Artificial Intelligence Breathes New Life Into Old Footage

artificial intelligence

This week saw some great developments in the use of artificial intelligence thanks to YouTuber Denis Shiryaev. When we talk about AI, we usually look at it in a business sense. Chatbots, business process automation, smart home assistants and many more applications use AI. However, great technology stretches far beyond just the business world.

Shiryaev took vintage footage of life in New York, Paris, Moscow and Victorian England, some over 100 years old and gave it a beautiful revamp. The black and white grainy footage has been converted to 4K colour brilliance for the world to enjoy, thanks to AI technology.

Start the conversation

How did the footage get restored?

The 1911 film, A Trip Through New York City usually lives in the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Shiryaev decided however, that it was time for the vintage footage to receive a modern overhaul. Multiple tools including Gigapixel AI, DAIN (Depth-aware Video Frame Interpolation and ESGRAN have been used.

Gigapixel AI uses an Artistic Intelligence algorithm to produce sharper and clear upscaled images. While at work, the technology powered by neural networks makes over a million calculations for every single pixel.

Likewise, DAIN also uses neural networks to add artificial frames to the video, bringing it up to 60 frames per second. ESGRAN is another AI system which adds realism to the images by giving the film’s resolution a realistic texture boost.

Future use cases for artificial intelligence in film restoration

It’s fair to say Denis Shiryaev’s impressive work is already serving as inspiration for other artists and developers. One of those people is Chinese video game developer DGSpitzer has used tutorials from Shiryaev to start working on his own project.

DGSpitzer has taken century old footage from Beijing, which shows people riding on camels and in rickshaws, giving it a modern spin. The black and white footage has been brought back to life using several artificial intelligence tools, much like Shiryaev did.

We can clearly see the huge reach that AI has, particularly in the artistic fields, but it could go much further than film restoration. As this technology evolves, there’s no reason we can’t see authentic vintage footage converted and used in big-budget film productions. Who said AI was just about business?

One of many reasons we love AI

This recent work from Denis Shiryaev is just another in a string of reasons why we love AI. Here at Human pixel, we work with artificial intelligence everyday to provide solutions for our customers. But as with all technology, AI isn’t just about business. It’s becoming part of our society’s fabric now, and this is a great example of how AI can touch many lives.

While we’re not in the business of recreating century old archive footage, we can certainly help with AI for business. If you’ve got any queries about artificial intelligence, please contact us at Human Pixel today.

Start the conversation