Approximate Nearest Neighbors in C++/Python optimized for memory usage and loading/saving to disk (by spotify)

Annoy Alternatives

Similar projects and alternatives to annoy

NOTE: The number of mentions on this list indicates mentions on common posts plus user suggested alternatives. Hence, a higher number means a better annoy alternative or higher similarity.

annoy reviews and mentions

Posts with mentions or reviews of annoy. We have used some of these posts to build our list of alternatives and similar projects. The last one was on 2023-09-05.
  • Do we think about vector dbs wrong?
    7 projects | | 5 Sep 2023
    The focus on the top 10 in vector search is a product of wanting to prove value over keyword search. Keyword search is going to miss some conceptual matches. You can try to work around that with tokenization and complex queries with all variations but it's not easy.

    Vector search isn't all that new a concept. For example, the annoy library ( has been around since 2014. It was one of the first open source approximate nearest neighbor libraries. Recommendations have always been a good use case for vector similarity.

    Recommendations are a natural extension of search and transformers models made building the vectors for natural language possible. To prove the worth of vector search over keyword search, the focus was always on showing how the top N matches include results not possible with keyword search.

    In 2023, there has been a shift towards acknowledging keyword search also has value and that a combination of vector + keyword search (aka hybrid search) operates in the sweet spot. Once again this is validated through the same benchmarks which focus on the top 10.

    On top of all this, there is also the reality that the vector database space is very crowded and some want to use their performance benchmarks for marketing.

    Disclaimer: I am the author of txtai (, an open source embeddings database

  • Vector Databases 101
    3 projects | /r/datascience | 25 Jun 2023
    If you want to go larger you could still use some simple setup in conjunction with faiss, annoy or hnsw.
  • I'm an undergraduate data science intern and trying to run kmodes clustering. Did this elbow method to figure out how many clusters to use, but I don't really see an "elbow". Tips on number of clusters?
    2 projects | /r/datascience | 21 Jun 2023
  • Calculating document similarity in a special domain
    1 project | /r/LanguageTechnology | 1 Jun 2023
    I then use annoy to compare them. Annoy can use different measures for distance, like cosine, euclidean and more
  • Can Parquet file format index string columns?
    1 project | /r/dataengineering | 27 May 2023
    Yes you can do this for equality predicates if your row groups are sorted . This blog post (that I didn't write) might add more color. You can't do this for any kind of text searching. If you need to do this with file based storage I'd recommend using a vector based text search and utilize a ANN index library like Annoy.
  • [D]: Best nearest neighbour search for high dimensions
    4 projects | /r/MachineLearning | 17 May 2023
    If you need large scale (1000+ dimension, millions+ source points, >1000 queries per second) and accept imperfect results / approximate nearest neighbors, then other people have already mentioned some of the best libraries (FAISS, Annoy).
  • Billion-Scale Approximate Nearest Neighbor Search [pdf]
    1 project | | 6 May 2023
  • [R] Unlimiformer: Long-Range Transformers with Unlimited Length Input
    1 project | /r/MachineLearning | 5 May 2023
    Would be possible to further speed up the process with using something like ANNOY?
  • Faiss: A library for efficient similarity search
    14 projects | | 30 Mar 2023
    I like Faiss but I tried Spotify's annoy[1] for a recent project and was pretty impressed.

    Since lots of people don't seem to understand how useful these embedding libraries are here's an example. I built a thing that indexes bouldering and climbing competition videos, then builds an embedding of the climber's body position per frame. I then can automatically match different climbers on the same problem.

    It works pretty well. Since the body positions are 3D it works reasonably well across camera angles.

    The biggest problem is getting the embedding right. I simplified it a lot above because I actually need to embed the problem shape itself because otherwise it matches too well: you get frames of people in identical positions but on different problems!


  • How to find "k" nearest embeddings in a space with a very large number of N embeddings (efficiently)?
    3 projects | /r/MLQuestions | 23 Feb 2023
    If you just want quick in memory search then pynndescent is a decent option: it's easy to install, and easy to get running. Another good option is Annoy; it's just as easy to install and get running with python, but it is a little less performant if you want to do a lot of queries, or get a knn-graph quickly.
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Basic annoy repo stats
3 months ago

spotify/annoy is an open source project licensed under Apache License 2.0 which is an OSI approved license.

The primary programming language of annoy is C++.

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