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PetMatch finds you a cat or dog that looks just like the one who died

Want a dog or a cat that is just so very similar to your last one? Here's the answer. But would it work to find substitute people too?

Aw. PetMatch

I don't want to diminish the death of your beloved kitty or pooch.

I just want to diminish the effects.

I know that losing your pet can be very painful, but this is a world in which cloning is au courant and apps exist to make your life more complete.

So let's put those two as close together as we can. What we come up with is PetMatch.

This thoughtful app seeks to find you a pet that looks just like the last one you had before it died of old age, ran away to Zurich, or was run over by a careless tyke on a bike.

All you have to do is upload a picture of your loved and lost one. Then the very clever technology from parent company Superfish does the rest.

Superfish claims: "Our sophisticated algorithms (and our registered patents) allow us to analyze every picture and provide similar and near identical images in real time -- no text tags, no human involvement."

The lovely thing about its PetMatch is that it takes your photo and tries to match it with images of cats and dogs in your area (and beyond) that are up for adoption.

Once a match is found, PetMatch passes the details on to you and you can find a new but very familiar friend.

There are, though, some practicalities. Pets have characters. What if you almost identical new pet has an entirely different character from your last? Won't that seem like your last cat or dog had come out of very difficult surgery that wasn't entirely successful?

On the positive side, though, you can just enter an image of your ideal cat or dog and see if, somehow, the app can bring up a match.

TechCrunch tells me that Superfish is populated by very clever Stanford and MIT PhD types, whose ambitions are great. Their next ventures are visual search apps for jewelry and furniture.

However, given the joy that PetMatch can bring, surely the next logical step would be LoverMatch.

Yes, she might have left you because she didn't realize quite how wonderful you are. But imagine if LoverMatch could find you someone who looked just like her, but appreciated you far, far more. And was, thanks to the myriad dating sites around available. (Or at least apparently available.)

It is said, by both men and women, that they have a type. So wouldn't it save so much time, effort, pain, and expensive dinners in pretentious restaurants for an app to help you find precisely the physical specimen you need to make your life truly whole?

Wouldn't it at least perform something of an automatic sifting process, without you having to do too much work?

Then, just as with the pet-adopters, you'd have to hope for a little character to go along with the looks.

I suppose there's only one drawback with this idea. No one on dating sites looks remotely like their picture.

The app in action. PetMatch