New age-progression software predicts what a child will look like as they get older in 30 seconds

Researchers at the University of Washington claim software can automatically generate images of how a child will age throughout each decade

Researchers have developed a tool they say can show what a child will look like as it grows up and ages throughout its life, by analysing thousands of photos on the internet.

A team at the University of Washington have created automatic software that can process visible ageing even in photos showing different expressions, poses, and under different lighting.

The automatic age-progression software can run on a standard computer and takes about 30 seconds to generate results for one face. It works by comparing aging data taken from thousands of pictures on the internet with the photo of a three-year-old, to work out how the child might look as it gets older.

Predicting what a child will look like later in life has always proved difficult because the shape and appearance of an baby's face often changes drastically as it grows up.

But the team say this particular technique is more successful and works by calculating the visual changes between groups of different ages and gender as they age, and then applying those changes t a new face.

A single photo of a child (far left) is age progressed using the software (left in each pair) and compared to photos of the same person at the corresponding age (right in each pair) A single photo of a child (far left) is age progressed (left in each pair) and compared to photos of the same person at the corresponding age (right in each pair) The software also determines the average pixel arrangement from thousands of random pictures taken from the internet of children and adults of different ages and from both sexes.

Finally, an algorithm looks at correspondences between the averages from each bracket and calculates the changes in facial shape and appearance during ageing.

These changes are then applied to a new child’s photo to predict what she or he will look like for any subsequent age up to the age of 80.

The researchers tested their images against those of 82 actual people who had been photographed over a span of years.

Random users who were asked to identify the correct aged photo for each example picked the software-generated photos about as often as the real-life ones.

The public will soon have the opportunity to test out the technology using a webcam, according to geekwire.

"Our extensive user studies demonstrated age progression results that are so convincing that people can't distinguish them from reality," co-author Steven Seitz, a UW professor of computer science and engineering, said.

"When shown images of an age-progressed child photo and a photo of the same person as an adult, people are unable to reliably identify which one is the real photo."

While this method considered gender and age, the research team now hope to incorporate other identifiers such as ethnicity, and cosmetic factors such as hair whitening and wrinkles to build a robust enough method for representing every human face.

The research was funded by Google and Intel Corp. The new technique has been outlined in a paper, which will be presented at the IEEE Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition conference in Ohio.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: Software Developer - C# / ASP.NET / SQL

    £17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...

    Recruitment Genius: Software Consultant / 1st Line Support

    £15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As your knowledge grows you wil...

    Ashdown Group: Systems Engineer - Linux - Central London

    £40000 - £48000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Engineer - Linux ...

    Recruitment Genius: Technical Support and Sales Engineer - UC / M2M / IoT

    £20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Cloud ...

    Day In a Page

    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night
    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living
    Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

    Homeless people keep mobile phones

    A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before