The 57-year-old mystery of an infamous prison break from Alcatraz may have lastly been resolved using artificial-intelligence and facial-recognition technology.

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Rothco, the Irish creative agency own by Accenture Interactive, teamed up with AI professionals at Identv to analyse a photo of 2 escapees and also have, because that the an initial time, shown their identities.

On 11 June 1962, three detainees – open minded Morris, along with brothers John and also Clarence Anglin – damaged out of their cells and also escaped from the jail on Alcatraz Island, near San Francisco Bay.


The trio’s extraordinary escape, in i beg your pardon they used sharpened spoons to dig v the walls and made papier-mâché dummies come fool the guards, was made famous in the 1979 movie Escape from Alcatraz. The prison, i m sorry shut under in 1963, was famed for gift supposedly impossible to to escape from.

Morris and also the Anglin brothers to be assumed to have actually drowned after ~ fleeing the island top top a raft do of 50 inflated raincoats, but brand-new facial-recognition evaluation appears come prove the they were, in fact, effective in your escape.

In 2015, a grainy photo (left) arised that was taken by a family members friend of the Anglins, that were allegedly living in Brazil in 1975. 5 years later, facial-recognition evaluation confirms that the men in the picture are the same as those that escaped native prison.

Rothco produced the idea and worked v Identv to create "The lengthy shot", a project thattells the story of how the picture’s surprise data to be unlocked by utilizing a facial-matching system based on a deep neural network, a kind of machine-learning algorithm.

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Mark Hughes, cook AI scientist at Identv, said the device is established on a training process in i m sorry the algorithm is fed numerous images that a solitary person’s face, together with many pictures of various people. This process is repeated millions of times, if mathematical models are optimised to learn exactly how to distinguish one person’s challenge from another.

He added: "Once we have actually a version trained, it gives us through the capability to create a mathematical fingerprint explicate in detail the visual elements of somebody’s face. These facial fingerprints are highly discriminative. We have the right to then to compare this face fingerprint to other fingerprints we have in a database to create a match, similar to exactly how today’s police fingerprint matching system works. Identv has occurred techniques to lug out this matching procedure in 10s of millisecond over numerous faces."

Rothco chief an imaginative officer Alan Kelly said: "’The long shot’ is a novel example of successfully using the an innovative knowledge and digital tools of today to a concealed piece that the past, unlocking newfound stories and also opportunities. Technology is progressing at together a rate, it have the right to leave you a tiny dizzy and, brief of obtaining DNA proof, over there will always be a little room for mystery. Yet as much as modern technology is concerned – the prisoners made it."