This AI has seen your selfies, and it knows who you are

According to questionable Russian researcher, one AI can ascertain what kind of person you are, solely by looking at your selfies. 

 

 

Researchers from both the Higher School of Economics University and Open University for the Humanities and Economics in Moscow have demonstrated that artificial intelligence is able to infer one’s personality from a ‘selfie’ better than human beings can, on average.

The team asked 12,000 volunteers to complete a questionnaire that was used to build a database comprised of personality traits. Complementing the data was about 31,000 selfies of the volunteers.

The questionnaire focuses on the “Big Five” personality traits – openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. These five traits are widely believed to be the best indicators of one’s personality and are often used by psychological researchers in their studies.

A neural network trained on the dataset was found by the researchers to ‘accurately’ predict personality traits based on “real-life photographs taken in uncontrolled conditions,” as written in their paper.

 

The researchers have suggested that the technology would be of great use to companies looking to sell products tailored to individual personalities or to dating services.

 

They found that their AI “can make a correct guess about the relative standing of two randomly chosen individuals on a personality dimension in 58% of cases.” The results are not exactly ground-breaking, but a 58% hit-rate was vaguely more accurate than human guessing.

Close relatives and colleagues were far more accurate when it came to rating personality traits than strangers of course, though the paper can claim that the AI “outperforms an average human rater who meets the target in person without any prior acquaintance.” 

The researchers have suggested that the technology would be of great use to companies looking to sell products tailored to individual personalities or to dating services. Fitting, considering that the co-authors of the paper on the research are affiliated with Russian AI psychological profiling company BestFitMe

It is no secret that neural networks have generated some impressive results. However, between the aforementioned authors’ connections and the less-than-stellar results, expectations should be tempered for now.

 

 

 

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