You might be familiar with GazoPa, a Web site that allows you to find similar images based on an image you provide. (It’s available at http://www.gazopa.com/; I wrote about it in ResearchBuzz last November.) GazoPa is releasing a new service that’s much more focused: it’s all about flowers.
Hitachi America announced private beta at GazoPa Bloom yesterday. You can sign up for an invitation at http://bloom.gazopa.com. This site is for exploring flower images and, if you need help identifying a flower, uploading images and letting other people try to identify them for you.
The front page has a bloom of the day, links for popular flower images (“popular” is relative — the site doesn’t appear that busy yet) and of course a search engine to search by keyword or a mechanism to upload images. I did a search for gardenia.
I got two kinds of results. The first kind was a classification result that showed general information about gardenias, including classification and a link to a Wikipedia article. The second kind was a set of five photographs showing gardenias.
The photo comes from Flickr as does some information about it. The community weighs in on what it thinks the bloom is and you are
free to disagree if you wish. What’s interesting is that GazoPa also suggests what it thinks the flower is — in the case of this image GazoPa thought it was an anemone. The site also shows images that are similar in shape, color, or overall. All the images I looked at came from Flickr.
I’m not a big gardener but I thought this was an interesting use of GazoPa technology. There will have to be a lot more traffic to see how it really works in practice, however. You know what I’d really like to see for a GazoPa niche engine? Cars. Can you imagine all the dozens of different brands of cars, with the hundreds and hundreds (thousands?) of year models, grouped by similar shape and color?