Tangentally Cerberus related, but I came across a copy of Ron D. Moore's Battlestar Galactica Series Bible. Quite a bit of the stuff here was eventually modified, but it's still an interesting read.
For example, this paragraph about the Quorum of Twelve:
There is a formal body of priests and clerics known as the Quorum of Twelve that now operates in a quasi-civil role within the Colonial government that can be likened to the British House of Lords. As the name implies, the Quorum is made up of representatives from each of the Colonies. The Quorum of Twelve advises the government on policy matters from a religious perspective, but its actual power is relatively narrow.
The blurb about technology really puts a different spin on things because it goes from "Galactica was an outdated heap o' junk" to a lot of stuff that was generally assumed as being available in civilian life actually does not exist in the BSGverse.
Following the Cylon uprising and eventual war, the Colonials had to forcibly remove any and all technologies that could be potentially subverted by the Cylons and used against the Colonials. In practical terms, this meant the elimination of networking, defined here as the ability of computers to share data and talk to each other. By eliminating data-sharing, the Cylons could not, for instance, introduce computer viruses to disrupt information systems or assert control over those systems.
The result WAS that many modern day conveniences we take for granted granted have been removed from Colonial society: the internet, wireless communications, satellite imagery, etc. As the Cylons grew more and more advanced, their mastery of technology grew as well, and the Colonials were forced again and again to radically limit the scale of high technology in their own society. Microprocessors themselves become vulnerable to Cylon interference at some point so microwave ovens, cell phones, game boys, etc., all began to be pulled from day to day life.
In writing for the series, we should think of the Colonials as using a blend of Apple II, current NASA/space shuttle, and futuristic technologies. For example, Galactica clearly has flatscreen plasma TV monitors strewn throughout CIC, but still relies on paper printouts that appear to be created by a dot-matrix printer on a continuous ream of paper. While the ship can travel faster than the speed of light, officers have to verbally go through long checklists while cadres of enlisted personnel flip switches and press buttons in order to make it possible.
A useful way to think about this is to take any piece of equipment and strip out its ability to talk to another piece of equipment. If your cell phone did not have access to a computer network, how efficiently could it operate? Could it operate at all? How do you design a navigational system for a spacecraft if the various components cannot be networked together? How do you design a fighter that relies more on human brainpower to identify threats and make decisions than anything built into the cockpit?
One of the most important concepts is that there is no "master computer" aboard// Galactica or any other Colonial ship. In fact, our computers are very dumb in comparison to even the PC sitting on the average writer's desk. We should always endeavor to find ways of forcing human beings to do the hard work involved with operating and maintaining a spacecraft.
Human brains need to crunch numbers, organize data, and come up with solutions to complex problems.
Also, the story structure section starting on page 30 is frakkin' awesome. Pages 40-49 deal with combat operations, flight operations, protocols, and so forth.