Jun 30, 2008

A Cyberpunk Evening

I logged in last night, and walked through the Loch making sure that everything was in order. Now I generally do this each evening, but last night was particularly interesting in doing so, for I had word out of world from Lady Kate that a griefing incident had occurred in Lovelace. Apparently hundreds of physical plywood boxes had been dropped into CoyoteAngel's sim - covering the ENTIRE sim. Gak! Thankfully only 28 of the blasted things were found in my sim looking very much like they had simply fallen my way from my neighbor to the south.

At any rate, once the cleanup and patrol were completed, I realized that Caledon was "vewy vewy quiet". Assuming that folks were NOT, in fact, Wabbit Hunting. I decided to check my map. No- not many green dots in the ol' Independent State. So with all things quiet on the home front, I pulled out my ever growing list of interesting places to explore when time permits. Next up: Insilico. I first learned about this sim from Wagner James Au here in his New World Notes, and from there did a little further research.

Last night I donned one of my more cyberpunk outfits and headed over to see what I could see.

First it may be good to share with those of my readership who are less familiar with the genre just what cyberpunk is.

Science Fiction writer, Lawrence Person defines it this way: Classic cyberpunk characters were marginalized, alienated loners who lived on the edge of society in generally dystopic futures where daily life was impacted by rapid technological change, an ubiquitous datasphere of computerized information, and invasive modification of the human body.

According to the Wikipedia article on cyberpunk: Cyberpunk writers tend to use elements from the hard boiled detective novel, film noir, and postmodernist prose to describe the often nihilistic underground side of an electronic society. The genre's vision of a troubled future is often called the antithesis of the generally Utopian visions of the future popular in the 1940s and 1950s. (Gibson defined cyberpunk's antipathy towards Utopian SF in his 1981 short story"The Gernsback Continuum," which pokes fun at and, to a certain extent, condemns Utopian SF.)

Often cyberpunk depicts the world as a dark, sinister place with networked computers and enormous corporations are dominating every aspect of life.

Teleporting into Insilico is dramatic in and of itself. I found myself in what appeared to be the center of the city - a gorgeous futuristic metropolis full of light and shadow, and neon signs and huge televisions shining through the darkness.

Lights flashing and flickering through the fog. Looking up at my control panel, I noted that I was over 3500 meters in the sky. I had read previously that this would be the case, and that only the automated residents in the newly forming RPG lived or worked on the earth below.

After things had fully rezzed, I tried to close my gaping mouth and look a little less "tourist-amazed" and more like a noir heroine.

I settled into my pseudo-role and stepping into the night surrounded by extraordinarily textured skyscrapers climbing ever higher into the dark sky, I enjoyed the sights and sounds of Insilico. There are many levels to this city with a smattering of stores to be found. I confess to a bit of shopping. Many of the stores are quite fantastic.

Some evidence that not all faith has been lost in this future.
(a wonderful creation of the sim owner and builder, Skills Hak)

It appears that not a corner has been cut, due to cost or prim allowance. Great use of sculpties! And there are functional innovations that have been noted by this author and others, including a voice activated web browser, which is mounted on a wall in the local public house.

Caught in the laser, which appears to be motion activated and tracks one's avatar until another comes along.

One of the denizens of Insilico, who was monitoring my activity for a while. I was a bit fearful of some sort of retribution for my explorations - perhaps in restricted areas of the sim...
but instead, after he learned of my particular skills in intelligence work, he found an occupation for me*

Monitoring the metropolis.

is well worth your time. I HIGHLY recommend you add it to your travel plans. I know I'll be going back.

*well - he really did not even speak to me...but in my self-created rp that's what happened. Slàinte!!