Life as an Extreme Sport

geeks in space

From io9, the Seven Habits of Highly Effective Spaceship Captains. Click the link for full justification, but here’s a summary of the captain and the lesson:

1. The Prime Directive is just a suggestion.
Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Enterprise, Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Lesson learned? Rules are made to be broken.

2. Always shoot first.
Malcolm Reynolds (Captain, Serenity – Firefly)
Lesson learned? Show your crew that you’re willing to take a bullet for them, and they’ll do the same for you.

3. Don’t be afraid to hook up with a cute spaceman.
Leela (Futurama)
Lesson learned? A good leader has to get laid once in a while, and she shouldn’t be ashamed of it.

4. When you’re about to go genocidal, get a second opinion.
Admiral William Adama (Battlestar Galactica)
Lesson learned? True leaders do not ever make decisions alone.

5. Just because you have a crappy ship doesn’t mean you’re a loser.
Han Solo (Captain, Millennium Falcon – Star Wars; god help you if you don’t know that one)
Lesson learned? Every crappy PC is a lean, mean Linux box waiting to be born. Oh, and in case that didn’t make sense: It’s not the tools; it’s what you do with them.

6. Freedom fighters make good teammates
Captain Janeway (Star Trek: Voyager)
Lesson learned? A little subversion goes a long way.

7. There is always somebody out there who can bend spacetime better than you can.
Captain: AI Ship Sleeper Service (AI that captains itself)
Lesson learned? No matter how in control you are, always be ready for something for which you’re completely unprepared.

If I were doing the list, I would probably swap out Leela – I don’t watch Futurama – and replace her with Jack O’Neill (Stargate: SG-1). The lesson learned would probably be something about a good leader using humour for group cohesion/loyalty, or the value of using both brain and brawn. Or maybe just that there’s always time for a good Simpsons joke…