The Matrix: the red pill or the blue pill

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by EmoBorg, Dec 11, 2013.

?

red pill or blue pill

Poll closed Dec 21, 2013.
  1. Blue pill - stay in the simulated reality in blissful ignorance.

    9 vote(s)
    39.1%
  2. Red pill - "wake up" from the simulated reality and join the free humans in Zion.

    14 vote(s)
    60.9%
  1. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Still trying to figure that one out. As I understand it, the Matrix is basically a holodeck writ large. (Although, in a sense it's not even that - all it really is, is basically a shared dream that everyone plugged into it is having.) How can physical locations in the program have any meaning?

    Sure, a person in the Matrix can take all the red pills they want, but I still don't understand how this enables anyone to locate that person's real body. Or, having to exit from the Matrix by going to a phone booth - again, this is within the Matrix, so I assume that actual physical locations in the program are meaningless. Is this just a MacGuffin of sorts?
     
  2. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

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    It's like a computer, I suppose. How do you shut a computer down?

    You either have to know where to look to find the "Shut Down" button and click on it (like the phone booths), or you can physically unplug it.

    As for the pill itself, it's like a hashtag. Neo takes #redpill. People in the real world can then search for #redpill and find out where he's being stored.
     
  3. Tosk

    Tosk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Why do you assume that? The conceit is that the Matrix is the same as what we the audience consider to be the real world, so the art and culture would be the same as what you're used to. They have art, film, music, fashion...
     
  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I didn't think the Matrix looked particularly dull.

    Green, yes. But that was intentional. It always had a greenish hue (like the AlphaVerse from Charlie Jade) just to distinguish it from the real world.
     
  5. Set Harth

    Set Harth Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Because the whole "the real world is trashed and doesn't look like Manhattan" wasn't an obvious enough indicator, I guess?
     
  6. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    In the question's premise I'm guess we're TOLD what the "real world" is like? Morpheous says, "It's an utter crap-hole where you're going to be mostly living in a rusty hovership eating runny oatmeal and you'll only ever see the dullest colors imaginable. Oh, and we live in a shitty dungeon of a city where we have caveman raves every other Tuesday."

    Yeah, one Blue Pill, please.

    As Morpheous himself says, "What is real?"

    If my mind doesn't know the difference from the input of the "real world" and the input of The Matrix then I might as well go with the place where life seems somewhat enjoyable and "normal." I don't exactly think the people on the hoverships/Zion are living that great of a life.

    It was always my interpretation that life in Matrix was analogous to the actual real world. With just as much diversity in culture and what have you as we actually have. Hell, before it seemed established everyone lived in a single "mega city" I had just assumed the Matrix was exactly like our own world. That *we* were living in The Matrix and didn't know it.

    I don't see why culture (movies, music, etc.) would be sterile or non-existent given the billions of people in The Matrix who, presumably, would have the creatively and range to make these things. I don't think we see enough of life in The Matrix to get an impression of what life is really like there beyond "like our world."

    So, yeah, Blue Pill for sure. As Cypher(?) said, "ignorance is bliss." More than that, "the real world sucks and I want to eat a delicious-looking rare steak and not slop that came out of an industrial oil dispenser drinking engine degreaser."
     
  7. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The matrix is most definitely intentionally dull and made passive; it's a zoo, a prison - as expressly said in the movie. It's purpose is NOT to be a culture festival and encourage diversity, but to encourage passivity and uniformity. It is a highly regimented dictatorship.
    Everyone who makes even a single move to change this status quo - and is reachble within the matrix - is most likely 'erased'.

    Also - it's interesting to see how many would willingly accept a life inside a high security prison in order to have the "freedom" of a boring job/otherwise passive life - and, of course, food security.
    These amenities are available inside current high security prisons, as well. Any volunteers?
     
  8. Tosk

    Tosk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    How is that comparable? Would these volunteers have their minds altered so that while they are in prison they think they are living free, making their own decisions?
     
  9. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The illusion of free will is NOT free will. And, in the matrix, you don't have more freedom of choice than in a high security prison. Arguably less.

    I'm reminded of the movie - Morpheus' words to the effect that 'most humans are hopelessly dependent of the matrix and they will fight to protect it'. Words much more realistic than I previously gave them credit for.

    Apparently, many here are so hopelessly dependent on tasty food security that they would sacrifice their freedom - agree to become, in all aspects of their so-called lives, cogs in a machine with no possibility of this ever changing - for some cuisine. They sold themselves very cheaply.
    But wait, as long as they can lie to themselves - regardless of how transparent the lie - that they are free, etc, then it's all right. lol.
     
  10. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    The results to the poll are making me a sad panda.
     
  11. EmoBorg

    EmoBorg Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Morpheus Explains that Reality is basically electrical signals interpreted by your brain. The Matrix is a very real place for those connected to it. Reality is what we perceive of things around us.

    If we look at a glass half filled with water. We would either say that it is half full or half empty. Both statements are true and that leads us to the concept of duality.

    Both the Matrix and Zion are real to their inhabitants. The Matrix is a real place for those in it, while those who live in Zion, their reality is a real place. The Matrix is an alternate reality.


    I disagree with those who talk about free will. Free will is based on choice and the Merovingian explains that choice is an illusion.

    Free Will does not exist. We don't have the free choice of choosing where we are born, in which country, in which gender, in which race or with what sexual identity.

    We don't have a choice of being born of rich or poor parents, or having good looks or average looks, or being able bodied and of sound minded or being born physically and/or mentally challenged.

    Everything is determined; freedom exists only in understanding that everything including ourselves is determined; and knowledge is power over our condition.

    That is why i choose the Matrix reality over the reality of Zion. It looks way more comfortable :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013
  12. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Nah, free will exists. You can turn left or right. You can jump off a building any time you want to end your life.
    Just because you have no influence on your starting conditions does not negate the existence of free will.


