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Forward-looking: As developers continue to experiment with AI, we'll no doubt see more quirky projects like this emerge. They're fun on the surface but could serve as the foundation for far more important - perhaps even life-saving - projects down the road.
Classic hidden image book series Where’s Waldo? (known outside of North America as Where’s Wally?) may never be the same thanks to an AI-powered robot from Redpepper, a creative agency that works with major brands like Coca Cola, Colgate, Verizon and John Deere.
There’s Waldo consists of a robot arm controlled by a Raspberry Pi equipped with a camera that enables facial recognition. The camera snaps a photo of a page and OpenCV is used to find and extract faces. The data is then sent to the Google Auto ML Vision service for comparison against the trained Waldo model.
If a confident match of 95 percent or higher is found, the robot arm points to the suspected Waldo match. In the event of multiple matches, the arm will point to each one it has located.
Redpepper says the fastest There’s Waldo has found a match has been 4.45 seconds. While not breathtakingly fast like those Rubik's Cube machines, it is faster than most five-year-olds, the agency notes.
Matt Reed, the creative technologist at Redpepper that led the project, said more practical uses could include detecting comic book forgeries or perhaps even polling the AI to see which cartoon character it thinks you most closely resemble.