How Old are You? This Microsoft Site Tries to Guess Your Age by Photo

The Microsoft is doing a series of ads in the Build conference for developers that will last until Friday (1st) in San Francisco. Among the new features is a face detection API that is able to guess your age and gender from any photo. Doubt?


To test the novelty, send a photo of up to 3 MB for How Old – there are also some sample images on the site. If all goes well, the page will highlight all faces present in the photo (if more than one) and a balloon above each face with the information.

The new API is part of the Project Oxford, a set of machine learning APIs developed by Microsoft. The How Old was just an inside joke to test the API, but ended up making too successful: more than 35,000 people accessed the page in a few hours – and looks that initially only about 50 were informed of the existence of it.

In my tests, the result left me half depressed: according to How Old I’m 27 years old in this picture, five above the correct age. What’s up?

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