Hilarious Reveal of the Star Trek Communicator Badge's UX Flaw

In the original Star Trek TV show from the ’60s, the Enterprise crew members all wear an emblem on their shirts, which is a logo for their fictional United Federation of Planets.

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By Jesperhansen1972 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

Fast-forward to the ’80s, and the production designers of Star Trek: The Next Generation were given a task: Turn that sewn logo on the crew members’ shirts into a physical object. Why? Because the writers wanted it to serve as a Communicator Badge. A couple trips to the prop shop and some spraypaint later, the actors now had a little gizmo pinned to their shirt.


Trekkies started calling it the “ComBadge,” and replicas became a popular item at conventions. Here in the 2020s you can even buy Bluetooth versions for $60.


A Star Trek meme-ist who maintains the Facebook account Spock Pointy-ears Vulcan has thought through the UX of having a physical badge pinned to a uniform that contains more than a little Lycra, and created a video illustrating the problem:

It’s the one at the conference table, with that sound, that got me.

The original video is here.

Source: core77

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