Web Photos Now Have Zero Credibility

Well-meaning researchers from Carnegie Mellon University destroyed the credibility of all photos on the web today. Alexiei Efros, assistant professor of computer science and robotics lead the team that created two related systems that, together, will do what governments and corporations could only dream of (until now).

The first program, called Photo Clip Art, uses thousands of labeled images from a site called LabelMe. These images can be added to photos. The system analyzes the geometric context of a photo, and place objects within the scene, adjusting its size as necessary to put it in proportion to other objects of equal distance from the camera.

The second program is called Scene Completion. It draws upon millions of photos from the Flickr website to fill in holes in photos. These "holes" are created when editors decide that some part of a picture is unsightly, and wants to remove it.


(Scene completion work flow)
Clockwise from top left 1) the original photo, 2) undesirable material removed, 3) thousands of possible matches scanned and 4) the new, doctored photo

This kind of work was done before, of course, but it was a painstaking and difficult chore. A person did all of the steps by hand, searching through photos for possible matches, and sizing and placing the substitute image fragments.

Now, any photo can be doctored easily, in seconds. Something unpleasant in that picture? Take it out. Don't like that person in the picture? Find someone else. Maybe even you, if you have a picture on Flickr.

I'm guessing that this technique will probably not stand up to rigorous examination of large file pictures; that's why I'm limiting it to web pictures, which are of relatively low quality. The entire graphic shown on this page is only 403x354 pixels.

Just think of all the tedious work done by Winston Smith, rewriting history in 1984 - and all that effort done with text, let alone pictures.

What happened in the unseen labyrinth to which the pneumatic tubes led, he did not know in detail, but he did know in general terms. As soon as all the corrections which happened to be necessary in any particular number of 'The Times' had been assembled and collated, that number would be reprinted, the original copy destroyed, and the corrected copy placed on the files in its stead. This process of continuous alteration was applied not only to newspapers, but to books, periodicals, pamphlets, posters, leaflets, films, sound-tracks, cartoons, photographs--to every kind of literature or documentation which might conceivably hold any political or ideological significance. Day by day and almost minute by minute the past was brought up to date.

Via Eurekalert.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 7/11/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )

Related News Stories - (" Communication ")

Fog Computing (AKA Edge Computing) Ad Hoc Networks
'The tiny devices chirped their impulse codes at one another...' - Vernor Vinge, 1999.

Biggest HiSeas 'Mars Mission' Problem? No Internet
I think sf writers have this covered!

Sansar Social Virtual Reality Platform In 2017?
'And just as a daydreamer forgets his actual surroundings, and sees other realities...' - Vernor VInge, 1981.

Publishing Technologies In Science Fiction
In response to a reader question, a set of links related to publishing technologies in science fiction

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

3D Printed Artificial Muscles Are Stronger Than Yours
Bots don't need to work out.

Fog Computing (AKA Edge Computing) Ad Hoc Networks
'The tiny devices chirped their impulse codes at one another...'

Dubai Scorpion Police Hoverbike Ready To Pull Young Kirk Over
'Is there a problem, officer?'

HEXA Robotic Help For Plants
Then some unknown race had chanced upon the dreamers and decided to "help them out."

Korean Tesla Model S Video 'Excelsior' Is Indeed Our Motto
'Improving man by bringing him close to Nature, while they combine the sensations of coasting with the interest of seeing the country well...'

DIY Robot Shoots You In The Face
'...there were automatic guns that fired ligamine darts.'

A Bayesian Approach to Safe Imitation Learning For AIs and Robots
Um, how about that pension for the humans who serve as the models for robot behavior?

Qoobo Headless Robotic Therapy Cat Was Anne McCaffrey's Idea
'...used as surrogates in intense dependency cases.'

Autonomous Cars Talk To Each Other At MCity
'My cars talk to one another.'

PUFFER Robots - From Philip K DIck's Second Variety?
'Across the ground something small and metallic came, flashing in the dull sunlight of midday.'

Russian Space Garden
'We saw the gardens, flooded with artificial sunlight...'

Targeted Neuroplasticity Training For 'Downloading Skills'
'I know kung-fu.'

U of M's MCity To Feature Asimov's Automatobuses
Should you turn autonomous buses off?

Crazyflie Drone Swarm Technology
'...Programmed to hang in space in a hexagonal grid pattern.'

Our GodBot, Who Art In Cyberspace
Vaal hungers! We must serve him.

easyJet Short-Haul Electric Jets
Have a little faith, will you? They're working on it.

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.