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quote:
Originally posted by razorgirl:
where have you been since January?
post some more. you rock.


So does that mean you think DermaWoman "does not feel the need to be cute or oppositely, difficult in order to be an online female presence"?

Well, bully for her. Keep your tongue that far up her ass, however, and people will question your intentions.

That Tipper Gore enough for you razorgirl, or should I light some Sterno and pass around marshmallows?

Yelena
 
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But remember, "i'm really not attacking anyone or trying to be controversial. I want to discuss this because i think it's really interesting."

Because as women, we shouldn't have a unique voice because that would just be trying to attract attention, wouldn't it? By the way, don't those "really-really"s sorta cancel themselves out?

Yah, it still burns me, too. But I'm shaking it off. Gimme a marshmallow -- I brought my own stick.

[This message was edited by tigerstripes on June 12, 2003 at 10:37 PM.]
 
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now you're just being childish.
didnt like what i said, fine. just one post out of hundreds, get over it. gonna follow me around the board and bully me?
just makes you look lame

and the *unique voice* deal? of course we all have one. that was the point of my post: not stereotyping ourselves unthinkingly. if you think that's self rightous and thought policelike, how about discussing *that* and what those implications are
 
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For gods sake everybody calm down.
A compliment is harmless
on the net there is no male or female unless you choose to show it, everybody should be able to have femenine or masculine personas if they want to regardless of there actual sex.
A persons presence should only be chosen by them and if they respect others who are we to judge.
Now can we get back on topic?

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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quote:
Originally posted by tigerstripes:
Because as women, we shouldn't have a unique voice because that would just be trying to attract attention, wouldn't it? By the way, don't those "really-really"s sorta cancel themselves out?



Thank you. Exactly my point. I certainly did not join the William Gibson Discussion Board "to put people straight on a few things" the way razorgirl did. (Check her profile if you don't believe me.) Nor did I join the William Gibson discussion board to attract attention, nor did I express "flirty, cutesy or girly" behaviours "as a way to intrigue people", nor "to express something else". I joined the William Gibson discussion board, of all things, to talk about William Gibson. (Imagine the audacity of such an unthinkable notion!)

What truly busts my chops about this whole razorgirl silliness though, is that, reading over DermaWoman's past posts, I can't see any fundamental differences between her posting style and mine, or the other two women on the board who razorgirl wanted to set everybody straight on. Yet DermaWoman "rocks" and we are attention-getters seeking only to (yugh*shudder*) "flirt".

Please explain this paradox to me. I am afraid that I am quite incapable of grasping all the nuances of so finely-tuned an awareness of my fellow humans as razorgirl quite obviously posseses.

Anyway. I originally left because some part of me thought perhaps razorgirl had a salient point, given how many posters were jumping on the, "Gee, she's right!" bandwagon over on the other thread. Maybe I was being girly, flirty and cutesy, I thought.

Mind me: I would sooner claw my eyeballs loose from their sockets with my rusty scalpel-tipped fingers than display such ludicrous and fundamentally manipulative behaviours, online or in person. If I had done so, it was entirely unintentional, and wholly, utterly humiliating and degrading, to think that I had indeed acted in such an immature, abhorrent manner.

As far as I knew, I was just making conversation. Perhaps more conversation than was socially appropriate (I'm reticent by nature, but get me into a situation where I'm comfortable and I can unfortunately become an incessant babblemouth.), but I've acknowledged that, and it will no longer be a problem for those who feel their voices are being drowned out by the thirty to forty posters who post all the time.

I am rapidly becoming convinced, however, that Occam's Razor does not apply to the thread that razorgirl opened on the topic, and which has spawned, at last count, three additional threads on the same topic. Which only drove me away wincing even more. (Yeah. Every time I did decide to log in again, it was to be greeted with yet another thread on how stupid I was and what an ass I was making of myself, or how I was a smug elite or somesuch. Does wonders for the self-esteem.)

However, if Razorgirl's hypothesis holds true, I am forced to question her response to DermaWoman's post...why does DermaWoman "rock" and why should she "post some more"? What is it about DermaWoman's posts

Aside: Hey, DW, don't get pissed off, I actually am curious as to what razorgirl thinks of you, unlike razorgirl claiming her name-calling wasn't intentionally spark-igniting. BTW, have they shown the Hibernia segment on Frontiers of Construction yet?

and/or personality that presents an attractive picture to razorgirl's mental eye, and what is it about mine that presents such an unattractive one?

