Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Outside the boardroom of Minds Inc, Robert paced back and forth. “Animus lets you enter someone's mind and experience their memories,” he thought. “Yeah, that's how I'll say it. Animus lets you enter someone's mind and experience their memories. Short and to the point.” An executive opened the door. “Mr. Snow, we're ready.” Robert froze. “Coming.” He removed his phone from his pocket and made sure it was on silent. He entered the room and walked to the front. Thirteen black suits sat around a long wooden table, watching him. Robert cleared his throat. “Hi, I'm Robert Snow, the inventor of Animus.” They stared blankly. He pulled a tiny device out of his pocket and held it in the air: it looked like an MP3 player with earphones attached. “Animus lets you enter someone's mind and experience their memories.” The room stayed silent. John Minds, the CEO, gestured towards an empty seat. “Mr. Snow, can you uh, demonstrate it for us?” “Of course.” Robert walked over to John and placed one of the ends in his ear. “So you put the receiver in one ear, like this.” He took a seat and placed the other end in his own ear. “You put the sender in like this.” Robert lifted the central console and placed his thumb in the middle. “Then you press play.” He pushed down. In an instant, Robert and John were 18 000 feet above ground, falling from the sky. Unconsciously, John let out a shout. His heart raced, as he looked around and saw Robert next to him, falling without a parachute. He reached behind his own back and realized he had no chute either. He yelled at Robert. “Parachute?” Robert wrapped his hand around his ear and yelled. “What?” The wind howled past them as they plummeted towards the Earth. John tried again. “Parachute?” Robert gave him a thumbs up. “You're insane!” John watched the ground approach his face. “End this! We're gonna die!” Robert smiled, and they hit the ground. John woke up screaming. He stood up, took a deep breath, and analyzed his body. “I'm..I'm okay. What just happened?” Robert removed the Animus from John's ear. “You weren't in any real danger.” He walked to the front of the room. “You experienced one of my memories.” “You fell from the sky without a parachute?” “Not exactly. I took a memory of skydiving and altered it a bit. I extended the free fall and got rid of the parachute.” John shook his head. “Incredible.” He looked at a nearby executive. “How long were we gone for?” “F-five seconds, sir.” John looked at Robert. “How's that possible?” “In the Animus, time flows like it does in a dream. Five seconds here can feel like thirty minutes in there.” “How does it work?” “Well, the sender loads a memory into the Animus. When he pushes play, the receiver experiences it with him.” John gestured towards the door. “I need everyone to leave. You're dismissed for the day.” Everyone got up and left. John looked at Robert and smiled. “OK Mr. Snow. You have my attention. What do you want from me?” “I've worked on this for the last ten years. I put my life savings into it—” “So you want money?” “No. It's not about money. It's more than that. I think it can change the world. It can be bigger than the written word. Imagine a world where anyone can experience someone else's story.” “Exactly. This…this is bigger than business. But you think too small Robert.” “What do you mean?” “Experiencing a memory is nice, but imagine if we could change them. Instead of experiencing someone's story, we could write it.” “But why?” “Peace.” “What do you mean?” “World peace, Robert. A fight starts because people see the world differently. Don't you agree?” “I-I do.” “Imagine if we all shared the same story—no more fights.” “I can't imagine that kind of world.” “Do you believe in truth?” “Yeah.” “If the truth exists, it must be the same for everyone, right? It has to be the same story—the true point of view.” “Hmm.” “We can create a better world. A world of Einstein's. A world of Shakespeare's.” John stood up. “A world of Robert Snow's.” Robert hesitated. “I-I don't know. I made it for the people.” “I'm with you Rob. But the world is moved forward by a handful of great people. People don't know what they want. They're like birds in a cage. You wanna give them freedom? Learn to open the cage for them.” “And how do I do that?” “With power.” John walked over to a giant window overlooking the city. “These people won't appreciate you Rob. Animus will be nothing more than a toy to them—a fancy video game. You're naive if you think they'll use it for experiences beyond the bedroom, partying, or a cheap thrill.” “I have to think about it.” “Think about this. How many people do you know reading Shakespeare? Dostoyevsky?” “Not many.” “How many people do you know studying Beethoven? Mozart?” “N-not many.” “Exactly. You think Animus will be different? These people aren't like us Robert. They'll just use it to escape their problems like they always have. Instead of becoming better, they want life to be easier, and it'll never be easy enough for them. But we can make them stronger.” “I have to think about it.” “By all means, think about it. But remember, you came to Minds for a reason, didn't you?” “I did.” “And what was the reason?” “You can get it into every home.” “Exactly. Power. You think I got powerful by giving the people what they want? I give them what they need, even when they don't know they need it. That's why I own the biggest building here. That's why you're the one coming to me and not the other way around.” Robert stayed quiet. “Now go home and think about it. But remember Mr. Snow, all roads lead back to me. Take it to another company? I'll buy them out. Get it to market? I'll have my best scientists tear it apart and figure out how it works. Don't make this harder than it needs to be. It's your destiny to bring Animus into the world, and it's mine to take it to the next level. Don't let your ego get in the way of progress. We can do great things together.” As Robert exited the room, John yelled after him. “I want the same thing you do: a better world.” On the way back to his car, Robert pulled out his phone. He had missed three calls from the same number. He opened a voicemail they had left and gave it a listen. “Hi Mr. Snow. I'm calling from St. Catherines hospital.” Robert's heart sank. “It's about your mother. She got into a severe car accident, and well, she's in a coma. We're not sure if she'll make it through the night.” Robert got in his car and drove towards the hospital.