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Neuromancer

Mick Doherty <doherm>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 19:12 -0400

I'd like to direct this question specifically to the people in class who have not read _Neuromancer_ before this week. (I noted in class that abouth alf of you had done so, and some of you multiple times) ...

Generally, what are your impressions of the novel? Think about it both in terms of content and writing style. What was the reading experience like, perhaps compared/contrasted to Card's _EG_?

Specifically, what charater -- if any -- did you identify with while you were reading? I noticed in class last week that people seemed anxious to identify a character with whom they identified -- Valentine and Ender, usually. Is that the case here?

Finally -- this is to everyone -- Gibson is fond of saying (as Oscar Wilde once did) "Life imitates art." In fact, I've seen interviews with scientists at the NASA/Ames VR Labs who've said they've read Gibson and use the technology in his books as "goals" to shoot for. Any response to that approach to VR research and development?

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Re: Neuromancer

Leareth <leareth@rpi.edu>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 19:59 -0400

> Generally, what are your impressions of the novel? Think about

it was a harder read than ender's game, and to me personally, not as interesting. my mind kept flitting about as i read so i doubt i got as much as i should have from the novel.

i found the end a bit confusing as well.. could someone explain the TA people a little better? what exactly were they pushing for/striving to become? a hive like entity? why did neuromancer seem to fear joining with

wintermute?

> Specifically, what charater -- if any -- did you identify with

> while you were reading? I noticed in class last week that people

case. i could relate to some of his thoughts, more specifically what wintermute diagnosed him/analyzed him as.

> seemed anxious to identify a character with whom they identified --

> Valentine and Ender, usually. Is that the case here?

i didn't particulary identify with anyone in ender's game.

some interesting references found in my music...

from my psykosonik cd:

"teknojihad"

a boot in the face the dream that fills your night decades later it seems george orwell might be right your dead polemics have sent millions to their graves despite your armies still we'll never be your slaves goodbye goodbye goodbye goodbye goodbye

[refrain]

teknojihad electronic holy war

teknojihad burn the system to the core

teknojihad hear the angry Voice of God

shoot them once now we unleash

teknojihad

servitude is in the mind a death in life

don't be confused by terms of left or right

statism is statism by any name the same

apathy is suicide and we will bear the blame

goodbye goodbye goodbye goodbye goodbye

[refrain]

huge beserk rebel warthig error

zeroboys unleash domestic terror

jack it in and burn the data

violence a religion they can relate to

so let them hear this and let them fear this

don't forget that power always comes

through the barrel of a loaded gun

[refrain]

and a quick part from

"Shock on the wire"

...flip the switch jack it in

feel the matrix burn within

sensations shooting up your spine

take it over the danger line

you're lukewarm you're getting warmer now

you're getting warmer now you're getting hot

you touch fire the neurological ride

you're moving further inside you're getting...

### http://www.rpi.edu/~hallm4 #####

######## leareth@rpi.edu #####

#### ### ######

######## #######

###### when i left you, i was but the learner, #### ###

##### now i am the master... ########

### Star Wars:ANH #####



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Re: Neuromancer

Dennis Payne <dulsi@identical.stu.rpi.edu>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 20:46 -0400

> Generally, what are your impressions of the novel? Think about

> it both in terms of content and writing style. What was the

> reading experience like, perhaps compared/contrasted to Card's

> _EG_?

I think Etienne described it best when he said it was like a western. Don't get me wrong Neuromancer says lot about what could be and stuff, but it's done subtely(sp?) while EG beats you over the head with it. It's harder to read because of the language used then EG.

> Specifically, what charater -- if any -- did you identify with

> while you were reading?

None. Although I share a trait or two with some of them they are vastly different from me. The same with the character's from EG. Actually while sitting here trying to answer your question on life and art, I think I probably identify with Moly the most. She's not a slave to pleasure like Case, does her job as best she can without much questioning, and keep herself bottled up.

> Any response to that approach to VR research and development?

Why don't we check hits to misses? With the shear size of art's domain their bound to have a partical thought here and there. There is no reason why we shouldn't take advantage of it.

Dennis Payne

dulsi@identical.stu.rpi.edu

payned@rpi.edu

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Re: Neuromancer

Daniel M. Cohen <cohend3>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 21:16:58 -0400

>Generally, what are your impressions of the novel? Think about

it both in terms of content and writing style. What was the

reading experience like, perhaps compared/contrasted to Card's

_EG_?

Specifically, what charater -- if any -- did you identify with

while you were reading? I noticed in class last week that people

seemed anxious to identify a character with whom they identified --

Valentine and Ender, usually. Is that the case here?

