So as long as it is a passive item it will work without the required stat points? I thought that I tried that with a computer component and when I unequipped my crew member the item's stats were removed from the info sheet,
Some computer components are active - they boost your accuracy, critical hit chance, etc... 50% of the time, i.e. their refresh time is twice their boost time. For those, you need the skill requirements, and you need some energy.
Oh! I don't recall exactly which point, but I had a really big Scavenger ship then the next upgrade in command made me a tiny ship again. Is that the same with the older races too? Kind of disappointing going from a nice battleship to a babby ship again.
I hate that as well, but understand why Shadow did it. Most players would never see the high end models if hulls went strictly from smaller to bigger. If I had gone to the trouble of designing Titans and Flagships (which often look awesome) I would want players to see them, too.
No good deed goes unpunished...