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This article was published on May 9, 2011

Google adds subject sorting to its image search

Google adds subject sorting to its image search Image by: Xavier Farre
Courtney Boyd Myers
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Courtney Boyd Myers

Courtney Boyd Myers is the founder of audience.io, a transatlantic company designed to help New York and London based technology startups gr Courtney Boyd Myers is the founder of audience.io, a transatlantic company designed to help New York and London based technology startups grow internationally. Previously, she was the Features Editor and East Coast Editor of TNW covering New York City startups and digital innovation. She loves magnets + reading on a Kindle. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter @CBM and .

Google Images is a pretty great tool when you need to creatively find or re-use images from the Internet. But what if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for? Say, you want an image of that beautiful park in Paris on the river, but can’t remember the name Seine. To make it easier for you to find these images, Google introduced “Subject Sorting” today.

Here’s how it works: While it’s not yet active on my own account, Google has provided us with a preview of what it will look like. Search for [London] and you’ll see default results ranked by relevance. Click on “Sort by subject” in the left-hand panel above ” and you’ll see images organized into categories that will narrow down your search and help you find the exact image of London that you want.

Google says its new sorting by subject uses algorithms that identify relationships among images found on the web and presents those images in visual groups, expanding on the technology developed for Google Similar Images and Google Image Swirl. By looking at multiple sources of similarities, such as pixel values and semantic relationships, and by mining massive amounts of data, Google can make meaningful connections and groupings among images.

According to Google, sorting will be rolled out globally to nearly every domain and language over the next week. Watch the video below for more information.