GEEKS HAVE INVENTED a program that can make anyone East Asian. The link was forwarded by a helpful reader who had heard this columnist lament that he had not been born a member of one of the cooler races. “This will make you Chinese or Japanese or South Korean,” said Sunita Chau.
I clicked the link but it was disappointing: Make Me Asian only works on photographs, not on real people—not yet, anyway.
You upload your photograph, whether you are Caucasian, Australoid, Mongoloid, or, like me, Random Nondescript Brownoid—and then press a button.
Round eyes are flattened, noses shrink, skin is tinted yellow and a wig of straight black hair is photoshopped over the top of your head.
The app-developers have been castigated as racists in America, since people on that side of the planet are terribly sensitive about these things. But Chinese and Japanese people in Asia seem unoffended, and are using it themselves to make their eyes longer and their noses tinier.
Make Me Old (wrinkles appear)
Make Me Fat (the lower part of your head expands)
Make Me Bald
and Make Me Irish (orange hair and a beard appear on your face, and a black eye from fighting in the pub)
Surely the range would sell better if they were Make Me LESS Old, Make Me LESS Fat, Make Me LESS Bald or Make Me ANYTHING BUT Irish?
Anyway, the Make Me Asian app is so badly coded it crashes all the time. One reviewer wrote a note to the programmers: “If you want to be Asian, you should make functioning apps for a starter.”
So I got a Photoshop user to try to make me East Asian but he just turned me into Homer Simpson (pic at top).
Sigh. Okay, I’m just gonna have to stay as I am…
TWO STUDENTS wore hi-tech cheating shirts during exams, the Indian press revealed last week. The shirts have a lapel mike built into the collar and a mobile phone in the armpit. This is utterly despicable and I wish I had thought of it first. Grade F for ethics, Grade A for resourcefulness.
A NEW TRAFFIC law was passed in China last week, forcing drivers to stop at yellow lights, I heard from reader Chris Donnolley. “How about getting them to stop at red lights while they're at it?” he asked. That may be asking too much.
TALKING OF laws, a new one passed in California last week made it legal for computer-brained cars to drive themselves around on public streets. As a parent, I find this really worrying. My car’s going to be calling me all hours of the night: “Toyota’s owners let her stay out late, why can’t I?”
A BOLSHIE MONKEY with a Donald Trump hairdo took up residence in the US embassy in Sri Lanka the other day, forcing staff to evacuate. It was eventually persuaded to leave using a trail of bananas—to the British government building next door. If this starts another war in Sri Lanka, America will pay.
A CERAMICS TYCOON in Fujian, China, is giving his daughter away in marriage along with a dowry worth more than one billion yuan. Never mind her, I would marry HIM for that. Or, if my wife is reading this, I wouldn’t marry either as a perfect spouse is beyond price.
GRANDPA sent this lovely video of an Asian street market—in fighting with his transport theme, see the market vanish as a train passes through and then reappear instantly:
YESTERDAY I managed to get a delivery of my book, plus envelopes and stamps, and sent off copies to people who have had trouble getting it: to Grandpa Fardel, Rafan jr and Ram. Should arrive in a few days, guys.
Anyway, I was particularly amazed at Ram’s address which is amazingly long:
6F, Nanobioscience Lab
Institute of Physics
Taipei – 11529
Republic of China
How do you get it onto one envelope, Ram?
(Did I miss anyone? Is there anyone else can’t get it the normal way, through the links or a bookshop? A NOOK edition has just been published. If you want a physical copy of the first edition, click here. And the Kindle one is available for easy download here.)
Have a great weekend.