Picard: It's a boyhood fantasy, Data. I must have seen this ship hundreds of times in the Smithsonian, but I was never able to touch it. Data: Sir, does tactile contact alter your perception of the Phoenix? Picard: Oh, yes. For humans, touch can connect you to an object in a very personal way. Make it seem more real. Data: I am detecting imperfections in the titanium casing. Temperature variations in the fuel manifold. But it is no more real to me now than it was a moment ago. Deanna: Would you three like to be alone?
Picard explains to Data that its a boyhood fantasy to finally touch the ship that he has seen hundreds of times in the Smithsonian. Data asks if touching it changes his perception to which Picard explains that for humans this can connect one to an object personally. Data proceeds on this analysis and explains that it is no more real to him than before. Deanna walks in on their intimate contact with the object and asks if the three of them would like to be alone.