Facebook's research team has found a way to turn your face into an avatar with just one photo

Facebook’s research team has revealed a new machine learning system that could convert faces found within a photograph into an avatar.

Buckle up – where we’re going, you won’t need a face; you’ll just need an artificial intelligence to convert the nooks and crannies on your noggin into a distasteful avatar.
At least, that seems to be the trend in recent weeks – while Snapchat users leverage Bitmoji to create stories using augmented reality and iPhone X users will be able to get to grips with Animoji, it seems that Facebook will be the latest entity to wade into the arena with a neural network that will be able to convert one’s visage from a photo into an online avatar.
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Facebook’s research team recently presented a new paper at the International Conference on Computer Vision, wherein the group detailed a machine learning system that can convert the specifics of one’s face into a characterized avatar.
According to the team, the system judges both the face in question and its generated representation by the same standard of analysis, and is capable of adjusting its output until the two become visually similar to a sufficient degree.
Facebook avatar
While the system could be used to create a custom system wherein everyone on Facebook could sign up to create their own avatar – and potentially use it within the company’s burgeoning Oculus platform – the system could potentially work with just about any avatar system.
The research will likely benefit everyone in the sense that avatars will far more rapidly and accurately represent their subject matter – though we’re not too sure how we feel about conversing with pixellated caricatures.
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Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA