The future has arrived. I can listen to whatever song I choose, make a phone call and send a message (through the air!), all from one device that fits in the palm of my hand. I can push a button and whatever flavor coffee I want comes out of the machine instantly (like in Judy Jetson’s kitchen!). ”Space Tourism” is an actual industry. I can even load a photo onto my computer and the computer will identify the people in the picture.
I am sorry, but that last one freaks me out a little bit. A computer can LOOK at a picture and IDENTIFY PEOPLE from it. Like when your kid pulls out an old, square Fotomat photo from a dusty box, wipes it off and asks, “Who is that little boy, Mama?” And you squint and jog your memory and say, “Um, I think that was my uncle, back when he was young and super cute, you know – before he started smoking pot all the time and living with the crazy cat lady who didn’t wear underpants to your aunt’s wedding reception. Yeah, that was him. Don’t do drugs.”
A bunch of different computer applications have face recognition software now… iPhoto has had it for a while and Facebook apparently has it too. I get how it works (our souls have a fingerprint-like uniqueness and the computers have a way of recognizing those very specific and detailed nuances), but I am leery of it at the same time. I would feel so much better – and the computers would seem so much less alive – if they were just measuring the distance between the eyes, width of the nose, depth of the eye sockets, shape of the cheekbones and the length of the jawbone.
So I was reassured and very pleasantly surprised the other day when Kid A posted her Hermione picture on her Facebook account and the computer identified her as… ME!
Now, let me give you a little background. Kid A is the first grandchild on both sides, so all of the relatives gathered together in the hospital room when she was born. My mom was so excited and overwhelmed to have a grandchild. She stared down at the minutes-old new life, scanned her beautiful baby face and gushed to me with joy, “She looks just like you!”
Everyone in the room responded, “Stacy looked just like Sheepdog as a baby?”
Seriously, Kid A looked exactly like Sheepdog and nothing like the woman who just attempted ripping the rails off of the hospital bed while forcing another human out of her body. And while Kid A’s looks have changed over the years, she has always most closely resembled her Daddy. Yet the computer identified her not as him, nor even as herself, but as me the other day.
Why did the software recognition program identify Kid A as me, you ask? I mean, yes, she is my kid but we really do not look alike. We clearly have different noses, different eyes, and very different face shapes.
There’s only one logical conclusion. It was definitely the hair. Unmistakable, big, Jersey Girl hair. She DOES look just like me!