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William Gibson: ‘I was losing a sense of how weird the real world was' (theguardian.com)
30 points by vo2maxer 9 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 5 comments





> “I was actually able to write Neuromancer because I didn’t know anything about computers,” he says. “I knew literally nothing. What I did was deconstruct the poetics of the language of people who were already working in the field.

This is one of the most powerful statements about the nature of art I've ever read. It's also a cogent insight into why we should teach the humanities.


Never underestimate the power of outside perspective.

There seems to be something in Gibsons writing about how he doesn’t let the details of the actual technology get in the way of the feeling and aesthetic he is going for, but also he has an almost unique gift for this kind of thing, and quite obviously does like and know about technology to some extent. If you take your average US boomer who brags that they “knew literally nothing about computers” I doubt they could invent “cyberspace” or a computer “deck” wired directly into the brain.

I don't know... Seems to me the easy part of sci-fi is the ideas, and the hard part is execution part where you turn them into good stories.

“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” - Commonly but falsely attributed to Henry Ford.

But a sci-fi universe where cars were never invented, and horses had after centuries of careful breeding achieved highway speed would be interesting.


I once had a conversation with a fashion designer about William Gibson's work and the designer made a comment that Gibson's stories are all detective stories about fashion. And, on rereading the Net trilogy, the Bridge trilogy, and the Blue Ant books, I came to see this as correct. Gibson seems interested in the flow of ideas and concepts, but much less intrigued by the material outputs.



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