‘Auto Awesome’, ‘Interestingness’ and al-Khwārizmī

Google+ chose to Auto Enhance this prosaic shot of palettes stacked in the garden!

Google+ chose to Auto Enhance this prosaic shot of potential firewood stacked in the garden.

Following on from recent posts about online software that will automatically arrange your photographs, I’ve been finding what else is going on out there, and discoveries include some odd features as well as the next stage of automation – story construction. This won’t be news for the tech savvy but there may be a few people reading this post who share the same low level of technical comprehension that I have and might find these topics entertaining, if not useful.

What intrigues me about this subject is that somewhere behind all the algorithms there must be teams of human beings involved in identifying and agreeing criteria on which the code is then based. I know little about how this process works (pleased to hear some explanations) and the only personal experience that has any relationship to this goes back to 2000 when I collaborated briefly with a computer science researcher who, for his PhD thesis was working in the field of metadata for image databases and was investigating classification, indexing and retrieval of images. Continue reading

Oporto photo shuffling

Porto montage 1Ten years ago, I was commissioned to create a poster to help mark the 20th anniversary of Bristol’s twinning with Oporto/Porto in Portugal – one of the nicest commissions I’ve ever been asked to do! I had proposed the idea to the Twinning Association way back in the 1980s and it lay dormant for a long time, but the anniversary provided an opportunity that I jumped at. Continue reading