Neuromancer

I just got around to reading William Gibson’s Neuromancer, and while I may be 30 some years late to this particular party (fashionably late perhaps?), I can say with a great deal of confidence that its a spectacular book well worth reading.

I think a lot of people get caught up in the ‘science’ part of science fiction and forget that blinking lights and flashing consoles a good story does not necessarily make. The science is just the backdrop, it’s the characters and how they interact with that science which makes a compelling story, and as far as I’m concerned, Neuromancer passes this test with flying colours. But even more, the ideas running throughout, whether they be relating to advances in AI, body modification or something in between are not only intriguing in a purely academic sense, but have had noticeable cultural impacts well beyond its readership.

Looking beyond the content of the novel, the writing is definitely worthy of praise as well. The context of the story are presented seamlessly throughout, the most unusual concepts are made to seem completely mundane, because in this world they truly are. An understanding of the background is built piece by piece, but in a way that feels completely organic. As a friend of mine said on the subject: “No one ever stops to explain how their iPhone works”.

If you haven’t read Neuromancer, do yourself a favour and fix that.

Donuts and Self-Doubt

I’ve had some fairly odd dreams in my day, but a recent one has been deeply memorable for the strangest of reasons. But before we dive into the dream itself, there’s some backstory that will need to be covered.

I don’t have very strong feelings about donuts. They’re alright, but on those rare occasions when I have some, I’ll inevitably come to regret doing so pretty quickly. Despite all this, I do have a favourite type of donut, but as I said before, they’re not something I ever find myself thinking about unless they’re free and sitting right in front of me.

Now back to the dough of the issue. Throughout this particular dream I found myself not only eating donuts, but enjoying them more than any other food I’ve ever had, and by a considerable margin at that. The passionate intensity of my feelings towards donuts was truly staggering. I couldn’t stop thinking how amazing donuts were in general, but also how this particular type of donut was infinitely better than all other kinds of donuts.

Now you may be thinking to yourself that this little tale is at best mildly amusing, but certainly not worth the memory to which its been written, and you’d be right if that was the end of it (indeed you might still be right regardless). But that’s not the end of it, because the particular type of donut that in my dream might as well have been baked and glazed ambrosia, is not actually the type of donut I like in reality, far from it.

Now I’ve long since realized that “dream Jeff” is on the whole full of shit and not to be taken too seriously. However I find myself unable to shake the creeping feeling that I’m engaging in some self-deception regarding my preference in doughnuts This would be bizarre to say the least. In fact I’d say its bizarre to even be dwelling on the possibility, given its complete irrelevance and triviality, yet still I remain a dweller.

So yeah, I’ve had donuts on the brain recently.