Or, more to the point (since I truly do not give a frelling flying frag what razorgirl actually thinks of me), what was it about my posts or my "personality" (what little of it I let seep through) that made so many people agree with razorgirl's initial assessment? (Hey, if there's anything at all I can do to remedy such a snap judgement of me, I will.)

I stayed away from the board because I'm a firm believer in the democratic process, and the majority had ruled in razorgirl's favour that I actually had come across that way, which meant to me that I should just shut the hell up and hope the embarrassment faded after a good long break.

However, razorgirl's response to this thread sheds a fresh insight on her earlier assertions that I find...interesting, to say the least. Anger-inducing at the worst, which was what led to my pot-shot above. (Perhaps not the wisest response on my part, but I'm not the type who takes too kindly to being backed into a corner.)

Is this more along the lines of the discussion you wanted, Razorgirl? Or are you still hell-bent on putting people straight on a few things?

(As for your "Aren't you childish?" remark, might I remind you that it does indeed take one to know one?)

quote:

Yah, it still burns me, too. But I'm shaking it off. Gimme a marshmallow -- I brought my own stick.





Think these are big enough? Given the size of the fire, I'd say they just about meet the minimum requirements......

Ah, maybe these are more to your liking:



Anyone else want one? Fire's nice and toasty now!

Yelena
 
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She's back....
 
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hahahahahahahahah -- Man...those are... really...big...marshmallows...

Y'know, rg didn't just pick out you and someone else, she specifically named the four most prolific, best known female posters. Does kinda make ya wonder. And of course, it wasn't just a single post, it was an entire separate topic. With a really terrible title. And no genuine point. But you are spot on about how fast a lot of the guys leapt onto her bandwagon! *yuck!* My tum actually lurches a little just remembering it. Some jerk told me to 'calm down' in reply to my post in that thread. I've been around this old world for quite a while now, talked to a lot of people in limitless scenarios of debate, chatter, conversation, rants, pillow talk, meetings -- you name it - and not fricking once have I *ever* heard one man say to another, 'Calm down.' Because ya know, those people with penises, they just don't get worked up and overexcited like us very flirty, girly, kooky, weird, eigthgrader, third person, self-differentiating, cute, difficult, flaming, stupid, little kids that just happen to have our gonads on the inside.

Oh, except for wax, who was pretty neutral for a while -- while her sex was still in question, that is.

Sometimes I don't mind this kind of problem coming to the surface, because it helps me sort out where others are coming from (as well as the wheat from the chaff.) I don't think this board is elitist - there are over 1000 people and still, only about thirty post regularly. Nothing's stopping the others but their own reticence to join in. [Come on in, y'all, the water's fine!]

Anyway Yelena, please don't let the bastards grind you down into despair or loathing or self-doubt. Some of the WG Board folk had good things to say about you in that topic and the others that followed. Your voice is individual, unique and welcome. You are a child of the WG universe, you have a right to be h-- What?! Huh? Where am I? Sorry, I was veering into Desiderata territory there-- scared myself.

How I love a good fire! Burn, Baby, Burn!

[This message was edited by tigerstripes on June 14, 2003 at 12:02 AM.]
 
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how i hate the kind of flamebaiting razorgirl specializes in.

this childish behaviour only drags down the level of all discussions... and I... I... aaaaahhh, I am going to pontificate again, NO, NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.
    citing Lajos Egri ('The Art Of Creative Writing'), about creating characters:

    I will take on man, a character, vivisect him to see the nakedness, the complexity, the contradiction in his mind. Since I know myself better than anyone alive, I will give you the summation of my character.

    (After you finish reading the following, please remember what Jesus said : "Let him without sin cast the first stone.")

    I am greedy, selfish, and jealous and I try desperately to be loved by all. I am thinking day and night of how to make myself so important that it will force people to think only good about me. I am sorry, but it's true that I always want to be in the right.

    I came to the conclusion that whatever I say, I say only for two reasons :
    1. to create sympathy for myself
    2. to show how important I am.


rg, why don't you find another place to climb up your maslow pyramid ?

[This message was edited by ki~2 on June 14, 2003 at 01:09 AM.]
 
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Just to get back on topic:
are we talking about Cyberpunk as a litery form or as a cultural form?

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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quote:
Originally posted by tigerstripes:
hahahahahahahahah -- Man...those are... really...big...marshmallows...



