Cyberpunk Information Database

Cyberpunk Timeline



Early use of the word "punk" to signify a criminal.


The word "cybernetics" coined by Norbert Wiener


The Naked Lunch published


The word "cyborg" coined by Manfred Clynes


Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep published


K.W. Jeter completes Dr. Adder (Spring)


"The Girl Who Was Plugged In" published in New Dimensions 3

Gravity's Rainbow published


Shockwave Rider published


The Ramones release first album; punk begins


"Fragments of a Hologram Rose" published in Unearth (summer)

Never Mind the Bullocks - Here's the Sex Pistols released; punk gets notorious

The Clash release first album; punk gets serious

The Ophiuchi Hotline published


Generation X, with Billy Idol on lead vocals, releases first album


The Clash release London Calling


City Come A-Walkin' published

The Artificial Kid published


"Johnny Mnemonic" published in Omni (May)

Spacetime Donuts published

"The Gernsback Continuum " published in Universe 11

"True Names" published

Sterling introduces Gibson's "Burning Chrome" to the writer's workshop in Austin


Software published (Jan.)

Gibson attends ArmadiloCon and reads the opening chapter of his work-in-progress, Neuromancer. "Behind the Mirrorshade: A Look at Punk SF" panel held. (Oct.)

Blade Runner released

Tron released


Cheap Truth begins publication

Gibson, Sterling and Shiner visit Rudy Rucker in Lynchburg after Balticon; Virginia hasn't been this hip since Thomas Jefferson was alive

War Games released

The short story "Cyberpunk" by Bruce Bethke published in Amazing Science Fiction Stories; this is, allegedly, the first use of the term 'cyberpunk' anywhere (Nov.)

The word "transrealism" coined by Rudy Rucker who issues "A Transreal Manifesto" in The Bulletin of the SFWA (Winter)


Neuromancer published; "cyberspace" coined

Dr. Adder published

Decoder, a film by Klaus Maeck, released

Frontera published

Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution published

In Japan, robots kill four humans in separate incidents

Terminator released

2600 begins publication

VPL Research Inc. founded by Jason Lanier

Gardner Dozois, reviewing "hot new writers" for The Washington Post, refers to a group called "cyberpunks". The name sticks (Dec. 30)


Schismatrix published

20 Minutes into the Future (aka Max Headroom) released

Eclipse published

Donna Haraway's "Manifesto for Cyborgs" published in Socialist Review (Apr.)

Japanese translation of Neuromancer published (July)

"Cyberpunks" panel convenes at the National SF Convention in Austin. Panelists are Rudy Rucker, John Shirley, Bruce Sterling, Lou Shiner, Pat Cadigan and Greg Bear (Aug. 31)

"Slamdancing in SF" published in REM #2


Burning Chrome published

Hardwired published

"Pakistani Brain" virus infects IBM computers world-wide (Jan.)

Rudy Rucker's "What is Cyberpunk?" appears in REM #3 (Feb.)

Count Zero published (Mar.)

Kim Stanley Robinson's parody "Down and Out in the year 2000" appears in IASF (Apr.)

Norman Spinrad's "The Neuromantics" published in IASF (May)

John Shirley confounds the elders at the Science Fiction Research Association panel "Cyberpunk or Cyberjunk" (June 28)

Cheap Truth ceases publication (Aug.)

Michael Swanwick's "A User's Guide to the Post Moderns" published in IASF (Nov.)

Mirrorshades published (Dec.)

Interzone reprints "the New Science Fiction" by Vincent Omniaveritas (Winter)


First German translation of Neuromancer published by Heyne

Science Fiction Eye premiers with all cyberpunk issue

Robocop released

Akira released

Bubble Gum Crisis begins in Japan

Decoder magazine begins in Italy

Mirrorshades published in Germany [Spiegelschatten]


In England, Max Dowhham's "Cyberpunk: the Final Solution" published in Vague

Islands in the Net published

Mississippi Review entire issue published devoted to cyberpunk; academic colonization of the Movement begins in earnest

Metrophage published

Shatter graphic novel published

Going GaGa begins publication

bOING bOING begins publication

Wetware published (Apr.)

The Internet worm strikes (Nov.)

Mona Lisa Overdrive published (Nov.)

Mirrorshades published in Brazil [Reflexo do Futuro]

Mirrorshades published in Japan (Spring)


"Fiction 2000" conference held in Leeds (June)

Mondo 2000 begins publication

Neuromancer: The Graphic Novel published

The Cuckoo's Egg published

Semiotext(e):SF published

Cherry comix special cyberpunk issue published

Crystal Express published

Tetsuo: The Iron Man released

Timothy Leary interviews William Gibson

Phrack #24 distributed containing the E911 document hacked from BellSouth (Feb. 24)


The Difference Engine published

Hardware released

EFF founded

Secret Service raids Steven Jackson Games in Austin (Mar. 1)

Harper's Magazine publishes "Is Computer Hacking a Crime?", a transcript of a WELL conference during which Phiber Optik hacks the TRW database and distributes John Barlow's credit history (Mar.)

