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Would you use a new AI tool to bring old family photographs to life?

Many of us have cherished photographs of great grandparents and ancestors from another lifetime, but would you bring them to life? MyHeritage is a company that has launched Deep Nostalgia, an AI-powered tool that can animate people in photographs, creating a short video clip that brings them to life.

I feel this is something that divides us. For some, it gives them the chance to see a loved one smile and move once again; for others, it will be too painful, perhaps too creepy to fathom. Whatever your feelings on the deep learning technology, if you use the tool it’ll make your ancestors smile, blink, and even turn their heads.

The movements are based on real human gestures, created by actors mostly employed by MyHeritage. Amazingly, it takes between 10 and 20 seconds to animate a face. And once you’ve done so, you’re able to share it. It’s certainly proving popular. There have been over 78 million animations so far, as people experience their family history “like never before”, as the website states.

In its FAQs, MyHeritage says: “The results can be controversial and it’s hard to stay indifferent to this technology. We invite you to create videos using this feature and share them on social media to see what your friends and family think. This feature is intended for nostalgic use, that is, to bring beloved ancestors back to life. Our driver videos don’t include speech in order to prevent abuse of this, such as the creation of ‘deep fake’ videos of living people. Please use this feature on your own historical photos and not on photos featuring living people without their permission.”

Right now, you can only animate one face at a time. To find out more about Deep Nostalgia, visit the MyHeritage website and see for yourself what is probably only the beginning of this incredible technology.

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