I surprised myself, when Google returned that pic for me. Now watch everyone judge me on the size of my marshmallows.... (Kindly note, I have forsworn on inserting smileys for the time being, lest it be misanthropomorphized as "girly" or "cutesy" on my part for doing so. If you don't get the jokes when I make 'em, don't bother responding.)

quote:

Y'know, rg didn't just pick out you and someone else,



Yeah, she did, actually. *wince*

quote:

she specifically named the four most prolific, best known female posters. Does kinda make ya wonder.



I'm not wondering anymore. I'm still p**sed off that her crass manipulation of the others worked, and the guys (and hell, even a couple of the girls) fell for her bait, hook, line and sinker. Including me. I fell for it, too. Until I read her suckup post to DW, that is.

Don't misinterpret me, please: The fact that I may have not known when to shut the hell up before may have made me a more attractive target to rg above anyone else, but that kind of crass downpegging has usually historically been reserved for elementary school playgrounds and higher-level business meetings, respectively.

The day that kind of s**t starts happening on the Internet is the day that Vinton Cerf's gently-decomposing corpse generates enough centrifugal spin to snare a small moon into Earth's orbit..... (Kindly note that Vint is Not Dead Yet, people. http://global.mci.com/resources/cerfs_up/)

The Internet was supposed to be a level playing field. It was supposed to eradicate all these f**ked-up imposed psychosocial barriers that lesser, more morally bankrupt humans have a way of dreaming up, to fit their particular worldview. Or to put themselves on top of everyone else, or of those who normally aren't granted admittance to the "mainstream" of society.

As time moves on, however, those very same barriers are sprouting up in every discussion board/newsgroup available. Suggestive (to me at least) that the Internet as a whole really is "going downhill".

quote:

And of course, it wasn't just a single post, it was an entire separate topic.


Three, actually. Four, if you count this thread. Ugh.

quote:

With a really terrible title. And no genuine point.



Funny, those who responded the fastest failed to notice those telling clues.....

quote:

But you are spot on about how fast a lot of the guys leapt onto her bandwagon! *yuck!* My tum actually lurches a little just remembering it.



That really made me go nutbar. Literally.

quote:

Because ya know, those people with penises, they just don't get worked up and overexcited like us very flirty, girly, kooky, weird, eigthgrader, third person, self-differentiating, cute, difficult, flaming, stupid, little kids that just happen to have our gonads on the inside.



Yes, but my point is, it should not matter what gender we are/are not, or whatever physical differences or similarities we have, on the Internet. It never used to matter, ferchrissakes!!

The fact that those things suddenly mattered enough for someone (troll or not) to start one thread that mutated into many on the topic, and so many people fell so quickly and so far into the same discriminatory mindset usually only practiced en masse on the outside, still depresses me.

quote:

Oh, except for wax, who was pretty neutral for a while -- while her sex was still in question, that is.



Point. Then when she reveals she's female, she gets a condescending (very male reaction, if you think about it), patronizing response from one of the other posters, when she disagrees (rather politely) with rg's initial assertions. Which I got, as well. Only I got two patronizing, condescending responses, instead. Ugh.

I've grown accustomed to being condescended to and patronized and treated like I'm a drooling retard who is only to be barely-tolerated in the Real World, but those same problems never used to exist for me on the Internet. Well, guess what?! "You think the Real World is a nightmare, Yelena? Welcome to Hell!"

That's fine, I'll just grow a thicker layer of skin, I suppose. Or just utilize the one that gets me through an average day of my life on the outside, I suppose. I shouldn't have to. It isn't fair. But I'll get used to it somehow. I always do.

quote:

Nothing's stopping the others but their own reticence to join in. [Come on in, y'all, the water's fine!]



Heh. Judging from all the new names and the unfamiliar avatars around here since I left, I think they're taking you up on the offer. Somebody needs to call Pest Control on that cockroach, though. Every time I see his avatar, I want to smack the screen with a rolled-up newspaper. (J/K 'roach, keep the good stuff coming!) Heh.

quote:

Anyway Yelena, please don't let the bastards grind you down into despair or loathing or self-doubt.



Hardly. I have a hard enough time stopping myself from doing that, some days. I don't have the time in my life to worry about letting a bunch of total strangers do my dirty work for me.....

quote:

Sorry, I was veering into Desiderata territory there-- scared myself.



Heh. Ah, well. Now that I'm resigned to the fact that I will likely be treated just as badly online as I am in real life, I just have to adopt the same coping strategies I use there. May as well keep going about business as usual. Doesn't make the revelation any less bitter of a pill to swallow, but nobody said medicine tasted good, did they?

quote:

How I love a good fire! Burn, Baby, Burn!



