Invited To The Pentagon

tides.png was recently invited to the Pentagon to demo our facial recognition voodoo as a potential biometric component to TIDES: Transportable Infrastructures for Development and Emergency Support. It was a very last minute trip with very little instruction and direction regarding what to prepare, so we packed up our Mactops and hopped on a plane.

The subway ride at 5-something AM local time (3AM at home) after an all-nighter came cold and early, and shuttled a variety of more well-rested military types, who periodically would share a silent glance as if to say “OMG U N00B.” (Yes, in all capital letters with no exclamation point.) The guest check-in process was straightforward, and we soon found ourselves inside a small tent-like shelter booting our Macs if for no other reason than to warm our hands.

The event itself brought in a diverse mix of (mostly) military, many of whom were happy to engage in our biometrics demo and subsequent discussion. I had many wonderful conversations with Dr. John Francis of the U.N. and many DoD personnel over at least a half pot of coffee. A fabulous experience, this goes to show how huge opportunities can spring up whenever, wherever.

Would you risk your time, reputation and money for the opportunity? I know I’m game.

Rails Presentation: attachment_fu, Kropper and face-based services preview.

I’m giving a brief talk at tonight’s Rails meeting in Chandler at 7:00pm on what we’re doing with attachment_fu and Kropper for upcoming face-based search service I’ll post the slides afterwards for those who can’t make it, but you won’t get to see the Über-secret developer build unless you come 🙂

Slides: Keynote PDF

Facial Search Service Coming Soon

My company recently entered into a partnership with img surf to develop a facial identification/search service initially targeted at the mobile market. I’m pleased to announce that we already have the base functionality working, and are planning to deploy for experimentation in an invite-only beta starting in October. We’re also planning on providing a developer API and releasing some of the libraries behind the magic of our face search process later this year, which are largely implemented in Ruby.

Exciting times.

Let me know if you’re interested in playing with facial search technology as either a user or developer, and I’ll hook you up with an invite code when the time comes.