This week saw the arrival of a brand new free tool from Google, one that’s designed to speed up drawing on your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Google’s AutoDraw is a web-based tool capable of recognising rough shapes drawn by users and matching their drawings with cleaner illustrations of the same object.
The illustrations come from a pre-defined list provided by professional designers and illustrators and cover everything from vehicles to animals to buildings, with Google continually updating the list with new drawings.
Using AutoDraw is pretty straightforward: access the tool, pick a colour and start drawing.
As you draw, the tool’s algorithms work out what it is you’re drawing and suggest relevant illustrations from its pre-defined list, and you can simply click on an illustration you like to have it replace your original drawing.
The suggested illustrations feature can be turned off, and there are various text, shapes and details you can add to the drawing.
Once completed, you can either download your creation as a PNG file or share it with other people on the Internet.
AutoDraw uses machine learning, a type of algorithm-based data analysis to process and learn from vast collections of data, identify what you’re drawing and suggest a replacement.
Google also uses machine learning to power its mighty Google Translate tool, and this type of data analysis is becoming increasingly common in many of the technologies we use today.
Google recommends using AutoDraw as a means to inject a little creativity into your communications: the company suggests using the tool to make birthday cards, party invites or just for your own enjoyment.
AutoDraw is available now for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Budding illustrators can submit their own drawings for consideration of use as part of the pre-defined list here.