Polar Rose, a company uniquely combining automatic face recognition with 3D modeling for visual search applications, announced its product and an open beta trial, beginning in Q1 of 2007. Using Polar Rose’s technology, it will now be possible to automatically search for and recognize faces on a consistent basis similar to the way people do – by using the visual cues of the photo as opposed to nearby text analysis. The company’s unique technology creates a 3D model from a single 2D image of a face. This approach radically improves photo matching by compensating for variations in lighting, facial emotions and pose.
Available as a free Web browser plug-in and through royalty-free APIs (Application Programming Interface) for partner integration, Polar Rose will seamlessly enhance the experience of browsing and searching for photos of people. Polar Rose, which is also the name of a flower-shaped mathematical curve used as a logo mark by the company, will augment any site with true people search and enable linked data discovery in connection with a person in any photo.
A search for “Peter Jackson” in today’s image search engines result in various images featuring multiple “Peter Jacksons” plus a number of images not featuring people at all but instead just images close to the text “Peter Jackson”. Polar Rose will instead sort the results to include faces only, and group the individual Peter Jacksons.
Polar Rose allows for ‘collective social intelligence’ for human refinement of the computer-generated face recognition. Polar Rose’s core technology combined with the training and input by users empowers unprecedented accuracy, speed and functionality. The ongoing use of Polar Rose and proactive input from tens of thousands of users creates the first true visionary search.
“We are very excited by the enhanced information and linking offered by visionary search, and are looking forward to creating a whole new experience by making photos searchable in a new way”, said Nikolaj Nyholm, CEO of Polar Rose.
User Value for Visionary Search
There are a number of potential applications for Polar Rose’s visionary search. For example, Polar Rose enables users to:
- Search for more photos of the same person on specific sites or across the whole Internet
- Collectively add information and tag people in online photos
- Automatically sort their online photos by the people appearing in them
- Be alerted when new photos matching visual search criteria appear
- On a news site such as cnn.com, to find additional or supplementary information about any of the people photographed in the story – transparently and without disrupting the cnn.com user experience
- On social networking or dating sites such as MySpace or match.com, to find people matching specific looks and to receive feeds of certain types of images from their friends’ photo albums
- For an online photo album, to categorize hundreds or thousands of photos automatically by face, as well as finding local or global matches and searching/sharing feeds from friends
- For a conference the viewer will be able to get or put information on the people appearing on the photo documentation site of the conference. This will help anybody finding a name to a face or visa versa.
About Polar Rose
Headquartered in Malmö, Sweden, Polar Rose is a company with face recognition technology originally researched at the Universities of Lund and Malmö. The company’s technology enables a new way of visual search using facial recognition and user-based contribution.