Image Text Search

A project created at the Cypher V Hackathon (3/23/2019)

Jesse Galloway, Isabella Fernandez, Yang Zhang, Reeves Trott


This project takes a list of links to images, extracts all the text found in the image, and allows the user to search the database to find the original image containing that text.


  • Search for images based on text
  • Censor images based on contained text
  • Accessibility of images for the visually impared

1. Parse Image Database:

We were able to obtain a database of some of the most popular images on the internet here: We parsed this db in python using Yang's python script in to a list of links (imagelist.txt)

2. Google Cloud Vision

We used Google cloud vision to perform OCR on each image, creating a database of each image url, along with the text contained in the picture. Our sample database for this project is

3. Search Functionality

In Java, we loaded the entire database into an searchable array, which returned results based on relevance using a priority queue.

Future Directions:

This method could be employed to index and search images on a large scale by image hosting sites, social media, or archives. This utility also has the potential to increase accessibility of images for those who are visually impared.


Before proceeding further, please install pandas, the scipy extension of numpy, and mpl_toolkits into your Python library. Then add the external libraries onto the project if working in Eclipse.

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