Do you frequently find yourself walking by trees and wondering exactly what kind of trees they are? If so, then this is the app for you!
A new iPhone app called LeafSnap allows you to point your camera at a tree’s leaf (laid flat on a white piece of paper) and the app will analyze it for you. It separates the leaf from the background and then looks at the leaf’s shape. It then uses an algorithm, designed by facial recognition experts at Columbia University and the University of Maryland and gets measurements from numerous points along the leaf’s outline. These are then compared to an encyclopedic database of leaves — donated by the Smithsonian Institution and non-profit nature-photography group, Finding Species, to give you a result. Of course, if it can’t find an exact match it will give you a list of possible matches.
Once you’ve correctly labeled your leaf you can tap “label,” which uploads your data to a community of scientists. Your data will be geo-tagged to your current location, letting flora experts map and monitor the ebb and flow of different trees.
Android and iPad versions of the app are scheduled to hit this summer.
I’m not really big into nature/trees like that, but it sounds like something I’d enjoy messing around with for a bit!
If you have an iPhone and want to check the app out, hit up the download link below.
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Co-owner and PR guy for GizmoNinja.com. I’m happily married and a father to a wonderful (most of the time) son. I work in the E9-1-1 software/data industry by day and am a tech loving geek in my spare time. I’m interested in all things tech, but am big into Android especially. I dabble in a little of everything – Android development, PC development, web development, etc – but am a master of none (not even close)… But I have fun doing it anyway! =P