Thursday, December 2, 2021

Divided -- for facial recognition

Recently-retired Virginia dentist Eric Forsbergh sent me a mathy poem about the fascinating -- and controversial  -- process of facial recognition.   Enjoy!

                  Data-driven approach divided the face into 63 segments.
                                                                Nature Genetics, Jan. 2021

       This, you can’t refute:
       How data banks embed us.

       Graphics now drag anyone
       into granularity. As if
       the features of a wave drew back
       to reveal a pebble beach.

       Camera to camera to camera
       you become the trail of crumbs.
       Why did you take a drive to Iowa?
       There must be a reason
       behind your latest walks.
       Once duly noted in Central Park,
       pixels of you amble
       now in High Line Park.

       Around the world,
       the all-too-friendly knuckles of the state
       parse data daily, examining its hygiene.

       Yet analysts express surprise
       when protesters erupt
       into the streets as a single organism.

       63 segments. What
       could they have missed?

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