"Computers can tell whether you will be a criminal based on nothing more than your facial features."

Maybe phrenology wasn't wrong after all


Sun, Nov 20th, 2016 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

If your Twitter feed yields nothing to scrutiny despite enhanced surveillance, then maybe your face will. Reportedly, machine learning can tell "whether you will be a criminal based on nothing more than your facial features." I'll be honest, while the article raises good questions about ethics, the faces that A.I. deemed as criminally minded don't exactly look like someone I'd want to meet in a dark alley.

[...] phrenology, which involved studying the cranium to determine someone’s character and intelligence, was debunked around the time of the Industrial Revolution, and few outside of the pseudo-scientific fringe would still claim that the shape of your mouth or size of your eyelids might predict whether you’ll become a rapist or thief.

Not so in the modern age of Artificial Intelligence, apparently: In a paper titled “Automated Inference on Criminality using Face Images,” two Shanghai Jiao Tong University researchers say they fed “facial images of 1,856 real persons” into computers and found “some discriminating structural features for predicting criminality, such as lip curvature, eye inner corner distance, and the so-called nose-mouth angle.” They conclude that “all four classifiers perform consistently well and produce evidence for the validity of automated face-induced inference on criminality, despite the historical controversy surrounding the topic.”



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