Facial Recognition Technology Goes to the Dogs

labrador-puppy-800x533Two Houston animal shelters have adopted facial recognition technology for dogs, according to a KHOU.com article. This marks the first such deployment of the technology in Houston, and the fourth in the United States.

The technology comes by way of a company called Finding Rover, which has developed an app that allows users to scan their dogs’ faces into the system. The facial recognition technology works in essentially the same way that it does on humans, scanning photo images of faces and identifying key characteristics, then mapping them onto an algorithm. If a dog owner loses their pet, they can report it missing on Finding Rover, which will then scan its network to see if anyone else using the service – including shelters – has reported finding a missing dog.

It’s a remarkable development in facial recognition technology. While the encroachment of biometrics into everyday life can sometimes feel a bit creepy, with the potential to do real damage in some cases, Finding Rover presents a clear case in which the technology can have an immediate and positive social effect, reuniting pet owners with their missing best friends.

February 25, 2015 – by Alex Perala