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A new movie search engine makes video store clerks obsolete

Almost everyone has tried to tell a friend about a movie, only to totally blank on the title and wind up describing it by saying things like “It has Scarlett Johansson, and she’s sad” or “John Cusack is all mopey about a girl.”

Thankfully, Valossa Labs, a group of researchers based University Of Oulu in Finland have come up with a solution to this problem. Whatismymovie.com is a descriptive search engine for video that allows for “natural, verbose and flexible querying.” That means you can describe movies as you would normally—“It has Scarlett Johansson, and she’s sad”—and it will come up with a list of potential titles.


The site works by analyzing video streams in real time to identify different people, places and things in order to create metadata. That metadata is then run through Valossa’s search engine, which works using natural language processing and pattern recognition AI.

The Whatismymovie.com database currently has over 45,000 movies in it, 30 of which might fit the description “John Cusack is all mopey about a girl.”

[Via The Independent]

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