CYBERPUNK by Kevin Lyons
this document represents merely an opinion of
Cyperpunk's definition and is extracted from several anonymous Usenet posts.
Since the definition of Cyberpunk is constantly changing, please consider this
document no more than an initial fleeting glimpse at the definition. Please do
not take offence if your own personal definition differs. Also, the definitions
and lists are at least two years old so this list is not up to date (and will
not be updated). No warranty is given for the accuracy of the information given
# [Cyberpunks are] "computer nerds who wear black
leather and get laid a lot". - William Gibson
# Think New York on a bad day with cybernetics on Acid, minus the funky
# A type of science fiction story which deals with a more realistic, gritty
future; deals with computers, networks, hackers, drugs, gangs, etc.
Many people consider cyberpunk to be narrowly defined as computer hacking,
telephone phreaking, and software piracy.
# The Hacker Ethic: "Attack anything that tries to
hide information from the masses".
# Rebel against harmful or oppressive
# Screw everyone but your friends.4. Never trust
# Style over substance, blur meat and machine (more on cybernetics
# Anti-totalitarianism. Anarchy preferred.
# Striving for a
moral and spiritual utopian "enlightened despotism".
# Related to Post
# Democracy does not really figure in (individual not
# Striving for "freedom" as either personal dependence
or independence from/on technology.
[ Top ]
History of Cyberpunk
# Thirty year old movement?
# buroughs wrote "Naked Lunch" before 1960.
# Philip K Dick published the basis for blade Runner in 1968.
# Origins from Generation X, Post Modernism, and british punk movements.
# Telephone considered by many as the first virtual reality.
# Video game characters like Mario brothers said to 'live' in virtual reality.
# Scientists, curiously imitating the genre, rush to create VR and biofeedback interfaces for computers.
# Hackers in Germany arrested for using Internet to access and transport information to KGb.
# One of these hackers, Pengor, was a Gibson fan.
# Secret Service raids 'Steve Jackson Games', seizing their computers and delaying the printing of GURPS Cyberpunk game.
# Self-proclaimed "cyberpunks" face off against US government's efforts to control encryption technologies.
# The Violence Initiative: governmental plan to drug inner city residents who are high risk for violence.
# Work Place Surveillance.
# Sperm Donation as precursor to Genetic Engineering.
# Software Piracy (and "borrowing" software).
[ Top ]
Cyberpunk Related Terms
[ Top ]
anarchy: absence of government(means without a leader).
anti-authoritarian: favouring individual freedom as opposed to subjection to authority.
artificial intelligence: AI attempts to create thinking or reasoning computers.
biochips: chips which connect directly to living matter (see wetware).
computer: machine used for information processing.
c-punk or CP: abbreviation of cyberpunk.
crack: to remove software copy protection.
cy'punk: abbreviation of cyberpunk.
cybernaut: someone who moves in cyberspace.
cybernetics: science of control and communication between machines and organisms.
cyberskate: moving in cyberspace
cyberspace: the illusion of a location generated by computers
cyberwave: (I have no idea what this word means!)
clipper chip: a chip installed so US government can eavesdrop on all electronic media and communications.
designer drugs: drugs taken to enhance the experience of virtual realism or to cause euphoria.
Generation X: people ages 18-25, a group whose only defining characteristic is that they have nothing in common.
genetic engineering: designing living organisms
hacker: someone who breaks into computer systems and networks by bypassing password security, etc.
hardwired: anything that is not removable, especially with reference to permanent implants.
interactive: when people communicate, especially within a virtual space.
jacking in: connecting to cyberspace, typically via a plug in one's head or neck.
nanotechnology: computer circuitry designed at the atomic level.
netrunner: someone who is wanted for hacking?
phreaking: illegal telephone use, typically making long distance calls without paying.
net: abbreviation of network, a set of connected computers.
network: a set of connected computers.
neurons: the cells in the brain which allow thought.
pirate: a person who uses, cracks, or transmits copyrighted software.
telepathy: the ability to transmit one's thoughts to others without using the traditional five senses.
virtual reality: the sensation of space when using a computer
virus: a program designed to do harm to other programs.
VR: abbreviation of virtual reality
wetware: machines which interface with biological matter.
Cyberpunk books & Authors
**Note: This list is old and by no means
complete. Individual authors should not take personal offence if their own
private works are not included here, because I have made no effort to keep this
up to date.
# Neuromancer, William Gibson
[ Top ]
# Virtual Light, William Gibson
# The Difference Engine, William Gibson
# The Hacker Crackdown
# Mirrorshades, bruce Sterling
# Islands In The Net
# Wetware, Rudy Rucker
# Interzone, William buroughs
# Tools For Conviability, Ivan Illich
# Hardwired, Walter Jon Williams
# Snow Crash, Neal Stephanson
# 1984, George Orwell.
# John Shirley, Pat Cadigan, brian Swanwick, W.T. Quick, Mike Farren
# Cyberpunks, Outlaws & Hackers on the Computer Frontier (non-fiction)
# Cyberpunk 2020 (a role playing game)
# GURPS Cyberpunk (another RPG?)
Note:: This is not a complete list. If you don't see
your favorite movie here, tough. This list is for people who want an initial
fleeting image of what Cyberpunk is, not for those who want to argue over a
# Blade Runner
# Demolition Man
# Wings Of Desire, by Wender
# Until, by Wender
# Forbidden Planet
# Clockwork Orange
# The Day The Earth Stood Still
# The Andromeda Strain
# TekWar (TV show)
[ Top ]
# Mondo 2000
# boing boing
**Note:This list represents a breif list of cyberpunk music.
Not all cyberpunk-style bands are listed. If your personal band is not here,
please do not be offended. I have simply compiled this list from the writing of
several net users and I have not (and do not intend to) keep this list up to
# "In the end, cyberpunks listen to whatever the fuck they want."
[ Top ]
# The Velvet Underground (Gibson's favorite cyberpunk band)
# on claims in VOX magazine, Feb 1994, that brian Eno's "Nervenet" is "the closest thing I've heard to a soundtrack for Neuromancer"
# Gibson wrote lyrics for Dog Star Girl song on Chris Stein's "Debravation"
# Front Line Assembly
# Front 242
# Information Society
# Electrik Music
# Art of Noise
# billy Idol's Cyberpunk album
# U2 (Zoo TV?)
# Pink Floyd
# Sonic Youth
# Neal Young, "Trans" album
# Many computer .mod music files can be considered cyberpunk