Take a stroll through the uncanny valley with Emily, an impressive example of how far facial animation has progressed –

Previous methods for animating faces have involved putting dots on a face and observing the way the dots move, but Image Metrics analyses facial movements at the level of individual pixels in a video, meaning that the subtlest variations – such as the way the skin creases around the eyes, can be tracked.

“There’s always been control systems for different facial movements, but say in the past you had a dial for controlling whether an eye was open or closed, and in one frame you set the eye at 3/4 open, the next 1/2 open etc. This is like achieving that degree of control with much finer movements.

“For instance, you could be controlling the movement in the top 3-4mm of the right side of the smile,”

CGI house Image Metrics has certainly done some amazing work here – but I’m still left with that eerie feeling of faux-humanity. – Lifelike animation heralds new era for computer games [via Neatorama]