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Real-life cut and paste tool will blow your mind

Ah, good old cut and paste. A feature seemingly as old as time itself. It's hardly the most exciting of technological processes – or so we thought, until we saw this mind-blowing demonstration of how the feature could look in reality (augmented reality, that is). 

Over the past few months, programmer Cyril Diagne has been sharing his progress on a remarkable tool which, with the help of AR, can allow users to quickly grab a real-world visual with their phone and dump it straight into Photoshop on desktop. And now, ClipDrop is finally available to download on Android, iOS, Mac and Windows. It could be heading straight for our list of the best apps for graphic designers.

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As Diagne explains in previous tweets (opens in new tab), there's a lot of technical wizardry (as opposed to just straight-up wizardry) involved in the process. The software uses complex machine learning to separate the object in the foreground from the background, while a separate process is able to detect where the phone is pointing at the laptop (for the paste element).

"You can extract anything: objects, people, drawings, and text," says Diagne (opens in new tab).  The quality of the salient object detection, background removal, and text detection is now quite incredible." A single subscription (opens in new tab), which gives access to unlimited clips and all features on all platforms, costs $39.99 for a year, rising to $79.99 on 20 November. 

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It seems we're not the only ones impressed with Diagne's sorcery (sorry, software). Back in May, The team behind Photoshop itself even replied to his tweets about to prototype tool. Perhaps that's what inspired Adobe to introduce its own mind-bending new Photoshop AR tools at Adobe MAX this year. 

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Daniel Piper
Daniel Piper

Daniel Piper is Creative Bloq’s Senior News Editor. As the brand’s Apple authority, he covers all things Mac, iPhone, iPad and the rest. He also reports on the worlds of design, branding and tech. Daniel joined Future in 2020 (an eventful year, to say the least) after working in copywriting and digital marketing with brands including ITV, NBC, Channel 4 and more. Outside of Future, Daniel is a global poetry slam champion and has performed at festivals including Latitude, Bestival and more. He is the author of Arbitrary and Unnecessary: The Selected Works of Daniel Piper (Selected by Daniel Piper).