*groan* I think I just added a few more old-growth cedars to the mix. But I promise to shut up about it now. Really.

Yelena

[This message was edited by Yelena Virago on June 14, 2003 at 10:39 AM.]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Jimmy C:
Just to get back on topic:
are we talking about Cyberpunk as a litery form or as a cultural form?



Define cyberpunk as a cultural form, please? The answer to your question hinges on the answer to mine (I don't really think there is such a thing, if you ask me.)

Yelena
 
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Really really?

(Sorry, I just couldn't resist. 8^D)
 
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Really truly. Heh.

So! Who wants to know what I've found on the Internet lately? (Yes, I am perfectly okay with it, if the answer is a resounding "NOBODY!")

By the way, TigerStripes, want to get on a cool mailing list? Email me if you do.

Yelena
 
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so basically your point is

me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me me

let me know if i missed anything
 
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rg, manners
 
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i get tagteamed, respond in kind and you tell *me* off? nice
thank you for contributing to this forum
 
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My point was that cyberpunk culture is almost transparant (especially as practically no one subscribes exclusivley to it).
As a media type it is much easier to clasify as media is easier to put into classes and groups

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen

[This message was edited by Jimmy C on June 14, 2003 at 03:19 PM.]
 
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quote:
Originally posted by Jimmy C:
My point was that cyberpunk culture is almost transparant (especially as practically no one subscribes exclusivley to it).


Which still doesn't answer the question, "What is it?"

Is cyberpunk culture composed of music fans who can tell LINUX from Lillix, and they like both?

Is cyberpunk culture made up of CompSci geeks who stand in line for days to see Matrix: Reloaded?

Is cyberpunk culture just one more on the list of "SF fan personality types"? I lean towards the latter theory, except I think cyberpunk culture aficionados might be slightly more literate in these days of 500 channels and nothing on but derivative Star Drek crap.....

Anyway, my point, is cyberpunk culture dead? That depends on how you define cyberpunk culture. If you define cyberpunk culture as all of us on this board (for better or for worse), then I'd say the corpse is alive and kicking up a healthy stink.

quote:

As a media type it is much easier to clasify as media is easier to put into classes and groups



Yeah. All the media that sucks is easy to classify. It's the stuff that's harder to classify (like Pattern Recognition, f'r'instance, just off the top of my head) that is much more interesting and worth seeking out. In my opinion.

Yelena
 
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quote:
Originally posted by razorgirl:
i get tagteamed, respond in kind and you tell *me* off? nice


Actually, I wasn't "tagteaming" you. I was trying to explain to you why I reacted the way I did to your initial thread. Which is allegedly what you wanted. You wanted an explanation of why I acted the way that I did. You wanted a legitimate conversation that was "non-controversial" in tone and subject matter. I try and be obliging to you, and all you respond is how self-centred it is? Explain to me please, how you feel my post can be anything other than self-centred when the questions you put to me were about me?

However, I am rapidly becoming convinced that not only do you not want serious conversation surrounding the (serious) issues and topics you have raised on this board, you are also apparently incapable of recognizing and responding to such overtures when you do get them, above and beyond any reasonable threshhold where you should, given your behaviour here.

I tried to explain, in a sensible and calm manner. You either weren't listening, or just didn't want to hear. Which is not the point. The point is, I tried. The fact that I failed is not a reflection on my lucidity or coherence or lack thereof; the fault lies entirely with you being unable to live up to some imaginary criteria that you demand of every other female poster on this board.

That is all I am going to say on the matter. You will get no further responses from me.

Yelena
 
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quote:
Originally posted by razorgirl:
not stereotyping ourselves unthinkingly.


I know, I know, I said I had nothing further to say on the matter, but then I caught this little gem of enlightenment, and am still trying catch my breath from laughing so hard.

If you ever were to meet me in the real world, razorgirl, you would instantly become aware of the fact that I not only defy every stereotype that surrounds me like the Great freaking Wall of China, I cheerfully stomp all such stereotypes into fine particulate and go on about living a normal person's life anyway. Which is just further proof of how far off-base you actually are, and how little attention you actually deserve (but are vying so desperately for).

