People have often asked me what things have struck me as the most Cyberpunk moments in my life. There are a lot of them, but here’s one of the most impressive– the view from the highest building in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
For years, I’ve tried to describe what it’s like to be looking out over a cityscape full of Manhattan-sized skyscrapers–that goes on unendingly to the horizon– in all four directions of the compass. The largest city on the southern hemisphere; the seventh largest city on earth, SP is so big that many of my “Paulista” friends who live there have never been to the other side of the city. At ground level, the city streets are a tight maze of buildings, parks, enormous billboards (the biggest I’ve ever seen and I’ve been to a lot of places around the world) and milling people.
Skyscraper lobbies are filled with entire street markets of microstalls, where you can buy produce, meat and knicknacks. Totally Cyberpunk. Giant billboards flicker overhead, blinding with shifting video pixels. Totally Cyberpunk.
So until I get to Tokyo, SP is my most Cyberpunk megalopolis. And I love the place.
I’ll leave you with a bit of video to think about. It even sounds Cyberpunk.
Recently, here at Tal, we ran across Immogen Heap and her new project, the Mi.Mu Glove. This high tech glove allows the user to create music just with gestures of their hand. It looks pretty impressive to use, but go online and check it out yourselves. Below you can find a link to an article with and interview with Immogen and a link to the Kickstarter she has put up for the Mi.Mu Glove.
Kickstarter Page: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mimu/mimu-glove-for-music?ref=live
Waaay back in 1990, the Cyberpunk idea of a plastic gun that could be created on an “autofactory” machine was the stuff of science fiction. But now…
Yep, the Dark Future is closer than u think…
This mindblowing piece of cinema perfectly outlines what it means to be fully interfaced in a Cyberpunk future.
Watch it…and be…educated.
It’s 2013. And years ago, when I wrote Cyberpunk, I used to joke that by 2013, my son (who at that point was only a conceptual gleam in his daddy’s eye) would be lopping off limbs to be a fashionable teenager in the Dark Future.
Cyber-fashion. Up to now, the idea of “cyber-fashion” has been only a concept from science fiction. So imagine my delight when I stumbled across a TED talk by fashion model and athlete Aimee Mullins about prosthetic limbs–not as replacements for lost parts (Aimee’s been missing both her legs since childhood), but as fashion statements and desirable forms of body modification. People have often commented about the juxtaposition of sheer, smooth femininity and hard edged cyberware in ‘Punk for years–I’ve taken a bit of heat over the classic illustration of Alt Cunningham at the start of Never Fade Way (especially from the feminist side). But there was a reason why I commissioned that art. I wanted to show, in a totally IN YOUR FACE way, that in the Dark Future, sexy and cyber– augmented and attractive– beautiful and dangerous– are not necessarily oppositional concepts. Keeping that in mind, fold that picture of Alt with her shiny metal arm into this picture of Aimee Mullins with her supertech “cheetah” legs.
Fellow Cyberpunks; the future has arrived.
The title of this post is a reference to one of Ms. Mullin’s stories–when a friend of hers find out that Mullins has used a pair of augmented legs to add 6 inches to her height, she exclaims, “But that’s not fair!” And that, people, is how cyber-fashion gets started.
But I’ll let Aimee tell the story; and her vision of an augmented, no boundaries future, in her own words:
By the way; the legs she’s wearing are only one of her 12 pairs. And you think you have trouble deciding what shoes to wear when you get up in the morning. Wimp.
Well it seems almost too good to be true but check out this new link to the KURATAS, a fully functioning recreational Mecha. At the site below you can customize and purchase your own KURATAS for just about 1.5 million dollars. That’s probably more than most of us have just lying around but it’s cool to run through the KURATAS customization program.
Part of the appeal of Cyberware is that you can have superhuman powers without anyone knowing. Now, Scientists at Princeton have built a mechanical ear on a 3-D printer that, with some work, could allow a deaf person to hear via a normal looking ear. It’s only another step or two to Cyber Audio.
Check out the Article!