Journey to the Wired West is a blog by Michigan State University PhD student Daniel Fandino that focuses on the intersection of history, technology, popular culture, and the digital world. Daniel’s studies focus on U.S. cultural history, Modern Japan, and digital history, so this web site reflects a particular emphasis on the connections between the United States and Japan.
Journey to the Wired West takes its name from the breakthrough 1998 Japanese anime Serial Experiments Lain (シリアルエクスペリメンツレイン), where the Wired (ワイヤード) is a worldwide virtual reality network that encompasses all forms of communications from the internet to radio to television. It is also a reference to the classic 16th century Chinese novel Journey to the West (西遊記). Lastly, the title reflects an attempt to build on the trans-Pacific association between the United States and the countries of Asia, as to an American, Japan and China lie to the West.
Daniel Fandino is a PhD graduate student at Michigan State University. His academic interests focus on the relationship between history, popular culture and technology. His other interests include photography, the virtual and real world histories of computer games and the relationship between the Americas and East Asia. He is one of the editors of Assembling the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Essays on the Social, Cultural and Geopolitical Domains. His most recent academic work is a chapter entitled “Remembering Fictional History and Virtual War in Eve Online” in Virtual Dark Tourism: Ghost Roads, published by Springer in 2018.
Audio for Wired History is recorded on a Blue Microphones Snowball nicknamed IT-O and edited using Audacity. Images seen on the site were taken with a Lumix DMC LX-7, Nikon D40, Nikon D7200, or Samsung Gear 360.