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Microsoft Pulls a Massive Facial Recognition Database

Several the people included in the dataset were not asked for their consent to be included, but their images were scraped from the Internet under the Creative Commons license

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FILE - Microsoft Corp. signage is seen outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Washington, July 3, 2014. VOA

Tech giant Microsoft has reportedly pulled a massive facial recognition database containing more than 10 million images of roughly 100,000 people from the Internet, however traces of the data trove remain online, the media reported.

Microsoft released MS-Celeb-1M, a dataset of roughly 10 million photos from 100,000 individuals collected from the Internet in 2016.

The database was designed to contain photos of celebrities, but as Berlin-based researcher Adam Harvey pointed out with his project Megapixels, the definition of “celebrity” was quite broad, the Vice reported on Friday.

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Rana el Kaliouby, CEO of the Boston-based artificial intelligence firm Affectiva, demonstrates the company’s facial recognition technology, in Boston, April 23, 2018. VOA

The database reportedly contained photos of “journalists, artists, musicians, activists, policy makers, writers, and academics”.

Microsoft said that the database was taken down just because the research challenge is over. Even so, it’s doubtful that the MS-Celeb-1M database’s life is over as well, Microsoft was quoted as saying by the Financial Times.

Also Read- Paytm Payments Bank Ahead of Major Banks in Digital Transaction Target

Several the people included in the dataset were not asked for their consent to be included, but their images were scraped from the Internet under the Creative Commons license, the Vice report added. (IANS)

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Microsoft Planning to Integrate Google’s Services into Outlook.com: Report

The feature is only rolling out to Outlook.com Web mail client users

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FILE - Microsoft Corp. signage is shown outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash.
FILE - Microsoft Corp. signage is shown outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash. VOA

Microsoft is planning to integrate several Google services into Outlook.com, including Google Drive, Google Calendar and Gmail.

This integration would work in a very similar manner to how it does on the existing Android and iOS Outlook apps, with separate inboxes and side-by-side integration in the calendar, The Verge reported on Wednesday.

The new integration was recently shared on Twitter by user Florian B who tweeted screenshots that show a new feature in Outlook.com allowing users to integrate their Gmail, Google Drive, and Google Calendar into their Outlook.com account.

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FILE – A sign for Microsoft is seen on a building in Cambridge, Massachusetts, March 18, 2017. VOA

As per the report, the Google Drive integration supports documents and files from Google’s service so a user can quickly attach them to Outlook or Gmail emails.

Also Read: Twitter Introducing Feature to Schedule Tweets from Web

Right now it is not clear how many Outlook.com users will get access to this, or when the company will make it available more broadly.

The feature is only rolling out to Outlook.com Webmail client users. (IANS)