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Mindkiller

Mindkiller is a 1982 novel by science fiction writer Spider Robinson. The novel, set in the late 1980s, explores the social implications of technologies to manipulate the brain, beginning with wireheading, the use of electrical current to stimulate the pleasure center of the brain in order to achieve a narcotic high.

A central character in the novel is a young woman who has attempted suicide by permanent wireheading, the constant use of which overrides desires for food and drink.

The novel incorporates as its second chapter a slightly modified version of his short story "God is an Iron" (first published in the May 1979 issue of Omni), a social commentary on the nature of addiction and addictive personalities built on wireheading.

The novel is unusual in its use of point of view, in a fashion similar to that of Robinson's mentor Robert A. Heinlein's novel The Number of the Beast.

An independent sequel, Time Pressure is set in 1974 and concerns the later discovery of a method of limited time travel by the protagonists of Mindkiller, though this connection may not be obvious to the casual reader until late in the novel. Baen Books has published these two novels, along with a third book in the series, Lifehouse, as an omnibus volume under the title The Lifehouse Trilogy.

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