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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Google Similar Image Search

Google image search now lets you find images that are similar to those brought up in a search. You can't load up an image and use it as a prototype to find similar image as far as I can see. Image analysis has been a particular interest of mine in recent ventures, so I tested this with a number of examples. You have to use it from the similar images search page at this time, not from the general search page.

Interesting results. Similar apparently means 'most similar'. So if I choose castles, and then seek to find all the castles that are similar to the German romantic castle Neuschwanstein, almost all found are professional photos of that castle pointing to commercial services. I might have meant 'similar' to mean other German castles, or castles with similar romantic forms. That is not what you get. Many pages down in the search you get tourist photos, other castles and things that don't look similar at all. So it does work, though the way this works you cannot choose the kind of similarity that you want based say on descriptive tags. That may not be what you want. Yes, I know it cannot read my mind as to what I mean by similarity. Nice experiment. Worth looking at.

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