Yelena
 
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media is easier to classify as its down on paper and is (at least once its been made) stationary. A culture resides in peoples minds and constantly evolves so can only really be difinitavly studied in retrospect.
I beleve that Cyberpunk in its oiginal form is dead mearley because it has been made obsolite by a new form of cyberpunk. As an example: compare bladeruner and the Matrix (which takes so many ideas from cyberpunk and related pholosphy that it cannot be seen as anything but). These two films are very different but show to an extent the evolution of cyberpunk.
As a cultural from it is almost intangable but I beleve is very much alive. ust look around you: The internet (and related industrial networks) is the most important system in the world, everybody has a mobile phone and a computer, man machene interfaces are in development and the young are latching on to this new digital world in droves.
This looks like the new cyberpunk to me, not a bidraggled dystopia like blade runner (yet) but a faster, more efficent, more eco-contious world.

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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Ok - Let's define it before we kill it

Yelena Virago wrote:
quote:
Which still doesn't answer the question, "What is it?"
Cyberpunk is a subgenre of sf. It's use in the wider media to describe juvenile computer crims (although, admittedly, that was Bruce Bethke's usage, and he coined the term) and their pop-cultural interests was a sloppy expropriation by lazy journalists (forgive the tautology).

Cyberpunk fiction is characterised by its interest in the visceral and intrusive impact of technology on society and the human being. Specifically, cyberpunk investigates the proposition that the nature of humanity and society at any time are largely products of the available technologies.

To be less vague:

Cyberpunk explores five basic themes -
    the street-level use of technology developed by higher authorities, particularly the adoption/adaptation of legitimate technology to illicit or anti-nomian uses

    the blurring of the distinction between physiology and technology; cyberpunk characters are enhanced or changed by technological methods - surgery, technical prosthetics, drugs - often for purely "cosmetic" or recreational reasons

    the immersion of the human mind in media - cyberpunk argues no meaningful distinction between human mentality and other data/software systems. The most obvious trope used is that of virtual reality sensoriums, although the recording of personalities, and media systems based on trading the sense experiences of celebrities are other examples

    (from the above, inevitably) artificial intelligence

    lastly, cyberpunk fiction pursues a fascination with the diversity of human social systems, particularly as they are expressed through technologies selected by those systems are as best suited to express their culture/politics (the technology/society relationship isn't a one-way street). Cyberpunk protagonists tend to flit from one exotic culture to another in pursuit of their McGuffins, but the fascination is also found in depiction of subcultures, street gangs and organised criminal groupings from local (i.e. local to the protagonist) urban population centres. Cyberpunk also examines the changes in overarching political structures that technological advancement would bring - the usual idea being that business corporations had an edge in developing technology and hence would supplant the nation-state.
This is the essence of cyberpunk. Everything else is cover art.

(assuming I'm not wrong, of course)

Cyberpunk's apparent exclusive concern with the impact of external influences on human behaviour explains the source of hostility from "humanist" sf who still saw character development as central to the literature, and whose protagonists were "people like us". Cyberpunk's answer was that it was (naive? wrong-headed? dull?) to assume that human beings would reach the stars with their own nature unchanged by the tools used to take them there. The universe will not be conquered by space-monkeys.

As for the cover-art - it was the dissemination through pop-culture of the mirrorshades, spiky hair gloss of cyberpunk, while it's essential themes languished, that led to Lewis Shiner declaring the genre dead (12 years ago, I might add), joined shortly in this view by Pat Cadigan and the Most High Spruiker himself, Bruce Sterling. (The Cadigan and Shiner pieces don't seem to be on-line - Sterling's Interzone piece is, quelle surprise.) Sterling argued that Cyberpunk now (then) faces a worse fate than death - respectability.

Forgive my verbosity. I now return you to whatever it is you were talking about.
 
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quote:
Ok - Let's define it before we kill it


Well, you know, it's been dead ever since they gave it a name. Defining a cultural movement is the same thing as killing it.

In bed.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by dpm:
i agree with you about the literary genre, but not about the culture. what 'projects' are doomed to failure? and why baby steps over generations? what whole package? whole cultural groups, clicks, music genres, fashions, scenes and lifestyles come and go in a matter of weeks here in NYC, and all large post-industrial cities. why should cpunk take generations to mature?


On the contrary, I think NYC and youth culture generally is really not about evolution (ala Yonderboy and the panthermoderns) at all, especially not rapid evolution.

What it is about is giving insecure, emotionally undeveloped teen psyches something they can easily identify and "join". If it wasn't stable, it wouldn't fulfill it's primary funciton: providing comfort zones where people know they will be accepted and can take part in a collective social experience.

C'mon dude, look around.

All the LSE punk rockers are aping Joey and Sid, people who are dead now, and did their respective things thirty five years ago.

