Public-facing augmented reality software, while certainly possessing some uses, is still largely bells and whistles at this point. Aside from tossing a Pokéball across your backyard lawn or clumsily trying to imagine what new paint color would look best as your bedroom's accent wall, there hasn't been a whole lot of innovation in the field since it first became widely available on smartphones and other devices. That all might very well have changed this week with the official beta test release of ClipDrop, a new image copy-pasting app that ridiculously simplifies digital design possibilities.
Already impressive in its beta phase— First announced back in May by developer, Cyril Diagne, ClipDrop is an app allowing users to capture images from both the real world and digital spaces and automatically upload them onto programs like Adobe Photoshop. Instead of cropped photos and screenshots sent via email or messaging, Diagne's creation uses Boundary-Aware Salient Object Detection (BASNet) to automatically identify and isolate photographic subjects. Open CV's Scale-Invariant Feature Transform (SIFT) is then able to translate the image from the app to your desktop photo editor. As you can see from both the video above and Diagne's Twitter demonstration below, the results are already pretty spectacular, especially for a program currently only in its beta testing phase.
ClipDrop isn't reserved solely for dragging real world items into digital landscapes, though. The program also does a great job of isolating both subjects and text blocks within desktop images. Those of you curious can download a trial version of ClipDrop for free on Apple and Android app stores, which provides ten free uses of the software before a subscription requirement ($9.99/month, or just $39.99/year for a limited time) kicks in. We are pretty happy with our brief trial run with the app, despite some predictable bugginess and lag times that seem pretty easy to fix over time:
Enjoy the fun while it lasts— Anyway. With new advancements like this and a number of other recent developments, AR is certainly feeling like a far more promising field than it did a couple of years ago. Of course, you should enjoy its relative innocence while you can. With Facebook and other Big Tech corporations running headlong into our augmented reality dystopian future, we're sure it's only a matter of time before they ruin it for everyone else.