I Invented Cyberspace

Meet William Gibson, an unassuming science fiction writer and author of the 1984 cult favorite Neuromancer. The Wikipedia description seems unassailable: “The novel tells the near-future story of Case, a washed-up computer hacker hired by a mysterious employer for one last job against a powerful artificial intelligence.” It was Gibson’s first novel, but it was not to be his last. Even if you didn’t get a chance to read it, you’re probably familiar with the plot, since it formed the basis for The Matrix, a movie you’ve probably heard of.

Not a Keanu Reeves fan? Not to worry. That’s not the most notable feature of the movie or the novel for our purposes here. The most revelatory part of the Gibson story is the fact that he was the first to coin the expression “cyberspace.” Even if that doesn’t equal Al Gore’s invention of the Internet, you have to admit it’s pretty cool, especially given the growing number of suffixes now taken for granted with “cyber,” including our own, very special field of cybersecurity. There’s cybercrime, cyberforce, and even cyberpunk. There’s baked cyber, sautéed cyber, boiled cyber, and cyber etoufee, and Gibson had the Gumption to start it all.

The Recipe For CyberSuccess

As in The Matrix, you have two options. Take the red pill, and you can step out of the digital world and go full Luddite, leaving all binary options behind in pursuit of more pastoral pastures. Take the blue pill, and you can continue to explore and enjoy all the wonders of cyberspace, complete with all the risks inherent to your organization’s cybersecurity. If you take the red pill, well, The Dude abides. If you take the blue pill, call ICS first. We didn’t invent cybersecurity, but we wrote the book on it.

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