I Found a More Attractive Deepfaked Self
March 26th, 2021
Enchantment of Deepfakes
Have you always wanted to speak Mandarin fluently but never really got around to learn it? What if you could talk in any language without actually knowing it? Sounds absurd, doesn't it? Welcome to the world of Deepfakes;it only gets weirder from here.
What are Deepfakes?
Deepfakes is a technology that tampers with a piece of media and makes it look real. This uses deep learning tech that applies neural net simulation to massive data sets to create a fake. Artificial intelligence learns what a person's face looks like at different angles and transposes the face onto a target as if it were a mask.
Deep learning uses neural networks to find and amplify minor patterns. Neural networks are layers of simple computational nodes that work together to analyze data, like neurons in the human brain.
Generative adversarial networks orGANs are responsible for the deep fakes technology.
The secret of the GANs lies in the way two neural networks work against each other. A lot of training data is fed into both neural networks, and a separate task is given to each. The first network, known as the generator, produces artificial outputs, like handwriting, videos, or voices, by looking at the training examples and mimicking them. The second, known as the discriminator, determines whether the outputs are real by comparing each one with the same training examples.
Deepfakes can be used to make Donal Trump dance to a Lavani tune, Belgium's prime minister link the coronavirus pandemic to climate change, Barack Obama rattles out racial slurs, etc. Deepfakes are a potent tool but can cause a sense of disbelief as you cannot believe what is being displayed, neither can you disregard what you see with your own eyes.
The implementations of Deepfakes are countless, but some notable ones are:
How fun would it be to see old pictures come to life (or spooky)? Deep Nostalgia is like the "live photo" feature on today's cameras wherein a few seconds before and after the photos are clicked and are captured.
This technology spread like wildfire when MyHeritage brought pictures from the past to life. These animations are created by using deep learning to analyze all facial features. The system animates the facial image using a predetermined sequence of movements and gestures, like blinking, smiling, and head-turning. These moving portraits are like GIFs similar to those in the Harry Potter series. This tech can be applied to images of anyone, even those who don't walk the earth anymore. Deep Nostalgia is a mind-bogglingly genius application of deepfakes.
Deepfakes in world of medicine
GANs can synthesize highly realistic images that have significant benefits for medical diagnosis.
Deep-learning algorithms are excellent at pattern-matching in images and can be trained to detect different types of cancer in a CT scan, differentiate diseases in MRIs, and identify abnormalities in an X-ray. This tech, however, was not being used because of privacy concerns. Using GANs, more medical images can be synthesized, indistinguishable from the real ones, making the data set large enough to use these deep learning algorithms.
The sea of possibilities with deepfakes
1. An out-of-sync dubbed movie is torturous, but with deepfakes, it can be fixed easily! Using the deepfakes technology, any actor's facial expressions can be manipulated to make it fit the dialogue. This is particularly helpful if an actor is required to speak in a language unfamiliar to him; deepfakes tech can create a false sensation of the actor saying that dialogue.
2. It can be used to create videos of historical figures telling their own story to make education more interactive and relatable. Historical figures can be brought back to life using the deepfakes tech.
3. Any voice can be manipulated to sound younger or older, male or female, and with different accents. This change can be accomplished smoothly using deepfakes as it has vast application in the entertainment industry.
4. A video of someone's full-body can be transposed onto that of another person. This can be used for stunt doubles in movies.
5. Aging and de-aging can also be done using deepfakes; this is useful in the movie industry and feeds an average person's curiosity to see themselves in their 90s.
The Dark side of Deepfakes
It isn't all rainbows and sunshine with the deepfakes as it comes with its own set of challenges. Deepfakes are a massive bearer of fake news. This technology is so close to real that it is challenging to tell any video or image's authenticity. With this technology, any public figure's words or face can be manipulated and used to send disturbing or false information. The dark side of deepfakes is used for Bullying, Revenge porn, Fake video evidence in courts, Political sabotage, Terrorist propaganda, Blackmail, Market Manipulation.
Deepfakes are a significant development in artificial intelligence, but it must be used vigilantly and mindfully as the dark side is rather prominent.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Syed Anab Akhtar is a final year computer science undergraduate student and a passionate developer and innovator with the motto: A project a week, keeps productivity at peak. He has been a part of Corporate Gurukul for over a year now and is a former Machine Learning intern at the National University of Singapore, Computer Vision Intern at the State Bank of India, and a certified cybersecurity analyst too.
Over the past few years, Anab has worked on numerous open-source projects using machine learning, data science, cybersecurity, etc that have grabbed the attention of not just students but developers from companies like Microsoft, Google, and even potential investors too. He is now preparing for his masters in computer science and all set to research further breakthrough technologies in the field.
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