Science Technology

Algorithm spots altered photos, Julia Roberts’ career shrivels

They’re actually considering passing a law in the UK, France and other European countries to require publishers to reveal the extent to which a photograph has been altered. Does this mean the death of supermodel careers past thirty?

News today from the scientific journal Nature that a team of researchers from Dartmouth College have developed an algorithm to allow photos to be analyzed for the way images have been altered. Rather than simply averaging the differences – which would include entirely normal cropping, white balancing and the like – the new algorithm uses a number of factors such as the number of pixels by which a face is altered to determine a rating system for those alterations.

While the article doesn’t really get into it, the fact is that altered faces of models are hardly the only practical application of this potential new technology. Altered passports, doctored images in the media and other applications we haven’t even thought of, yet. There will also, necessarily, be algorithms developed to fool this algorithm. Such is life in a digital world.

More details in the Nature article linked below:

Computer model spots image fraud : Nature News & Comment.

By Tommy Belknap

Owner, developer, editor of DragonFlyEye.Net, Tom Belknap is also a freelance journalist for The 585 lifestyle magazine. He lives in the Rochester area with his wife and son.