Tech & Science

What the puffer-clad Pope Francis photos tell us about the future of AI images – National

Waves of social media users are sadly starting to realize that the Pope isn’t as stylish as recent photos suggest. did you get tricked too? (Most of us did.)

An image of Pope Francis in an oversized white puffer jacket took the internet by storm over the weekend, with many online admitting they thought the photo was real.

No, His Holiness doesn’t dabble in high-fashion streetwear. The images are photorealistic, but were generated by artificial intelligence (AI).

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The fake image originated from a Reddit post on Friday, captioned “pope dripwas created with Midjourney, a program that generates images from user prompts. This tool is similar to his DALL-E from OpenAI. After being trained and fine-tuned using massive datasets, these AI models use deep learning principles to take requests in plain language and generate original images.

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The fake image was quickly cross-posted on Twitter, with posts from influencers and celebrities exposing the Pope’s blowfish to the masses. His original Reddit post was posted on the r/midjourney subreddit, but the lack of context on Twitter has tricked many into believing the image was real.

Model Chrissy Teigen has admitted to being duped by a fake Frances.

“I thought Pope’s puffer jacket was real and didn’t give it a second thought. I can’t survive the future of technology.”

An alarming number of people in her reply indicated that she wasn’t the only one who had her eyes covered.

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“Not only did I not realize it was fake, I saw someone tweet saying it was AI and thought it was a joke,” one user responded.

The images generated by Midjourney went viral on Twitter when Bellingcat founder and journalist Eliot Higgins posted a thread of fake images of the arrested former US President Donald Trump.Higgins was later banned from Twitter and the word “arrest” is now Prohibited as Prompt From Midjourney.

These were mostly harmless cases of people being fooled by AI-generated images, but it’s clear that advances in AI technology are making it harder for ordinary people to parse fact from fiction.

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The ease of use of text and image generation tools means that the bar for malicious actors to spread disinformation has never been lower.

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Risk analysts have identified AI as one of the greatest threats facing humans today. The 2023 Top Risks report calls these technologies “Weapons of mass destructionIt “undermines public trust, empowers demagogues and authoritarians, and disrupts business and markets.”

Yoshua Bengio, a Montreal-based computer scientist known as one of the godfathers of AI, told Global News that we need to consider how AI can be abused. He suggested that governments and other groups could use these powerful tools to control people as “weapons of persuasion.”

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“What about the exploitation of these powerful technologies? Can they be used, for example, by governments to maliciously control people and ensure reelection? They are weapons on the battlefield, weapons of persuasion, Can it even be used as a weapon, period?” he asked.

“What is inevitable is that scientific progress will get there.

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One way Canada is trying to address the potential harm caused by AI is by strengthening its legal framework.

If passed, the proposed Privacy Act C-27 would: artificial intelligence and data law (AIDA) aims to ensure the ethical development and use of AI in the country. While the framework should be embodied in concrete guidelines, AIDA is a mandate for companies developing AI systems with the aim of protecting Canadians from the harm wrought by prejudiced and discriminatory models. We plan to create national regulations based on

The law demonstrates the willingness of politicians to ensure that “high impact” AI companies do not adversely affect people’s everyday lives, but the regulation is primarily focused on oversight of corporate practices. I’m here. No mention is made of educating Canadians on how to navigate disruptive AI technologies in their daily lives.

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Given the chaos caused by the Pope of Pufferfish, where’s the next House Hippos-style public service announcement in a time of need?

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Canadian political scientists Wendy H. Wong and Valerie Kindulge appeal to the Canadian government Editorial prioritizing digital literacy in the age of AI.

They argue that access to quality information is necessary for democracy to function smoothly. Access to this information can be threatened by AI tools with the power to easily distort reality.

“One way to embrace disruptive technologies is to equip citizens with the knowledge and tools they need to deal with these innovations in their daily lives. That is why we need to advocate for widespread investment in digital literacy programs. There is,” writes the author.

“The importance of digital literacy goes beyond our daily interactions with the online information environment. Fundamental rights such as freedom of expression and assembly are thwarted when our information is distorted. , to participate in politics, we need to discern consumers of information,” they added.

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AI technology is improving day by day, but for now, one strategy for determining if a human image is AI-generated is to look at the hands and teeth. Models like Midjourney and DALL-E still struggle to generate realistic hands and often get the number of teeth in a person’s mouth wrong.

The federal government’s Digital Citizens Initiative is already helping groups combat disinformation on topics as diverse as the Ukraine war and COVID-19. But with the proliferation of AI tools, the Canadian public should be prepared to see more misinformation campaigns in the future.

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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