The AI image extension allows WPSOLR to connect to an external api that will process images on your website. This makes it possible to use images as well as text in your WordPress Search therefore increasing your website search performance and displaying more relevant content to your users.
Computer vision is a field that has existed for a long time, beginning in the late 1960s, but has only recently received widespread recognition with progress in machine learning and deep learning techniques. Computer vision is supposed to be able to complete tasks that the human visual system can do like image recognition or motion analysis.
Computer vision is pretty complex. The AI needs to understand and recognise faces so in addition to being advanced it also has to have a large aggregation of data, for example, to identify celebrities in photos. Open source APIs do exist but they don’t always have the same features as commercial ones. For example, OpenCV is mainly used for image detection while AWS Rekognition can recognise faces. Certain commercial APIs are also widely used. This means that you can easily decide if the api fits your needs based on the opinions of other customers.
If you have a website with a lot of images, be it in the form of posts and products or standalone images, computer vision can help your customers find more content. WPSOLR only searches text by default which is pretty useful in most cases but is detrimental when a significant portion of the content consists of images. When content on your website is indexed by WPSOLR, images are sent to the computer vision api. They are then processed in the way you defined it in WPSOLR settings. The result is then sent to Elasticsearch where it can be retrieved when the user searches your website. The type of images that are sent to the API depends on how you configured WPSOLR. If you chose to index the images in the media library it will only send those images, but if you chose to index the images in posts, for example, it will send the photos inserted in the post as well as the featured images and any external image that has been linked in the post.
How much does it cost?
- The WPSOLR’s image add-on is part of WPSOLR, therefore included in the WPSOLR PRO license.
- computer vision APIs, on the other hand, cost money. Price will vary by company but it is generally based on the number of calls your website makes to the api.