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What have we learned from the Cybermen?


Paper published by Doctor Tanizaki

Cybernetics Expert

Profile of Doctor Tanizaki by Ianto Jones

Dr Tanizaki

Dr Tanizaki is head of the Cybertechnology Institute of Osaka, founded 2007 after the Cyberman invasion. Purpose of the CiO was to monitor and learn from the Cybermen and their debris.

Many early experiments proved unsuccessful, especially due to the lack of available material (mechanical or biological), or any way of understanding the equipment that was used.

Dr Tanizaki once said during an interview, “I wish I understood them. It’s like hoping to find God on the autopsy table – all you’re staring at is a set of parts. In some ways, horrible as this is to say, I wish I’d become one of these creatures. Just to know how it all happened. What if felt like – even though, of course, we know that these poor creatures felt nothing at all.”

Dr Tanizaki is incredibly fussy about travel and hotels. First class and five star. Very keen to know what kind of treadmill is in the hotel gym, due to a recurrent knee injury.

What Have We Learned From The Cybermen?

Cybernetics is “efficiency of action” taught Louis Couffignal, an early pioneer. “Efficiency” is what the Cybermen have shown us. Their technology reduced humanity to its core essentials, and then rebuilt those components so that they functioned more efficiently. It was a fundamental reimagining of the human concept, a revision not just of body but of brain. If we look to the Greek origin of the word “Cybernetics”, we see that it was originally about the theory of government. Rather than replacement limbs or organs, we return to the Greek view of restructuring human behaviour along unified lines of efficiency. This is what the Cybermen are – a model of physical and psychological efficiency. A simplified structure where every unit (we cannot say individual) worked towards a defined Telos (Greek again, for goal or purpose). If you look at the human way of doing things, you can see at least five different levels and modes of interaction, which I shall detail later. What is most important is that these are layers of inefficiency, with each individual working towards their own goals, and only towards a unified goal if that suits their own selfish purpose. A way of defining a unified goal is to identify, perhaps, supporters of a football team – they display, there, a shared wish for success which can also [extract ends].


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