Image Enhancement

At our 4th March meeting, Robert demonstrated the benefits of upscaling images using AI powered tools. DaveK showed us the microCOVID Project website and members shared a number of suggestions and topics.

Image Enhancement

Robert talked about using AI (Artificial Inteligence) based tools to scale up small and lower quality images. This could be useful if you have images such as old digital photos, scans from small prints or crops from larger images which are not large enough for use in print or on a web site. He showed what the tools can do and some of their limitations:

  • Scale up images without obvious pixelisation.
  • The scaled image remains sharp even at the larger size.
  • The AI scaled image won’t have additional detail that wasn’t in the original.
  • If the original subject was out of focus this won’t be corrected.

For the demonstration Robert used the app AI Image Enlarger from the Mac App Store. This app uses a web service to perform the enlargement, it’s free with a monthly paid option to unlock some features.

Note: the image on this post is a real example, low resolution on the left half, AI upscaled on the right. Click or tap the image to see a larger version.

DavidB mentioned that Pixelmator Pro has a similar feature built-in called ML Super Resolution and he showed us a sample of its results during the meeting. Pixelmator Pro can be bought as a single purchase (no subscription) and does not use a web service for AI processing.

microCOVID

DaveK explained and demonstrated the microCOVID Project website which can be used to estimate COVID risk for an activity (such as going shopping or going to the pub) and assess the impact of various safety measures (different quailies of mask, keeping distance from people etc.).

Member topics

  • DavidB suggested members check the Emergency SOS and password security recommendations features in iOS.
  • David also mentioned the website Have I Been Pwned? where users can check if their personal data has been compromised in a data breach. If you’re interested in this service but concerned about the privacy of using it, you may wish to read the site’s Privacy page and perhaps look at its Wikipedia article.
  • Brian reported that he’s continued to have problems with Safari on his Mac since upgrading to macOS Monterey. We found a thread on the Mac Rumors forums that might be helpful.
  • Elliott told us about using the Apple Lightning Digital AV Adaptor to connect iOS devices to his TV.
  • Ben mentioned the iCloud Plus features now included with a paid iCloud plan.
  • Sue reported a problem with other devices ringing when her iPhone was called. We pointed out the “Calls on other devices” option in Phone preferences.
  • Ann-Kay mentioned the Apple “Peek Performance” event scheduled for the 8th March.