Israelis develop software to improve your looks

Tue Nov 25, 2008 11:01am EST
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By Douglas Hamilton

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Want to optimize your looks without radically altering them? An Israeli team of computer scientists may have the answer.

They have developed a computer software model based on the innate preferences that studies show we have for human faces.

"This technology could become a product where for example there's a web service where people upload their photographs and have them enhanced or beautified by our software," said Professor Dani Lischinksi of Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Studies show that eyes a certain shape and distance apart, nose a certain length, lips a certain curve, increase the probability that we will find one face more attractive than another.

"We were able to fit a mathematical model to this set of data that we've gathered, namely the images that we showed to people and their responses in terms of the beauty scores that they chose to give to each image," said Lischinksi.

The team then applied the model to modify images so as to make them appear more attractive. They are now exploring a variety of potential commercial applications for the software, Lischinski said.

"This is something we're looking into," he said. It remains to be seen whether women would simply use the improved image as a guide to more effective makeup application or whether people take it to a plastic surgeon and say: "Make me look like that."

SUBTLE SHIFTS   Continued...

<p>Two pictures of a woman's face, one modified (R) and one unmodified, are seen on a computer monitor in the office of Professor Dani Lischinksi in Jerusalem, November 18, 2008. REUTERS/Baz Ratner</p>