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Tuesday, April 01, 2008

What is beauty? Certainly not what a computer says it is...

According to Haaretz, an Israeli team of computer scientists has developed a software that ranks facial attractiveness of women. Instead of identifying basic facial characteristics, this software has been designed to make aesthetic judgments — after training. The lead researcher said this program ‘constitutes a substantial advance in the development of artificial intelligence.’ It is interesting to note that the researchers focused on women only. Apparently, men’ faces are more difficult to grade.

Here are some details about how the software was tested. “In the first stage, 30 human participants were asked to rate from 1-7 the beauty of several dozen pictures. Participants did not say why they ranked certain faces as more beautiful than others. The pictures were then processed and mathematically mapped. ‘We came up with 98 numbers that represent the geometric shape of the face, as well as characteristics like hair color, smoothness of skin and facial symmetry,’ Kagian explains. Participants’ rankings of the pictures were also input in the computer.”

But what was the second stage? “‘We input new pictures of faces into the computer and it graded them based on the information it had.’ Human subjects were then asked to rank the new pictures too. ‘The computer produced impressive results: the rankings were very similar to the rankings people gave.’ According to Kagian, the key achievement is that the computer operated according to certain perceptions of beauty that were not input into it, but learned by processing the data it received.”


“This work presents a method for estimating human facial attractiveness, based on supervised learning techniques. Numerous facial features that describe facial geometry, color and texture, combined with an average human attractiveness score for each facial image, are used to train various predictors. Facial attractiveness ratings produced by the final predictor are found to be highly correlated with human ratings, markedly improving previous machine learning achievements. Simulated psychophysical experiments with virtually manipulated images reveal preferences in the machine’s judgments which are remarkably similar to those of humans.”

Full Article

Wasn't it: It is not beautiful what is beautiful, it is beautiful what you like..
That means, since the program has a father or more fathers, it will be declared beautiful what they like and NOT what it is...
That means I could try it...
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