In May 1960, Manfred E. Clynes and Nathan S. Kline attended the Air Force School of Aviation Medicine to participate in the Psychophysiological Aspects of Space Flight Symposium. They presented a paper called “Drugs, Space, and Cybernetics”. The proceedings of the symposium were published in 1961 but before that, an excerpt of Clynes & Kline’s paper appeared in the September issue of Astronautics magazine (issue 13), entitled “Cyborgs and Space”. Aside from an early mention in the New York Times, this is the first time the word appears in print.
September 1960. That’s 50 years ago.
To commemorate, I’ve organized a project called “50 Posts About Cyborgs”. Over the course of the month, a whole gaggle of people have agreed to put up work ruminating on the use and abuse of the term. We’ve got essays, fiction, links to great older material, comics, and even a song.
It’s gonna be great.