Usage and origins
Wetware, in the context of the brain, refers to the biological components and processes that make up the central nervous system (CNS) and the human mind. The term is derived from the computer-related concepts of hardware and software, but applied to living organisms.
The prefix “wet” in wetware refers to the presence of water in living creatures. The term wetware is used to describe the biological equivalent of hardware and software in humans, particularly in relation to the brain and the mind. It has found usage in various works of fiction, scholarly publications, and popularizations.
The term gained significant attention and became a buzzword in the early 1990s. In 1991, a Wetware Convention was organized in Amsterdam by Dutch media theorist Geert Lovink to counterbalance the “out-of-body” experiments conducted in high-tech laboratories, such as those exploring virtual reality.