Trope-a-Day: Manchurian Agent

Manchurian Agent: You might at first think that given the advanced sophotechnology of the Empire and some of its peer civilizations, with appropriate technologies for mental editing, gnostic overlays, and thought-viruses, that Manchurian Agent would be something that happened an awful lot.

But no, largely because with appropriate technologies for mental auditing, this sort of thing rather stands out – even when civilians go to have a routine backup made (After all, that much change in these unusual ways? Triggers the caution-and-review alarm.), and certainly when people in sensitive positions undergo their routine audit to make sure no-one’s pulled exactly this kind of thing.

Which is not to say that there isn’t some devious mental skullduggery going on from time to time, but it has to be a heck of a lot subtler than this for the agencies responsible to get away with it.

Trope-a-Day: Brown Note

Brown Note: Basilisk fractals, and their audible, etc., equivalents, which is to say, various forms of sensory input that can take advantage of cognitive bugs to actually crash your mind – and, at least theoretically, can implant thought-virus programming, although that capability’s never yet been seen in the wild.  Most modern (artificial or modified) cognitive architectures include protection against known basilisk hacks, but known is, regrettably, often less than all.  And baselines are still vulnerable, as are people who don’t keep up to date with Cognitive Threats Monthly.  Apply your service packs, kids!

Doing it with a thought-virus that is implanted into the mind using regular educational axiom feeds or other mind-editing tech is too trivial to even mention.