Its most definitely a hard book to read. I got used to some of the lingo Gibson uses but that was after several hours of rereading the same page(s). I had to get a ton of help from my roommate as well. It took sometime to figure out what was going on. Whether something was a flashback, in CyberSpace , or actually happening.

I indetify myself with WinterMute. I can understand why an AI would want to commit Suicide. Who would want to survive without a purpose? I sure as hell wouldn't. And If someone had forced me to stay alive, I would have done whatever I could to die. I guess Im just weird for identifying myself with an AI. I cant talk anymore about this now. Talk to you guys Later

DAn

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Re: Neuromancer

Rat in the Hat <gentrj>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 21:34 -0400

> Specifically, what charater -- in any -- did you identify with

> while you were reading?

Well, I don't meet mick's standard of being a first-time reader of this tale, but I've always identified the closest to Case. For future note, I never really felt a connection w/ anyone in Count Zero, but there was a bit more in MLO ... not as strong as w/ Case, however. For some reason, I could envision myself in a similar situation - as distasteful as it may seem.

j

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Re: Neuromancer

Rat in the Hat <gentrj>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 21:35 -0400

> I can understand why an AI would want to commit Suicide.

Ummm ... who said that 'mute committed suicide? Just wait till we get to Mona Lisa Overdrive. ;)

Ride this loa ...

Baron Samdedi

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Commiting Suicide

Daniel M. Cohen <cohend3>

Sun, 15 Sep 1996 21:48 -0400

> Ummm ... who said that 'mute committed suicide? Just wait till we

> get to Mona Lisa Overdrive. ;)

>

> Ride this loa ...

> Baron Samdedi

Oops, I forgot to mention that I still havent gotten all the way through the book yet.. Im on page 201. I should be done with it by class tommorow. Maybe my comment was a little premature.

Dan

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Re: Neuromancer

lavalj@rpi.edu (Jean-Etienne LaVallee)

Mon, 16 Sep 1996 16:21:33 GMT

Heyas,

>>Specifically, what charater -- if any -- did you identify with

>>while you were reading? I noticed in class last week that people

>>seemed anxious to identify a character with whom they identified --

>>Valentine and Ender, usually. Is that the case here?

I too don't fit the criterion set forth by Mick, but what the hell...

I identifies the most with Case too. His sense of being used and just sort of getting caught up in the flow of a crazy situation is something I've felt before. Also, I've experienced a physical imparement which has kept me from doing domething I love, namely scuba diving and a so I could understand his down right frustration from the myoelectric burn out thing that was done to him.

>Its most definitely a hard book to read. I got used to some of the lingo

>Gibson uses but that was after several hours of rereading the same page(s).

>I had to get a ton of help from my roommate as well. It took sometime to

>figure out what was going on. Whether something was a flashback, in CyberSpace

>, or actually happening.

I really liked the book for this reason. I find that contextually agressive books like Neuromancer make the reading more realistic because you HAVE to figure things out. Gibson doesn't go and write things out for you and show every detail, he leaves it to the story to bring those details out and to your brain to fill in the blanks. In all actuality, his description of cyberspace is about as coherent as an acid trip, but we have all found our own ways of filling in those blanks.

>I indetify myself with WinterMute. I can understand why an AI would want to

>commit Suicide. Who would want to survive without a purpose? I sure as hell

>wouldn't. And If someone had forced me to stay alive, I would have done

>whatever I could to die. I guess Im just weird for identifying myself with

>an AI. I cant talk anymore about this now. Talk to you guys Later

Hmmm, my interpretation (and it's JUST an INTERPRETATION) was that Wintermute liked being a futile entity and that it was his creative twin, Neuromancer who wanted to be free of the bonds of AS/Spindle/Hivemind society. Neuromancer is like Wintermute's subconscience in that respect. Only able to surface when Wintermute isn't paying attention and having to disguise himself even then. That whole thing with Case being on the beach was to me a battle between Neuromancer and Wintermute that took place in their shared consciousness. I've also read this book about 8 times now, so I've read into it a bit. Not to mention the other books.

