Categories: News

This Website Uses AI to Create Shockingly Realistic Pictures of People Who Don’t Actually Exist

When it comes to the pictures on This Person Does Not Exist, you won’t believe your eyes—and you shouldn’t.

Though the people pictured in the photos look authentic, none of them actually exist. Each time a user refreshes the page, a new computer-generated face appears.

The images are created through algorithms known as Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs), which feature two computer programs, the generator and the discriminator, that compete against each other using commonalities in data sets from real faces to generate artificial ones that grow in refinement over time.

The results are shocking.

While most of the images look authentic, there are sometimes glitches in the matrix.

All in all, the technology—which was introduced in 2014—has gotten more sophisticated with time. This GAN (called StyleGAN) for faces was developed in part by a Graphic Processing Unit Company called Nvidia. That sophistication could lead to some sinister developments down the line.

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Evan Brechtel

Evan is a writer and editor based in New York. In addition to his work with Second Nexus, he freelances for a variety of sites addressing topics of queer culture and history. You can find his other work at www.evanbrechtel.net. Twitter: @EvanBrechtel