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Cyberspace

  • By: Bruno Moriset
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

The term cyberspace describes the worldwide network of interconnected computers and the amount of digital data to which it gives access. The word was coined in 1984 by William Gibson in a famous science fiction novel, Neuromancer. The prefix cyber derives from the ancient Greek kubernan, which means “to navigate.” The metaphor of navigating, or exploring a new, virtual world, is justified by the incommensurable size and complexity of the Internet and the World Wide Web (the Web). Accessible information and applications are often structured in a way that replicates the real world. We connect on, and travel across, Web “sites.” An increasing part of everyday life—at least in wealthy countries—is spent connected to Internet-based applications, for purposes of business, shopping, gaming, travel, social meetings, ...

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