This is the new trend of the moment that you may have seen on your Instagram or Tiktok feeds: photoshopped photos of your friends with their faces in different periods of history. A concept proposed by the Israeli site Myheritage called the IA Time machine, in French the artificial intelligence that makes you travel in time.
If the name of the Myheritage site means anything to you, it is because the company made itself known by offering to test your DNA to trace your origins. The principle is simple: you send a sample of saliva and hop, we tell you where you come from. It also allows you to find family members around the world. Since then, the site has also diversified into other activities, particularly in artificial intelligence. For some time now, Myheritage has been offering to send around twenty photos of oneself taken in different directions… And from that, an artificial intelligence made available free of charge, will modify your photos to project you into different historical periods.
So Matthieu if you do it, you will be able to get pictures of yourself as Vikings, as a medic from the Second World War or even as a man from the 50s. The AI is so strong that we will be able to see you with hair! AI changes your facial features, it removes wrinkles, also changes your makeup and hairstyles to fit the times. You receive your photos by email a few hours later and the result is quite strikingly realistic. On Tiktok, the IA Time machine hashtag has over 31 million views and the funny thing is that some users compare their IA version photos to those of their ancestors to try to see the similarities.
At times there are still some bugs, we see that the artificial intelligence is not yet 100% perfect, but the photos generated by the AI are still quite impressive. The downside is that we don’t know what Myheritage does with our photos. According to them, they remain hosted on their site without the AI having access to it. Ok, very good but I remind you that myheritage has already been the victim of security breaches. In 2018, more than 92 million accounts were hacked. The company has always said that hackers never had access to users’ personal data, but that shows how careful you have to be. We are talking about a site to which some send their DNA, and now their photos. Let’s not forget that behind the game or the search for its origins, we still give our most intimate data on a silver platter to a website located abroad where the rules are different from ours. Many companies would pay dearly to access it, such as pharmaceutical labs for example.
A similar site, Family Tree, had even been accused of having shared the genetic data of its customers with the FBI as part of an investigation. So even if on paper, it may seem to be for a good cause, it is still a violation of our privacy.
Indeed, another application is a hit, Lensa AI. It has been downloaded over 1.5 million times since November. Its concept is the same as Myheritage except that it also produces manga or drawing type photos that many users have been putting in avatars for some time on their networks. Again, be careful, the application has flaws. We don’t really know what they do with the photos we send, or even worse, she could use our AI-made avatars for publicity purposes. At least that’s what a scientist specializing in AI at the Mashable site says. In any case, we must therefore remain very vigilant because for the moment these artificial intelligence 2.0 systems are still quite vague on data protection, and if it is to find his photo used in an embarrassing ad, no thank you.
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When artificial intelligence takes over our photos
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