Hip Hop? Stuck in a morass of recycled radio bling-bling gansterism, going nowhere for arguable 8 plus years. Dead as Biggie, maybe died with him. And don't talk to me about the coffee shop hippe East Bay underground sound, because it's not blowing up, it's just been sitting there doing nothing for four years.

Electronic? All the really cutting edge shit has been marginalized (jungle, drill and bass, idm) and we're stuck with 102,000 prada v-neck sportitg, champagne sipping, utterly cliche house DJs. even the electroclash kids are biting somehting Afrika Bambaataa et. al. nailed shut in the freakin 80s.

Where are these dandelion "cultures" you speak of, supposedly sprouting through the cracks in the Williamsburg sidewalks? Examples, please. I would like to visit this parallel NYC you inhabit, it sounds more interesting than mine.
 
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Punk is still going and is evolving, athough slowley. Alertative Rock is always on the move (compare the presidents of the united states to the white stripes), although people need confort objects they are still prepared to throw themselves at the newist thing.
These cultures are still there but in a much more scattered form because they do not need to be in dnesley populated areas becase of the internet, just look at this board, it could be called a community (although small and fragmented).

As to cyberpunk, i recently saw a n advert for an australian jewlrey company (i can remember there name) which specialised in stuff that looked oddly like cybernetic implants i.e full cybernetic arms etc. If techno-fetishm is dead why the hell would anybody buy this stuff?

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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Cyberpunk will never die!

Yes, times they've changed, they've accelerated and literature does not manage to follow their run... but cyberpunk has become a way of life, and thinking.

Future is now, here, outside the door and beyond the display... aren't you a bit distressed?
 
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Not quite dead... afterall, PR did pretty well on the NYT Bestseller list.

Margaret Atwood in the New York Times on her latest novel 'Orxy & Crake', which I think falls right in the soft side of Cyberpunk:

Fantasy, she said, is "largely mythic and Celtic in inspiration" and deals with "dragons, magic swords and chalices that glow in the sky." She offered "The Lord of the Rings" and the "Harry Potter" series as examples. Science fiction, she said, deals with "technologies we don't yet have, other universes," as in "Star Trek" and "Star Wars."

In contrast, speculative fiction is "this planet," she said. It doesn't use things we don't already have or are not already developing. `Beam me up, Scotty' is not speculative fiction. We don't yet have the ability to disintegrate people and have them reassembled in some other place."
 
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but speculative fiction dosnt just cover cyberpunk but also covers alternative history 'what if' storys such as Harry Tturledoves world war series

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by jandzero:
Not quite dead... afterall, PR did pretty well on the NYT Bestseller list.

Margaret Atwood in the New York Times on her latest novel 'Orxy & Crake', which I think falls right in the soft side of Cyberpunk:

Fantasy, she said, is "largely mythic and Celtic in inspiration" and deals with "dragons, magic swords and chalices that glow in the sky." She offered "The Lord of the Rings" and the "Harry Potter" series as examples. Science fiction, she said, deals with "technologies we don't yet have, other universes," as in "Star Trek" and "Star Wars."

In contrast, speculative fiction is "this planet," she said. It doesn't use things we don't already have or are not already developing. QUOTE]

I don't consider PR cyberpunk, do you? Really? *Maybe* cyberpunk lite, but that's strectching it.

Also, I think Atwood is on the mark. I've also heard WG describe the Idoru books as transpiring in an "alternate present," which I think states the same concept a different way. Too bad 'Orxy & Crake' was terribly conceived and executed.
 
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Is the combustion engine dead?

No.

Is it likely that anyone will come out with a revolutionary combustion engine?

No. Improvements, yes - new types, yes - revolutionary, no. If it were revolutionary, it would no longer be a combustion engine.

Technology progresses in a burst pattern that quickly saturates, Punc Eek(google). Therefore, any writing sytle and subject based on technology will also progress in a burst pattern that quickly saturates.

Sure the tech is tweaked to its' fullest potential, but until a radically new way of doing the same thing comes along, we basically just keep doing it the same way.

So, Cyberpunk is not dead, it just isn't as exciting as when it first came out. i.e., when computers and the internet first hit the masses. It's saturated. Its been done. You can only make so many western movies before the folks stop coming. Subculture, sure - mass culture, not literature. Movies, maybe. But even Reloaded was considered a bust by many folks I talked to.

