Monday, 9 November 2015

The Matrix has you....

When the Wachowskis named their enslaving computer system The Matrix, they knew what they were doing. The word was originally coined by William Gibson in his seminal book Neuromancer (please please read it now if you never have, you can trace 99.99% of all cyberpunk to that book) and it describes the visual and sensorial feed one has when Jacked into the Grid, a - by this point - interplanetary communication network, connecting together virtually every computer humans ever made.

The microprocessors in a Deck (a Jacking / hacking computer) converts the impulses of data in the Matrix into images, sounds, feelings a human can interpret. Computers will be nodes, data links long luminous lines, files might be boxes, or tablets of text, or floating signs. Other, less benign programs (Like ICE: Intrusion Countermeasures Electronic), might be interpreted differently. A firewall will be exactly that, a wall. Or a force field. Or a castle. A decryption program might be just a set of gears, churning through the data. A worm or hacking program might be a drill, a spear, a hammer, a bull.

If you get hurt in the Matrix, the neuro-feedback will zap your brain and damage you physically. But you need to Jack in. After all, the whole Universe is in there. Just waiting for you.

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