spoiler alert The answer to this post is in a comment below.

spoiler alert The answer to this post is in a comment below.

I had an awesome debug session on my iPhoto project tonight. This is the kind of mystery that programmers live for, in my opinion. It’s a pretty easy puzzle in retrospect (my 7-year-old saw the answer right away), but it thrilled me when I realized the solution. Read on…

I’m querying the iPhoto SQLite database to find all of the faces that the user has tagged. Out of my 5,000 photos, I found 10 that had duplicates. I was concerned that my SQL query had a problem, like I once forgot the clause “AND isInTrash=0”. But that was not the case this time.

I picked one of the offending photos and dug into the data. I saw that it had three recognized faces: one “Dan Dolan” and two “Holly Dolan”. Once I opened up the actual photo, the light bulb illuminated. Below is a cropped version.

Answer to the mystery in a comment below.

6 replies on “spoiler alert The answer to this post is in a comment below.”

  1. That’s pretty wild! I haven’t played much with the faces feature yet. It must have to spend a long time chewing through the pictures the first time you add a face. Not to be done on battery power to be sure.

  2. Yeah, I have a ton of matches for photos in our living room, where a lot of pictures are taken. At first I was thinking this was an annoying bug/feature, but it’s just doing its job really well 🙂 Pretty neat!

    I started using Picasa again as well recently for better g+ integration. It has a bit different UI for ripping through a large library. I’ll have to go back and play with iPhoto again to see which one I like better… I also just noticed a very cool “Face Movie” feature in Picasa. It matches very similar expressions (and ages, it looks like) for a person and overlays photos, shifted and rotated so that the face is the same from photo to photo. You can choose a slow slide-show or a rapid time evolution. Very cool effect!

    One thing I couldn’t find was if you can force it into a strict time line. Running through 3-4k of Jonah pictures last night it seemed to go forward and backward in time. My guess is that it gives similar expressions preference over the date sequence.

  3. Have you tried taking a photo of people standing next to a computer screen showing an iPhoto display of photos of people standing next to photos on a wall? How recursive can you get it to go? 😉

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