Thursday, August 4, 2011


I have an undying hatred for Captcha, it seems to haunt my self confidence whenever I attempt to submit anything online. All it says to me is that the website has unmanageable amounts of spam and that somehow, it's the users fault. Well, maybe no one is being blamed, but it is the user that gets stuck with the bill. I'm glad our justic system isn't built off the same logic. "Well, to prove your not guilty, we would like you to perform a miracle, someone benevolent and righteous enough to do such a thing could never be guilty." So, anyway, I got to thinking about new ways of Captchaing submissions that lower the amount of cognitive/ sensory resources needed to complete it. Most Captcha designs are based on the computer intelligence tests that somehow go back to the stoneage when all we had were words that were easy to read and words that were hard to read. With all of our intelligence in the fields of computer science, psychology, and AI, is this the best we can do? The first thing I thought was along the same lines as what is currently in market place, a text word written plainly, with a bunch of words and letters scrolling in front of it. The idea is that your brain would focus on the static word, and the fly by decoy words would be ignored. Well, I made an example..

It didn't take me long to realize that I wasn't a fan, and that I wan't figuring anything special out. So I got to thinking again. I remember watching Tron and thinking man it's so easy to tell his face is CGI, I wonder how well a computer can tell a CGI face from a real face, I know I can. What if a 2nd gen captcha had two faces a CGI face and a real one and the question was posed, "which of these is a real person?"

Can you answer? I think I can, can a robot answer? no clue.

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