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Why did the architect build the matrix?

Also, why did the people in the real world agree to be the part of the matrix?

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    What about the explicit explanation given in the films doesn't satisfy you? – Daniel Roseman Mar 2 '12 at 12:12
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Why did the architect build the matrix?

In the original plot, the machines used the human brains for their processing power (i.e. for information processing). In idea was that your consciousness was distracted with the "real life" (reading newpapers, working, etc) while the machines could use your unconsciousness in a gigantic super computer.

The studio bosses didn't like it (or likely didn't understand it), so this was changed to "the machines need the heat of the human body".

why did the people in the real world agree

They didn't. Human babies are grown on farms by the machines and they are attached to the matrix before they open their eyes. The humans in the matrix never were asked.

The first victims were probably prisoners of war but maybe the machines hatched them from stem cells or a similar technology.

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  • Do you have a reference for the "processing power" statement? To my knowledge it's nowhere stated in canon. – bitmask Mar 2 '12 at 13:26
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    AFAIK, it was stated in an interview by the brothers. No proof, though. But for a geek, it seems a pretty obvious solution (johnaugust.com/2009/matrix-needs-humans, mikebrotherton.com/2009/03/18/…) – Aaron Digulla Mar 2 '12 at 13:38
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    @bitmask: There's one reference in canon. Neil Gaiman's short story "Goliath" is pretty clear that the machines get processing power from the humans. – Tynam May 14 '12 at 15:18

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