Is William Gibson A Modern Day Oracle?

If you aren't already familiar with PBS's Idea Channel, drop what you're doing and go check it out. Immediately. In fact, why don't you start with the video featured here, in which the Idea Channel's Mike Rugnetta presents a damn compelling case that William Gibson is pretty much a modern day soothsayer.

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And if you feel like Rugnetta is leaning pretty hard on internet memes to convey his message, it might have something to do with this.

[Via The Idea Channel]

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DISCUSSION

dragonfliet
dragonfliet

I don't mean to crap on Gibson at all, because, you know, he is super awesome, smart and forward thinking, as well as one of my fav writers, but predicted the internet? The internet already existed, if in a very early stage, when he wrote Neuromancer and his VR stuff is...you know, completely and utterly ridiculous? It makes for exciting fiction, and works great in his books, but it isn't exactly prescient. Also: he predicted some government crackdowns, which, you know, again, not exactly shocking. THE GOVERNMENT? CRACKING DOWN ON SOMETHING? Also, he didn't predict cyberspace, he coined the neologism and other people were like, HEY THIS WORD FITS OUR STUFF. That he was able to look at some things and see their future importance is super awesome, but I get sort of eye rolley at omg prescience! kinds of stuff. (which, obviously, he wasn't exactly arguing for).

In short: He doesn't seem at all an oracle, even in the kindofsortof of modern day life, but he's still superbadass and everyone should read him.