There's something in economics called the Elliot Wave. Basically, there is progress and then a lesser retreat, then progress...like the bunny hop. Overall the trend is upward (or downward, think stock market), but its not linear. Its like the tide. It comes in one wave at a time, but only slowly does the tideline creep up the beach.

Eventually, the tide is as high as it can go and reverses course. So, now that cyberpunk writing is well waned, perhaps it will once again rise to greatness and become the talk of the town. But maybe not in our lifetime. Afterall, how many people who wore 40s clothes in the 40s are alive to see the kiddies wearing them again. History repeats, but more often recombinantly and nonlinearly.

Thus, it does not surprise me that WG barely touches on cyberpunk in PR. He wants to be cutting edge. Commercialism is somewhat cutting edge. Cyber is a yawn. After the matrix - what are ya gonna do!

Curious: My guess is that most of the posters to this site are older than 30. An arbitrary cutoff to the cyberpunk generation. Good poll idea.
 
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I tend to think that the question of "what is cyberpunk" is irrelevant, but then I always said that if I ever chose a religion for me, I'd become a Handdara disciple. I believe that the question boils down to who you are, and that, in turn, has been pounded by all kinds of people for thousands of years, one particular example I happen to like to be found in Dharma 101.

Whatever cyberpunk is, it can't be dead, since it never was alive. As long as there's someone reading Neuromancer, author's skill reverberating, creating interference patterns within reader's experience and feelings, that patricular work of fiction is alive. For author himself, the text might be long gone, because it's fixed, and even the brainwave pattern which accompanied it's birth will never be the same, or even close.

/\/\ike
 
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To turn the tables on the topic: When was cyberpunk born. Most people came into contact with it with Blade runnner which is seen as the quintessential Cyberpunk film. But it was based on a book that was written in 1968 by Philip K Dick, indeed a lot of Dicks work seems to follow cyberpunk ideas and ideals such as the march of commercialism (Ubiks pay for absolutly everything hell) and technology superseeding humans (do androids dream of electric sheep?).
I think that litrature does not and should not move like technology especially scince fiction as it is the art of wrightning convincingly about what doesnt yet exist.
So is cyberpunk dead? no and I think that it will experiance a revival (in a slightly different form) soon, especially with the sucsess of the matirx encoureging people to look back into the history of cyberpunk.

I do not intend to live forever through my work, I intend to live forever by not dieing- Woody Allen
 
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quote:
Originally posted by mbravo:


As long as there's someone reading Neuromancer, author's skill reverberating, creating interference patterns within reader's experience and feelings, that patricular work of fiction is alive. For author himself, the text might be long gone, because it's fixed, and even the brainwave pattern which accompanied it's birth will never be the same, or even close.

/\/\ike


I think, by "alive," we're talking about it being an aesthetic that people are still using in creating new work. I mean, that's the important part, in terms of evolution.

Plenty of people can speak Latin, read Latin, but ain't a lot of new Latin *words* been eteched into that lexicon in quite a while, you know.

As far as "new work" I really wish someone would pick up the ball and run with it in this new century. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy PR, but it is not cyberpunk. Successful (in terms of accomplishing what it sets out to do, not sales), but not cyberpunk.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by hughblaze:

Plenty of people can speak Latin, read Latin, but ain't a lot of new Latin *words* been eteched into that lexicon in quite a while, you know.



So, the question is not that Latin (carrier language) is "alive"; but the works of Latin writers and poets do continue to inspire - even if as a component of classical education.

quote:

As far as "new work" I really wish someone would pick up the ball and run with it in this new century. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy PR, but it is not cyberpunk. Successful (in terms of accomplishing what it sets out to do, not sales), but not cyberpunk.


Well, I'm not at all sure that Pattern Recognition, or any other WG book did have something that it set out to do, an agenda or something like it Smile At least it wouldn't fit into my personal perception of their creation process.

And to reiterate - I can't say what is cyberpunk and what isn't - it could be that Pattern Recognition's genre translates as a grandson of cyberpunk. The point is that I probably do not care enough Smile It strums the strings of my soul as surely and in the same unique way as Winter Market, The Belonging Kind or Neuromancer does. I will never be the same person as the one I was before reading this book. This is what matters.

/\/\ike
 
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quote:
Originally posted by mbravo:



Well, I'm not at all sure that Pattern Recognition, or any other WG book did have something that it set out to do, an agenda or something like it Smile At least it wouldn't fit into my personal perception of their creation process.


/\/\ike


I disagree. I think any author worth his salt sets out to make a statement about the state of the world, what it is to be a human, or *something*. And I think interviews w/WG I've read support that conclusion about him as an author.

