I am a new user. Can someone please tell me: is, or is not, this app supposed to let me take a photo of a plant or insect and try to guess what it is? Am I dreaming of that functionality, or was this what it’s supposed to do and I just can’t figure out the GUI to make it do that?
:) welcome to iNaturalist!
The app allows you to create an observation of something alive in nature (like a tree or a bird or the spider in the bathtub) by taking a picture in the app (or adding photos from your camera roll)
to get help from the AI with identifying the subject of your, observation, touch the what did you see? section
the screen will refresh and then offer a list of suggestions of things that might match your thing. If you feel that a suggestion from the list is right on, then pick it. If nothing looks good, and you know what you saw, then you can use the search feature to find the right thing. If you don;t know, then you can choose a very general identification like - plant or animal - to get things started.
once you choose Share, then your observation is added to the list of observations that ‘need id’ Other users of inaturalist review the observations in the identify list and come to a consensus about the id.
here’s the main tutorial for getting started
Hope this helps!