"Stargate SG1" Questions Is anybody here a fan of the television sci-fi series Stargate SG-1? If so, maybe you can help me out with a few questions I have. I'm a casual fan and haven't seen all of the episodes. Most of these questions pertain to the way the stargates "work" in the show as discussed here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stargate_(device)#Operation 1. Why are six symbols (seven including the point of origin) used to determine a specific destination? This figure http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:StargateCoordinates.svg tries to explain it: the destination is at the intersection point of the three lines that are drawn connecting each of three pairs of constellations for a total of six symbols. However, it seems from the diagram that once you have drawn two lines connecting two of the three pairs, those two lines intersect at a unique point, making the third line seem somewhat redundant. So why don't you need only FOUR symbols (five including point of origin)? 2. While we're on the subject, what is the advantage of this system over a more traditional 3D coordinate system e.g. spherical polar with the origin at the galactic centre? The only one I can think of off the top of my head is that a large number of destinations can be addressed using a finite number of universal symbols (namely, the 38 + 1 symbols that are carved onto a gate). However, what would be the problem with making an input device like a computer that enables you to enter the coordinates yourself onto a display? (So what if there are an infinite number of real numbers? There's no rule saying that they have to be carved onto the input device.) 3. Speaking of the finite number of universal symbols, that wikipedia article says that they are images of actual constellations, as viewed from Earth. Now, in the Stargate FILM, other stargates had an entirely different set of symbols, which makes sense, because if you look at the stars from some location other than Earth, you aren't going to see those constellations (which again calls into question their use as "reference locations"). However, in the TV series, it would seem that all gates have the same 38 symbols (the Earth constellations). Is this "geo-centric" system explained adequately on screen? 4. Speaking of the constellations, weren't the Stargates built by "The Ancients" tens of millions of years before humanity even existed? So why do the constellations look exactly like the modern ones agreed upon by the IAU? It seems unlikely that the Ancients would have independently come up with the same patterns in the sky, considering that different cultures on Earth have come up with different names and different ways of connecting/grouping the stars. Okay, you could argue that the Goa'uld redecorated the Stargates with more familiar symbols once they arrived on Earth. But revamping the gate network's addressing system seems like a lot of work, and is out of character for the Goa'uld, who prefer to appropriate and use technology, rather than to learn about it. For the sake of argument, say that they DID change the symbols. That still doesn't explain away this problem. Most of those constellations originated with the ancient Greeks. Now, some system lords DO have names corresponding to deities in Greek/Roman mythology afaik, suggesting that they did visit Earth and influence its populace. That having been said, it is my understanding that the only functioning stargate on Earth was entirely under the control of the System Lord Ra, during the time of the Ancient Egyptians. If so, why don't the symbols on the gate correspond to *Egyptian* star groupings, whatever those may have been?