chapter  4
17 Pages

How Does Your Cyber Garden Grow?

The symbol of the Slow Food Movement is a snail, a far cry from the techno and cyberspace dreams of computerised—everything. The stage is set for simulation, in the cybernetic sense of the word—that is to say, for all kinds of manipulation of these models(hypothetical scenarios, the creation of simulated situations, etc), but nothing distinguishes this management-manipulation from the real itself: there is no more fiction. However, despite the 'reduction and absorption' of referential distance, there are in these cyber-fictions the persistent vestiges of the 'natural', organic, or botanical, usually by analogy or metaphor. Post-war, synthetic food stuffs are all that is generally available; 'the garden had perished during the war'. Cyberpunk fiction's relation to information technologies is at once celebratory and subversive; while its depictions are dystopian, it is not technology as such that is being questioned, but rather its control by powerful and corrupt totalitarian interests, like the fictionalised Sunflower Corporation in Virtual Light.