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Category Archives: Lucid Blog

What is Cyberpunk ?

Cyberpunk is where science and technology meets society

What exactly is cyberpunk? The question seems to be continuously resurrected in cyberpunk communities without ever coming to a conclusion as to a definition. What is the point of this topic then? While it is true that cyberpunk may mean different things to different people, there certainly is a common thread. That then is what we’re after.

Cyberpunk is “low life, high tech”

The very word cyberpunk is itself a portmanteau of cybernetics, the science and technology of the system, and punk, the philosophy of rebellion against the system. Where the system intends for order, cyberpunks frequently make disorder; as they say, “the street will find its own use for things.” To understand the movement we must look past the black-and-white to see the modern world in its true shades of grey as the lines between natural and artificial, organic and mechanical, and real and virtual continue to blur.

Cyberpunk is an attitude

There seems to be a common attitude or philosophy among those attracted to cyberpunk. They often find themselves caught in the romantic struggle between themselves and the system. For some this manifests in an interest—sometimes even an obsession—with privacy and security, both online and offline. The cyberpunk notices that the world is heading in the wrong direction as the wealthy are becoming more powerful while the poor are becoming helpless, working more and earning less. As disparities grow wider, their tactics become more desperate: using the tools of the system against the system. When pushed they feel free to use anything and everything at their disposal: including hacking, deception, and intrusion. Do not fuck with us.

Cyberpunk is an awareness

In a world saturated with violently accelerating change, the cyberpunk must find herself armed with a sharp awareness of what is going on around her. Most seem to be apathetic about the philosophical implications of the uncanny technologies of the near future as the existential issues invoked by artificial intelligence, transhumanism, and the technological singularity continue to evade our collective consciousness. Advances in biological and information technologies are already radically changing our lives, but will likely only become more coercive and invasive in the future, especially with the birth of the cybernetic organism and brain–computer interface. While these technologies are not inherently malign, we would rather not see what happens when they are exclusively in the hands of the corporate elite.

Cyberpunk is a subculture

Perhaps the most clandestine aspect of cyberpunk is the ethereal subculture of hackers, phreaks, netrunners, ravers, and razor girls. It is androgynous, sophisticated, and futuristic. It cannot be restrained as it has slipped through the cracks and is now lost in the delicate balance between the analog and digital worlds, avoiding both the attention and oppression of the system. With the rise of a ubiquitous internet, “cyberculture” has begun to permeate throughout the popular culture of modern society. Meanwhile the cyberpunk subculture remains somewhat underground, though where one ends and the other begins is often difficult to discern.

Cyberpunk is a subgenre

The most accessible aspect of cyberpunk is the literary subgenre of science fiction that features a dark and gritty, yet painfully realistic vision of our near future. It essentially takes active social trends and pushes them to their logical extremes. The megacorporation now dominates as the primary influence of society, which brings about an aggregation of wealth, acceleration of environmental decay, and expansion of Asian popular culture. Urbanization sprawls as people flock to the cities, drugs and crime offer most one’s best hope of achieving happiness, and the line between human and machine begins to fade away. This culminates in the “city lights at night” aesthetic present in much of cyberpunk art. While some may enjoy—perhaps even fetish—the dystopian world presented in cyberpunk literature, most are anticipating the resistance against it. For some this fight has already begun.

 

Source : https://lainchan.jp/cyb/res/115.html

Wookie armor crafting guide.

 

 

 

 

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“By 2029 no computer – or « machine intelligence » – will have passed the Turing Test.” Detailed Terms »

(Bet 1 http://longbets.org/1/#terms Duration 27 years (02002-02029))

 

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Manifeste du Web Indépendant

par le minirézo

Le Web indépendant, ce sont ces millions de sites offrant des millions de pages faites de passion, d’opinion, d’information, mises en place par des utilisateurs conscients de leur rôle de citoyens. Le Web indépendant, c’est un lien nouveau entre les individus, une bourse du savoir gratuite, offerte, ouverte ; sans prétention.

Face aux sites commerciaux aux messages publicitaires agressifs, destinés à ficher et cibler les utilisateurs, le Web indépendant propose une vision respectueuse des individus et de leurs libertés, il invite à la réflexion et au dialogue. Quand les sites d’entreprises se transforment en magazines d’information et de divertissement, quand les mastodontes de l’info-spectacle, des télécommunications, de l’informatique et de l’armement investissent le réseau, le Web indépendant propose une vision libre du monde, permet de contourner la censure économique de l’information, sa confusion avec la publicité et le publi-reportage, sa réduction à un spectacle abrutissant et manipulateur.

