Vantage point

Friday, June 27, 2003


I saw Matrix Reloaded.....but I want to talk about something that has been bothering me since I saw the first part of the movie. This whole "fields of humans" concept which is the basic reason for designing the matrix in the first place. At first sight it seems inconsistent with the Law of Conservation of energy. Analyse it carefully and you can think up scenarios to somehow rationalise it, but it still seems untenable.

This is what Morpheus says to Neo while explaining the matrix -

Without the sun, the machines sought out a new energy source to survive. The human body generates more bio-electricity than a 120-volt battery and over 25,000 B.T.U.'s of body heat. Combined with a form of fusion, the machines had found all the energy they would ever need.

It is shown that the dead are liquefied and fed to the living humans with such a low level energy input, will the body still produce 25,000 BTUs? And how long will they be able to feed the dead? Even in the most passive form, the energy requirements of a human body are considerable. We will need many dead bodies to be fed intravenously. This means that the number of people dying will have to be a lot more than the number of people living. If not then this closed system of "human fields" will have to be fed some extra energy from the outside. If the system needs extra mass/energy to be provided from outside, then it is not a "source" of energy, but merely a way to convert some other energy input into electricity. Now with technology as superior as the machines seem to possess, it would surely be conceivable to design a more efficient way of producing electricity for the fusion than a field of human bodies.

Now again, about the ambiguously mentioned "form of fusion". I would like to know more about this "form of fusion". Without this fusion, the whole idea seems wrong even in theory. If the sun has been shut out of the "system" then how will any new energy enter the system? It can happen only through fusion, the same method by which the sun produces energy.

Now even in fusion, mass is converted to energy, so surely the total number of mass in the earth "system" will keep decreasing, albeit at a very gradual rate.