Today, children’s puzzle books. Tomorrow, the world.
Nashville-based creative agency Redpepper has introduced a robot that can easily beat your kid in finding Wally (or Waldo, in other countries) from the popular series, Where’s Wally.
Here’s how it works. Once presented with a scene from the books, the machine – aptly named There’s Waldo – takes a high-res photo and scans each character’s features. It then uses artificial intelligence to tell Wally apart from everyone else before finally pointing him out using a creepy plastic hand.
The time it takes to find Wally? 4.5 seconds.
This stunning feat was made possible by Google’s Cloud AutoML machine learning tool, which the robot’s designers used to teach it to identify Wally.
“I got all of the Waldo training images from Google Image Search; 62 distinct Waldo heads and 45 Waldo heads plus body,” Matt Reed, the creative technologist at Redpepper, told The Verge.
“I thought that wouldn’t be enough data to build a strong model but it gives surprisingly good predictions on Waldos that weren’t in the original training set.”
Sorry, Wally. Not even you can hide from Skynet.