How your poop can help train AI


San Francisco (CNN)The next time you go to the bathroom, a couple startups are hoping you’ll snap a photo before you flush. For scientific reasons, of course.

No, really. Two companies — Auggi, a gut-health startup that’s building an app for people to track gastrointestinal issues, and Seed Health, which works on applying microbes to human health and sells probiotics — are soliciting poop photos from anyone who wants to send them.

The companies began collecting the photos online on Monday via a campaign cheekily called “Give a S–t” (you can imagine what the dashes stand for) with the goal of creating one of the first known data sets of human poop images. These pictures — the companies hope to collect 100,000 photos in total — can then be used to build AI for research into gut-related diseases and to help people with such health conditions more easily track their own bowel movements.

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