Pollen analysis is an exercise in seeing. The ultimate goal is to see into the past, to send down a periscope and view what went on. The metaphor of the periscope is too limited, however; a video recorder from high in space with resolution in places up to 10 m is more encompassing of what is possible. The images that are retrieved can be of high or low resolution temporally, spatially, taxonomically, and numerically, and they can illustrate local to global changes in plant populations, vegetation, climate, human activity, fire frequency, and plant diseases over decades to millennia. Because each of these entities or phenomena varies spatially and temporally, records of data covering a breadth of scales in space and time are needed. To obtain the highest quality images about a specific phenomenon requires an understanding of the sensing system that accumulated the data. How does the periscope or video recorder work and what are the scaling characteristics of the images that it registers? These characteristics include breadth of coverage, sampling resolution, and sampling density in time, space, and taxonomy. Actualistic and taphonomic studies of Quaternary data covering a variety of temporal and spatial scales have helped provide this understanding, and temporal resolution is just one concern in these studies.