Polar Rose Face-Recognition Search Engine

Polar Rose is a new search engine that will allow you to find anyone in any photo on any site. The Polar Rose plug-in helps build a database of identified people by aggregating user input.

Update: 19-Dec-2006: It appears that the mainstream media have finally caught up with this story. Polar Rose was successful in raising almost $1.5M in November; they've also added some better photos to their site. I've put them in the comments, which are worth looking at anyway, since they have anticipated the privacy concerns now (finally) being discussed more widely. See also the more recent article Polar Rose Addresses Privacy Concerns. -End-


(Polar Rose finds the people in an image)

Polar Rose starts by identifying the parts of an image that looks like a person. In the picture above, there are five parts that are identified as people's faces. If a person's face is not in the database, the application asks if you know that person.


(Polar Rose identifies the person in the image)

If the Polar Rose database knows the face, or if it has any possible matches, the plug-in will display it on the picture, and ask for your agreement or other input.

Polar Rose is a computer vision research project at the Universities of Lund and Malmö (Sweden). The goal of the 7 person team is to provide an application that will make images as searchable as text documents are today.

The Polar Rose search engine is currently in a closed alpha trial with a limited number of users, but will be scaled up as bugs are fixed.

Visit the Polar Rose website.

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