Search This Blog

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Searching by Image

Google Images now lets you search by image instead of keywords. You can give it an image and it returns images that look similar, at least to its algorithms. I immediately put it to the test by giving it my mugshot from Stack Overflow. Hmm. Mostly women, with a few babies thrown in. It seems to be having more luck noticing that I'm wearing a black shirt than that I'm male.

Maybe it's because the photo I gave it has the top of my head cropped off? I try the mugshot from this blog. This time it successfully finds web articles containing that same photo, and also comes up with a few faces that do look vaguely like me. Not sure what Angelina Jolie's doing in there though.

Okay, clearly these are early days for this technology, but I applaud what they're trying to do. I look forward to the day when it's so reliable that it can spot family resemblances. That would make a useful complement to the Relative Finder in 23andMe. Another search engine I would like to see is one that let's you hum a few notes of a song and then tells you what it is. Targeted ads could include places to buy the song, or Singing Lessons if it thinks you're off tune.