Sounds like an April Fool’s Day headline, right? But it’s real. Scientists want to know exactly what people are staring at when an attractive breast is in sight — or rather, they want to know exactly which breasts are aesthetically pleasing and which are not. This, they say, is the first step in using science to create the perfect man-made boob for those who require plastic surgery (or elect to have it: it’s your own business after all).
The Polish-led study analyzed what 50 men and 50 women were looking at by using the eye-tracking technology. Sexual preference was not a factor in deciding which men and women were allowed to join the oddball study. Instead, they were described only as Caucasian or male and female.
Scientists published the study in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.
Lead author Piotr Pietruski said, “Terms such as ‘beauty’ or ‘aesthetics’ are subjective and thus poorly defined and understood. Due to this fact, both aesthetic and reconstructive breast surgery suffer from the lack of a standardized method of postoperative results analysis…Eye-tracking technology enables quantitative analysis of observer’s visual perception of specific stimuli, such as comprehension of breast aesthetics and symmetry.”
A variety of breast shapes and sizes were used: saggy boobs, perky boobs, big boobs, small boobs, etc. Participants were asked to rank each boob on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the most mouth-watering, errrr, we mean, “attractive.” Interestingly, though, all breasts utilized white pigmentation. Doesn’t seem fair, but we’ll wait for other scientists to judge before we try to understand the reasoning behind the decision.
Pietruski said, “Personally, I believe that the most important potential application of eye-tracking technology could be the development of an artificial intelligence-based algorithm for the analysis of various body regions’ attractiveness.”
It seems that belief is venturing into dangerous waters, however, because humans’ appeal slides back and forth on a spectrum depending on the day and age. It doesn’t stay put. One century we might prefer our men more muscular, our women more big-boned, the next we might prefer our men more metrosexual, our women more stick-thin.
If we teach AI software to recognize what someone finds attractive, then we risk standardizing the exact type of physical appeal for all future generations based on what applications we use for that AI — such as deciding on physical traits for babies before they’re even born.
Either way, the eye-tracking tech might be a boon to boob reconstruction or augmentation for those individuals who need it for whatever reason. They might be able to choose the exact characteristics they desire before a surgery is performed — or maybe they’ll be provided a set of images and let the eye-tracking software decide for them.