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New Feature Alert! Google Photos to Let Users Search for Text in Images

As per reports, the feature is currently available on some Android devices, although it does not appear to be active on iOS yet

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FILE - A woman walks past the logo for Google at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, Nov. 5, 2018. VOA

Google is rolling out new AI features to its Lens platform that would let users search their Google Photos library for text that appears within photos.

The Artificial Intelligence (AI) feature would start rolling out from this month itself, Google said in a tweet.

With this, users would be able to copy text from the images and paste them in a word document or notes. This works on both the Android and iOS apps, as well as the web client, 9to5Google reported.

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FILE – The Google logo is seen at a start-up campus in Paris, France, Feb. 15, 2018. VOA

As per reports, the feature is currently available on some Android devices, although it does not appear to be active on iOS yet.

Also Read: Netflix Working on Curation from Real, Honest-to-goodness Humans

“Starting this month, we are rolling out the ability to search your photos by the text in them. Once you find the photo you are looking for, click the Lens button to easily copy and paste text,” Google wrote in response to venture capitalist Hunter Walk, who noticed earlier this week that the Lens feature had been turned on for his account. (IANS)

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WHO Works with Google to Ensure People Read Up the Right Facts About Coronavirus

Google Works with World Health Officials to Combat Virus Lies Online

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The World Health Organization is working with Google to ensure that people get facts from WHO first when they search for information about coronavirus. Pixabay

The World Health Organization is working with Google to ensure that people get facts from WHO first when they search for information about the new virus that recently emerged in China.

Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told the opening of WHO’s executive board meeting on Monday that social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Tencent and TikTok have also taken steps to limit the spread of misinformation and rumors about the virus and outbreak that first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late December and has now spread to 23 other countries.

“To that end, we have worked with Google to make sure people searching for information about coronavirus see WHO information at the top of their search results,” he said.

WHO officials like Tedros have heaped praise on China’s response repeatedly in public, echoed Beijing’s calls to avoid panic, sought to reinforce weaker health systems and dispel rumors that may have prompted xenophobic invective against Chinese citizens and even other Asians.

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Passengers arrive at LAX from Shanghai, China, after a positive case of the coronavirus was announced in the Orange County suburb of Los Angeles, California, U.S. VOA

Ambassador Li Song, deputy permanent representative for China in Geneva, lashed out at flight cancellations, visa denials and refusals by some countries to admit citizens of Hubei Province, where Wuhan is located, saying those moves went against WHO recommendations.

Li noted how Chinese President Xi Jinping, meeting with Tedros last week in Beijing, had said the coronavirus epidemic “is a devil – we cannot let the devil hide.”

“At the same time, the international community needs to treat the new virus objectively, fairly, calmly, and rationally, and not over-interpret it negatively and pessimistically, or deliberately create panic,” Li said.

“We need facts, not fear. We need science, not rumors. We need solidarity, not stigma.”

Tedros recounted how his own daughter had advised him against the trip to Beijing, and that he tried to explain to her “it’s ok, it’s not all over China.”

“Even in China, the virus is not evenly spread everywhere, and the risk is not the same,” he said. “When I was in Beijing, what we had discussed with the authorities is that our concentrated effort should be in the epicenters, or the sources of the virus.”

“These myths are then refuted with evidence-based information,” it said, noting that WHO is providing myth busters on its social media channels in China and beyond.

Tedros also reiterated his decision last week to classify the virus outbreak as a global emergency, saying the move was prompted by increased human-to-human spread of the virus to numerous countries and the fear it could have a significant impact on developing countries with weaker health systems.

As of Monday morning, the outbreak had infected more than 17,300 people, including 17,238 cases and 361 deaths confirmed in China, Tedros said. Outside China, there were 151 confirmed cases in 23 countries, and one death, reported in the Philippines on Sunday, he said.

Tedros said recent outbreaks including the new virus and Ebola demonstrated the shortcomings of the “binary” emergency system, calling it “too restrictive, too simplistic, and not fit for purpose.”

Also Read- Here’s why HIV Vaccine Trials Failed in South Africa

“We have a green light, a red light, and nothing in-between,” he said, adding that WHO was considering options to allow for an “intermediate level of alert.”

The WHO executive board, which is starting a six-day meeting, plans to hold a special technical session on the coronavirus Tuesday. (VOA)