The objects were then ranked in order of potential to assist in the inevitable destruction of humanity.
It reminds me of Bill Gosper's old code for Conway's game of life from back in the 1980s. It used spatial and temporal hashing so it took several minute to do the first 1000 generations of the F pentonimo but just another second for the next 2^31 generations.
Hashing, sometimes using K-D trees, was common in image processing in the early 80s and into the 90s. There just wasn't enough processing power, but if you created your tables cleverly you could get pretty good results a lot faster. (Professor Pentland at MIT got our group on the right track with this, way back when.) I suppose you never really have enough processing power.
One step closer to the robot apocalypse. They're walking with perfect balance now, and aiming "pretend" weapons. They've had control of the means of production for decades. The only piece missing is the Anger Core.
Seriously though, there are indeed some pretty sinister implications in the offing when computers are being used to automatically understand images.
The NSA has lots of computers... I bet they have a few spare.
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