There are many people obsessed with their food intake and the number of calories they ingest every day. Many of them already use various applications that tell them approximately how much they are going to get from a meal.
However, it would be nice to take a picture of the food you are about to eat and find out instantly just how many calories you are looking at, without having to use calculators, weigh your food or use any other hardware.
Google has recently revealed that they are planning to use artificial intelligence to develop a new calorie counting application that could determine how many calories our dish has, just by analyzing a photo on Instagram.
The project called Im2Calories was announced last week at Boston’s Rework Deep Learning Summit.
This application basically does a lot of math while engaging a lot of algorithms to get the job done and it involves a combination between pattern recognition and an analysis of the photos’ pixel depths. Luckily, you do not need a professional camera for your food photos. The application is designed to work on normal resolution.
For the time being, the precision still leaves a lot to be desired, but research scientist Kevin Murphy said that this is going to improve in time.
“We semi-automate. If it only works 30 percent of the time, it’s enough that people will start using it, we’ll collect data, and it’ll get better over time,” he said.
The company relies on users to correct the software’s flaws, as they will signal when the application fails to identify certain foods.
Obviously, the application is meant for people who are dieting and does not aim to have users feel ashamed of the quantity or quality of food they eat. It will also be useful for researchers who will be able to collect data more easily or establish certain statistics.
The new application is definitely revolutionary, as it involves no effort from users and many will have access to it.
There are other applications out there, but they involve scales or sensors to establish the amount of calories food or drink has. SmartPlate’s app and Vessyl’s “smart cup” are some of them.
Even if the app is still in its project phase and many people are still distrustful of it, the right amount of investment can help Google revolutionize diet monitoring in the future.
Image Source: Latinoshealth