Heineken Commercial

I’m not a huge Heineken fan, but I found this commercial to be amusing. The changing of the cityscape from current to “old” is really neat.

Interesting fact: According to the Heineken website, Heineken is Europe’s largest brewery. Heineken beer is sold in over 170 countries.

Riya – Blending facial recognition with your photos

Founded by a group of facial recognition Ph.D.s from Stanford University, Riya brings facial recognition technology, long used by the FBI and law enforcement, to the average Joe. Through “contextual recognition”, Riya will search through digital photo albums to find matches for people that you’ve identified.

According to co-founder Munjal Shah, contextual recognition is an amplified version of facial recognition. The software looks at a person’s face, but will also look at the shirt they are wearing and other cues to find a match. Additionally, it will search for text in the images, so if people want to find a photo where they posed by a “Welcome to Florida” sign, they can search on the word “Florida” and the Riya search engine will find it.

Roughly 70 percent accurate, Riya is a fascinating look into facial recognition. With time, user input (increasing data available to Riya), and further investments in contextual recognition will hopefully improve the accuracy of Riya. I have not personally tried the site, but am looking forward to uploading pictures and discovering Riya myself.

(Via CNET)

We Smirch

A new celebrity gossip and news portal has been launched. Powered by Memorandum, We Smirch will find and display the most popular stories from blog posts or news sites. In a single-page view, you’ll find the current hot gossip, showing the stories as clusters of links from sources. Also included in the results are thumbnail pictures, making your gossip experience that much more exciting.

We Smirch picks up on stories relatively quickly, making it a good site to get your gossip fix without visiting a large number of separate sites. Yes, it may become your primary site for celebrity news and gossip. It will also find stories that are potentially popular from much smaller sources and display them on the site.

(Via TechCrunch)

VW, Google and nVidia partner for car navigation system

German automaker Volkswagen (VW) has partnered with Google and nVidia (a graphics card manufacturer) to create an in-car navigation system. The central element of the navigation system is the interactive touch-screen display. The interface is linked to Google Earth for 3D maps and real-time data, such as traffic and weather. I’ll be excited to see this if/when it is released.

More pictures here.

(Via Boing Boing)