    That Merovingian video reminds me why I hate the Matrix films. Big bags of hot pseudo philosophical air.
     
  13. Tosk

    Tosk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Your body would have less freedom, but not your mind.

    There's no need to be condescending just because some people dare to choose a different option to you. No one is saying "Plug me in right now!" The option is The Matrix vs the Real World of the the film...a bleak shit-hole. (And you keep oversimplifying it by referring to it simply as food security, when it is clear there are more factors at play than just food.)

    If some people would rather live in true blissful ignorance, so what? How do you know you're not doing that right now?

    And you do have free will in the Matrix. Clearly. People make decisions every step of the way. If there is no free will, how are there so many people living in Zion who were once part of the Matrix? They would have to choose to leave, no?
     
  14. EmoBorg

    EmoBorg Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Your starting conditions are very important. If you had been born in Somalia, Afghanistan or Colombia, you choices in life will be different from the ones you have now. Everything is predetermined.

    You can turn left or right depending on where you go. If your house is located at a certain place , you must make the correct sequence of turns to reach it. Where you buy your house depends on the availability of the house to you when you were house hunting and whether you could afford it or not.

    Similar thing for going to work. The place you work at, is the place that hired you. All that is predetermined.

    If you suffer from mental illness, that could lead you to kill yourself. That is predetermined.

    If one's get cancer, it could be that the person inherited the gene that causes cancer. Where is the free will in that.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013
  15. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Not quite, Tosk. You see, dictatorships that impose conformity/homogeneity - and who don't care about their subjects beyond keeping them docile - are not big on freedom of the mind/ideas/etc.
    And all such known dictatorships are amateurs by comparison to the matrix - which can erase and rewrite the memories of the plugged-in slaves.

    People make decisions in a current high security prison, as well. The range of the choices is quite limited, though. Much like in the matrix.

    And people choosing to live in a high security prison - the matrix - because they can't process being in an environment different from the one they are used to and desperately run after a distorted illusion of familiarity - at the cost of becoming slaves?
    My condescension is quite appropriate.

    Assuming the real world is a simulation (which is quite different from the matrix as depicted - the prison/zoo), I can assure you I didn't choose to live here because it has better cuisine (or better clothes or a boring, dead-end job, or a boring life with no perspectives whatsoever, etc). Indeed, no choice was offered.

    Many other posters, on the other hand - well...
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2013
  16. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    Can we really say that much about what life is like inside The Matrix? I mean for all outside appearances it looked to be very much like our own world. People driving, commuting, we saw buildings, factories, fancy cars, virtually everything we have here. What do we have to go on that life inside The Matrix is so terrible beyond Neo's experiences and given his "The One" status and that he was inherently 'different' that may just have been how he was experiencing things.

    We *do* get a good impression of what life is like in "the real world" and we see that it's a shit-hole. Even if you're one of the "civilians" living in Zion it seems like life ain't too great. Want to talk about a lack of art and movies? Yeah... I didn't exactly get the impression Zion has a functioning Hollywood-level production going on inside those caverns or an IMAX-3D cinema.

    Again, to me, I got the impression life inside The Matrix was very much like our own life.
     
  17. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Trekker4747

    Zion beats the matrix vis-a-vis freedom of the mind and freedom in general by a large margin.

    Let's say the agents decide certain ideas within the matrix are destabilising and decide to do an upgrade. This upgrade will include the deleting of said ideas and rewriting of the memories from the minds of all slaves affected. You think you'll have a say in this, mr. slave?

    Considering how homogeneous the matrix was depicted, such tabula rasa upgrades are common.
     
  18. Chemahkuu

    Chemahkuu Admiral Admiral

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    The Merovingian was eventually going to be the cause of it's collapse, he was not meant to survive the 2.0 purge but somehow did and pulled hundreds of defunct programs with him.

    He continued to save programs meant for deletion, altering them for his own use through some process that although gave them new abilities (Twins, Vampires etc) left them highly unstable and worsening the deterioration of the prime program.

    Seraph was the only program to fully survive the process in functional form, at the cost of all his wings and therefore much of his programmed 2.0 Agent abilities.

    His effect on the Matrix would reach a point where he was able to pose no threat to Agents or other safeguards within the program, no matter how much his actions were curtailed by each One in their confrontation.

    We have no idea how long it would have been before he over ran the Matrix with his own damaged programs the way Smith did, albiet slower and more subtle in his actions.

    We know he also commanded the data lines to the Machine maneframe, able to smuggle programs back and forwards to it, so he could block them sending the Digi-Sentinals in to stop him.

    I think the catastrophic collapse of the Matrix program through a seige from an insane meta-program over the course of weeks, months or even years as it fell apart would be a pretty nasty way to die, the data corruption killing the podborn by degrees of neurological shock.
     
  19. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    Thanks for linking to my profile. I'd have no idea who I was without it. ;)

    We're told by Agent Smith that the initial Matrix was an idealized world that people rejected. So I doubt they're dicking around to much with thought, free-will and such lest another rejection occur.

    Still, knowing what Zion and the real world is like I'd choose the Matrix.
     
  20. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Trekker4747

    You think the machines created a perfect world without rewriting the minds of every plugged in human on a daily basis?
    That the homogenised collection of stereotypes that is the matrix is achievable without such upgrades, mr. slave? Hope does spring eternal.

    And let us be clear - even if there are no such upgrades, all plugged-in inhabitants of the matrix are and remain slaves - the machines grow them as crops, keep them as batteries and terminate them without hesitation or moral qualms when this suits them. None of the inhabitants having any say in these matters.
    A slavery more profound than any in history.
    But hey, you have your illusion of cuisine and this makes it all right, yes?