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Software can read danger in a face

india Updated: Aug 18, 2011 23:46 IST
Mario Rojas

Scientists have developed new computational tools that will help computers determine whether faces fall into categories like attractive, threatening, dominant or mean.

Mario Rojas and other researchers at the Computer Vision Centre in the Autonomous University of Barcelona in Spain, in cooperation with researchers from the Department of Psychology of Princeton University, have developed a software that is able to predict those traits in some cases with accuracies beyond 90%.

If the information on which the evaluation of faces is based could be automatically learned, it could be modelled and used as a tool for designing better interactive systems.

The team studied to what extent this information is learnable from the point of view of computer science.

Specifically, the task was formulated with the intention of predicting 9 facial trait judgments (attractive, competent, trustworthy, dominant, mean, frightening, extroverted, threatening, and likable) using Machine learning techniques (a branch of artificial intelligence that uses examples to teach a program how to work).