Visual Search Gets Personal

December 7, 2018

The steps made in visual search are many and well-advertised, so it should come as no surprise we have news. What might be surprising, is that you could be part of this latest development by Google. We learned more in a troubling and fascinating story in recent Venture Beat story, “Google Makes Dataset of 50 Million Drawings Available on its Cloud.”

According to the story, Google’s cloud sourced AI drawing game, Quick Draw, is turning out to be less time-killer and more data collector:

Quick Draw has collected more than 1 billion drawings across 345 categories, 50 million of which Google open-sourced last year — complete with metadata, including prompts and geographical user locations. Today, it’s making them available through Google Cloud Platform (GCP) in the form of an API and an accompanying Polymer component.”

This is a really odd development for a tool that most people never realized would be made public and mined for data. However, when it comes to anything visual, one should not be surprised by Google’s ultimate goal. Currently, they are fine-tuning their visual search tools and we have a hunch this is part of the big picture. Search by talking, search by drawing—next up mental telepathy?

Patrick Roland, December 7, 2018


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