Manga Me: An A.I. powered app that draws you in anime/manga
Manga Me: An A.I. powered app that draws you in anime/manga
An A.I. powered app that draws your anime/manga portrait from a photo! We'll teach the A.I. to draw using photos from backers like you.
An A.I. powered app that draws your anime/manga portrait from a photo! We'll teach the A.I. to draw using photos from backers like you. Read more
About this project
One week total funding period!
The Manga Me app instantly transforms your photo into a Japanese style manga/anime character. You will be able to create an awesome new profile pic or the more ambitious could even make a manga or visual novel all on your own without learning how to draw.
But Manga Me has a secret, a secret so mysterious that I’m telling it to you right now: behind the scenes, the app will upload your photo to the cloud where a state of the art artificial intelligence (A.I.) personally draws a manga character that looks like you!
We can build it. We have the technology. But, we don’t have the training data, the data needed to teach the A.I. how to draw manga, and we need your help to produce it. Without the training data, the A.I. is Quasimodo (half-formed)
By backing this project, and sending us your photo. Your contribution will allow us to have a manga artist draw a manga character from your photo. Then we will pair up your photo and its manga character, and teach the A.I. how to draw manga by example. We will do this with hundreds to thousands of photo-manga pairs, creating what we in the industry call the “training data”.
The “training data” is what makes an A.I. an A.I., not just a computer program. Like you or me, A.I.s learn from experience. This process is called “machine learning”. The “training data” is everything the A.I. experiences in its so-called “life”. If the code is the mind of the program, the training data is the heart and soul; it is what makes the A.I. who it is.
Let me show you an example of what a huge difference the training data makes:
First I want to tell you about this amazing A.I. that transforms sketches into cats!
Or combination cat-octopus monsters!
This A.I. was trained on just a couple thousand pairs of images, one image had a cat sketch the other had an actual cat. After hours to days of “studying” the images, the A.I. is now able to producing these amazingly realistic cat pictures from just sketches.
Want to hear something even more amazing? You can take the same A.I. that draws cats, and make it draw buildings instead!
(By the way, you can play with both the cat and the buildings A.I.s right here: https://affinelayer.com/pixsrv/ )
The only difference between the two A.I.s? Training Data. This A.I. “studied” around five hundred pictures of buildings in order to get to where it is today.
So it’s more accurate to say the cat A.I. and the building A.I. are like identical twins. Although they came from the same blueprint, one A.I. was locked up in a room with a cat lady, and given nothing but cat pictures until it “learned” how to draw cats from sketches, while the other was forced onto the streets and had nothing to do but look at buildings until it “learned” how to draw buildings. They may have the same DNA, but their experiences have shaped them into completely different programs.
With the right training data, we can teach AI..s to do some amazing things. We need your help creating some high quality training data that we can use to create awesome A.I. that will instantly transform your photo into a manga character.
How well the A.I. can “draw” manga characters depends on both the quality and the quantity of training data. After the Kickstarter is successful we will start the training process, and we will keep you involved every step of the way. Every time that we receive new drawings from the artists we will retrain the A.I., and share the results with you. You will be able to see it get better and better at “drawing” manga until it has surpassed your wildest dreams (we hope). In this way, you will be able to see the A.I. grow from a fledgling sketcher to a competent artist.
Once the A.I. has trained on all the backers’ photos, we will release an app for iOS and Android that will allow everyone to use the A.I.. If you claim an eligible backer reward, you will get a complimentary copy of the app upon release.
The app will let you take photos of people on your smart phone and transform them into manga characters on the fly.
Yourself as an anime/manga character. And an IOS or Android copy of the app. An artist will create an anime/manga character in your likeness, which will be used to teach the A.I. how to draw! We will send a copy of the finished character to you digitally. In addition you will get a copy of the app for either an iOS or Android device. Your pledge helps cover both the cost of the artist and the time it takes to process the image and train the A.I.
Risks and challenges
Regardless of the A.I.s status, we will still deliver the manga versions of your photos. Since we are doing everything digitally, there is little risk in artists drawing your picture. Your rewards will come through.
The field of Artificial Intelligence has bloomed in recent years creating a wide variety of new and exciting applications such as Manga Me. With each new application however, there is a risk that the A.I. will not succeed to learn its task. Our Kickstarter goal is set up so that we will obtain about 200 example images to be used to train the A.I.. For most A.I. applications, if the A.I. does not succeed, then the most common solution is to collect more or a wider variety of training data. If the A.I. does not succeed with the images obtained from the Kickstarter, we will still publish the app, but as a beta, so that backers will be able to use it. While the app is in the beta stage, we will continue to collect more example images and improve the app until the A.I. does succeed.
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