To select the best watermelon in summer, AI could be of great help

2024-05-30 16:06:47Global Times Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

As watermelon season approaches, many people feel like buying a watermelon is like a surprise box - will it be sweet or a dud? Recently, videos of using AI to select watermelons are circulating on social media, claiming the technology can pick only ripe and sweet fruit. But can AI really help us choose the right melon?

To put AI to the test, a reporter from the Chinese media outlet on Tuesday visited a store in an agriculture wholesale market in Changsha, Central China's Hunan Province to conduct an experiment. The reporter took photos and numbered eight watermelons, then had AI select the sweetest one. The store owner also picked a melon based on experience, without knowing the AI's choice. The result surprised everyone.

One AI software program admitted it couldn't judge sweetness based on images alone. "Usually, methods to determine the sweetness of a watermelon include observing the appearance, weight, and sound of the watermelon. Tapping the watermelon can also be used to determine its ripeness and sweetness, but the methods require actual operation to draw conclusions, and sweetness cannot be judged based on images alone," the AI software explained.

Another gave tips on what to look for in a sweet watermelon. "Based on the shape of the watermelon, rounder watermelons usually indicate a more uniform internal structure, which may be a sign of higher sweetness. In the image, watermelons one and eight look rounder and larger, indicating higher sweetness. Therefore, based on visual judgment, I would tend to choose watermelon one or eight as the sweetest. However, the final sweetness needs to be confirmed by taste," the AI software said.

The store owner surnamed Zhang, chose watermelon number one based on the sound it made when tapped - a method he swears by.

After cutting open watermelons 1 and 8, both were red and juicy, but watermelon one was slightly sweeter. Zhang explained that in today's market, the chances of getting a bad watermelon are slim, as most are sweet at varying levels.

So, is using AI to pick fruit reliable? According to an AI expert, AI can provide helpful suggestions based on visual and base knowledge, but it's not foolproof. While AI can be a useful tool for those unsure how to choose a melon, experienced individuals may still rely on traditional methods like tapping and smelling. Ultimately, the decision on which watermelon to choose may still come down to personal preference and experience.

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