Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Recording Corridor Use

Poul Anderson, The Corridors Of Time (London, 1968).

When the Wardens (or Rangers) construct and activate a time corridor, can they also install a device to audio-visually record every arrival and departure throughout the twenty five years' existence of each of the gates?

I think that each group tries to conceal its corridors but we also know that some corridors are used by both groups and, in theory, by no one else. Lockridge and Auri make one corridor journey while serving Storm and another with their own people for their own purposes.

The first task after activating a gate should be to check the record of arrivals and departures. With this information, Wardens would:

be able to arrange ambushes for Rangers seen using a gate;
know for sure whether or not a Ranger suspected of using one of their corridors had in fact done so.

If both sides did this, it would further restrict the scope of the time war. It would only be safe to use corridors whose existence was kept secret from the other side. However, neither group would want a complete record of its own time journeys because it would want to preserve its own freedom of action. If a Warden knew that the record showed that he had not used a corridor, then he would have to avoid using that corridor but then that would be why the record showed that he had not used it.

Addendum, 18 Mar '14: Maybe such recording devices are impossible or impractical or are avoided because they would restrict freedom of movement too much? A camera inside the corridor spanning the entire length of a gate would show only approximate dates of return into the time stream, because of the uncertainty factor, whereas a camera recording the scene outside the gate for the entire twenty five years of its existence would show exact dates of arrival and departure.

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