Visual “Optimization”

Here is a EurekAlert! press release well worth a close read, about Neon, a Carnegie Mellon spinout that is being honored by the World Economic Forum for being a company aware of challenges in the world and doing its part. But what does Neon do? It uses outstanding technologies rooted in machine learning, psychology and brain imaging to enable real-time selection of images on-line that significantly increase human engagement and human click-through’s! The article says:

Neon’s proprietary technology, developed in research labs at CMU and Brown University, uses cognitive science, neuroscience and machine learning tools to understand how humans see and react to images, and selects images that emotionally resonate with viewers. Neon’s products provide real-time optimization tools for images and video, proven to increase engagement through clicks by 16 to 34 percent.

So, not only can scientists merge together disciplines to significantly affect our personal behavior unawares; they can also attract massive venture funding and global lauding for the ability to improve profit for on-line visual content markets.  The computers will only become ever better at dishing us information that remote-controls our responses. This is a one-way street we are traveling, people.

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