Description: What is facial recognition, and how does it work? We’ll answer all your questions about facial recognition in Mylio here.
By: Maggie King
“Where the heck is it?!”
Under non-pandemic circumstances, anyone who spends time at my house hears that a lot. We’ve got three kids, a work-from-home setup, and a semi-work-from-home setup to keep straight. Despite my near obsession with all things organization, keys, cell phones, and that snack I swear I packed for the kids all get jumbled together in the rush of getting five peoples’ days started.
The one place we know where everything is? Our family photo library in Mylio. Thanks to the Life Calendar, facial recognition technology, and a host of other features, I can sit down at my computer (or pick up my phone) and pull up just about any image I need in a matter of seconds.
I can’t help you find your iPhone and I don’t know where your kids’ snacks are, but today I’m going to help you get your photos organized and searchable with Mylio’s facial recognition. Unlike most other things in life, once you’ve got facial recognition set up in Mylio, your photos are a breeze to find. In fact, your images will get more organized the more you use this feature — Mylio can even recognize the same face as it grows and changes — so read on to learn how to get it up and running. (You’re not going anywhere without your keys, anyway.)
Why would you ever need facial recognition?
Before we dive into getting the most out of facial recognition in Mylio, I want to explain why you would want to do so in the first place. Here it is in a nutshell: facial recognition in general, and especially in Mylio, turns your personal photo library into a searchable database. That means you’re accessing specific memories faster and more accurately.
We’ve all had that experience of wanting to show someone a really meaningful photo, but struggling to find it in the endless scroll. What about the last time you tried to put together a family photo album or slideshow? Remember how you had to keep going back to find the right mix of family members so everyone got their fair share of the limelight?
Maybe you don’t. Maybe you’ve been wanting to put together that photo album or slideshow but couldn’t commit to the kind of time it takes to customize it the way you really want to.
Mylio isn’t the only program to offer facial recognition, but it’s the most intuitive one I’ve found. The set up is simple and can be done in batches, it gets better at identifying people the more you use it, and it syncs effortlessly between the devices on your plan, so you can find a photo of anyone you want, anywhere you happen to be.
It learns as it goes
For my family in particular, Mylio’s facial recognition has been a great help for keeping track of photos of our children. As they grow and change, Mylio recognizes that they are the same individuals. The more I tag, the more accurate the suggestions seem to get.
For older photos (of your parents, for example) the same applies. When you go back through to look at the images of an individual, you can watch them grow up before your eyes.
Now, for the next question:
Does tagging photos compromise my privacy?
As vulnerable as it may feel, tagging faces in Mylio does not make your private information (like the names of your family members) public. Mylio does not maintain the right to use or access your photos for any purpose other than transferring them between your devices or publishing them to your social network, if desired. In fact, facial recognition in Mylio is considerably more private than the photos you probably already have tagged on your social media accounts.
Where to find people in Mylio
In Mylio, facial recognition is its own channel of sorts. On the desktop, you have a horizontal menu across the top. Simply select People, and you’re there. On a mobile device, the same menu is across the bottom of the app. (Look for a round icon that looks like a headshot.)
People View, courtesy of Mylio Support
Once you’re in, you’ll see all the people who are tagged in your Mylio account. If you haven’t tagged anyone yet, you’ll see only the Untagged collection. At the top right of each person’s collection, you’ll see the number of images that person appears in, within Mylio. If Mylio has some suggested images that person might be in, you’ll see a little person with a question mark next to that number. We’ll talk about how to approve those suggestions in a moment.
Tagging names and faces
Once you’re in People, click the plus sign toward the top right, above your flags, stars, and labels. A dialogue box will open for you to enter a name. (In the app, click the three dots at the far right of your bottom menu and select New Person.) Now that person has their own collection. When you see them in a photo, you can easily tag them.
