A couple of weeks ago, Google’s artificial neural networks research team showed off some of its work in teaching a computer to recognize what it was looking at. The programmers feed in images of different things, and the AI slowly learns to identify them in other photos it sees. But it also has a serious case of Pareidolia – which for humans manifests itself as stuff like seeing animals in clouds and Jesus in a piece of burnt toast.
For Google’s artificial neural network, it sees and enhances all sorts of things in photos that aren’t really there. And when the team let the network scan and enhance the same image for multiple iterations, all sorts of creepy stuff started to appear – eyes, animals, mouths… it basically looked like an acid trip gone very wrong.
Now Google has released the code for this iterative process, nicknamed “Deep Dream.” People with enough know-how to manipulate that code are already doing some pretty cool things with it, like feeding it the movie Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas. Others have set up sites where the less technically savvy of us can upload any photo and have it processed by Deep Dream.
Some of the results:
Terrifying stuff. Now share your own Deep Dream nightmares in the comments!