Facial recognition technology is one of the more controversial things enabled by ubiquitous cameras in society.
From privacy concerns to general unease over a “Big Brother” type of entity, facial recognition gets at the heart of what makes current innovations so powerful and scary at the same time.
And today’s headline is no different because, now, your face might not even be needed to identify you in a photo as Google Photos has announced they have developed the ability to identify subjects with their backs to the camera lens.
That’s pretty next level and underscores the brave new world that might be terrifyingly beyond our wildest imaginations.
How does it work?
According to a response to Android Authority from Google,
“We continuously improve our ability to help people organize and find photos of themselves and loved ones. Recently, we improved our models so Google Photos can better group people based on clothing and other visual cues across photos taken within a similar timeframe.”
That makes sense and it is somewhat comforting that, at least at this stage, it seems as though the feature needs to have some familiarity with the subject prior to being able to identify it without being able to see the face. Of course, none of that settles the unease some people feel with using a service that “learns” how to accurately identify photo subjects over time.
As Android Authority points out, other features that Google has added, including those powered by AI, have been somewhat welcomed by the community. After all, who doesn’t like faster editing and background replacement, among other things?
Do you use Google Photos? What are your thoughts on facial recognition technology? Let us know in the comments.
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