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.
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 |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )
Related News Stories -
Burner Generates Temporary Phone Numbers
'Interesting phone system he's got, by the way...' - John Varley, 1984.
HushMe Bluetooth Device Reinvents The Hush-A-Phone
'Talking into a hush-a-phone which he had plugged into the telephone jack...' - Robert Heinlein, 1940.
Ubiquiti FrontRow Camera Records Your Life
Why be choosy? Just upload your whole life to the Internet, and be done with it.
SmileCloud Bubloons Are Custom Clouds
'Spurgle kicked at the letter G... It was a monstrous white thing, ten feet thick, half a city block long...' - Alan Nelson, 1953.
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.
Swarm Of Mindless Robots Works Together
'Very tiny pseudo insects that... can unite to form a superordinate system.'
SpotMini Robot Dog, Autonomous And On Sale In 2019
Great, an autonomous slamhound. It is cute, though.
RoboFly Is Laser-Powered, Adorable
Don't swat this fly!
MSG Sphere Las Vegas, ala Star Wars
'The smoky globe, hung in the vault, was shot with colored light...'
Tetraplegics Dominate Avatar Races
Well, just speaking brain-to-computer...
MIT Ampli Blocks Build Biomedical Devices
Damn it Spock, I'm a doctor not an engineer!
UberAIR Asks For Skytaxi Landing Prototypes
You know you want to ride in one.
Boring Tunnel Almost Ready
Your underground future is calling!
Handheld Human Skin Printer
It outputs a thin wad of uniflesh.
Healthy Fast Food Courtesy Of Robot Chefs
'The electric cook was stirring empty nothing in a pan, with a zeal worthy a dozen eggs.'
Mass Production Of In Vitro Meat From One Sample
They're Assimilating Our Culture, That's What They're Doing
Amazing 'Hybrid' Solar-Powered Sea Slug Does Photosynthesis
Thank goodness for Star Trek.
Retinal Prosthesis Uses Organic Printing Inks
We can rebuild you - well, your eyes, maybe.
Should You Submit Your DNA To A Database?
Consumer DNA services are often inaccurate.
Squid-Like Robots Soon To Be 3D Printable
'It was a chemotactic artificial jellyfish designed to slither...'
Humans Evolve Deep Diving Abilities
Sounds like '60s sci-fi to me.
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories