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I am looking for an Android application that can detect police or speed radar presence by using the camera when driving. (i.e. based on object recognition, not database-based like this question looking for an app showing typical police traps locations)

Any price is good. If location specific (since cop colors and equipment change from place to place), I am mostly interested in the US, specifically California and Massachusetts.


Same question for iOS: iOS app to detect police or speed radar presence

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    Presumably you are looking for visual recognition and are not too worried about unmarked police vehicles - in the UK we have them for traffic as well as more serious crime & the constabularies have been know to swap them between them when they get too well known. – Steve Barnes Aug 1 '15 at 6:13
  • @SteveBarnes Thanks, good to know, I wasn't of this issue in the UK. I know cops do the same in California but not so frequent. – Franck Dernoncourt Aug 1 '15 at 6:19
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    In order for the police car to be big enough in the camera picture for the image-based detection algorithms to work decently you'd likely be already too close to the speed traps to slow down in time :) Plus often the speed trap placements are in zones with limited visual range, further reducing the effectiveness of a camera-based solution. – Dan Cornilescu Aug 3 '15 at 2:07
  • @DanCornilescu I agree, but still useful in many cases :) e.g. to avoid inadvertently overtaking a police car when speeding. Also for the longer term, one could foresee Waze-style police reports automatically fed by such applications. – Franck Dernoncourt Aug 3 '15 at 6:49
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If your police vehicles and speed cameras are clearly marked, in some countries they are not always, then you could use the OpenCV android implementation for something like this.

There are a number of resources and guides linked from this page as object detection, (not necessarily police vehicles), is a common problem in robotics. Beware of the simple colour detection mechanisms as they will tend to give too many false positives, (due to matching colours in the environment unless the police in your area use really unusual colours), and false negatives, (due to changing light conditions).

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