Operation Sun Devil (May 7-9)

Paul Di Filippo's "Ribofunk" published in bOING bOING #2 (Winter)

In England, The Hardcore special "Cyberpunk is Dead" issue published (Winter)


Postmodernism, or, The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism published

Storming the Reality Studio published

Synners published

Terminator 2 released

The Silicon Man published

Transreal! published

U.S. intelligence agents reportedly cripple Iraqi air defense computers with a virus during the Gulf War (Jan)

Lewis Shiner announces in the Op-Ed pages of the New York Times that he has resigned from cyberpunk (Jan.7)

Steven Jackson Games sues the Secret Service (May 1)

"Michelangelo" virus media panic begins (Dec.)


EFF moves to Washington D.C. and is immediately compromised

The Hacker Crackdown published

Snow Crash published

Mondo 2000: A User's Guide to the New Edge published

The Lawnmower Man released

"Michelangelo" doomsday; nothing happens (Mar. 6)

Jaron Lanier loses his patents to his creditors (Nov)

Future Sex begins publication (Nov)

Freejack released

Tetsuo: Body Hammer released


Wired begins publication

Virtual Light published

Fringe Ware Review begins publication

Nemisis released. Gibson will later praise the film as "sort of early Gibson meets Terminator 2 ... it has a few bits that are just brilliant Cyberpunk."

Bubble Gum Crisis released in the West

Time Magazine "Cyberpunk" cover story; real cyberpunks outraged (Feb. 8)

Court rules in favor of Steven Jackson Games, Secret Service ordered to pay damages (Feb.)

Wild Palms premiers (May 16)

Billy Idol's new album Cyberpunk released; real cyberpunks outraged (July)

Flame Wars; The Discourse of Cyberculture published

Deus X published (Jan)


The Hacker and the Ants published

Data Trash published

Cyberia published

"VNS Manifesto" published in Unnatural: Techno-theory for a Contaminated Culture

Phiber Optic begins serving a 13 month sentence for computer intrusion and conspiracy (Jan.)

In Paris, "Cyber SM" gives first public demonstration of virtual sexuality, S&M style (Jan.)

Line Noiz e-zine distributes results of its opinion poll "Does Cyberpunk Still Exist?"; no conclusions, as usual (Aug. 12)

Western news media reports two thirds of Russian computer users have encountered viruses, 85% of those viruses were Russian made (Nov.)

Crypt Newsletter begins

10th anniversary edition of Neuromancer published (July)


The Diamond Age published

EFF retreats to San Francisco

The Cyberpunk Handbook published; cynical opportunism reaches new low

Wired UK edition begins (March)

Synthetic Pleasures released

The Net released

Hackers released

From Australia, Geekgirl debuts on the Net (Jan.)

Kevin Metnick arrested by the FBI for numerous computer crimes (Feb. 15)

Italian police raid BITS Against the Empire BBS accusing the computer group of subversion (Feb. 28)

The Steampunk Trilogy published (Apr.)

VR 5 premiers (May 24)

Virtual Futures conference meets at Warwick University (May 26-28)

Johnny Mnemonic released (May 26)

Arthur & Marilouise Kroker publish "Johnny Mnemonic: The Day Cyberpunk Died" in Ctheory (Jun.)

K.W. Jeter's Blade Runner 2: The Edge of Human published-- to the consternation of all (Nov.)

Western news sources identify Bulgaria as the leading exporter of computer viruses


Escape Velocity; Cyberculture at the End of the Century published

FutureSex goes online

Ramones break up

Ribofunk! collection published (Mar.)

Datableed - the second Virtual Futures conference meets (May)

Sex Pistols reunion tour begins at Hollola, Finland (June 21)

Holy Fire Published (July)

Idoru published (Sept.)

Kyoko Date, the virtual girl, activated

Hacking the Future by Arthur & Marilouise Kroker published

Clinton signs Communications Decency Act into US law (Feb. 8)

Wired magazine, as a preliminary action to a planned IPO, files a prospectus with the SEC valuing itself at $447 million -- 17 times greater than its actual revenues. Much derision follows in the financial press (May 30)

Wired magazine's IPO tanks (Oct. 24)

Blade Runner 3: Replicants Night by K.W. Jeter published -- for no good reason (Nov)


A Cyberpunk Manifesto published by Christian As. Kirtchev (Feb 14 1997)

Freeware published (April)

Wired UK edition folds (Feb)

US Supreme Court rules Communications Decency Act unconstitutional (Jun 26)

Blade Runner computer game released by Westwood (Nov)

First authorized Russian translation of Neuromancer [Neiromant] published by Terra Fantastica


The Cyberpunk Project and Cyberpunk Information Database opened (November)

William Gibson's and Tom Maddox's episode, "Kill Switch" premiers on The X-Files (Feb 15)

Burning Chrome stage adaptation opens in Chicago (Feb 6)


William Gibson's and Tom Maddox's second episode "First Person Shooter" on The X-Files


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  Cyberpunk Timeline
  Is Cyberpunk Dead?

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