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Cloud Computing Insights

Tim Vibbert

Media searching media

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Currently keywords are used to search for everything, including images, videos, and music.  This will change in the future, to search for an image you'll supply another image.  Think this won't happen, think again.  Image-crunchers Like.com and Polar Rose, and music-matchmaker Pandora have taken some early steps towards this more media-centric Web.

When searching for images and music today, you are really searching for the words that surround them .   When you search for "Steve Jobs" using Google Image Search, you aren't really looking for images of Apple's CEO.  You're looking for filenames and captions that contain those keywords, "Steve" and "Jobs", and hoping the right photos are somewhere nearby.

The two are completely different.  On any given image search, Google turns up countless photos completely unrelated to the query, even as it overlooks countless others that may be a perfect match.  Ultimately you are relying on Web publishers to annotate their images accurately, and that's a hit-or-miss proposition.

Similar situtations exist for MP3s, podcasts, and other sound files.  You can search for "4Him" or "Why?" when trolling Web-based music sites.  But what if you are looking for music that sounds like 4Him?  Wouldn't it be nice if you could use one song to find another song?

Ojos and Polar Rose are tacking the image side of the issue.  The photo sharing tool Riya, from Ojos, automatically tags you photos using face recognition.  Instead of having to manually add "Mom" tags to all your photos of Mom, you can show Riya what she looks like, and it adds the tags for you.  Riya has gained momentum since it was launched and Ojos quickly realized that Riya face-rec engine could be used for Web-wide image search.

That's no small feat but, with an alpha service experience called Like.com, the company is already offering a simple prototype.  Currently, Like.com is barely more than a shopping engine.   You select a photo of a product that best represents what you're looking for, and you are shown all sorts of similar products.  But it's an excellent proof-of-concept.

Polar Rose introduced a brower plug-in that does face recognition with any photo posted to any web site.  Currently, it's simply a means of automatically tagging images, similar to Riya.  Unlike Riya, it already works across the legnth and breadth of the Net.

The closet audio equivalent is Pandora from the Music Genome Project, a group of "musicians and music-loving technologists".  Over the past six plus years, the group has analyzed songs from over 10,000 artists, carefully notating the music makeup of each track.  Using this data and a list of your favorite artists, Pandora can instantly construct a new collection of songs that suit your tastes.  This is hardly a Web-wide search engine, and unlike the image service expereinces from Ojos and Polar Rose, it relies on human input.  We are inching ever closer to true media searching.

Tim Vibbert

Tim Vibbert is the CTO of Red Eagle Service. Red Eagle Services is a leader for Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)and Cloud Computing (CC) expertise and professional services. As a thought leader and authority on SOA and Cloud Computing, Red Eagle Services provides its clients strategic, adviory, and professional services.

Tim has over 15 years of experience in Enterprise IT in several industries including (Health Care, Legal, Manufacturing, Media Distribution, Government, and Retail). Twitter : @soachief

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Tim Vibbert

Tim Vibbert is the CTO of Red Eagle Service. Red Eagle Services is a leader for Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA)and Cloud Computing (CC) expertise and professional services. As a thought leader and authority on SOA and Cloud Computing, Red Eagle Services provides its clients strategic, adviory, and professional services.

Tim has over 15 years of experience in Enterprise IT in several industries including (Health Care, Legal, Manufacturing, Media Distribution, Government, and Retail). Twitter : @soachief

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