I’ve just seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and I really have some questions for the Dark Side about how they construct their bases. Look, I like science fiction and fantasy. I am willing to look over the fact that the Laws of Thermodynamics and the Laws of Physics are routinely violated. What I have trouble overlooking is that the Dark Side designs their bases in bizarrely unsafe and inexplicably useless ways.
Let’s ignore the fact that the Dark Side is completely incapable of learning from its mistakes. It’s called redundancy by design. Your enemy should not be able to find one thing to destroy and take down the entire base. So stop putting the same flaws in base designs. Also, for goodness sakes, get better computer network security.
No, what I really want to talk about are the catwalks. The Dark Side has completely inexplicable, unsafe catwalks installed in their bases. I am ignoring the huge, unused, exists-for-no-reason chasms that always seem to be in the bases. Most bases are about using all the space they have. Good to know the Dark Side has space to waste. Anyway, those chasms always seem to have one or possibly two catwalks. The catwalks don’t seem to exist for productive reasons because if so, there would not just be one when the chasm is something like 50 stories high. You would want to move people or things on more than one level. Also, the catwalks are about the width of one person. They never seem to be wide enough for two people to pass. That is fairly stupid design. If it was a narrow chasm, then that might make sense, but when the chasm is a hundred times bigger than the catwalk, surely you can make the catwalk a little wider.
Now let’s talk safety. Yes, I get it. These are bases, so they are not designed for children, disabled, or comfort. That doesn’t mean you can’t have handrails, safety rails, safety cages for your wall ladders, etc. Safety is not just to protect stupid people, although that at times is a big part. People trip. People are holding something (like a prisoner, say) and can’t completely see where they are going. Don’t try to tell me survival of the fittest. From what I can tell, the Dark Side seems to most appreciate Storm Troopers who just follow orders and don’t think for themselves. They are prime candidates for people who need safety rails. People who blindly follow orders are prime for lemming-like activities. [Although lemmings don’t actually do that mass suicide thing that many people think they do, but I regress.]
If you have the resources to build the most amazingly large and destructive bases in the universe, then you have the resources to put in proper safety rails and catwalks wide enough for two people to pass.
Is there an Intergalactic Building Code? Does the Dark Side follow it? Does the Dark Side have licensed Professional Engineers? How did they get building permits? Were there inspections? Does the Dark Side have any common sense? Any engineer who approved these designs should have the license revoked. Any organization that can’t learn from its mistakes to deserve to have their stuff destroyed over and over again.
One more thing I have to say as an environmental engineer. Has the Dark Side heard of recycling? I don’t just mean because it is good for the environment. I mean why waste perfectly good resources, like I don’t know all the leftover resources on a crashed battleship? Use old resources when rebuilding, especially when you keep rebuilding the same thing over and over again.