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This link recently saved by hjl on August 16, 2012
Since February, all of the direct photo links that were sent to me by Ars readers disappeared, and I began deleting my own photos again from Facebook's site to see how long it would take for them to be removed from the CDN. I tested this with two photos while saving their direct URLs, and both photos became inaccessible within two days of deletion.
Other readers wrote to me about different aspects of their Facebook experience remaining online indefinitely. Many pointed out that Facebook chats are only hidden and not deleted when a user thinks they're deleting them. Others said that deleted private messages seemed to magically resurrect themselves when using any one of Facebook's mobile apps or outside applications. And more than one user told me horror stories about how their friends-only Facebook albums somehow ended up being publicly accessible, and there's at least one unanswered Get Satisfaction thread on the topic.
This link recently saved by hjl on November 12, 2009
The “beautification engine” uses a mathematical formula to alter the original form into a theoretically more attractive version, while maintaining what programmers call an “unmistakable similarity” to the original.
The software program, developed by computer scientists in Israel, is based on the responses of 68 men and women, age 25 to 40, from Israel and Germany, who viewed photographs of white male and female faces and picked the most attractive ones.
Scientists took the data and applied an algorithm involving 234 measurements between facial features, including the distances between lips and chin, the forehead and the eyes, or between the eyes.
Essentially, they trained a computer to determine, for each individual face, the most attractive set of distances and then choose the ideal closest to the original face. Unlike other research with formulas for facial attractiveness, this program does not produce one ideal for a feature, say a certain eye width or chin length.
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