The first question, from a mischievous European reporter (me), asked Pat Gelsinger what his favourite Star Trek episode was, which slightly floored the chief technology officer of Intel, but he and Shatner worked out that it was called City on the Edge of Forever, one of 17 Star Trek episodes dealing with time travel.
In this episode, we believe, Kirk fell in love with a lass who was played by Joan Collins.
The disclosure led Shatner to reveal that once, when an episode called for him to use a futuristic weapon, he just picked up a camera tripod and held it so the three legs were pointing like a triple barrel, something, which he said, no one had ever picked up on.
In fact, the true story about this episode and a picture of Shattner holding the weapon is here.
He was asked about the episode where he encountered silicon based life on a distant planet and said that the closest he'd ever come to meeting such a form in reality was Pat Gelsinger.
No one asked him for reminiscences of his part in that other Shatner masterpiece, TJ Hooker, although reference was made to the film using Esperanto. Because this could be the only Esperanto film ever, and because Shattner made his own pronunciation up, he believes that he may have influenced the way the language is now spoken worldwide. Here's Esperanto.Net. We thought he might take the occasion to talk about the Klingon language, but all he did was worry whether there might be Klingons in the audience.
He's co-written a book, called I'm Working on That, in his attempt to understand technology and science. That led him to comment that he'd sat down for the keynote and was completely baffled by the subject.
"You guys speak a different language," he said. "I don't understand what you're talking about. In fact, he said, he didn't understand any technology at all, but wanted to. When the plumber came to his house, for example, he wanted to know as much as the plumber.
He said: "How does the toilet really work? I don't know. There are other forces at work. Who invented the toilet, and what gave him the idea?"
In the course of writing the book, he had talked to Ray Kurzweil, the father of voice recognition technology. While he was dictating a sentence something like "I have just talked to Ray Kurzweil," the speech recognition engine translated Ray Kurzweil to Pakapakapaka.
He said he asked Ray what he should do about that and Kurzweil said, "Just say delete". But when he said delete, it didn't delete Pakapakapaka but just pasted delete after it. So he said delete again and now there were two deletes.
He said: "It [voice recognition software] can't even spell the name of the person who invented it."
"None of this shit works," he said.
William Shattner .COM
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