Infrastructure // PC & Servers
Commentary
7/9/2007
07:10 PM
Mitch Wagner
Mitch Wagner
Commentary
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William Gibson To Appear In Second Life

William Gibson, whose 1984 novel Neuromancer was a bible for Internet pioneers, is making an appearance in Second Life. Gibson wasn't the first person to use the idea of "cyberspace," but he coined the word and popularized it.

William Gibson, whose 1984 novel Neuromancer was a bible for Internet pioneers, is making an appearance in Second Life. Gibson wasn't the first person to use the idea of "cyberspace," but he coined the word and popularized it.

Gibson's publishers at Penguin write:

Over the next few weeks - to celebrate and, yes, promote his new novel Spook Country, - we're planning a range of William Gibson activities in Second Life; we're screening his fine and strange movie No Maps for These Territories; there's a competition to design an avatar for the man himself; we're giving away shipping containers packed with Gibson goodies and at the beginning of August, William Gibson himself will be coming into Second Life to read from Spook Country and answer questions.

Wikipedia has a good definition of cyberspace: and history of the idea, dating all the way back to the ancient Greeks and Plato. "Cyberspace is the metaphorical space of computer systems and networks, in which electronic data are stored and online communication takes place." In Gibson's novels, and many other cyberpunk science-fiction in the 1980s, cyberspace was navigated is if it were a physical space, with three-dimensional objects representing computer systems and databases.

Neuromancer was an inspiration for Internet pioneers through the 90s, although it's been somewhat eclipsed by Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash, which postulates the Metaverse. Second Life is the Metaverse in every important respect except popularity.

Via Boing Boing, which unfortunately appears to have a broken link leading to what looks like an interesting interview.

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