Tagging new people in Mylio
Or, you could go about tagging names in reverse. Go into Untagged and bring up a photo. Look for the tagging icon at the top of your options on the right (look on the bottom menu in the app) and click it. Mylio will automatically find the faces in the photo. When you click one that isn’t in the system yet, type their name in the Who is this? bar that pops up right next to their face. The New Person dialogue box comes right up.
The cutest face tag
Batch tagging: Work Faster & Smarter
All this is well and good, but you’ve got hundreds (if not thousands) of photos to tag. Getting to them one by one may not be realistic. So once you’ve got a few people in your system, it’s time to tackle facial recognition in batches. Go to Untagged and click the Batch Tagging icon (where the regular tagging icon is when you’ve got a single image pulled up).
Now on your right, you’ll see a column of people who haven’t been tagged yet. Mylio may suggest a name next to some. When you click on them, all the images they are suggesting for that person will pop up. Beneath each photo is a checkmark, a question mark, and an X. You can approve a suggestion by clicking the checkmark, reject it by clicking the X, or enter a different name by clicking the question mark. The fastest way to do this is to Shift + Click several images at once and approve/deny/change the suggestion of them together. If Mylio has it mostly right but there are a few wild cards, you may choose to go ahead and change the wild cards first so you can approve several images at once.
Ignore blurry faces in the background
Now what do we do with this little guy? He was way in the background of a photo I took of my kids at a costume party (that’s why he’s a little blurry; Mylio zoomed way in to find him). I have no idea who he is and therefore will never need to find him. I’m going to Shift + Click all of these photos and click Ignore, right at the top there. Sorry little buddy, but I bet you’ve got a starring role in your mom’s Mylio account.
Oops! I tagged the wrong person
Sometimes I move very quickly when I’m approving suggestions and realize right after I click a checkmark — Oops! That’s not what I meant to do!
Tagging in Mylio doesn’t have to be forever, so don’t panic if that happens to you. Just go to each incorrectly tagged image (or Shift + Click them all at once), right click, and select Undo: Person Tagging.
Or, you can go to Edit > Undo for the most recent couple of changes you’ve made.
Changing names in Mylio
So what happens when you need to change a name? Maybe someone gets married or you realize you’ve been spelling a name wrong for years, or that cutesy nickname you originally entered starts to feel a little silly.
Go to People, right click the person whose name you want to change, and select Rename Person. Now you can tell the important people in your life that they’re free to have as many identity crises as they’d like.
Tagging people, even when they’re not there
I shared in another article how I tagged my mother in some photos of her recipe cards. Now, those cards come up when I search for her, so I can see her handwriting (and make some delicious food) without the hassle of scrolling back through months of photos.
You can use this for nearly anything. Places, for example: when you drive past the old farmhouse you grew up in and take a quick snap, tag your family members who lived there with you. Combined with Mylio’s powerful geolocation features, this is a great way to keep meaningful imagery (and the facts associated with it) accessible.
How to get the most out of facial recognition
Before I started using facial recognition, there was a lot of scrolling in my life. I was constantly doing that “Wait just a minute, I swear it’s here…” thing to friends and family when I had a photo to show them. Now, I can pull up People in Mylio and find the photo I want in seconds. But the applications go way beyond swapping stories from last week’s barbecue or baby pictures from a couple of years ago.
Facial recognition is a game-changer for less recent family history, since you may not even know who some of the people are. Spend some time going through Mylio with an older family member. It’s one of the most informative bonding experiences you’ll ever have. Tag the faces of everyone they recognize and write any little anecdotes they have in the captions.
If you’re looking to get started with organizing and tagging your family photo library (or just want to upgrade your existing vault or add a new one), Seagate’s PhotoDrive comes with three years of Mylio Create and a heck of a lot of storage. That’s available exclusively at Walmart.
Maybe your photo library isn’t a family heirloom, per se, but the ability to pass down information to your children so easily is worth every moment spent batch tagging. And who knows? The time spent going through images with family and tagging them together could become an entirely new sort of treasured memory.