LeafSnap App: Poison Ivy or Just Ivy

Leafsnap is a new iOS application that  is the first in a series of electronic field guides being developed by researchers from Columbia University, the University of Maryland, and the Smithsonian Institution.  This free mobile app uses visual recognition software to help identify tree species from photographs of their leaves.

Leafsnap contains beautiful high-resolution images of leaves, flowers, fruit, petiole, seeds, and bark of trees found in New York City and Washington, D.C., and it will soon grow to include the trees of the entire continental United States.  This website shows the tree species included in Leafsnap, the collections of its users, and the team of research volunteers working to produce it.

This application is currently available for free to iPhone and iPad users.  An Android version is under way, but there is no estimated time for release yet.

Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod, News

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Alan May 2, 2012, 8:12 am

    Love the idea of this, I hope they include native plants from other countries as well for when I travel.

    1
  • RainyDayInterns May 2, 2012, 9:13 am

    “….Photos of leaves must be taken with a single leaf on a fully-white background…”

    The idea is cool, but to actually use it…”Photos of leaves must be taken with a single leaf on a fully-white background…”

    Bringing along a white background for taking pics is not a big problem if you are planning on using the app, but not so much for those spur of the moment “what is that?” situations.

    2
  • Julie May 2, 2012, 9:27 am

    @RainyDayInterns I suppose you could fold up a piece of typing paper and always keep it in your wallet or gear bag.

    3
  • David Conrad May 2, 2012, 4:39 pm

    FYI: It’s not a new app. I’ve had a copy on my iPhone for a good six months.

    Re: White background.
    It’s true that it’s a bit of a nuisance to come up with a white background, but I’ve managed several times with a (clean) handkerchief. And I think I remember once having done it with the sky as background.

    4
  • Elizabeth May 2, 2012, 7:07 pm

    Hi David. It’s new to me! That’s why I thought I would write about it.

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  • RainyDayInterns May 4, 2012, 9:02 am

    @Julie…

    ….which is why we always have our Moleskine notebook with us :-)

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  • Julie May 4, 2012, 9:43 am

    @Rainy good point!

    7
  • Phreqd May 10, 2012, 5:13 pm

    They’ve had the Android app in development for over a year. If you can bug them to give a better idea than “in the works”, I’d appreciate it! They don’t respond to emails except for canned messages.

    8
  • Lisa May 13, 2012, 6:26 pm

    Everytime I try and get to the App for my iPhone it says that it is “not currently available in the US” … anyone knw what this is about?

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