What About Digital Cloning?

How would you like to go to a movie? In this movie, the actors have one thing in common: none of them are real!

It’s already happening, thanks to Paul Debevec, who runs USC’s Institute of Creative Technology. They use thousands of LED’s (light-emitting diode) and 50 cameras to capture every minute detail. The computer measures lightning off the skin and penetrates the skin. They can capture any wrinkle, any facial movement, even down to a blink or twitch. Real life actors are scanned and their images are turned into technological stuntmen. Digital cloning has been used in “Avatar”. They scanned Sandra Bullock’s face for a scene in Gravity. And in the recently released film “Maleficent”, human face clones were used as fairies. Debevec seems to believe we’ll be able to make whole movies using this technology.

And it’s not just movies. The US military is using digital cloning. Even in the classroom, they’re using digital cloning to preserve history. I saw a demonstration of a Holocaust survivor telling his story to school children through this cloning. Now those are great ways to use digital cloning, but what about the not so great ways? I’m already reading chatter about how this is going to cut cost. I’m worried that could include cutting actors’ and crew people’s jobs in an industry that’s already extremely difficult to get into. I wonder what could happen if hackers, spies, or other cyber criminals get their hands on this technology. So like anything else, digital cloning should, and must be used for good and not abused. Is digital cloning a blessing or curse in the making?

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