By Columbia University, University of Maryland, and Smithsonian Institution
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Leafsnap 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. Leafsnap currently includes the trees of the Northeast and will soon grow to include the trees of the entire continental United States. Leafsnap's high-resolution images were created by the conservation organization Finding Species.
What's New in Version 1.06
- Fixed camera screen on iOS 8
- Updated look
Very slick app! Currently only for trees
I had downloaded this app to investigate a ground plant a friend did not recognize in Illinois. It was only then I realized that it was for trees. My mistake (I was in a hurry and a friend had suggested it so I never read the description).
Regardless I was very impressed with the process. I only had a photo of the leaf so I popped the picture into a photo editor. Highlighted the lead and pasted it into a blank document with a white background. I took a picture of my screen and it did an excellent job of finding very visually similar leaves (a fig leaf was almost a dead ringer for my single stalk ground leaf!).
I am looking forward to using this during the summer. If I happen to not have a white background with me I will just snap a picture and do as above later.
Suggestion to developers. Build in a simple image editor that allows you to do one thing:
Take a picture without a white background then allow the user to trace the edge of the leaf they want to identify and replace the rest of the image with a white background.
Amazing free app
Technology and the great outdoors. I have found that photographing against the sky works well for the white background. The technology is reading the edges for the leaf so it needs this plain background. LeafSnap is great fun for kids, combining technology and nature. Been using it for years and look forward to LeafSnap's development.
Try it out
Everybody should stop complaining, it's an electronic field guide! There's no other app like this and you should definitely give it a next time you go camping etc.
great tool for kids. Plus its free. Comes with lots of nice pictures of different species and their flower, seed, and leaves. Very educational and neat.
- Category: Education
- Updated: Jan 17, 2015
- Version: 1.06
- Size: 53.7 MB
- Language: English
- Seller: Peter Belhumeur
- © 2015 Columbia University, University of Maryland, and the Smithsonian Institution
Compatibility: Requires iOS 5.1.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.