LEON VALLEY, Texas (AP) — Two men have confessed to snatching a small shark from a Texas aquarium’s interactive touch tank, then whisking it away, wrapping it in a blanket and concealing it in a baby stroller, police say.
Everything you need to know about the deepfake phenomenon
By| Posted Jul 30th, 2018 @ 2:29pm
About 10 seconds in, her face changes. In fact, it’s not her face at all — it’s President Donald Trump’s. Merkel, like other world leaders, including Barack Obama and Argentina’s president Mauricio Macri, has had her video edited to create what has been coined a “deepfake.”
What is a deepfake?
A deepfake is an image, audio clip or video, created using artificial intelligence software, that seems real — but isn’t.
The word is a combination of the words “fake” and “deep learning” — a type of machine-learning method.
How do you create a deepfake?
Digital film editing has been around since the 1980s but was mostly used only in big-budget movies. It was often very expensive and time-intensive. Adding CGI to movies to create a fake landscape or person could take months and a team of specialists.
Now, machine learning does this intensive work. With artificial intelligence, images and videos can be superimposed on an existing image frame-by-frame, with little input from the human editor — though it does require somewhat extensive source footage.
For a closer look at how this technology works, watch Michael Zollhoefer’s “Deep Video Portraits.” Zollheofer is a visiting assistant professor at Stanford University in the computer science department.
The software that makes this possible is open-source — meaning that it’s free and available on the internet for anyone who wants it. Tools like Google’s TensorFlow and Facebook’s DensePose allow hobbyists and those without much technical skill to make deepfakes.
Almost anyone can also create deepfake audio clips using software like Lyrebird or Adobe’s forth-coming Project Voco. This means that, in addition to Donald Trump’s head being superimposed on Angela Merkel, it could also be his voice.
While there is some promise to this type of technology, deepfakes still pose major concerns.
How did deepfakes start?
Like other new technologies, some of the first applications of deepfakes were in pornography. Most often the targets of these deepfakes were female celebrities like Olivia Wilde and Gal Gadot who had their faces superimposed on porn stars in videos in late 2017.
Now, those wishing to create revenge porn or embarrassing videos of others can do so relatively easily through apps that allow users to create deepfakes with enough source footage. Lawmakers are already investigating the legal implications of these actions.
PornHub, Reddit and Twitter all banned deepfake and AI-generated porn content, but it’s difficult to manually monitor, and the content still exists and has moved to other corners of the internet, according to Vice News.
Vice News did some foundational reporting on deepfakes in late 2017, beginning a flood of reports from other news outlets across the world about the trend.
What effects have deepfakes had?
Perhaps more concerning than deepfakes’ use in pornography, however, is its effect on trust. Trust is declining in the United States, according to the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer, which monitors trust in institutions globally.
The United States had a deeper decline than any other country with a staggering 37-point drop in all institutions, including the media. Across the world, seven out of 10 respondents to the Edelman survey expressed concerns about false information being used as a weapon.
If a viewer cannot trust audio or video, it becomes more difficult to trust all media and erodes trust in institutions like the legal system, government and more.
However, a 2018 Pew Research study found that individuals who had more trust in the media were more likely to identify factual statements.
Though deepfake media is relatively new, it can be combatted with some critical thinking skills. Parents and educators can encourage media literacy skills by asking such questions as:
- Who created the content?
- How might others interpret what the content says?
- What possible biases and opinions are shared in this content?
- How is this video or image trying to get my attention?
- What purpose does this content have?
Deepfakes can also be flagged by the same technology that makes them possible: artificial intelligence. According to tech news platform Wired, GIF-hosting company Gfycat can run deepfakes through its AI tool and flag a clip that may resemble someone but that does not render perfectly in each frame.
But technology will have a harder time keeping up with deepfakes as they become more sophisticated, making it increasingly critical for media consumers to be throughtfully critical of everything they encounter.
Pdf book on link above
From Esoteric Anatomy : The Body as Consciousness by Bruce Burger (see here for full text and footnotes)
In the Himalayan vision of east Indian philosophy, creation is sung into being. The Universe . . . as a living Being . . . conceives of a Goddess who sings creation into manifestation. All that is. . . is the vibration of her song . . . carried on her life breath, pregnant with her intelligence and will.
In this essay we will consider the fundamental principles in the universal mind that underlie the stages in the manifestation of consciousness in form. A foundation of the Sanatana Dharma (timeless Vedic way of life) is the cosmology know as Samkhya, which means “to enumerate.” Samkhya philosophy enumerates the tattwas, or fundamental forces that underlie creation. Samkhya, the oldest of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy, is said to be “the philosophical foundation of all Oriental culture, the measuring rod of all Hindu literature, the basis for all knowledge of the ancient sages (rishis) and the key to Oriental symbolism . . . ” Through careful reflection it expounds twenty-five tattwas, charting the stages of the evolution of consciousness into mind and matter. “This exposition is no mere metaphysical speculation, but is a purely logical account based on the scientific principles of conservation, transformation, and dissipation of energy.” Samkhya postulates two ultimate realities, Spirit (Purusha) and Nature (prakriti).
On a societal scale, we are seeing the results of the gaps between awareness and understanding create a lot of rifts between people. While new truths are out there for all to see, how much ‘new truth’ someone can accept depends on their level of understanding. The idea of our unlimited potential, being masterful creators, multi-dimensionality, and intergalactic connections is just too much for some people who just want to go home, put their feet up and watch the next episode of Wheel of Fortune with the ageless Pat Sajak and Vanna white.
