Alex Zimmerman, a Blinq co-founder who manages strategy and business, says the software has a practical application: users can test their photos before uploading them to Blinq (so, crowdsourcing your dating profile).
“You can maximise the people who will think you are attractive.” He points out that the algorithm was tested on a Swiss “data set”, so the results will be skewed to “how people see attractiveness in Switzerland”.
In all, I was alone, and in several I am doing something “kooky” to distract from the self-consciousness of taking a selfie, e.g. In one, I have cat nose and whiskers drawn on my face.The verdicts: in four of the five pictures it determined I looked 23 years old.This is a result as I’m 25, so I repeated the ruling loudly until an exasperated colleague congratulated me.In four of five uploads, my selfie scored “Hot”, though the picture of me yesterday was judged only “Nice” so I booked an eyebrow threading at lunch. Rasmus Rothe, the engineer who wrote the software, explained that it has “learned from millions of images of faces how to determine attractiveness, age and gender”.These images were taken from Wikipedia, IMDb and Blinq’s own archive, and was determined using more than 100,000 pictures and 20 million “hot or not” ratings.
“When a user uploads a photo, the software first tries to find the location of the face,” Rothe continues.
“In the next step a deep neural network, like an artificial version of the human brain, analyses the face with the knowledge of all images it has seen before.
Similarly to the human brain, the artificial neural network is a bit of a black box and thus it is hard to visualise what exactly it has learned.” Suffice it to say this: the machines have risen and now they’re judging us.
Existence is the pursuit of reassurance and validation.
Historically, you sought reassurance and validation from people but now that we are ruled by mechanical overlords, you seek reassurance from the machines.
The machines tell you if you have walked sufficient steps, and eaten insufficient calories; they tell you whether anyone really likes you (they don’t, because your Instagram photo only got three likes).