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"I'm a fairly visual thinker. In doing science, I think in terms of pictures of things happening, and then do the mathematics."
- Gregory Benford

Psychoscanner  
  A device capable of taking impressions, feelings and memories from living brains; it can be used on animals as well.  

The aliens needed to know what Buck knew about human beings. They needed to know what Buck really knew and felt; fortunately, the psychoscanner worked just as well on dogs.

Psychoscanners have been able to secure excellent pictures and sound memories from the animal. It is of a species that lives in symbiosis with the creatures operating the space craft. Its utility to the superior race is not yet clear... The animal's vision appears to be relatively poor, but its hearing and smell are excellent. It's memories of smells, in particular, are especially vivid... Apparently, however, little or no technical information can be had from the animal because of the disinterest of "Buck" - this is the auditory memory of the animal's name for itself - in such matters.
Technovelgy from Propagandist, by Murray Leinster.
Published by Astounding Science-Fiction in 1947
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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Propagandist
  More Ideas and Technology by Murray Leinster
  Tech news articles related to Propagandist
  Tech news articles related to works by Murray Leinster

Psychoscanner-related news articles:
  - Bowlingual Translates Canine Speech

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