Digital Despair and the Fading Nostalgia for Cyber-Utopia #cyberpunk
In this video for Zer0 Books, Douglas Lain talks about the origins of cyberpunk, modern digital despair, the cyberpunk now, and two forthcoming books by the publisher, The Freaks in the Machine (a history of cyberculture and Mondo 2000 magazine) by RU Sirius and Behold a Fail Horse (learning critical theory for radical social change) by Matt Christman.
Lain quoting from RU Sirius’ The Freaks in the Machine:
After cyberpunk, ours is a world where the dominant comfort narrative, in games and movies for young people, is an endlessly repeated story of colorful individualistic punk revolutionaries overthrowing dystopian authoritarian corporate states, exactly like the ones in which we currently live. This is what it looks like when the bad kids take all of the good toys for themselves and leave us bereft, a crude and contemptuous caricature of the utopia we strove to make real.
We reached the shining celestial city on the hill and found a claustrophobic epic mirage. Be careful what you wish for.
One other idea from the video that struck me (although it’s painfully obvious when you think about it) is that, in the cyberpunk now, personal self-expression (once thought to be a revolutionary breakthrough of a “way new media”) has become little more than a banal act of social conformity.
Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.