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Search for Matching Images Online

Posted by Matt on September 25th, 2009 filed in Handy Hints, News, Photographers Rights


A new site, TinEye, has been launched in Beta that lets you search for images that match, or match part of, a source image you provide. This differs hugely from Google’s text based image search which relies on the person uploading an image and putting appropriate keywords around the image to help find it.

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To use Tin Eye, just upload a photo from your computer, or provide a link to a photo on the web and off it goes. Any matches it finds, including partial matches, are presented for you to peruse at your leisure. As you can see in the example below from their ‘cool searches‘ page it’s pretty clever:


You can probably already imagine the uses, especially when finding where people have used your photos without permission or attribution. Unfortunately at the moment the site’s search index is nowhere near as comprehensive as Google’s, but that should change with time. Tin Eye is also quick to point out that they are not a facial recognition site, so different pictures of the same person will not be matched – it’s the shape and forms of the original photo that are searched on.

Go check out the site, if it becomes successful it will be a huge resource to all of us who take photos.

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