The band is known for performing modified, more elaborate versions of the song when playing live. In particular, Matt Bellamy now plays a slightly re-worked piano part during the intro, and substitutes the tremolo technique used in the solo for tapping. At the end of the song, Bellamy plays a riff from Rage Against the Machine's cover of "Microphone Fiend" or Deftones "Headup".
Matthew Bellamy said of the song: "It's about a semi-fear of the evolution of technology, and how in reality it's destroying all humanity. My fear is that we can't control it because it's moving faster than we are, so the songs setting myself in a location in the future where the body is no longer important and everyone's plugged into a network. The opening line is 'link it to the world', so it's connecting yourself on a worldwide scale and being born into another reality." The song was also remixed by Paul Oakenfold for the movie Swordfish, although it doesn't appear in the movie, it appears on the soundtrack.
Chris Wolstenholme said: "New Born I think between the three of us is probably one of our favourite tracks off Origin of Symmetry. It is a good live track. I think it's one of the songs which showcases the experimental side of the band. It is not really a conventional pop song. I think a lot of the reason for choosing these songs is that we went for the heavier more direct kind of songs rather than going for anything too mellow".
The song was "performed" on Live & Kicking, but due to the BBC producers not allowing the band to perform live, Matthew Bellamy waved his hands around instead of playing the keyboard. Chris Wolstenholme (bass) and Dom Howard (drums and percussion) swapped instruments for this mime performance.