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Friday, February 22, 2019

'This person does not exist': New AI portrait generator launches — with photos of people who aren't real



Forget deep-faking videos of public figures saying anything you want them to say: A new website called " This Person Does Not Exist" generates amazingly realistic portraits of people who don't even exist.

What are the details?

The site uses an algorithm to instantaneously create a non-existent person's face. You can refresh the site to your heart's content and never appear to run out of fake faces to scrutinize.
Philip Wang, a 33-year-old software engineer, created the site and posted about it on Facebook.
Wang wrote, "Recently a talented group of researchers at Nvidia released the current state of the art generative adversarial network, StyleGAN, over at https://github.com/NVlabs/stylegan."
"I have decided to dig into my own pockets and raise some public awareness for this technology," he added. "Faces are most salient to our cognition, so I've decided to put that specific pretrained model up. Their research group have also included pretrained models for cats, cars, and bedrooms in their repository that you can immediately use."
According to Mashable, the algorithm is called StyleGAN, an algorithm that Nvidia researchers developed and published in 2018.
The outlet reported that GAN is a "concept within machine learning which aims to generate images that are indistinguishable from real ones."
Wang told Mashable that he initially created the concept to persuade his friends into believing the authenticity of artificial intelligence.
"It ... started off as a personal agenda mainly because none of my friends seem to believe this AI phenomenon, and I wanted to convince them," he explained. "This was the most shocking presentation I could send them. Then I posted it on Facebook and it went viral from there."
He also said that the site serves as a warning to people who don't believe that AI can successfully mock up a very realistic-looking graphic or video, whether to help or to harm.

What else?

According to Inverse, Wang is resigned to the idea that AI is the future.
"I'm basically at the point in my life where I'm going to concede that super-intelligence will be real and I need to devote my remaining life to [it]," he said. "The reaction speaks to how much people are in the dark about AI and its potential."
He added, "I just hope my demonstration raises awareness. Those who are unaware are most vulnerable to this technology. On the flip side, AI truly will bring a lot of good to this world."

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