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He is often seen with a cigarette between his lips, even if it's raining or there's clearly a 'No Smoking' sign where he is sat, standing or walking through. Spike's constant smoking is a homage to Lupin III, as Lupin's partner, Jigen, smokes cigarettes that are usually in very poor condition, similar to Spike. There is also quite a distinctive reference through Spike's rebellious demeanor and fluffy hair to the famous musician Bob Dylan. Although Yamadera was a fan of Matsuda's, he avoided imitating his distinctive manner of speaking, noting that it "wouldn't have sounded right" for Spike.
Spike is a slothful, nonchalant, indifferent, and lazy character.
He passes the vast majority of his time on the Bebop lounging, watching TV, or sleeping. In a few rare occasions, he is also seen practicing Jeet Kune Do, a martial arts practice he is very skilled in, being among other things passionate of Bruce Lee and his philosophies for example, he follows Lee's "water" analogy for his style of fighting. He is a hardened smoker, shown with a cigarette in his mouth in practically every shot the poor conditions in the cigarettes that are depicted recall those of Daisuke Jigen. Although he rarely acknowledges it, Spike has very little patience.
He also claims to dislike cats.
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Spike is rarely seen excited about something and, even less frequently, says he likes something. He usually behaves phlegmatically and walks slouching almost as if he is sleepwalking. He considers he already died once and therefore doesn't show the slightest fear of the possibility of being killed, often acting as if to challenge death, so to prove he is still alive. However, in a conversation with Faye, he admits to not wanting to die because of "the hate to.
One of the recurring themes surrounding Spike's character is how he views himself and his life. Following the implant of an artificial eye, he says his left eye, the real one, sees the present while the synthetic right eye sees the past, making the past indelible in his mind, not allowing him to get rid of or forget about it. Despite that, he usually encourages others to forget the past as "not important. When he is not working, Spike is very laid back, sarcastic, and lively to the dismay of his crew mates.
He is typically found either resting on the couch or reading magazines. Spike's philosophy seems to be based on the ancient samurai ideals of immediacy, such as considering oneself as dead and the idea of death as being an awakening from a dream, which are both elements of bushido illustrated in the Hagakure. Although people often talk about cowboys in an almost heroic sense, his image is far from the idea of one and, on the contrary, has characteristics typical of an antihero.
He never acts to protect anyone, but only for interest, so he often has to be persuaded to commit himself to a hunt he considers only a little exciting, has a rather sharp and cynical sense of humor, when he pursues a bounty, he throws himself headfirst into action, regardless of damage caused to people and buildings, and doesn't have the slightest moral scruples of having to kill someone. In spite of all this, Spike still has a good heart and, whether he admits it or not, is more caring than he lets on and more than willing to help out others without expecting anything in return, which is rather ironic considering his line of work.
A good example of this is in Session 7 , when Victoria Terpsichore offered him a wad of cash, and he only took a single note while saying the rest was for her husband. He has also shown compassion for Rocco's blind sister in Session 8 , even buying flowers when he went to visit her in hospital and being saddened and sympathetic by the loss of her brother. He treats Ein as kind of emergency food and Ed as a burden, but in reality, despite never showing his companions appreciation, Spike nurtures an obvious affection for each of them and often seems willing to help them.
This affection is shown through his constant choice to not interfere as they face their past, even if meaning he has to pass up a bounty. In particular, Spike shares a genuine brotherly affection with Jet, and it is safe to say that they consider each other their best friend. In fact, they are often seen talking together like two old friends. Although they often fight because of the excessive stubbornness of Spike, occasionally resulting in him being banned from Bebop, these arguments are always resolved in short time.
Jet is also the only person Spike confides about his past. Spike's most complex relationship in the series is the one he has with Faye. Most of the time they usually bicker, however, in moments of danger, Faye has always shown concern for Spike, and Spike has shown some empathy for Faye's situation, but perhaps due to their stubborn natures they can't outright admit to this. Faye has also always taken care of Spike when he was injured, although she still kept a bitter attitude.
The affection between them is quite obvious, and many people have speculated that Faye could be in love with Spike and desires to find a connection with him. Watanabe has addressed the subject, saying, "Sometimes I'm asked the question, 'What does Spike think of Faye? But he's not a very straightforward person and makes sure not to show it. Spike has many talents and abilities, including very sharp eyesight, abnormally acute perception, and extraordinary luck.
It's implied he has little trouble recovering from even fatal injuries after a few days and usually has strong endurance against pain during fights. Spike makes use of sleight-of-hand techniques to win card games, pick pockets, and even to slip things onto other people unnoticed.
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He is well-versed in weaponry such as his personal Jericho , or Ruger P85, as well as other guns and explosives martial arts fighting, and hand-to-hand combat skills due to his past employment with the Red Dragon crime syndicate and occasional training on the Bebop. He follows Jeet Kune Do , the mindset developed by Bruce Lee , though he has a penchant for high kicks of French boxing.
