Caorda was recently approached by the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV) to help them upgrade an existing iOS app that uses image recognition technology to provide an additional perspective on some of the Gallery’s Emily Carr work. The existing image recognition technology was provided by a third-party service that was becoming too expensive to support, so the team at AGGV decided it would be best to work with a professional software development company like Caorda to see if there was a way to leverage the augmented reality (AR) services built into iOS. That’s when one of our senior developers, Lance, started his magic!
What The Emily Carr Image-Recognition App Does, In Detail
Have you ever walked-up to an amazing painting, and wished you could learn more about the specific art piece, or perhaps see it in a different perspective? The “Activating Emily” app that Caorda developed for The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV) accomplishes this exact goal for a number of Emily Carr paintings currently on display at the Gallery! When you launch the app on your iOS device and point your camera at one of several specially-marked Emily Carr paintings, the app will use image-recognition technology to provide you with additional information about the subject or present you with a unique artistic perspective!
Below are some shots of the app in action. We also have a video at the end of this post showcasing the app’s powerful image-recognition abilities using images from the “Activating Emily” activity book (available in the Gallery).
How This Technology Is Different & Unique
Our client, AGGV, wanted the upgraded “Activating Emily” app to provide the same functions, but without a reliance on a third-party service, thus eliminating latency, ongoing costs and a reliance on a network connection. The new version of the app differs from the old in two main ways:
*WARNING: incredibly nerdy & technical jargon coming up! =P
The app has been re-written as native, instead of as an Apache Cordova app.
Instead of using Apache Cordova (a mobile application development framework which runs on Node.js), the app has been re-written as native (using Swift), which allows developers access to the rich and extensive library of available device functionality.
For image-recognition, the app now uses CoreML instead of a web-based API! BOOM!
Apple’s Core ML technology has been available in iOS since 2017 and gives developers the ability to leverage rich AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning technologies to provide exciting on-device experiences. Using CoreML for image recognition requires a developer to “train” a computer, and man, what could possibly go wrong teaching a computer to think??
Download The App on iOS Devices Today!
You can get the “Activating Emily” app on Apple’s App Store, but really, you need to go to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria to get the full experience. With the days getting shorter and cooler, make plans to visit the Gallery soon!
Video of the Caorda ‘Activating Emily’ App in Action!