WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
Avatars will play an increasingly important role in the future – whether they’re being used to depict, or replace actors in movies, VR simulations or to compliment bots, Loom.ai’s new product makes the process of creating one simple.
We’re entering a new world of, among other things, artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) where you’ll be able to become anyone you want, and inhabit and take part in brand new worlds where the only limit is your imagination. And in the new world personalisation will be king.
How would you like to be the star in your own AI directed movie? Play the lead character in a VR game or, if you’re running a business, become the face of your own customer service bot? Personally I think the first two are way cooler but in each case you need to be able to transpose your own “image” – or avatar – into, or onto, the new world, and now, thanks to a startup called Loom.ai you can. And you can do it easily and for a fraction of the cost of what it would have cost you even at the start of this year. Say goodbye to hiring a team of professional designers and spending weeks twiddling your thumbs – now it’s as easy as uploading a photo and voila, you’re done.
If you visit their website you can upload an image, either of themselves or someone else, and Loom.ai’s software will generate a 3D personalised avatar that resembles the image. The technology is based on a combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning, machine vision and a collection of new rendering techniques and while the result isn’t yet photorealistic, and the product has a problem with hair and only offers a narrow range of facial expressions, all of those developments will inevitably come in time – and as and when, and if, they get more funding.
As you can see from the above animation the company has already released a few example avatars based on celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Kanye West, and Elon Musk and the result’s not bad.