YouTuber challenges scientist to create an AI version of him for $100

By Sam Haysom

We already know deepfakes are all over the place these days, and the technology associated with them is advancing rapidly. But how easy is it to create a digital replica of somebody? And could it be done on a budget?

That’s the question YouTuber Tom Scott set out to find the answer to in his latest video, for which he challenged AI in neuroscience researcher Jordan Harrod to create a fake version of him for $100.

“This isn’t a face replacement or a body double,” Scott explains at the start of the video. “That’s mainstream now. Hollywood’s doing it, anyone can do it. This is trying to create a cheaper, complete replacement for me — an automatic digital puppet on a budget of just $100.”

As you can probably guess, Harrod manages this easily enough — creating a version of Scott that, while a little rough around the edges, still manages to help her narrate the rest of the video while doing a passable impression of Scott’s voice and facial expressions.

But rather than being an instructional video (which, given the concerns around deepfake technology, wouldn’t be a great idea), Harrod uses the time to explore the tech’s advancement, the associated dangers, and the tools we can use to identify synthetic media going forwards.

It’s a fascinating insight into something which, while perhaps not a widespread source of misinformation just yet, isn’t going away anytime soon.

Read More

Sam Haysom