Quickly Catalog Books or Other Named Items on Shelves

Bookshelf with some books lined up and a few books resting on top of the lined up books. Most of the books on this shelf are relating to Apple and computer culture. Included are "Steve Jobs" by Walter Isaacson and "The Road Ahead" by Bill Gates.

If you have trouble finding particular items across multiple shelves of books, labeled boxes, or anything else that’s clearly identified with a text name, take carefully composed photos that capture all the titles without glare. Later, you can search for any text in those photos to find them—tap the Search button in Photos on the iPhone or iPad, or use the Search field in Photos on the Mac. Photos highlights the search term on the found photo. (If Photos on the Mac doesn’t surface an expected photo, try again on your iPhone, which seems to get more hits on harder-to-read text.) This capability comes courtesy of Apple’s Live Text feature, which uses machine learning to identify text in photos. Think of it as the lazy person’s database!

(Featured image by Adam Engst)

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