Google research takes 40mil pictures, finds landmarks, matches against your vacation photos

Mid 2009, Google showed off a research paper at CVPR 2009. You can read about it on Google’s blog: A new landmark in computer vision.

What they did:

Google research took 40mil pictures, several of them geotagged. Then they  automatically organized them into clusters per landmark (unsupervised). And afterwards they are able to take an arbitrary picture of a landmark (for example from your last vacation) and tell you with a 80% chance what the name of the landmark is and what the location is.

From their 8-page research paper:

The GPS-tagged photos yield ! 140k geo-clusters and !14k visual clusters with text tags, from which 2240 landmarks from 812 cities in 104 countries are mined.

I’ve read about it first on And I’m still searching for a blog that would have told me earlier. Read about what blog I’m searching for in my first post: Is there a blog on cool image processing stuff for geek end-users?


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