Is a Cyberpunk world closer to reality than we think?

The world of cyberpunk created by William Gibson is a very grey, urban and technological place. In the lecture, Graham described it as antiauthoritarian, libertarian and consumerist. From reading Johnny Mnemonic, we see that members of this dystopic society are involved in body augmentation and drugs, and there is a sense of ‘us against them’. Individuals against the authorities. The characters have a very strong relationship with technology. It defines who they are and their position in society.

Is this sounding somewhat familiar? Consumerism, plastic surgery, technology, … according to this article from Wired Magazine [], we even have cyborgs living in society today.

There are obviously many differences between the society we live in right now, and that Chiba City, but the similarities are lurking in the background. For example, when I read about Molly Millions “mirrored lenses” for eyes, I couldn’t help but think of the soon to be released Google Glass.

So they may not be surgically implanted into our eye sockets, but who knows, we will probably have people doing that in the future. But having a piece of technology constantly on us, enhancing (or not) how we act and live. This is bringing us closer to technology than we have ever been before.

As technology develops even more, and we may become even more attached to it, this idea of technicity, that is explored in the Tomas reading, may become relevant in our society. There are already digital divides between those who have access to technology, and those who have weak access, or none at all. Technology may start to “define social bonds”. We may start to connect and form new social groups defined by how our bodies are augmented and what we are capable of doing.


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