Flico for Chrome identifies landmarks in YouTube videos
Flico is a new browser extension for Google Chrome that you may use to identify landmarks and words in YouTube videos while you watch them.
If you like to watch videos on YouTube, you may have come upon locations displayed in some videos that you would like to know more about.
While that is easy if the location is listed in the title, description or an annotation, it may be quite difficult if it is not.
Flico has been created to provide a solution for that which is easier than having to take a screen grab, and upload it to one of those reverse image services on the Internet.
The Chrome extension integrates in the browser and displays an icon on YouTube whenever you play a video on the site.
A click on the icon displays a menu that enables you to either have it identify a landmark or place displayed at that time, or identify words that you want to know more about.
This works really well for world renowned locations like the Capitol or the sea-side view of Dubrovnik.
What's interesting about this is that Flico may pick up locations that have an appearance in TV shows or movies as much as it picks up locations in the real world.
Rule of thumb is however that the more modified the locations are, the less likely it is that they are identified by the service.
While it works really well with renowned locations, it is likely that it won't return any hits for most locations that you want identified.
Landmarks are your best bet, especially when it comes to buildings such as castles, statues, forts or other landmarks that can be pinpointed to a location easily.
Natural landmarks on the other hand appear to have a lower matching rate right now.
The text identification and look up option works similarly. Instead of trying to identify the image that is shown on the YouTube video at the time, it tries to scan the screen for words.
It displays information about these words in its interface afterwards. This is a hit and miss kind of thing as well. Not all words get identified -- often none even if some are displayed on the screen -- and those that are identified, may not reveal much.
This may work better with less common words but the feature did not work reliably when I took it for a test run.
Your mileage may be better depending on the videos that you watch, and how words are displayed on the screen.
Flico is an interesting extension for Google Chrome. It is unclear why it requires access to your browsing history, and the developers of Flico should provide an explanation for why that permission is required on the Google Chrome Web store.
The extension can be quite useful if manages to identify landscapes or words correctly. It needs some work though on the backend to improve the identification of both and make using the extension more reliable for that purpose.
BIG Brother keeps watching you all.