The new Deep Nostalgia tool helps people worldwide bring old photos to life. Now, thanks to a little AI and video magic, it can look as though long-passed relatives smile and nod at the viewer. However, as you might expect, the internet quickly turned the entire thing into a meme…
The Deep Nostalgia Tool
For those who don’t know, MyHeritage is a genealogy website that wants to bring people closer to their passed-on relatives. Now, they have a new way to do it! The website’s Deep Nostalgia tool, thanks to AI, can animate the faces of people in photos. The new video makes the person seem alive, and the results are incredible! “You’ll have a ‘wow moment’ when you see a treasured family photo come to life with Deep Nostalgia,” Gilad Japhet, the founder and CEO of MyHeritage, said in a statement along with the release of the app. “Seeing our beloved ancestors’ faces come to life in a video simulation lets us imagine how they might have been in reality, and provides a profound new way of connecting to our family history.”
How does this photography magic work? First, the MyHeritage employees filmed the base facial movements and gestures used to pair with the pictures in question. The movements include blinking, head turns, smiling, raising brows, and the like. To truly perfect the end result, MyHeritage also uses AI video technology to put it all together smoothly. The result is a “realistic depiction of how a person could have moved and looked if they were captured on video.”
The company has already posted a few examples of the new Deep Nostalgia tool to its official Twitter page. However, of course, the internet quickly turned the tool into a meme generator…
Old Photos Turned Into…A Meme?
Thanks to the Deep Nostalgia tool, Marie Curie, Amelia Earhart, Charles Darwin, and other iconic figures came back to life. Meanwhile, plenty of users also used it on their relatives, just as intended. Of course, some results were better than others. The company stresses that picture quality matters. “The technology sometimes needs to simulate parts that do not appear in the original photo, such as teeth or ears, and the quality of the end result may vary,” the company stated on the website. “When the person in your photo is wearing a hat or another accessory, sometimes the simulated movement works well, and other times it does not.”
While the tool’s goal was to bring old pictures to life, internet users have found its new purpose – animating high-quality meme pics. In February, Twitter user @paulfeigelfeld became the first to post an animated Deep Nostalgia meme. He animated the Unflattering Beyoncé meme. Within hours, plenty of other classic memes had been brought to life. When will it stop? No time soon, that’s for sure.
In all, most found the tool either heartwarming or a little charming. Still, some did find it creepy, in the vein of deep fakes. The developers even had to ask consumers not to animate living people without their permission.