Nature lovers, rejoice.
A new app can tell you what species a plant or animal is – just by looking at it.
Are you human, plant, or Theresa May? Time to find out.
Seek, free on iPhone and Android, uses your phone’s camera to identify organisms.
Keen to put Seek to the test, I sneakily papped the rest of the Lifestyle desk. It immediately decided that SEO reporter Aidan was a mammal. So far, so accurate.
After about 30 seconds of wondering whether she was actually a squirrel in disguise, Seek finally decided that Aidan is human. Apparently, so am I.
Phew – I don’t think the world is ready for Ghostbusters 3.
Keen for a new test, I moved onto Lifestyle editor Ellen’s petite armada of potted plants.
First up was her fave – a Chinese money plant. Seek did not find. A total failure. Maybe the app prefers dollars.
Ellen doesn’t have any Chinese money, so the plant was pretty useless anyway.
Seek pinned down her peace lily with a stalkerish ability that MI5, or that friend who spends their life on Instagram, would be proud of. It even offered a link to the Wikipedia page.
Did you know that the peace lily is an evergreen herbaceous perennial plant with large leaves 12-65cm long? You do now, thanks to Seek.
Addicted, I decided this wasn’t enough.
I decided to use Seek for a whole new purpose, one it had never been designed for. I decided to use it on species that had never been formally classified.
I was fantastically successful, making many new discoveries.
The dragon from ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ is actually an Australian green tree frog according to Seek.
In awe of my new tool, I couldn’t stop. I guess with great power comes great irresponsibility.
Pikachu is a domestic guinea pig.
Mike Wazowski from Monsters Inc and the Loch Ness Monster are both birds.
Seek didn’t say which birds, but I reckon I’ve already done enough to bag Blue Planet once David Attenborough nods off.
There was only one disappointment.
Mark Zuckerberg is not classified as our reptilian overlord. He is, apparently, a human.
After the success Seek has brought me, how can I doubt it?
The app can be downloaded for iPhone or for Android
Seek was launched by iNaturalist.org, an online community where nature junkies can compare their discoveries with each other.
iNaturalist is a joint initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society.
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