We've created the Edward Snowden action figure. Edward Snowden is a whistleblower and a a former CIA and NSA employee/contractor who disclosed a large number of top secret NSA documents to several media outlets.
Officials with ThatsMyFace stated the doll was created to promote donations to the Freedom of the Press Foundation which is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to helping support and defend public-interest journalism focused on exposing mismanagement, corruption, law-breaking in government and to encourage news organizations to use encryption tools.
The action figure alone costs $99 and is a fully-articulated 12-inch figure. Customers can upgrade to variety of optional outfits. All of the proceeds of the sales of Snowden's action figure will be donated to the Freedom of the Press Foundation.
The DailyMail details how the UK supermarket chain Budgens is using facial biometrics to identify minors who has previously been unable to prove they are 18 when buying alcohol.
"Customers' images are monitored and relayed to a control centre to be compared with under-18s already on record.
Future options include other retailers linking the scheme to their shops to create a giant database."
Orwellian overkill anybody? Or just a good excuse for a marketer's wet dream? How long before such a setup is compulsory in all off-license shops? And why not link it up to the police's offender's facial database while we're at it? I guess none of this will matter once the compulsary biometric National ID cards are introduced.
People will never learn... Welcome to Police State Britain.
BBC reports that a Japanese company is developing a cigarette vending machine equipped with a camera to photograph punter in order to their (facial) age. If the estimated age is under the legal age, the machine will ask for an ID card for age verification and give the go ahead if the face matches the one on the ID photo.
Apparently the system developped by Fujitaka company compares facial characteristics including bone structure, body frame, sags around the eyes and mouth and crow's feet against a record of more than 100,000 people. Its accuracy is said to be 90%.
It's surprising Fujitaka reports such a high accuracy given that the system works in a rugged environment -i.e. the street- on the unapprised public. Featuro's age estimate is acceptable (although not in the 90% range) but our estimations are based on a rather constrained set of facial photos taken following precise guidelines, not that of a bystander's face peering at a pinhole camera. Since only a Yes/No answer is demanded of the vending machine -and not an full age estimate as in Featuro's case- one could indeed expect higher accuracy rates.
Still, this begs the following questions: why not just ask for the ID card every time? Is it because the age estimation problem is easier to solve than the facial verification problem? Or is it due to privacy concerns? Wouldn't a bit of make-up on a kid do the trick? A face mask? As Dvorak noted, won't kids just carry a lifesize posters of Keith Richards to fool the vending machines?
So if your Featuro asymmetries rating is low and gender rating is high, then you probably have good genes. Your face therefore "advertise[s] quality in terms of resistance to disease, or environmental stresses and that might mean people with these traits are healthier and live longer".