The British Comedy troupe Monty Python famously joked about the strange strides emanating from the farcical Ministry of Funny Walks. But even normal looking walks can be quite distinctive. According to researchers at Shinshu University in Tokida, Japan, computers aided by 3D image processing technology can identify an individual with up to 90% accuracy just based on their gait. Apparently, the way a bare foot interacts with the ground while walking may be as unique an identifier as an individual’s fingerprint. A footstep pattern analysis tool invented by Todd Pataky at Shinshu correctly matched individuals 99.6 per cent of the time. Pataky claimed this could be useful in security checks – and perhaps provide some consolation to U.S. air travelers who must already shed their shoes to pass through security.
(Image via salforduniversity‘s Flickr photostream)