Google Image Swirl

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 18, 2009
Updated • Mar 23, 2017
Google, Image

Google Image Swirl is a new Google Labs project that uses Google Images to display relations between images found by the image search engine.

Google's image search engine is a very comprehensive search engine to find photos and all kinds of images that have been posted publicly on the Internet.

It does offer a few sorting and filtering options, and can even find related images to one of the selected images on the results pages.

Google Image Swirl

Google Image Swirl takes this concept a step further by solely concentrating on the related images concept. It is currently an experimental service over on Google Labs. This means that it may or may not be released as a stable permanent version.

Google Image Swirl starts of like any other Google Image search. The user enters a search phrase in the search form on the page. The script will then display possible image matches for the entered search phrase. This is exactly how Google Images operates up to this point.

You will notice that you are using a different service once you select one of the images of the results.

Google Image Swirl will display the image and related images in the same interface, instead of loading the website that the image was found on.

Related images are placed around the selected image with lines showing their relation. Even better is the fact that second tier relations are shown as well on the page. A click on the central image will load that image on the website that is was published on.

It is however also possible to click on one of the related images to navigate further into that path. This can be a very interesting way of exploring images about a specific subject. Google Image Swirl is an experimental service that is open to all users over at Google Labs.

Update: Google Image Swirl has been discontinued. It is no longer available, and there does not seem to be a comparable service around that provides similar functionality at this point in time.

Google Image Swirl
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Google Image Swirl
Google Image Swirl is a new Google Labs project that uses Google Images to display relations between images found by the image search engine.
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  1. Antony said on November 22, 2009 at 5:31 am

    It looks a good feature though just demo for now.
    I think by adding the possibility to refine the search by “date” would be appreciated to.

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