“Every dark purpose has a light potential. We cannot find that light when we are mired in anger, even if it is justified and it usually is. It does not serve us to stay mired in it. Find our own joy, in spite of the pain we have suffered. And that is our victory, which we can celebrate every day
No matter the experiences that hurt you, karmic lessons were meant to help you overcome and thrive beyond them.
If someone was unloving, they were a lesson in creating your inner source of love.
If someone is jealous, or cruel, it is a lesson in honoring your value, and learning compassion for yourself.
If someone is angry, it is a lesson in finding higher frequencies and vibrations of emotional energy.
If someone abandoned or betrayed you, it is a lesson to create your own stable source of empowerment from within.
When we allow the memory of trauma to become our emotional filter we challenge their actions and try to find understanding when there is often none. Our only powerful recourse is to reject them and what they have done instead of embodying the lesson so we could become more of what we wanted and knew was right for us. Where we have succeeded in creating more joy, love, and peace in our lives than they had in theirs was the purpose of the lessons we learned through them.
Be aware that you may be feeling a lot of energy you aren’t too comfortable with and that it probably isn’t yours. We’re in a very heavy energy cycle right now and you know that because you’re seeing it in the world around you. People are waking up and that is bringing new levels of awareness which are creating anger and a desire for very quick change. So they’re releasing a lot of dense energy, like so much energetic litter.
Be Kind to One Another
Be kind to each other, practice compassion with everyone, live with acceptance of yourself and others. Live within the fullness of your power and perfection in each moment. When you use kindness in your interactions with others you give them the gifts of acceptance, love and compassion.
Kindness is more than being nice to others, it is a state of spiritual awareness, where you lead with your spiritual nature, speaking from you divinity to others’ divine selves, becoming a shining light for others to see. When you are kind to others your light shines more brightly than any darkness around you.
Being kind to others, no matter what they are doing or have done to you, allows you to stay in your power, maintain your energy boundaries, and to choose how you will interact with everyone around you.
Kindness engages your human/divine partnership, which is the highest expression of your light. Through it you express your mastery and you see the unlimited potentials for every situation.
You cannot be angry if you choose kindness, you cannot be resentful, hurt, or disappointed. Kindness is not a state of doing or allowing others to take advantage of you, it is an opening that invites others to experience your light as you choose to express it. When you choose to be kind you resist the urge to judge and instead, exercise detachment and forgiveness.
Begin each conversation in the spirit of forgiveness, which is the intention to be in your own energy space, so any negativity you may experience from someone does not connect with a past wound or hurt within you. Being kind does not mean doing things for others, it means being respectful of their level of spiritual growth and understanding and how that is what affects their ability to interact with you.
If you approach everyone with kindness, you set the energetic vibration for that interaction and you are the leader, not the follower. Your kindness does not require others’ acceptance and sometimes it will not happen, but with it you will not judge yourself for others’ lack of appreciation.
Kindness allows for joy, love, compassion, and peace to dominate in every relationship. See your kindness as a gift you set in front of someone, then allow them to respond as they can. Let kindness be your truth so you are not distracted by others wounds, hurts, issues or problems. Kindness allows you to disconnect with compassion, when that becomes necessary, and fully release any karmic energies to allow your healing to be completed.
Your gift of kindness opens the door to new ways of interacting that are free from conflict and fear. When you choose kindness as the energetic vibration that you will share with others you create healing for yourself and offer them the gift of healing. You also create this vibration in the world around you and for the planet as your willingness to be kind to others and to everyone is magnified and manifested in the world.
Imagine what the world would be like if everyone was kind to each other. It is something that you can create for yourselves and the world when you are kind to one another. Hold the energetic space for kindness and know that each act of kindness is important to the healing to wholeness process that the earth and humanity are currently experiencing within the ascension journey. Learning to be kind to each other is an important part of that process and it is a gift that you can give to yourself and to others every day.
NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook said it has uncovered “sophisticated” efforts, possibly linked to Russia, to influence U.S. politics on its platforms.
The company said it removed 32 accounts from Facebook and Instagram because they were involved in “coordinated” political behavior and appeared to be fake. Nearly 300,000 people followed at least one of the accounts.
Facebook stopped short of saying the effort was aimed at influencing the U.S. midterm elections in November, although the timing of the suspicious activity would be consistent with such an attempt.
You could describe modern air travel in a lot of ways, but the words “comfortable” and “laid back” probably wouldn’t be the first to come to mind. Cramped seats, pricey baggage fees, rancid smells — they’re all par for the course while riding the friendly skies in 2018. That’s why it’s so encouraging and refreshing that there’s a new airliner that’s all about turning long-haul flights into a luxurious and leisurely cruise through the clouds, complete with lounges, a bar, and panoramic views of your surroundings through giant windows and a glass-bottomed floor.
Democrats held a news conference Tuesday, calling on the administration to reverse the decision. Senators said Trump has the power to stop the company from making downloadable plans available online.
Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal said if Trump fails to act, “blood is going to be on his hands.”
People can use the blueprints to manufacture plastic guns using a 3D printer. But gun industry experts have expressed doubt that criminals would go to the trouble, since the printers needed to make the guns are very expensive, the guns themselves tend to disintegrate quickly and traditional firearms are easy to come by.
Unlike traditional firearms that can fire thousands of rounds in their lifetimes, the 3D-printed guns normally last only a few rounds before they fall apart, experts say. They don’t have magazines that allow the usual nine or 15 rounds to be carried; instead, they usually hold a bullet or two and then must be manually loaded afterward. And they’re not usually very accurate.