Strange Technology

Doppelganger Series + Face Search Engines

I’ve long been interested in doppelgangers. Using modern face search engines, you may be able to find one or more of yours. It makes sense that some people would look alike, with so many of us on the planet. There is also the interesting fact that everyone alive today is a genetic cousin of everyone else.

Canadian photographer François Brunelle puts together this series of strange coincidences. Unrelated, total strangers to each other, he sought out pairs who looked uncannily alike and shot them side by side. The series entitled, ‘I’m Not a Look-Alike!’, came from an obsession with the idea that everyone on earth has a doppelganger, with the hope of shooting 200 couples and turning the results into a book and exhibition. While some are a little bit of a stretch others definitely fall under the ‘Twilight Zone’ Category. Judge for yourself, ‘classic’ poses and all, in the gallery.
more here: Doppelganger Series

Face search engines exist, and while the best ones are probably only available to law enforcement or other high level groups, there are some anyone can use. There have been many publicly available search engines, but they keep getting purchased by big companies and then the old web sites go defunct. Here are a few that anyone can still use:

There are more impressive systems with massive databases of faces in use that can quickly find the “spitting image” of you or anyone else. Here is one example:

NEC’s NeoFace Watch solution is specifically designed to integrate with existing surveillance systems by extracting faces in real time from existing video surveillance systems and matching against a watch list of individuals. When the system identifies an individual of interest from the watch list, it raises an alert, so appropriate actions can be taken rapidly to reduce the risk of public safety threats.


Instant face lookup is awesome technology, but a bit spooky. Hopefully it will never be abused by those with access to it.

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I had a doppelganger when I was in college; people kept confusing me with a complete stranger; one day, I got her information from someone, and we met up; I could see myself, and it was eerie! Unfortunately, technology will be abused – either by people with evil intent or by governments being supported by unsuspecting users of Google glasses & co, unwittingly giving them the biggest “Big Brother” access of all time… As far as I’m aware, such glasses or other technologies are illegal here in Switzerland, which has very strict privacy laws; in our church, we even need… Read more »

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