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Google’s Lunar New Year Web Game Lets You Experience AI and Shadow Puppetry

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Shadow Art is a new web browser-based game from Google, that allows you to experience Artificial Intelligence (AI) and shadow puppetry in a playful way. You simply use your hands to form one of twelve zodiac animals from the lunar cycle in front of your laptop or phone camera, trying to match your hand to the diagram on the screen.

Shadow Art screengrab

Google says that it has used TensorFlow.js, a TensorFlow library which makes it easy to build and train a machine learning model directly in the browser, to bring what used to be an offline experience online.

The shadow of your hands on the screen then transforms into a shadow puppet animal. Users have twenty seconds to form each animal with the goal to go through the full lunar cycle as fast as possible.


“In September last year, we built an interactive installation that used AI to help people explore shadow puppetry. Though it’s an ancient art, people connected with shadow puppetry in a new way, and after the conference, we decided to bring it online so that everyone could play.”

The new game is now available in eleven language varieties, including English, Chinese, Thai, Bahasa Indonesia, Malay, Japanese, Korean, Spanish and Portuguese. You can try it out right now by following this link.

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