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This is regarding Kid's Story from Animatrix.

I thought if you died in the Matrix, that you also died in the real world. How did the Kid die in the matrix but not in the real world? Is this somehow related to self substantiation?

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Kid did self-substantiate

After Kid commits suicide in the Matrix, he wakes in the real world to the following conversation:

Trinity: His vitals are good. He’s gonna make it. Its unbelievable. I didn’t think self-substantiation was possible.

Neo: Apparently it is.

While the process of self-substantiation doesn't appear to be fully documented, the best guess is that Kid's faith in Neo somehow broke his connection to the Matrix, and allowed him to wake up.

Others have self-substantiated through awareness of the Matrix through:

"...a rare degree of intuition, sensitivity, and a questioning nature"

and that:

"...some attain this wisdom through wholly different means".

The Matrix Wiki - Self-Substantiation

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  • So can somebody who self substantiates plug in to the matrix? They're already dead in the matrix, right?
    – todd w
    Jan 5 at 16:17
  • I'm not sure. But it sounds like Kid at least took part in training programs with Morpheus, requiring him to be at least plugged into that program. Whether he plugged back into the full Matrix, I'm afraid I don't know - matrix.fandom.com/wiki/Kid
    – Longshanks
    Jan 5 at 16:25

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