Joy Buolamwini, 28
MIT Media Lab and Algorithmic Justice League
As a college student, Joy Buolamwini discovered that some facial-analysis systems couldn’t detect her dark-skinned face until she donned a white mask. “I was literally not seen by technology,” she says.
That sparked the research for her MIT graduate thesis. When she found that existing data sets for facial–analysis systems contained predominantly pale-skinned and male faces, Buolamwini created a gender-balanced set of over a thousand politicians from Africa and Europe.
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