Roman empire to early modern Europe.
Roman empire as example of how information processing works. Byzantine from same perspective.
Friday is development of modes of collection and processing. Techniques of navigation, cartography,
and cryptography. Then early modern period.
Recap of methods up til this point: Political warfare or subversion is important tool of politics. Intel is
assessed with sophisticated methods that are modern net assessments. Sources are open sources largely,
but dealing with rational actors comparing strengths and weaknesses.Almost all the sources were
human, some intercepted dispatches but few. Intel run by politician inAthens. If you read records
carefully, political debates will involve politician saying “my sources tell me something”. On field of
battle, tactical, stems from recon, scouts. Politcal warfare is very sophisticated, sources are human.
Roman strategy as means to simplify the processing of information.
Rome in 200 BC
Becomes dominant power in mediterranean, more or less establishes boundaries to the Rhine River in
England and Scotland and down to the middle east around the mediterranean sea. Significant and
expensive efforts to expand the empire. Proves difficult. Core areas are ones just outlined. Tries to
maintain control by centering on development of communication systems, or Command, Control,
Communication and Intelligence Systems. Means to simplify movement of sources and speed
movement of info. Strategic level application. Similar to telegraph, speeding movement of info. When
Roman empire reaches more or less its mature form, almost all forces are thrown on the frontiers.
Closest thing to frontier protection/imperial guard is pretorian guard. Provide means of security in the
metropolis.As much a fire brigade as anything else. Intel works in sense of allowing you to know what
threats are, what they might be, what opportunities there are, and if you're caught by surprise you can
act quickly. Romans solve this by building frontier defenses. Frontier defenses are primarily on Scottish
frontier as well as Rhine and Danube. Would imagine huge walls with fortifications, but that's
expensive to do in terms of building and allocating garrisons. Hardrian's wall, the most expensive and
sohpisticated of Roman systems, is not impermeable. What you're doing is lying down a wall,
establishing territory, means to minimize penetrating by small forces, ensure that if someone does
penetrate your frontiers they have to attack in large numbers. Thus signalling their presence.
Hadrian's wall. Tactical intelligence that allows you to see any kind of movement. Doesn't prevent
commercial traffic or normal life, just minimizing likelihood of assault.Along wall are watchtowers
around every mile or so. Behind are garrison points. Watchtowers are connected by signals, by flag or
fire.Allow you to react immediately to any incursion against the wall. Install intelligence and
communications processing system to allow you to observe any large force approaching you, then call
up large or small force to contain attack, as appropriate. Complicated C3I system, means you can now
solidify the frontiers.
Along Rhine and Danube rivers, frontiers on northern interior of empire – much longer pieces of
territory. Can't afford to build defenses like Hadrian's wall. Build long continuous palisade instead,
from logs, with towers, established to allow tactical intel on any large forces moving on the other side.
Behind this, build roads running parallel to the walls, leading inland to major garrisons – ability to send
relatively small force, or call up 2 or 3 legions. Each legion usually has auxiliary force the same size, can send around 20000 men forward. Makes it difficult for small scale raids to proceed, but doesn't
prevent large scale forces from massing and attacking – Rhine and Danube walls are not impermeable,
but you do force the enemy to concentrate in large numbers so you'll know they're there. Thinking
about Roman defense as being part of a system that integrates primitive intelligence, they're able to
minimize cost required to keep the frontier from being constantly raided, reducing cost to keep it stable,
and ensuring attacks that come in will probably be the kind you'd like to take on. Engaging a large
enemy force in the open.
Much the same function is conducted by a number of Chinese dynasties. Great wall wasn't completely
constructed til 400 years ago, mind you, but Chinese wall systems in general go back 1500 years.