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AI tool colorizes black-and-white photos automatically

Enlarge / Palette.fm does AI photo colorization using text prompts for refinement. (credit: Benj Edwards / Ars Technica)

A Swedish machine learning researcher named Emil Wallner has released a free web tool called Palette.fm that automatically colorizes black-and-white photos using AI. After uploading a photo, users can choose a color filter or refine the colors using a written text description.

Palette.fm uses a deep learning model to classify images, which guides its initial guesses for the colors of objects in a photo or illustration. “I’ve made a custom AI model that uses the image and text to generate a colorization,” Wallner wrote in a message to Ars. “One model creates the text and the other takes the image and the text to generate the colorization.”

After you upload an image, the site’s sleek interface provides an estimated caption (description) of what it thinks it sees in the picture. If you don’t like any of the preset color filters, you can click the pencil icon to edit the caption yourself, which guides the colorization model using a text prompt.

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