Give Google a bone — Google Photos can now identify different pets

google photos
audioundwerbung/123RF
Dogs and cats are getting upgraded from objects to actual pet status inside of Google Photos. On Monday, October 16, Google Photos rolled out an update that expands the computer vision options to recognize specific pets and even particular breeds.

The “People” album that automatically curated from photos with faces is now called “People and Pets” because the program is now able to tell one dog (or cat) from another. Now along with tapping a face to see groups of photos with the same friend in them, users can tap a pet face to see all the photos of a furry friend. If you go in and type that pet’s name into that grouping, you’ll then be able to search for Fido from the search tool.

Along with recognizing pets, Google Photos also now can differentiate between a number of different breeds. If you want to find photos of a friend’s dog without digging through images of your own pup, typing in a breed name instead of simply dog helps generate more specific search results. The breed feature works with cats, too.

While Google Photos can easily tell your Labrador from your St. Bernard, the program will have likely have some trouble if you own two dogs from the same breed. Google said that incorrectly identified pets can be moved to the correct folder, which will help the program learn the difference over time.

The update also allows for pet-friendly searches using the dog or cat emoji.

Google says the new tool helps make tasks like creating a pet-focused photo book or album easier, as well as of course finding the best photo to plaster on social media on National Dog Day. Google Assistant’s option to create videos of pets, first rolled out in May, is also simplified by the new pet recognition tool.

Computer vision and machine learning are part of several recent Google Photos updates. Using machine learning to recognize the best photos, for example, allows the program to auto-generate albums and create videos from related still photos, or suggest photos to add to a manually created album. Last year, Google said the algorithms had created 2 trillion labels that help users search for specific photos — and that was before dog and cat breeds made their way into the search tool.

Mobile

Google hit with another fine by the EU, this time for $1.7 billion

Google has been fined for the third time by the EU, this time for breaching antitrust laws by requiring third-party websites using its search function to prioritize its ads over competitors.
Mobile

Google Fi: Phones, plans, pricing, perks, and more explained

Google's wireless service, formerly Project Fi, now goes by the name of Google Fi, and it's now compatible with a majority of Android phones, as well as iPhones. Here's everything you need to know about Google Fi.
Deals

Amazon slashes $77 off the iRobot Roomba 690 multisurface robot vacuum

This special offer comes just in time for you to get a head start on spring cleaning. The Roomba 690 robot vacuum sucks up dust, dirt and pet hair — all while you're away at the office.
Computing

Teens are using Google Docs as the modern version of passing notes in class

Google Docs is reportedly being used by teens as a secret communications app. Instead of passing notes, students are now using the software's live chat function or comment boxes to talk with their friends while in the middle of classes.
Photography

Obsbot Tail camera uses A.I. to follow the action (or a pet) for you

Want to capture more epic action selfies, or see what your pet is doing while you're gone? The Obsbot Tail is a camera-gimbal combo that uses artificial intelligence to follow the action.
Social Media

Twitter takes a cue from Instagram and Snapchat with new quick-swipe camera

Twitter is giving the "what's happening" treatment to photos and video by allowing users to access the in-app camera fast enough to catch and share the moment. The new Twitter camera is now accessible with a swipe.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Photography

The Lensbaby Composer Pro II with Edge 35 mimics tilt-shift blur for less cash

Want to create a tilt-shift image on a budget? The new Lensbaby Composer II with Edge 35 mimics the look of a tilt-shift lens for under $500. The new Edge 35 optic is part of the Composer Pro II optics system.
Photography

Loupedeck Plus can now edit video, audio with Final Cut Pro

The list of Loupedeck Plus-compatible software is growing. The photo-editing console now works with Final Cut Pro and Adobe Audition for video and audio editing. The controls can be configured to be used on either platform.
Photography

Photography News: Taking a smartphone photo probably saved this guy’s life

A man was snapping a photo in Australia when the smartphone stopped an arrow shot at his face. In this week's photography news, see Canon's plans for a stabilized mirrorless, Hasselblad's newest accessories, Samyang's latest lens, and more.
Deals

The best budget-friendly GoPro alternatives that won’t leave you broke

Cold weather is here, and a good action camera is the perfect way to record all your adventures. You don't need to shell out the big bucks for a GoPro: Check out these great GoPro alternatives, including some 4K cameras, that won’t leave…
Computing

Nvidia’s A.I. Playground lets you edit photos, experience deep learning research

Nvidia is making it easier to access information on deep learning research. It has launched an online space with three demos for image editing, styling, as well as photorealistic image synthesis. 
Photography

Paper designs digitize in real time using an Illustrator-connected paper tablet

Love graphic design, but prefer the feel of real paper? The new Moleskine Paper Tablet - Creative Cloud Connected syncs with Adobe Illustrator in real time, turning paper sketches into digital drawings.
Photography

Insta-checkout? New Instagram service lets you shop without leaving the platform

Shopping on Instagram no longer means leaving the platform to checkout in a web browser. Instagram checkout launched in beta today with a handful of retailers, allowing users to checkout without leaving the app.