To brag about how absolutely dope its artificial intelligence is, Facebook showed that its AI could detect the difference between tempura broccoli and cannabis flower at the company’s F8 developer conference. See, other AIs just aren’t this dope. Other AIs might think marijuana and broccoli are the same thing — which, to be fair, so do stoners.
The demonstration during Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer’s keynote was to show the lengths the company is now going to curb some of the worst problems on its platform, including hate speech, misinformation, and inappropriate videos. Though Schroepfer admitted AI couldn’t fix all the company’s “complex problems,” this new AI program could detect “policy-violating content,” which might include someone selling marijuana on Facebook.
— Queenie Wong (@QWongSJ) May 1, 2019
In the past, Facebook relied on behavioral signals to detect people selling cannabis on the platform. But the new visual algorithm Facebook’s developers created is more able to sift through some of the workarounds bad agents would employ, like obscuring packaging or hiding product in baked goods.
“This is an intensely adversarial game,” Schroepfer said, according to CNET. “We build a new technique, we deploy it, people work hard to try to figure out ways around this.”
Now, when comparing two similar looking items like broccoli tempura and cannabis flower, “the visual algorithm was 94 percent sure that the marijuana was, in fact, marijuana, and 88 percent sure that the other image was the broccoli,” writes Marijuana Moment.
— John Colucci (@johncolucci) May 1, 2019
Whether this will all factor into Facebook’s decision to lift its restrictions on marijuana-related content for legitimate companies and influences remains to be seen.