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01 May 2020

The dystopian cyberpunk future I always wanted (4/100)

2020

It was only a few shorts months ago that I was proclaiming 2020 as the Cyberpunk future I’d always dreamt about since I was a teen in the early ’80s. A futuristic milestone notched up on the electrified twirling baton of time. Little did I know it would get quite so dystopian and quite so bleak where human contact becomes the vector by which to spread my own demise. I have no doubt the current situation will shake it all up and shape our dystopia for years to come. Perhaps a global pandemic is the catalyst for change that our society seemed to be hankering for the past few years?

I’d kind of hoped I’d have had my breather and cyberdreads sorted out by now.

The future past

I set out to describe intimately why I love cyberpunk.

I’m not sure I’m going to do a very good job of it.

Internally, it’s a feeling for me. It’s a look. It’s an attitude. It’s a fantasy. But one grounded in near future tech realism and one of overwhelming corporate dominance, with a hint of sly tech wrangling and enhancing the human condition with crafted bio-mechanics and digital exocortex functioning.

Humanity++

But with an edge, a fight, a struggle - against the oppressors.

Taking from them, ground level engineering and integration, enhancing and using it against them. Self improvement and payback through bionics and interfacing. Hacking the planet.

Young and impressionable, these films had way more of an effect on me than my parents would have liked. (I’m going to list films now, formative and genre expanding throughout the years)

  • Tron
  • Blade Runner
  • Terminator
  • Robocop
  • Running Man
  • Hardware
  • Total Recall
  • The Lawnmower Man
  • Hackers
  • Johnny Mnemonic
  • Judge Dredd/Dredd
  • Strange Days
  • Fifth Element
  • eXistenZ
  • The Matrix
  • Avalon
  • Minority Report
  • A Scanner Darkly
  • Repo Men
  • Preist
  • Elysium
  • Ex-Machina
  • Ghost in the Shell
  • Upgrade
  • Black Mirror
  • Alita: Battle Angel
  • Altered Carbon

I have an armful of Anime too:

  • Bubblegum Crisis
  • Akira
  • Dominion: Tank Police
  • Appleseed
  • Cyber City Oedo 808
  • Macross Plus
  • Armitage III
  • Ghost in the Shell
  • Cowboy Bebop
  • Serial Experiments Lain
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion
  • Renaissance
  • Roujin Z
  • Vexille

And games

  • Shadowrun
  • Syndicate
  • Rise of the Robots
  • System Shock
  • Deus Ex
  • .hack
  • Anarchy Online
  • Neocron
  • Enter the Matrix
  • The Matrix Online
  • E.Y.E. Divine Cybermancy
  • Cyber Knights
  • Bionic Dues
  • Mars: War Logs
  • The Technomancer
  • Remember Me
  • Echo
  • Transistor
  • Watch Dogs
  • Cosmic Star Heroine
  • Dex
  • Technobabylon
  • Satellite Reign
  • Invisible Inc
  • All Walls Must Fall
  • Neon Chrome
  • System Crash
  • There Came an Echo
  • Hacknet
  • Hackmud
  • Neofeud
  • Observer
  • Ruiner
  • Astral Chain
  • (Cyberpunk 2077)

I’ve bound to have missed out a lot. But these media sources have all played their part in cementing my love for cyberpunk.

I’m leaving out books and music, although I could write a book about those and have a cool darkwave soundtrack for the audiobook.

What is this Cyberpunk thing?

Cyberpunk for me, is essentially fantasy writ gritty with its balls out and its heart replaced with a beating machine.

My hopes and dreams digitised and gone viral.

Humanity built large with steel and surgical chrome.

Mind function accelerated and expanded with hijacked processing power and elusive connectivity.

It is a partly shaved head, exposed enhancements, torn tight functional clothing, chemical enhancments, neon glows, shimmering custom tattoos and the technical know-how to escape the cage that surrounds us all.

It is fighting back, from the gutter, using their technical advancements against them. Whoever ’they’ are, at the moment, for the right price, monetarily or ethically. It’s our time to RISE! [1]

I’ve probably failed to convey exactly what Cyberpunk is. But some of the above succinctly reminds me of what it is.

It’s a feeling, I have, that I am very fond of.

#100DaysToOffload [2]

This post is my Day 4 of my #100DaysToOffload challenge.

Also Kev Quirk has enabled a blogroll for everyone who is taking part in the challenge. [3]

Amolith has enabled an RSS feed [4] of all the sites on the blogroll, if that’s how you like to read your content. Very useful and very much appreciated.

For today’s Mastodon recommendation to follow, I trade some nyen with a Mr Johnson I know to transfer this important com-link ID for a Cyberpunk appreciation movement known as #WeAreNameless [5]

[1] https://thedroids.bandcamp.com/track/rise [2] https://100daystooffload.com [3] https://100daystooffload.com/blogroll.html [4] https://tt-rss.nixnet.services/public.php?op=rss&id=-2&view-mode=all_articles&key=sjaac55ea7316531b70 [5] https://hackers.town/@wearenameless

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