The Algorithm That Recognizes You Even Without Seeing Your Face

Facial recognition systems, i.e. software that can identify a person by reading their somatic traits, have made giant strides reaching remarkable levels of precision. But the sine qua non condition, not because they work, of course, is to be able to see the subject’s face. But a new experimental algorithm developed in Facebook laboratories has gone further: it is able to recognize a person even if the face is hidden.

We’re more than a pretty face. This is taught by the daily experience: we are often able to identify the identity of a friend or acquaintance also by other factors, such as haircut, posture, the way to dress. And that’s exactly what the Facebook team did, which has equipped its ability algorithm to analyze and interpret a much wider range of variables than traditional recognition systems.

♪ We use a lot of data: people have different aspects even if you look at them from behind ♪ ♪ Yann LeCun, head of the company’s artificial intelligence division ♪For example, you can

9 PHOTOS Photogallery Our faces, if they were really symmetrical GO TO THE GALLERY

He’s almost never wrong. The research team conducted a test with 40 thousand public images taken from the Flickr database, the well-known photographic site, which portray both subjects with well-in-disposed faces, or subjects with shoulders or hidden or covered faces. The images were subjected to the analysis of an advanced neural network, a computer computer model used very often, for example, when it is required to identify sequences within a mass of data The algorithm was able to establish the identity of the people in the photos in 83% of cases.

The fact that it already works with such a level of reliability does not mean that it will be used shortly, even if it is easy to imagine that in the future it will be integrated into the functions of the social network or even employed in wider contexts. With all the privacy implications that this entails.

20 PHOTOS Photogallery Social media before the web GO TO THE GALLERY

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