The Core Dump

The Core Dump is the personal blog of Nic Lindh, a Swedish-American pixel-pusher living in Phoenix, Arizona.

[By Nic Lindh on Saturday, 21 February 2004]

William Gibson interview

A great William Gibson interview leads Nic to talk about other interesting cyberpunk novels.

Interesting but short interview with William Gibson at The Philadelphia Enquirer. [Edit Sept. 26, 2013: Like most newspapers, the Philly Enquirer breaks links with wild abandon, so this one no longer works.]

I’ve been a massive Gibson fan-boy ever since Neuromancer completely shattered my head during my formative years. Heck, I’m even dork enough that I keep naming my computers after characters and objects in his books.

The fun paradox with Gibson is that he prophesied all this grungy tech, even coining the term “cyberspace,” but is a completely non-technical person. Or perhaps that’s not a paradox, but the source of his strength–he envisions society, not technology, and fits in whatever technology resonates with that vision of society. Not being technological allows him to remain unfettered by the realities of the current state of tech. In an older interview,

Gibson talked about having a problem with his Mac, calling Apple Care, and having the tech explain to him how hard drives work. Gibson was quite bummed out–he’d had this idea of some kind of crystal doing magic things, and a bunch of spinning platters with a rust coating was a big let-down.

I’m personally really bummed that cyberpunk as a literary genre has flamed out, or perhaps been assimilated into the mainstream of sci-fi and thus been diluted. The real value of cyberpunk may have been to inject life into the horrible stagnated sci-fi scene of the time.

If for some reason you’ve managed to go through your days without a good inoculation of dystopia, here’s a highly subjective and woefully incomplete Canon of Cyberpunk:

To delve further into the cyberpunk world view and the sources that highly influenced the scene, the following proto-cyberpunk novels make excellent reading:

That should do it for a good starter kit. Later on, I’ll put together a list of recommended background music.

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