Category Archives: Online Shopping

A Way to Window Shop from a Computer or Phone

Search engines will usually be a part of most people’s experience when they sit down to use the Internet. But people tend to use them without really giving much thought to the nature of those systems. But a recent article published in the MIT Technology Review might make people rethink everything they thought they knew about the technology.

The article begins by showcasing how little search engines have changed in the past twenty years. An entire generation has been born and come of age during that period. And in that time search engines have almost always been a simple box that people enter text into. This text is then matched against a list of items within a database. For such a vital part of most people’s computing experience it’s remained fairly primitive. There’s a good reason for that though. The next step up from there is to use a more intelligent system which would make use of deep learning and other aspects of artificial intelligence. And even the most advanced computer systems of the modern era are only just now reaching a point where that’s viable. And when it works it can be amazing. It can perfectly replicate the feeling of window shopping. For example, when on a website one might like a pair of boots and be able to get suggestions about outfits which would compliment them. All based on how things would look together.

But again, one of the biggest issue is the sheer computing power needed to run visual search or make use of the associated artificial intelligence techniques. Many companies are working on answers to the issue. But one company, Slyce, has come up with a solution that’s currently running on a number of different platforms. Slyce recognized that people would want to run visual searches from very underpowered devices such as phones. But even the most powerful smartphones can’t compete with the power of a desktop system. And desktops themselves aren’t able to really run efficient deep learning systems. But Slyce came up with a way to use a combination of distributed computing and advanced APIs to enable even the most underpowered devices to use visual searches.

Slyce developed a seamless technique which allows any program to be easily modified to communicate with their advanced data servers. These advanced servers can run all of the calculations on images in order to process them for a visual search. The end results are then seamlessly integrated into the program which made the initial request. This essentially allows Slyce to enable even the most underpowered device to run programs which make use of visual searches and deep learning technologies.

Slyce’s New Search Products

Slyce Incoporated -the visual search platform- have stated on October 5, 2015 will be showing their visual search tools and a variety of their services that are still in beta development at Shop.org. Slyce visual search tools can be used in retailers’ e-commerce application to allow for users to take a picture of a product and be shown products that match in the retailer’s inventory. The products that pop up in a search can then be purchased. Tilly’s, Neiman Marcus, Home Depot and JCPenney already use this technology.

The other products that are still in development that Slyce will be showing includes the Universal Scanner, which allows users to scan anything and have immediate matches online for the same or similar products. It can scan barcodes, QR codes, coupons and any real world image.

Another product is Slyce Insights, which shows companies statistics to learn how consumers have been using visual search. Another product they’re showing is Snap-to-Coupon. This allows a retailer’s app users to take a photo of any of it’s printed coupons so the consumer can be notified when they’re close to stores that the coupon can be used at and be notified before the coupon expires. The last product Slyce is showing is the Out-of-Stock Mitigation Tool Using Attribute Matching. This option gives consumers other similar options if one product is out of stock.

Slyce Inc. creates 3D visual search technology that allows consumers to search for products on retailers’ apps with just a snap of a photo taken by a mobile device. The company is located in Toronto, ON. They may be contacted at Mark Elfenbein’s work phone: (587)897-0993. Or his email: Mark@slyce.it. Or the company may be contacted at Roy Roman’s phone number: (647)464-6200. Or at Roy’s email: Roy@slyce.it.