Emily Isn't Real, But Would You Have Guessed?

Illustration for article titled Emily Isnt Real, But Would You Have Guessed?

The woman above is not real. I mean, she was real once, when real actress Emily O'Brien provided Image Metrics (you know their work from GTAIV) with 35 facial poses in front of a pair of digital cameras. From there, O'Brien was dismissed so the animators could go to work. Apparently "ninety per cent of the work is convincing people that the eyes are real." And the results-while not always perfect-are pretty extraordinary. Here's Emily's "interview":

I'm not sure if Emily has quite crossed the uncanny valley, but one thing's for sure. Dating sims are about to get a whole lot more interesting. If only these models didn't look like they were wearing dentures. [timesonline via neatorama and technabob]

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DISCUSSION

I think we need to go back and look at what the uncanny valley is for a second.

When things approach a sort of realism to the point where they look almost real but you can still tell something is wrong and are therefore turned off or, as the definition states, repulsed by them, they have reached the uncanny valley.

The trick is to cross the valley, to make it to a state where we believe that what we are seeing is completely real and are not repulsed by it.

In this case, at least at this quality, I'd say they've come awful close to crossing the valley. Most of the things we were able to nitpick, could easily have been explained away as other things, had we not known it was CG to begin with.

I think it won't be long until we have actually crossed the uncanny valley. Then all of the actors can just get fat and teenage girls can stop starving themselves.

Crap, I was doing so well at trying to sound smart.

-peel