AI as Cold as Ice

Sebastian Kearse '10, English 65, The Cyborg Self, Brown University (Fall 2006)

William Gibson's Neuromancer is a work of fiction that seems to foreshadow humanity's future connection to increasing levels of technology. Through the use of invented slang and different space age devices, the future becomes a seemly lonely place. Yet the people are ever connected through the "matrix." The world he creates is filled with characters that have limbs replaced with cybernetic attachments or implants and other software fused with them. This society of "$1 million" people is further illustrated in the protagonist, Case, who constantly jacks into the matrix, spending anywhere from hours to days in this virtual cyberspace. Case does many advanced activities from hacking into systems to stepping into the artificial shoes of his partner Molly. His connection is so deep that the matrix almost acts like the stimulating drugs that he takes, filling the missing pieces of his being. When he jacks in after a long time of separation, his experience is euphoric.

And somewhere he was laughing, in a white-painted loft, distant fingers caressing the deck, tears of release streaking his face (52).

The outside world still remains as confusing to him as to the reader who adjust to the unusual pattern and cruel violence that is reality.


Gibson, William Neuromancer. New York: Ace Books, 1984.

Cyberspace OV Cyborg  Mona Lisa Overdrive

Last modified 17 September 2006