Our youngest lab project, “With the eyes of the machine”, focuses on current developments in artificial intelligence and machine learning. In addition to language processing, image and facial recognition technologies have made significant leaps in the last few years. But the road to widespread implementation of these technologies is littered with open questions about the ethical implications they present. Most recently, Berlin has experienced its own political controversy around the subject as a result of authorities experimenting with a trial run (link in German) of facial recognition technology at the Südkreuz train station.
For Berlin's "Long Night of the Sciences", we developed an AI Photo Booth that allowed visitors to have their portraits algorithmically analyzed. Visitors were given the results of this analysis so they could see how accurate they found the algorithm’s assessment. In addition to making facial recognition technology and machine learning more tangible for average people, we also want to start a conversation about the possible applications of these still-emerging technologies, as well as the opportunities and risks they present. As part of this effort, we have produced informational cards about current realms of application and conflict surrounding AI technology. Below, we’ve collected all of the project’s relevant materials, background information and links for further reading.