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Thursday, August 13, 2015

Using Computing to Understand Architecture

Computers Can Categorize Buildings into Architectural Styles

Steve Dent | August 12, 2015

Even if you've never heard of "Byzantine," you can probably tell a Byzantine church from a Gothic one. Judging style differences is nearly impossible for a computer, however, and researchers from the University of Massachusetts want to fill in that gap. They used geometric matching, crowdsourcing and machine learning to teach an algorithm how to spot similar styles in buildings, furniture and other objects. That's something that could be incredibly useful for historians with mountains of photo archives, or game designers who need to auto-fill a level with historically accurate furniture.

As the researchers explain, humans can perceive stylistic similarity between objects that transcends structure and function. For example, we can see a common style such as Danish modern' in both a table and chair, though they have different structures. Until now, machines have found it difficult to do the same. Source:

<more at; related links: (UMass Amherst computer scientists introduce new graphics software; Computer scientists unveiled a new software modeling program that uses sophisticated geometric matching and machine learning to mimic humans' perception of style, giving users powerful new tools to compare the style similarity of 3-D objects. August 11, 2015) and (Sweden's 'dream home' crowdsourced from 200 million web searches. May 20, 2015)>

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