Forgive my retardedness but I always wanted to know lol
Originally Posted by Jainil Lakhani
"Pilot" word is used in chemistry as "Pilot reading" while doing experiments. It is the first reading that you take while conducting any experiment. That particular reading is not necessarily accurate. It just gives the ballpark of where the measurements would lie... For eg. If you are measuring normality or molarity of any chemical and the pilot reading turns out to be say 11.7, that means that you measurement would lie between 11 and 12.. Or some range of that sort. 11.7 gives you an idea of what the future expectations from the measurements should be...
On a similar line the first episode of any TV series gives you the idea of what expectations should you set from the series in future. Moreover when producers sell their tv series to broadcasting channels, these broadcasters decide whether to air the series or not depending on the appeal that pilot episode creates. On this line, the first episode of all TV series is termed as "pilot"
No, like @Cohen said. It's to test out how well the first episode will run (amount of views, people staying to watch after the break). You know, statistics. This way they can kind of estimate how well the series will run in it's future which is both usefull for the company that broadcasts it and those who write the TV Serie.