Posts tagged: image retrieval

Best Visual Search Engines Review: (3) GazoPa

GazoPa is another image based visual serch engine (still in Beta). It is owned by Hitachi, Japan. Users can search similar images on the web based on image color, shape or faces. Similiar to Like.com, but GazoPa has interest of general objects rather than only commercial products. Different from TinEye, GazoPa does not focus on finding the same images.

Let’s first watch an overview video of GazoPa.

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Best Visual Search Engines Review: (1) TinEye

TinEye

From now on, a series of posts will focus on reviewing several of the best visual search engines in the world. These search engines represents the state-of-the-art developments and applications in the field of visual search and retrieval. Each engine will be evaluated based on technology, functionalities, searching speed and accuracy, and business model.

The first one to be reviewed here is TinEye, owned by idee, a Canada based company. Tineye provides image search by image functionality, and show where and how the given image appears all over the web. This is one of the most brilliant applications of computer vision.

Let’s first watch an overview video for this technology.
Please enable Javascript and Flash to view this Blip.tv video.

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Visual Search Engines: The Future Search Engines

Text based search engines, such as Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft search engines, have become an important tool for us to obtain useful information through Internet. Interestingly, even you want to find a picture on the web, a text description of the picture has to be input to the search box. The search engine is then actually doing a text-context based search.

Imagine the following scenarios. Your girlfriend/wife came across a lady carrying a beautiful handbag on the 5th Ave of New York City. She quickly took a photo of that bag using her iPhone. Can she find similar bags instantly through iPhone? In another scenario when she came across a stylish Chanel handbag, which is too expensive for you to afford. Can you quickly find a cheaper one of similar style online?

Obviously, the current functionalities of major search engines are far from meeting our increasing demand. First of all, “Each picture is worth a thousand of words”, therefore, sometimes it is kind of difficult to describe what you really want using concise phrases. Secondly, even if you can describe the scene, many unrelated pictures are usually returned for you to manually sift what you need page by page.

Is there an efficient and automatic way to solve this problem? The answer is yes, I believe. Visual search will be the future and the ultimate solution for above scenarios.

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