Terminator 2: a couple of questions

Besides, who cares how efficient it is ? SkyNet isn’t under any time pressure, he’s got a frigging time machine. Going through the phone book is an ultra low profile way to find out where the Sarah Connors of the world live. Rather than trying to find the exact right one, T-800 opts to go through them all exhaustively (which is consistent with how a computer would think. Brute force : it works, bitches !). There are two possible outcomes there :

  • T-800 kills the right Sarah. End of story, SkyNet wins, thanks for playing.
  • T-800 spooks the right Sarah, she somehow manages to escape and vanish. T-800 goes into hiding. As soon as SkyNet goes online, T-800 feeds it the information it has gathered (i.e. which were the wrong Sarah Connors). Future!SkyNet now possesses this information, sends a Terminator just a little further back with this additional search data.

Brute force. It just works.

The White Pages currently lists one “Sara Connor” and one “Sarah Conner” for Los Angeles. Either naming patterns for the city were retroactively influenced by the movie or I’d say 3-4 in 1984 is pretty accurate.

While I like the whole series, The Terminator is one of my favorite movies of all time (not just in the sci-fi/action genre), and it’s by far my favorite in the series (I know a lot of people like T2.) I do find it interesting when I’m accused of not having seen the movie (I have / have had it on VHS, DVD, BluRay, have it on my itunes) when I’ve seen it as recently as last year, especially when same person talks about how there would be 300-400 Sarah Connors even though the film itself shows a list of like 3-5 meaning we know for a fact how many there are in the LA area.

Or the T-800 was more effective than the movie showed us, and three generations of Sarah Connors were wiped out off-screen.

The biggest plot hole of all?

Three Words: Offsite Data Backup

I was living in LA in 1985, and being a fan of the movie I of course looked in the phone book. I can’t remember for sure, but I think there were no Sara Connors (or any spelling versions) in the LA book in 1985. I figured that was deliberate. Hollywood usually vets character names so as not to offend people who have the same name (you named your pedo serial killer after my father!). If all the SCs in LA started getting crank phone calls in fake Austrian accents, there would have been a backlash, probably. Worse if they started being murdered. :eek:

No one ever pointed out the other flaw in the Terminator strategy-unlisted phone numbers. Had a terminator been looking for me in the LA phone book in 1985, he’d have never found me.

I’ve always wondered what the acceptance levels for tech companies of off-site backups were in 1991/1995. I kinda feel like it didn’t take off for most big companies until the 2000s. But I have no way of knowing as I’m only a few years older than John Connor myself.

mid-40’s is too old to have children? You spew silliness like that and expect anyone to believe any of your other silly claims?

In the novelization BTW, the Terminator cut open each Sarah Connor’s leg after killing her, to look for a severe break that she was known to have had- I forget how it knew that. Anyway, it wouldn’t have found it even if it killed the right Sarah, since the break happened in the fight in the machine shop at the end of the movie.

And it’s a fucking Terminator. Why should it be worried about killing the wrong one? It killed a few dozen cops in a police station - clearly it had no concern whatsoever that it would be located and destroyed before completing its mission.

Novelization aside, the terminator doesn’t appear to have any way of knowing if it’s killed the right target or not. I imagine that, even if it killed the right Sarah Connor, it wouldn’t stop, and would just continue killing women named Sarah Connor in an ever widening spiral centered on LA, until SkyNet finally launches the nukes.

I worked for large telecommunications company starting in 1982 - and we were backing up data offsite then, and apparently had been for years.

Of course, sometimes when they brought the tapes back from the caves, they weren’t readable any more. But that’s a separate issue.

Off site backups only solve half the problem. The chip salvaged from the first terminator contained tech that was a quantum leap beyond what humans are currently capable of. They’d only partially analyzed it when the building was destroyed. Even if every lab note was archived (and recoverable), it’s questionable how much of it they could finish without that original piece of future tech.

For T2 it’s also questionable, at least to me, why SkyNet didn’t send the more powerful T-1000 back to 1984, as that timeline would also have the original T-800 meaning they’d both be able to work together against Reese by himself who probably could not have killed a T-1000 let alone one with a T-800 helping it.

For that matter (and I’ve not seen T2 as many times or recently), in T1 it at least made sense why SkyNet had only sent one T-800 back. We were told that the facility was basically under attack and had just been brought online, the resistance had basically won the war and were mopping up and SkyNet ordered a T-800 through at the last minute before Reese was sent to follow him. So in that scenario SkyNet didn’t have the ability to send, say 500 T-800s back at once. I’m not sure we ever find out the circumstances in which SkyNet is using time travel in T2 and what would have limited it to sending only 1 T-1000 through.

The T-1000 was experimental, and there was only one of them - I’m pretty sure that was in the novelization, but it may have been in the movie too. So Skynet could only send it on a single mission. Since it had better data on John Connor’s childhood than Sarah Connor, it sent the more effective agent after him (I’m definitely handwaving now.)

BTW, the wrong Sarah actress who Arnie killed first was all of 36 when the movie was released. Hardly too old to have more kids.

Simple. SkyNet sent the T-1000 (which was explicitly identified as a prototype in the movie) back first, to kill John himself. When that didn’t work, it sent the T-800 back even further, to kill his mom.

The T-1000 got all that information from the cop car it commandeered after it arrived in 1995.

I’m really confused here… nevadaexile has a laundry list of complaints about how the terminators tried to find Sarah Connor and yet seems OK with the fact that:

  1. there’s a time machine
  2. only flesh can go back in the time machine
  3. covering machines with flesh is enough to fool the laws of physics
  4. John sent back his own father, causing his conception in the first place

I mean, as long as we’re going to handwave these things away, who cares what method the Terminator uses to locate people?

Especially when DNA and voice recognition are NOT actually better options than the phone book…

You bozos are going to make me watch T2 again tonight instead of playing Assassin’s Creed 4 like I should be, aren’t you!

Well, it’s possible the time machine has a huge cooldown. You know, for balance purposes :smiley:

ETA : also, one Arnie is… well, not inconspicuous, but good enough for government work. 500 Arnies in LA ? Bound to raise a few eyebrows. Same for T-1000s, who seem to default back to the first shape they assumed.