN/VOY
Type: OpenClass: Galaxy
CO: Captain Dick SpragueJoin!

Go check out the USS Albion today!

New Sim: USS Montana

Let’s give a warm welcome to Captain RS Harrison and our newest game, the USS Montana, which launched yesterday on January 8, 2021. The Montana is our only sim set in the TOS movie era, something that many of our players have been asking for for quite some time. Well, here it is, folk. Enjoy!

USS MontanaNCC-1889
Format: ProseEra: TOS Movies
Type: TraditionalClass: Miranda
CO: Captain RS HarrisonJoin!

Check out the USS Montana today!