The 10-Year Challenge has gone viral on platforms like Facebook, but some worry about how the data will be used. The 10-Year Challenge has gone viral on platforms like Facebook, but some worry about how the data will be used. In the latest social media craze, people are sharing photos comparing how they looked 10 years ago with how they look today. Dubbed the "10-Year Challenge," the viral fad has attracted everyone from celebrities like Mariah Carey and Justin Baldoni, to environmentalists seeking to highlight the impacts of climate change. The challenge is light-hearted, but you may want to think twice before joining in.
Microsoft claims its facial recognition technology just got a little less awful. Earlier this year, a study by MIT researchers found that tools from IBM, Microsoft, and Chinese company Megvii could correctly identify light-skinned men with 99-percent accuracy. But it incorrectly identified darker-skinned women as often as one-third of the time. Now imagine a computer incorrectly flagging an image at an airport or in a police database, and you can see how dangerous those errors could be. Microsoft's software performed poorly in the study.
A team of engineering researchers from the University of Toronto has created an algorithm to dynamically disrupt facial recognition systems. Led by professor Parham Aarabi and graduate student Avishek Bose, the team used a deep learning technique called "adversarial training", which pits two artificial intelligence algorithms against each other. Aarabi and Bose designed a set of two neural networks, the first one identifies faces and the other works on disrupting the facial recognition task of the first. The two constantly battle and learn from each other, setting up an ongoing AI arms race. "The disruptive AI can'attack' what the neural net for the face detection is looking for," Bose said in an interview.
THE #10YearChallenge was all fun and memes until last week after a tweet moved thousands of people to worry: are we unknowingly helping giant corporations to improve their algorithms for biometric identification and age progression? The #10YearChallenge gained widespread traction on social media this month. It calls for posting two photos of yourself side by side - one from today and one from a decade ago - to show how you've changed. People are participating mostly on Facebook and Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. Some made jokes, paid tribute to old hairstyles or drew attention to issues like global warming.
If you use social media, you've probably noticed a trend across Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter of people posting their then-and-now profile pictures, mostly from 10 years ago and this year. Kate O'Neill is the founder of KO Insights and the author of Tech Humanist and Pixels and Place: Connecting Human Experience Across Physical and Digital Spaces. My flippant tweet began to pick up traction. My intent wasn't to claim that the meme is inherently dangerous. But I knew the facial recognition scenario was broadly plausible and indicative of a trend that people should be aware of.