For too long, the internet’s foot fetishists have been stymied in their appreciation of our species’ stinky, wrinkly old tootsies by the fact that there’s a finite number of feet out there for them to ogle. Well, no more. Thanks to This Foot Does Not Exist, a website that allows users to text requests for a limitless number of machine-generated foot pics, humanity has finally broken through one of the last barriers separating our kind from godhood.
Created by MSCHF, the people who previously brought us sneakers filled with holy water, a sickly, virus-stuffed laptop, and an astrology-based investment advisor, This Foot Does Not Exist uses the same technology behind somehow-less-unnerving projects like This Person Does Not Exist to automatically generate images of feet dreamed up by robots. In an act of immense altruism, these photos can be received for free by anyone who texts the number (646) 760-8955. Basically, thanks to modern technology, MSCHF has created a never-ending foot buffet where AI servers, their brains defined by Generative Adversarial Network (GAN) machine learning, present patrons with a limitless supply of feet images. (For more detail on how this works, check out a longer explanation.)
In an email describing the project, MSCHF’s Daniel Greenberg presented and answered the obvious first question anyone’s likely to ask of his group’s work: “Why the fuck did we use some of the world’s most complex artificial intelligence to create feet pics?”
He explains that “feet pics are commonly produced as a niche fetishistic commodity and have all the perceived transgressive elements of more traditionally recognized pornography” without being viewed as explicit in the same way as other forms of nudity. Because of this, these kind of images “can be memes and nudes simultaneously, in the same public sphere” depending on the viewer’s outlook. “This results in an unusual economic paradigm by which the foot pic is both highly valuable and almost throwaway-worthless at the same time,” Greenberg continues. “And this creates a highly intriguing supply and demand dynamic when creators/consumers fall on different ends of this valuation scale.”
While a fascinating explanation, we doubt that those who truly, fundamentally enjoy this project most are too concerned with the rationale behind its creation. No, it’s more likely that their brains are whirring with something simpler. Like that it’s finally infinite foot pic season and, baby, the weather is good.
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