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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Transform Your Zoom Presence with AI: Embrace the Genius of Albert Einstein or the Elegance of the Mona Lisa

Customised video conferencing backgrounds have gotten an artificially intelligent upgrade: real-time animated deepfakes that transform your face into that of a celebrity.

Karim Iskakov and Ali Aliev, two folks from Moscow, made a program that lets you make deepfake videos while you’re on a video call. They work at the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, and Ali is a software developer.

The program Avatarify is designed for video chats like Zoom or Skype. It only needs a picture of the person you want to look like.

Aliev showed New Scientist on Zoom how he used a computer program to make it seem like he was talking like different people, like Boris Johnson, Donald Trump, Albert Einstein, and even the Mona Lisa.

The software uses a pre-existing AI algorithm originally designed for making animated videos. This AI learned from a collection of 12,331 short videos of people’s faces, which were taken from YouTube interviews.

The software quickly copies a person’s facial expressions and puts them onto a picture, like a photo of a famous person or a piece of art.

The outcome is funny, though not completely believable. When the person in the video moves their head a lot, especially if the background has a pattern, the deepfake looks weird.

The developers think of the software as something fun to use. Iskakov says, “Your eyes are good at spotting differences in faces.

The software only fixes the video picture, and it doesn’t alter anyone’s voice. “I don’t think it can be misused to impersonate someone at the moment, he says.

AI software runs best on powerful computers because it needs a lot of processing power.

 

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