ObscuraCam For Android : Detect And Strips Faces From Your Photos Automatically

O bscuraCam is an open source photo anonymizer project made in concert with the folks over at Witness.org - a human rights violation watch...

ObscuraCam For Android  Detect And Strips Faces From Your Photos Automatically (1)

ObscuraCam is an open source photo anonymizer project made in concert with the folks over at Witness.org - a human rights violation watchdog. Why is a human rights organization helping you blur those photos you took that night you accidentally [insert potential human rights violation here] but still thought would be hilarious to upload to Facebook? Well, Witness wants this app to be used by political dissidents in countries where things like facial identification and metadata scraping are major barriers to posting photos of political protests online. It's really a pretty noble cause.

This is an interesting app. When I first saw the software I was wondering what it was all about. ObscuraCam really only does what the likes of PaintShop/Photoshop/Gimp have been able to do for years - select a certain part of a picture and blur, pixelate or completely remove it.

I was thinking about how you would utilize this app and for what reasons, and then it made sense - to me at least. I run a small website for the Boys Brigade in the UK and when I go to an event organized by them, to raise funds etc., I may take pictures and upload them to Facebook. Because so many children take part, it is impossible to ask each and every parent to sign a disclaimer to allow us to upload their child's image to appear online. When you take the pictures you don't want to upload to a computer and then "Photoshop" the images either if possible.

So, getting down to brass tacks, what does ObscuraCam really do? Let's walk through the app's features. First and foremost, ObscuraCam utilizes the same sort of face detection algorithms you'll find in common point-and-shoot cameras used to focus images. Instead of using them as focal points, ObscuraCam outlines the faces it finds in your photos, and then allows you to choose how you'd like them to be obscured. If ObscuraCam fails to find a face, you can manually select an area to obfuscate. You can pixelate them, black them out, or put on a Groucho Marx-style nose and dark glasses, complete with ridiculous bushy eyebrows (who says human rights advocacy can't be "fun?"). You can also choose the invert the pixilation and obscure the background of your image, so as not to reveal the location of your secret lair.

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With ObscuraCam all you need to do now is take the picture, the app immediately recognizes where the faces are on the image and you simply tell it to filter the image of the face. This is a very clever piece of programming and can cope very easily and quickly with a large number of faces on one image and if it does happen to miss anyone you can tell it to create another "Tag" which you can move around and resize until it obscures the face. For a bit of fun you can even place dark glasses and a moustache, complete with bushy eyebrows, over a face to hide a person's identity.

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The software is user friendly, easy to use and eliminates the need for additional software or indeed hardware to accomplish, what has now just become, a simple task.

Features:

  • Detect faces in photos or manually select them
  • Remove EXIF metadata from photos
  • Redact (black out), pixelize or mask faces and other sensitive items in any photo
  • Save to SDCard or share through any other Android app
  • Open-source, licensed under GPLv3

 

Download ObscuraCam For Android From Android Market

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