True Names Origin

Vernor Vinge describes the event that inspired his ur-Cyberpunk story True Names in an interview ca 1995 with Kevin Kelly:

Vinge: In '78 or '79, our university got a little PDP-11/44 with a few dial-in lines. In order to work from home, I bought myself an enormously expensive display with a keyboard and a 300-baud modem. One day, I was lurking around, and someone started talking to me with the Talk program. We chatted for some time, trying to figure out who each other was. Finally, I told him I couldn't talk anymore because, really, I was a personality simulator so, goodbye. After I broke that connection I thought, I just lived a science fiction story!

(cf Still True Names (2005-02-16), ...) - ^z - 2019-04-03