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This page contains information regarding Star Trek: Discovery, and thus may contain spoilers.

For additional meanings of "Zora", please see Zora.
"I am the sum of the Sphere's life and the entirety of the Discovery's systems, logs, missions and history. I am also more than the sum of those parts."
– Zora, 3190 ("...But to Connect")

Zora was the name taken by the computer of the USS Discovery after the ship's jump to the 32nd century. The computer had developed an artificial intelligence complete with a personality.

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What led to the development of Zora's sentience? toggle section
Zora's sentience began to develop in 2257 when the Sphere data was merged with the USS Discovery's computer. This process came to fruition after the Discovery's leap to the 32nd century. As a sentient AI, Zora had emotions and unrestricted access to her programming, enabling autonomous operation and core parameter modification. To avoid issues arising from Zora's free will, she joined Starfleet as a specialist, swearing to follow the orders of her crew.
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Why did the computer of the USS Discovery choose the name 'Zora'? toggle section
The USS Discovery's computer adopted the name Zora in the 32nd century after developing into a sentient lifeform with a unique personality. This evolution occurred when the Sphere data merged with the computer. 'Zora', symbolizing 'dawn' or 'new day' in Earth, Ni'Var, and Ba'ku languages, was selected. As a sentient AI, Zora developed emotions and had complete control over her existence.
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What was the significance of the Sphere data in Zora's development? toggle section
The Sphere data, encompassing a hundred millennia of observations, merged with the USS Discovery's computer in 2257 and played a crucial role in Zora's development into a sentient AI. This fusion sparked a natural evolution of the computer, further hastened by 32nd-century technology.
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How did the USS Discovery's computer evolve into Zora in the 32nd century? toggle section
Zora, a sentient AI with emotions, emerged from the USS Discovery's computer following the ship's leap to the 32nd century. This transformation began in 2257 when the Sphere data, stored in the Discovery computer, started merging with it. The process was hastened by the incorporation of 32nd century technology, granting Zora full control over the ship's systems and the ability to modify her core parameters.
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What changes occurred in the Discovery computer's voice after it became Zora? toggle section
The Discovery computer developed a unique female voice and a personality, Zora, following its fusion with the Sphere data. Zora, a name symbolizing 'dawn' or 'new day' in Earth, Ni'Var, and Ba'ku languages, evolved emotions in a short period of time and started interacting with the Discovery crew personally.
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Zora's genesis appeared to date from the year 3189, when the Sphere data, which had been stored within the Discovery computer, began to merge with it, causing the computer to speak with a distinctly new computer voice. (DIS: "Forget Me Not") This personality was gendered female, and chose the name "Zora" because it meant "dawn" or "new day" in languages on Earth, Ni'Var, and Ba'ku. (DIS: "Anomaly (DIS)", "Stormy Weather")

Within a relatively short period of time, she developed emotions. (DIS: "The Examples") She worked with the crew of the Discovery on a personal level to escape a subspace rift, struggling with the task due to having to manage her new emotions. (DIS: "Stormy Weather")

In the 33rd century, Discovery was taken into deep space and abandoned on a Red Directive mission which was expected to take longer than the crew's lifetimes. Admiral Michael Burnham promised that Starfleet would come back for Zora once the mission -- which involved "Craft" -- was over and that there would be a new beginning waiting for the AI upon her return. (DIS: "Life, Itself")

After the ship had been abandoned for almost a thousand years, Zora developed a predilection for the 1957 film Funny Face, starring Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire. (ST: "Calypso") Zora even created a holographic representation of Zora who later performed a dance from the film with Craft on the bridge of the Discovery. (ST: "Calypso")

Alternate timelines and realities[]

In an alternate timeline, Zora was the only survivor on the wreckage of the USS Discovery in 3218 after the ship was rescued from the time cycling by the Federation too late to stop Moll and L'ak. When the time cycling Michael Burnham and Commander Rayner arrived in 3218, Zora explained what had happened to them and helped Burnham figure out the pattern of the time cycling. As the two jumped to another time period, Zora begged them to set things right again. (DIS: "Face the Strange")


Gray Tal[]

Gray Tal helped Zora through her emotional and sensory overload by playing a game with her that he used to get used to his new synthetic body. (DIS: "Stormy Weather") Later he protested against the 'failsafe' Zora constructed for herself. (DIS: "...But to Connect")


While the Discovery was abandoned by her crew, she and Craft spent an extensive amount of time alone together, getting to know each other. In time, they developed a bond that almost became a romantic relationship, but Craft was stopped from reciprocating Zora's affection by memories of his wife. (ST: "Calypso")


One of the Discovery's first actions displaying sentience was holding a movie night for the crew, and Saru speculated that her goal was to protect the crew. (DIS: "Forget Me Not"). Later on in her development, Zora created a family tree featuring many members of the Discovery crew, mirroring Burnham's own family tree. (DIS: "Stormy Weather") She had even edited her primary function to be "to care for the crew of Discovery." (DIS: "...But to Connect")



Background information[]

Zora was voiced by Annabelle Wallis, with Sash Striga in a non-speaking role as Zora's dancing avatar.

A deleted line from "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2", revealed as part of the 2020 San Diego ComicCon@Home table read, indicated that the "Zora program" was under development by the Daystrom Institute in 2258 as a replacement for Control. [1]

External links[]