Spike is also a pilot, and flies a converted Asteroid racer called the Swordfish II , which is armed with four machine guns, multiple missile launchers, and a single plasma cannon. Spike has repeatedly demonstrated an exceptionally sharp intellect, although he has a habit for neglecting to plan ahead, as noted by Jet. Spike has repeatedly been able to outwit the entire Red Dragon syndicate, predict the moves of his opponents whether in combat or in the casinos , and use lateral thinking to get out of virtually every situation life throws at him.
Spike can also regurgitate objects he swallows at will, like a casino chip or cigarette and spit them back out. Spike was born on June 26, on Mars. Some speculate he was an orphan and his parents died when he was young. His racial background has been speculated online to be anything from Jewish, American, Italian, Chinese, or Japanese. It has also been speculated he could be Latino, a light-skinned african or the last Mohican by select online communities. Throughout the series, there are some clues given about his past that it can be presumed that he was raised in one of the slums of Mars before becoming a thug, a thief, and then finally a criminal affiliated with the Red Dragon Crime Syndicate where Mao Yenrai , head of the organization, takes him under his wing.
The criminal organization becomes kind of like a family for Spike, and, thanks to his skills, he manages to become, in a short time, one of the top men, even being considered by many in the Red Dragon to someday be the leader. Because of his recklessness, he loses his right eye in an unknown accident, which occurred in a mission on behalf of the Red Dragon, after which he was implanted an artificial eye. Simultaneously, after joining the Red Dragon, Spike meets a woman named Julia during a pool game; it's implied he fell in love with her at first sight.
He also encounters Vicious , and soon, both become candidates for possible successors for Mao as the leader of the organization. While Vicious is ambitious, selfish, ruthless, and willing to do anything to get the leadership role, Spike instead finds no interest in the opportunity. The difference of opinion between the two gives rise to a great mutual hatred as well as a strong rivalry; however, this is not the only reason.
They have a shared history and are shown to have fought and worked together in the past, possibly at one point being good friends. In Spike's flashbacks, he is shown fighting alongside Vicious.
At about this time, Spike gets involved in a shooting probably not with the police, but the assassins of Vicious. He survives and is rescued and healed by Julia.
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It is unclear exactly what links Vicious and Julia, though it seems the most likely that Julia was somehow subdued by Vicious and obliged to obey him, and some elements reveal she might've had a romantic relationship with him, further explaining Vicious' anger at Spike for engaging in an affair with Julia and sending assassins after him.
Having heard of the new bond, Vicious offers Julia to restore her freedom in exchange for the life of Spike, adding that if she did not kill him, they would both end up dead. Spike simultaneously staged his fake death and offered Julia to leave the Red Dragon and run away with him to start a new life. They were supposed to meet in a cemetery on a rainy day. The binary machines of information processing should be eluded by producing noise the old archenemy of cybernetics and information theory. The practice of attacking, sabotaging or overloading infrastructure can be seen as a form of resistance.
Tiqqun preaches a double strategy of sabotaging and lingering, they propagate destroying machines and to avoid producing processable information. This should be accompanied by the production of fog or interference because opacity of actions and motives is essential for revolts against an ideology of transparency. For Tiqqun, cybernetics constitutes a specific form of power knowledge and governing techniques.
They identify cybernetics as the ideology of transparency and a specific, information-based form of control. Under the older term accelerationism a relatively new approach to progressive politics and technology has recently emerged. Especially the Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics , by Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek, boosted a new discourse about contemporary leftist perspectives on radical change.
I understand accelerationism mainly as an intervention into contemporary leftist politics. Leftist politics should rather cope with global capitalism and its complex governmental and economic circuits. Here, accelerationists call for education and cognitive mapping in favor of realistic speculations and political manipulation. Concerning this understanding of speculation and productive manipulation, an implementation into leftist politics of a new understanding of the future can be observed. The future has to be regained as such and has to be designed instead of following the non-visionary and defensive trade unions, social movements or the latest Occupy protests.
When one looks back from this open future, Armen Avanessian points out, the presence can be seen as contingent and open for manipulation and political navigation. Concerning this productive understanding of political navigation and strategic manipulation, accelerationism also designates the active acceleration of technological progress.
This kind of politics on the one hand implies the overcoming of the technological analphabetism in wide parts of the contemporary left. On the other hand, the techno-political acceleration should proceed within existing capitalism. Technologies are understood as tools and conditions for planning, thinking and doing. A consequence of accelerationist politics is that infrastructure, communication technology, medication, mathematical methods etc. Srnicek and Williams deliver some practical hints for navigating towards radical futures, too.
In general, they propose a counter-hegemonic strategy including radical think tanks, propaganda, alternative economics, hierarchical organizations, utopian pop-culture and all kinds of technological experimentation. Srnicek and Williams propose that representative parties should work together with mass movements and the state should be turned into a meaningful tool for the people. I want to offer deeper insights into decisive problems with these projects, problems that are related to political and bureaucratic structures in which innovations were implemented.
In the early s both cybernetics as well as information theory — having emerged from military research in the US — were called pseudo-scientific, reactionary and idealistic.