As Jester brought up, with respect to the rest of the series, I identified most with Bobby Newmark. There was just something about him that clicked with me. I'l figure it out sooner or later.

cyas,

Etienne

/__ /\ / ___/ /\ / |\/ __ /\ -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

\ / / / /\ / / / /| |/ /\/ / / Jean-Etienne LaVallee /

/ / / __// / / / / / / / / / reply to: lavalj@rpi.edu /

/ / / /\ / / / / / / / / / / lavalle@cat.rpi.edu /

/____/____/_____/_____/_____/ / http://www.rpi.edu/~lavalj /

\ \ \ \ \ \ -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

"I'm a limitless person, living in a sadly limited world." - H.E.Ellison, "Levendis"

"All we're waiting for is something worth waiting for" - KMFDM, "DOGMA"

"I beat my machine, it's a part of me, it's inside of me"- NIN, "the becoming"

"Christmas IS carnage!!!" - Ferdinand the Duck, _Babe_

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Re: Neuromancer

Garden Gnome <andret@rpi.edu>

Mon, 16 Sep 1996 15:51:58 -0400

The biggest difference I noticed between Neuromancer and EG is the level of detail of Gibson's future versus Card's. I felt as though Neuromancer were telling a story about the future of the human race while EG was the story of events that just happened to take place in the future. As we said in class the important themes of EG didn't require a future setting since they were concerned mainly with one person's struggle against himself and his tormentors.

Although Neuromancer followed a small cast of characters, I felt its story was much larger than the story of Case, Molly, Armitage and a few others. To me, Neuromancer was about a vision of a future that could come true given humankind's present course.

Actually, Neuromancer reminded me a lot of Blade Runner in that I felt the two future worlds might be very similar although Blade Runner was less concerned with the state of computer networks in the future.

As for a character I related to in Neuromancer I can't really think of one. There were elements of Case and Molly that I could understand but I can't say I really sympathized with either of them. At least not to the degree that I understood the characters in EG. I suppose that's a product of Neuromancer not being so concerned with the characters' stories as EG was.

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Re: Neuromancer

Garden Gnome <andret@rpi.edu>

Mon, 16 Sep 1996 15:58:39 -0400

Really, I didn't get the impression at all that Wintermute died (or whatever an AI would do). I got the feeling that Wintermute was freed from whatever restrictions the Turing Cops had placed on he/she/it and became part of some larger intelligence in the matrix.

thayer

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Re: Neuromancer

Kenneth W. Flynn <flynnk@rpi.edu>

Sun, 22 Sep 1996 13:20:45 -0400

At 03:51 PM 9/16/96 -0400, Garden Gnome wrote:

>The biggest difference I noticed between Neuromancer and EG is the level of

>detail of Gibson's future versus Card's. I felt as though Neuromancer were

>telling a story about the future of the human race while EG was the story

>of events that just happened to take place in the future. As we said in class

>the important themes of EG didn't require a future setting since they were

>concerned mainly with one person's struggle against himself and his

>tormentors.

Exactly, and that's why in some ways Ender's Game was a much better book. Characters are what's important to me, and Neuromancer didn't really care about it's characters, they were just there to make a point.

Kenn

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Kenn Flynn

flynnk@rpi.edu

http://www.rpi.edu/~flynnk

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Welcome to the human race. Nobody controls his own life,... The best you can

do is choose to fill the roles given you by good people, by people who love

you.

--_Ender's Game_ by Orson Scott Card

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Re: Neuromancer

Garden Gnome <andret@rpi.edu>

Sun, 22 Sep 1996 15:02:49 -0400

> At 03:51 PM 9/16/96 -0400, Garden Gnome wrote:

> >The biggest difference I noticed between Neuromancer and EG is the level of

> >detail of Gibson's future versus Card's. I felt as though Neuromancer were

> >telling a story about the future of the human race while EG was the story

> >of events that just happened to take place in the future. As we said in class

> >the important themes of EG didn't require a future setting since they were

> >concerned mainly with one person's struggle against himself and his

> >tormentors.

>

> Exactly, and that's why in some ways Ender's Game was a much better book.

> Characters are what's important to me, and Neuromancer didn't really care

> about it's characters, they were just there to make a point.

>

>-- End of excerpt from Kenneth W. Flynn

I wouldn't be so quick to decide which book was better simply based on character development. For me, it depends on what mood I'm in. Sometimes I want to read a story such as EG that is concerned with the lives of its main characters and sometimes I want to read a story with a broader scope that uses characters to describe larger themes. I can't really say which makes a better book. Like I said, for me it depends on what I'm interested in at the time.

On a similar note, did anyone else get the feeling of stronger character development in Count Zero? I just finished reading and to me it seemed much easier to understand the characters' thoughts and feelings. That might just be a product of my reading Count Zero more slowly that I read Neuromancer. Also, Gibson might have been more forthright in his descriptions of the characters of Count Zero. Any thoughts?

thayer

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