331: Photoshops

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Photoshops
When I look into your eyes, I see JPEG artifacts. I can tell by the pixels that we're wrong for each other.
Title text: When I look into your eyes, I see JPEG artifacts. I can tell by the pixels that we're wrong for each other.

[edit] Explanation

This whole comic including the title text are a pun on the then-popular internet meme "This Looks Shopped".

Adobe Photoshop is a popular image manipulation tool. It is used to manipulate photographic images and for drawing. Of course, Photoshop and similar tools like Paint Shop Pro can only be used for imagery, not for real life objects.

The title text contains the second part of the internet meme, the complete text is: "THIS LOOKS SHOPPED / I CAN TELL FROM SOME OF THE PIXELS AND FROM SEEING QUITE A FEW SHOPS IN MY TIME."

Quite a few interesting images have been uncovered as "shopped" using various techniques. Some examples: shadows are in the wrong direction, extra hands appear, movie stars are made thinner, wrinkles or spots removed and objects added or removed. This of course triggered the start of the meme.

JPEG is an image compression algorithm that works by finding frequencies in blocks of 8x8 pixels and saving that instead of the original pixels. This works remarkably well, but sometimes leaves artifacts that can be seen when zooming in enough. The iris of an eye contains all kinds of odd colored spots - and there's not a JPEG algorithm in sight.

This is another strip in the My Hobby series.

[edit] Transcript

[Megan holds a sword while Cueball looks on.]
My hobby: Insisting that real-life objects are photoshopped.
Megan: This sabre is a 19th-century family heirloom.
Cueball: It looks photoshopped.
Megan: Huh?
Cueball: Yeah, the reflections are all wrong. Definitely photoshopped.
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Discussion

While many alarming or suspiciously interesting pictures (and videos) have later proven to be 'shopped', I believe that Randall is commenting on the abysmal existence of a certain kind of person who cries foul on *any* picture that isn't straightforward.

They usually profess to be Photoshop experts and point out various 'defects' in the photo that 'prove' it has been manipulated.

This is just a (hopefully unconscious) attempt to appear more cynical, more intelligent and harder to fool than everybody else who has ignored the glaring evidence.

What makes it simultaneously amusing and annoying is that usually the commenter is patently, completely and obviously wrong - the image has in fact captured a real occurrence.

The original examples that come to mind are the Apollo 11 photographs from the surface of the moon, but the internet abounds with such.

StephenP

108.162.219.223 18:28, 17 December 2013 (UTC)

To be entirely fair, with the advent of 3D printers, it will become possible to "shop" real-life objects. 108.162.218.101 00:03, 10 February 2014 (UTC)

I'll just leave this here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/new-matter-mod-t-3d-printing-for-everyone Brettpeirce (talk) 13:48, 29 May 2014 (UTC)
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