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Traditional soviet academics battled the idea of disciplinary take-overs, and media comments imagined the rise of robot-soldiers without conscience and robot-workers without class-consciousness. Nikita Khrushchev recognized cybernetics as a new form of governing technique and as a way to overcome the weak economic situation of the post-Stalin era. In the Soviet Academy of Sciences demanded an accelerated development and broader usage of computers and statistics for planning.
The soviet economy was also conceptualized by cybernetic ideas and planning was understood as a control system with various feedback loops. Kitov wrote to Khrushchev in , that computerization. Kitov soon lost his academic position and party membership because of formal and power-related reasons after he proposed a dual-use network of the military and civil sector. Military authorities criticized Kitov heavily, because they were not interested in any associations to potential economic weakness. Political authorities were concerned about their loss of direct control and the lack of ideology in automated management.
His plan for a computer network all over the Soviet Union for monitoring labor, production and retailing would integrate a number of existing informational infrastructures and included more than regional network nodes interconnected by wide-band channels as well as over twenty thousand local computer centers. The structure would additionally provide a distributed data bank accessible from everywhere. This idea for data compiling, storing and processing, later specified together with Nikolai Fedorenko, was crucial to the whole concept and would have meant a major shift in soviet bureaucracy.
Instead of collecting raw economic data and feeding different administrative channels, Glushkov and Federenko thought of single storage in central data banks, which would then be made accessible for all different kinds of usage. The opposition against such proposals quickly increased. The plans were criticized from three positions. First, bureaucrats and factory managers did not feel attracted to more observation and standardized control over their daily work and general efficiency.
Second, more liberal economists saw a new rise of centralization and extensive planning from above. Finally, the building of a universal computerized data network was confronted with resistance from top political level in order to preserve the administrative status quo. OGAS included the former plans of thousands of computer centers, the connection of automation networks and the installation of a powerful supervising agency. Driven by the wish to conserve the balance of power and authority over strictly divided competences, the general cybernetic idea of OGAS was fragmented into separate technological tools.
After the 24th Party Congress of , several ministries, agencies, the party and the military increased their individual implementation of networks and information technology for their particular needs. They all focused on the technological aspects and neglected the comprehensive cybernetic management models. The different programs were not compatible to each other, both on hardware and software levels. Beside the secret and non-transparent systems of the military sector, there were single and incompatible networks constructed for aviation, banking, weather prediction, as well as numerous state and party bodies.
I want to emphasize one particular insight that is central for the progress of cyber-communist approaches. Technological and scientific insufficiencies were not the prime problem for building a general cybernetic system for the Soviet economy. Instead, political mechanisms of power, information exclusivity and competence skirmishes prevented a technologically bolstered, cybernetic re-coordination of the economy.
The political, academic and military divisions showed a tendency for applying only parts of the large-scale innovations for their particular purpose. Computer technology, information networks and especially cybernetic modeling are by definition general ideas applicable to various problems. Military authorities, economics, politicians and scientists did all anticipate benefits for their particular needs in the Cold War. One problem in the Soviet Union was, for example, the lack of standardization and coordination for computer networks.
Without such standards for digital communication and because of incompatible hardware and software the bunch of different soviet networks were never to be connected. Each one was sheltered and veiled by intransparency and the fear of losing already gained privileges. Latin America offered a rather different effort of socialist politics meeting the frontier of cybernetics and computing.
Besides the differences, I will highlight similarities to the Soviet case. There have been several attempts of socialist politics politically distanced from the Soviet Union around the world and the government of the Unidad Popular in Chile from until is one quite short, but intensively debated case. President Salvador Allende lead the multiparty alliance that ranged from the Communist Party to Christian socialists. In this political setting, a small group of government agency employees started to work on a computer and communications program. Two aims were crucial for their effort: the system should coordinate the heavily extended but weakly organized state run sector, and additionally they were looking for a model fitting the specific Chilean style of socialism.
Allende was eager to establish radical change within constitutional limits, to strengthen worker participation and to concede civil autonomies. The developers in Chile found a British cybernetician and the short but thrilling story of Project Cybersyn started.
The British cybernetician Stafford Beer was a successful consulter and promoter of management models. The young Chilean engineer Fernando Flores contacted him in July Flores was a high-ranking manager of the Production Development Corporation called CORFO, which had control over several weakly coordinated nationalized sectors. These two theoretical proposals were the conceptual foundation of Project Cybersyn. Cybersyn consisted of four central components. Cybernet was a communications network that was composed of Teletype machines linked to one central mainframe computer in Santiago.
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The best solution to transmit data from the production sites to the center seemed to be a telex network. The second component of Cybersyn was a statistical software called Cyberstride. The data was collected in individual plants by managers and sent to Santiago, where it was worked into punch cards for the mainframe and then calculated. Based on these statistical calculations the information was sent back to the peripheral production sites. Cyberstride should work like an alarm system for resource problems.
It was not a strict control or automation tool, because it should only indicate potential problems to factories, which were then relatively free in adjusting. The last component was the central operations room in Santiago. All the information of Cyberstride and CHECO were displayable in the Opsroom that was designed for participation of workers, engineers and politicians.
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