On Wired, Kate O'Neill argues that Facebook's 10 year challenge is actually a method for the social media giant to train facial recognition software on age progression using nice clean data freely provided by users.
Sure, you could mine Facebook for profile pictures and look at posting dates or EXIF data. But that whole set of profile pictures could end up generating a lot of useless noise. People don’t reliably upload pictures in chronological order, and it’s not uncommon for users to post pictures of something other than themselves as a profile picture. A quick glance through my Facebook friends’ profile pictures shows a friend’s dog who just died, several cartoons, word images, abstract patterns, and more.
In other words, it would help if you had a clean, simple, helpfully labeled set of then-and-now photos.
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