For example, he's said on this site that a science fiction writer only ever *really* writes about the present. And he's said in other interviews that, given the curent atmosphere of hyper-marketization, "intersttitial" or "bohemian" communities can no longer exist, they're too quickly commodified. And if you look at what's going on in PR and ATP, they're definately saying *something* about that phenomenon. Right?

So, I think it's safe to infer that 1) WG has opinions about the present 2) he expresses them in his work. I mean, otherwise these books would simply be entertainment, not literature. And who wants to be simply entertained, without getting any intellectual stimulation when they're reading a novel? Isn't that what network TV and Hollywood films are for?
 
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Perhaps I'm getting way too metaphysical here Smile I agree, absolutely, that WG does have a vision, an opinion - in fact, multiple ones, - and that he does express them wonderfully in his works. It's just I was nitpicking about an actual "agenda". I think an author writes because he has to, and I doubt that one has specific agenda to impress oneself on the world. When it actually happens, it's a sort of expected side effect; but not the cause of writing.

/\/\ike
 
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I first read Neuromancer in '86 as a high school senior. The American zeitgeist back then was saturated with anxiety over Japan's apparent techno-edge.

Screw Cuba, the missile gap, and Vietnam---that was ancient history in our books. We were worried about *Japan* in the 80's.

The Japanese were not only kicking our asses in consumer electronics manufacturing, but in bigger-fish endeavors like steel and automobiles.

I was living in Hawaii then, and I recall seeing almost daily newspaper feature stories about the latest suspected Zaibatzu big-shot driving through exclusive ridge-communities like Lanikai and literally ordering his agents, through the window of his limo, to "buy that one, buy that, buy that."

Japanese entities bought Rockefeller Center and a major Hollywood studio, and were thought to be well on a path to capital-imperializing all of North America for the crown of Asia.

Cyberpunk was born in this milieu.

Apathetic American cowboys who *use* Asian technology, but who equate it somewhere along the lines of a deleterious drug habit...Not wishing to use their talents to advance the cause of any social or corporate identity, but to rip off whatever they can to justify their entropic ambitions...Asian technology as a fishing pole, reeling in redemption as the final chapter concludes...

Slackers with supernatural powers, gamely sleepwalking their way through images of cultural ennui in order to achieve their cum-shots.

The thinking around Neuromancer's time was that hardware drove software, and that he who manufactured stuff most cheaply would call the tune.

Wrong.

Intellectual property companies like Microsoft and Intel put the lie to the "Japanese Miracle". IP won and showed that manufacturing, no matter how excellent, was just manufacturing. Intellectual property is where its at...

The current bleeding edge of technology is biological.

Then maybe nanotech, and then maybe we're ready to revisit cyberpunk

Paul Tillich, a liberal theologian who is still studied even among hyper-reactionary "Bible Colleges", suggested that the word "God" not be uttered for 100 years in order to get a better point of view on the subject. In a similar vein, and with a equal respect, I suggest that "cyberpunk" be rested until "cyber" becomes fresh again, and until "punk" becomes angry again.

w00t
Michael

_______________________
"An idealist is one who, on noticing that a rose smells better than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup."
 
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Now I know we could wrangle for *days* about what, in a practical sense, qualifies as cyberpunk.

No one would argue that Neuromancer does. But what about Naked Lunch?

To *me* cyberpunk is iconoclastic art that questions the nature of consciousness in the context of life's intersection with technology.

And *to me* Masamune Shirow's "Ghost in the Shell" fits squarely in that category.

I note that the sequel to GitS is in production. Draw your own inferences...

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Hooker like joke.
 
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Just to make things more interesting...

In this month's WIRED magazine, none other
than Neal Stephenson calls cyberpunk "history".

http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/11.09/

He isn't calling it dead... he is saying that
"looking backward is another way of seeing the future." Other than steampunk, I've never
thought of cyberpunk as being retro in any way.

Interesting... I'm looking forward to
seeing the article.

TVgeek
 
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quote:
Originally posted by TVgeek:
Just to make things more interesting...

In this month's WIRED magazine, none other
than Neal Stephenson calls cyberpunk "history".




Yeah I read that. I wish I thought historical revisionism was as sexy as trying to tip-toe out onto the ledge.

I'll be skipping his new one.

Besides Stephenson's propensity to rant and blab, I find psuedo-historical science fiction about as exciting as a civil war reenactment.

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Hooker like joke.
 
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