Pourtant le Web indépendant et contributif est menacé ; menacé par la fuite en avant technologique qui rend la création de sites de plus en plus complexe et chère, par l’écrasante puissance publicitaire du Web marchand, et bientôt par les accès dissymétriques, les Network Computers, les réseaux privés, le broadcasting, destinés à cantonner le citoyen au seul rôle de consommateur. Déjà la presse spécialisée, si avide des publicités d’annonceurs qui récupèrent à leur profit la formidable richesse du Web contributif, et fascinée par les enjeux techniques et commerciaux de l’Internet, réserve quelques maigres lignes aux sites indépendants, occulte l’enjeu culturel du réseau, expédie rapidement la mort des sites pionniers du Web artisanal, quand elle glose en long et en large sur le nouveau site de tel vendeur de soupe. La création d’un site personnel y est présentée aux utilisateurs comme une motivation très annexe, loin derrière les possibilités d’utilisation en ligne de sa carte de crédit.

Nous invitons donc les utilisateurs à prendre conscience de leur rôle primordial sur l’Internet : lorsqu’ils montent leur propre site, lorsqu’ils envoient des commentaires, critiques et encouragements aux webmestres, lorsqu’ils s’entraident dans les forums et par courrier électronique, ils offrent une information libre et gratuite que d’autres voudraient vendre et contrôler. La pédagogie, l’information, la culture et le débat d’opinion sont le seul fait des utilisateurs, des webmestres indépendants et des initiatives universitaires et associatives.

-le minirézo

[first published on uzine.net – 1997 by le minirézo]

\/\The Conscience of a Hacker/\/

by The Mentor

Another one got caught today, it’s all over the papers. « Teenager
Arrested in Computer Crime Scandal », « Hacker Arrested after Bank Tampering »…
Damn kids. They’re all alike.

But did you, in your three-piece psychology and 1950’s technobrain,
ever take a look behind the eyes of the hacker? Did you ever wonder what
made him tick, what forces shaped him, what may have molded him?
I am a hacker, enter my world…
Mine is a world that begins with school… I’m smarter than most of
the other kids, this crap they teach us bores me…
Damn underachiever. They’re all alike.

I’m in junior high or high school. I’ve listened to teachers explain
for the fifteenth time how to reduce a fraction. I understand it. « No, Ms.
Smith, I didn’t show my work. I did it in my head… »
Damn kid. Probably copied it. They’re all alike.

I made a discovery today. I found a computer. Wait a second, this is
cool. It does what I want it to. If it makes a mistake, it’s because I
screwed it up. Not because it doesn’t like me…
Or feels threatened by me…
Or thinks I’m a smart ass…
Or doesn’t like teaching and shouldn’t be here…
Damn kid. All he does is play games. They’re all alike.

And then it happened… a door opened to a world… rushing through
the phone line like heroin through an addict’s veins, an electronic pulse is
sent out, a refuge from the day-to-day incompetencies is sought… a board is
found.
« This is it… this is where I belong… »
I know everyone here… even if I’ve never met them, never talked to
them, may never hear from them again… I know you all…
Damn kid. Tying up the phone line again. They’re all alike…

You bet your ass we’re all alike… we’ve been spoon-fed baby food at
school when we hungered for steak… the bits of meat that you did let slip
through were pre-chewed and tasteless. We’ve been dominated by sadists, or
ignored by the apathetic. The few that had something to teach found us will-
ing pupils, but those few are like drops of water in the desert.

This is our world now… the world of the electron and the switch, the
beauty of the baud. We make use of a service already existing without paying
for what could be dirt-cheap if it wasn’t run by profiteering gluttons, and
you call us criminals. We explore… and you call us criminals. We seek
after knowledge… and you call us criminals. We exist without skin color,
without nationality, without religious bias… and you call us criminals.
You build atomic bombs, you wage wars, you murder, cheat, and lie to us
and try to make us believe it’s for our own good, yet we’re the criminals.

Yes, I am a criminal. My crime is that of curiosity. My crime is
that of judging people by what they say and think, not what they look like.
My crime is that of outsmarting you, something that you will never forgive me
for.

I am a hacker, and this is my manifesto. You may stop this individual,
but you can’t stop us all… after all, we’re all alike.

-The Mentor

[first published in Phrack Volume One, Issue 7 – 1986 by The Mentor]