TECHNOLOGY

‘Snow Crash’ is a cyberpunk classic


Neil Stephenson Snow crash With one of the most popular science-books of all time and William Gibson Neuromanser It stands as a basic text of the cyberpunk movement. Science fiction writer Anthony Ha Was blown up by Snow crash When he first read it in the late 90s.

“It was a time when movies and TV had some vague representations of virtual reality,” says Ha in episode 487. Gexi’s Geeks Guide Podcast. “So it wasn’t Snow crash This is the first time I’ve encountered this kind of iconography, but it looked really great the first time.

Snow crash Hero tells the story of the protagonist, a katana-driven hacker who jumps back and forth between a virtual world called Dystopian Los Angeles and Metavers. Gexi’s Geeks Guide Organizer David Bar Kirtley notes that the novel has inspired countless entrepreneurs and inventors, including John Carmack, Reed Hoffman and Palmer Lukki. “I started making a list of everyone in Silicon Valley who mentioned this work as their inspiration,” Kirtley said, “and I kind of stopped at a certain point, because it was basically everyone.”

Snow crash Still as fun and stylish as ever, but some aspects of the book are badly dated. Lisa Yaszek, a professor of science fiction, says that from 2021 onwards, the book has some weaknesses in terms of race and gender. “If you’re someone who wants to know a lot about the history and development of cyberpunk, I think it’s important to read it, because it’s an important intervention,” he said. “The moment before cyberpunk really became a global storytelling mode, where all sorts of people, color writers, LGBTQ + writers – were really going to start using it.”

Science fiction writer Sam J. Miller notes that the characters Snow crash Seemingly a bit thin, a robotic guard dog named Rat Thing stands out as one of the most sympathetic characters in the book. “In many ways I think the rat thing could be the character who came closest to the heart, and an emotional pressure and who really made me feel things,” Miller said. “Like everyone else, they’ve got three pairs of sunglasses. They’re very pretty.”

Listen to the full interview with Anthony Ha, Lisa Yaszek and Sam J. Miller on Episode 487 Gexi’s Geeks Guide (Above). And see some highlights from the discussion below.

David Bar Kirtley in Character Development:

“Hiro seemed attractive, and he had this interesting background with his parents, and White had this relationship with his mother. – I mean, he’s in a coma but he could have gotten out of it. There were a lot of characters and a lot of agencies here and it got really complicated. It’s all great, everything in this book is great, but I felt like a character. [was lacking]. There was really no emotional weakness or heart-to-heart moment, or people felt remorse or something like that. It just felt too much on the surface. ”

Anthony Ha in Backstory:

“The problem is if you’re reading a book for a plot, [backstory] Turns into a confusion, where the key, in the climatic moment, is when suddenly the hero will return to the library and discuss [ancient Sumeria] When he’s going to do another sword fight or something like that with the librarian. So especially during the first reading, especially if you are younger, I think your feet are just like impatiently tapping, ‘Why am I reading this?’ For that story it was a great McGaffin, it was interesting to learn about Sumerian mythology, but there were times when Stephenson seemed to have a lot of words to say, ‘Man, isn’t language like a virus? Not cold? ‘And I was,’ It’s great, but it’s probably not worth so many words. ‘

Sam J. Miller in Floating Town:

“One of the things I’ve done before writing Blackfish City Did I go to Cambodia – who are basically Vietnamese refugees, who are basically a floating community. They have a church, a school and all these things floating and they have a convenience store that sells lottery tickets and petrol and they have an alligator farm. It’s amazing, and it’s deeply tragic, and not a high standard of living. For the most part they are there because their ability to live on land – due to immigration problems – is limited. [Floating cities] It’s a great idea, but I think in practice it’s a scenario that will only develop by necessity and probably won’t be great.

Lisa Yaszek on economics:

“The funny thing is that people use viruses, which are suitable for the production of products that do not go into the body itself. So [Snow Crash] Thinking about language as much as thinking about labor, and that’s part of it that I still find interesting. … In many ways I think it’s William Gibson’s reaction. I like it because I’m a sucker for utopian thought, but I think Gibson is often a utopian ignorant of the ability of marginalized populations to resist integration and destruction by their committed involvement with capitalism. I think what this book does and a part of what I like is that it explores how possible it is – can you really stay away from the trap of capitalism?


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