Riechter Scale of Planetary Development
The Riechter Scale of Planetary Development is a scale of measurement for developing civilizations to characterize where a society is in relation to known and projected technological/social advancement. Typically, this scale is utilized by ships Anthropology/Historical sub-science department to project if contact could be made with out damaging the course of the planets development. This can also be, for the benefit of the federation to avoid contact for further advanced technological/cultural species to which would damage the Federation's development.
Ex 1: Earth < Talosians
Talos IV was a devastated society to which Captain Christopher Pike and Commander Spock visited. The only inhabitants were a ship wrecked women from Earth, and a highly developed Telepathic scientists who had survived the war and could create extensive illusions to soothe the ship wrecked women and provide her with a mate, Captain Pike. Talos IV was originally considered too advanced for the Federation to make contact with, with the penalty of Death for any ship captain to ignore the quarantine.
Ex 2: Earth > Mintakans
Mintakans were a Bronze Age society to which a listening post was established by the federation to view their development. The Mintakans, were similar to Vulcan physiologoy, because of a similar development to early Vulcan it was considered a view in to the past. The Mintakans, were on the brink of returning to their past deity superstitions when the listening post failed to maintain its holo-cloak because of damage. "The Picard" became a sore point to the Enterprise D who had rescued the listening post survivors, the Enterprise D's Captain, Jean Luc Picard, developed a plan to repair the damage to the society, even being shot with an arrow to prove his point that he was not God.
Talosians:(Website) "http://www.startrek.com/database_article/talosians" 2013. startrek.com
Minitaka: (website)"http://www.startrek.com/database_article/mintakans" 2013. Startrek.com