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Arch, 2366


An arch was a holographic structure containing virtual computer control panels and interfaces; they were a feature of Starfleet holodecks of the 24th century. When a program was running in the holodeck, the arch could be made to materialize by voice command when participants wished to modify the current program, communicate throughout the ship, or access most general computer functions. The arch was visible to participants, and even though the holographic characters generally did not perceive the arch, there were exceptions. (Star Trek Generations; TNG: "Elementary, Dear Data")

A related voice command, "Exit", was used to remove the holographic environment around the holodeck door when participants wished to leave the holodeck without closing the program. (Star Trek: The Next Generation, et al.)

Although the arch appeared frequently in scenes on the holodeck on The Next Generation, it was strangely absent in most holodeck episodes on Deep Space Nine and all Voyager episodes often requiring characters to search for manual holodeck controls somewhere in the environment during a malfunction instead. However, in "Twisted", Harry Kim uses the command "computer, arch", (which doesn't work, as there is a malfunction) but it is reasonable to assume that the Holodeck on Voyager "hides" the arch until it is required.

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