Posted: June 17, 2011 in Internet
Tags: , , , , , ,

Here’s the deal.  Completely automated public Turing tests to tell computers and humans apart (or CAPTTTTCAHA…or the more commonly shortened shortened version, CAPTCHA) are annoying.  You know these things.  The words written with squiggly letters that you have to correctly identify to do anything on the internet.  Yep, those.

Terminator (character)

Image via Wikipedia

This distorted text is designed to be legible by humans, but unreadable by computer programs and to protect websites from bots.  Sure, computers can run complex programs, defeat chess grandmasters, and perform millions of intricate calculations in seconds…but show them a consonant with a little wiggle to it and they’re completely lost.  Hmmmm, who knew bots were so easily defeated?  They didn’t have to waste all that time running from the Terminators, they could have just held up a CAPTCHA.

“Take me to Sarah Connor.”

“Sure, if you can read this!”

“What?  Those letters are so squiggly.  Does not compute.  Must self terminate.”

So, yeah, it seems like a good idea.  The problem is, about 34% of the time these things can’t be read by computers or humans.  For example, what the hell does this say?


heturin ygeen?  limlnrris ygeen?  halvrrh ygeen?  Can I just type in “something ygeen?”  I can’t count the number of times I’ve misidentified a CAPTCHA and have been instructed to try again.  Sometimes it makes me wonder if I’m actually a highly developed android and I don’t know it.  That might explain why I find the toaster so attractive…

So, how am I going to do it?   How will I put an end to my embarrassment at not being able to correctly identify myself as a member of the species Homo sapiens by reading a blurred text?  We simply need to find a different method of differentiating the humans from the bots.  Couldn’t we just ask some simple questions that only humans would know the answers to?  For example, aren’t emotions cool?  Or, isn’t it great having blood pumping through your veins?  Or maybe – to _____ is human.  (For those humans who need help with these questions, the answers, disguised in case any bots are reading this, are yes, yes and err).  I don’t know whether or not this will work, but something must be done.  Because I don’t care if you’re a human or a bot, nobody knows what a limlnrris ygeen is.

  1. angelina says:

    Is that what that is?? Whew! At first i thought i was stroking out!

  2. Jennifer says:

    I hate those CAPTCHA things. I never can type in the right word (if you even call it a word). I usually get so mad by the thirteenth time I’ve tried to type it in correctly that I give up altogether. But, I guess there is one good thing about CAPTCHA, it is doing it’s part to keep the Bots from taking over the world.

  3. heathersnyder1 says:

    I hate CAPTCHA! Everytime I buy a concert ticket, one of these suckers pops up. Then I have to decipher what it actually says in the 2 to 3 minute time frame that it gives you to purchase the tickets.

    • Makya McBee says:

      Yes, it’s created a new art form – abstract writing…I prefer them when they’re actually words, then you have a fighting chance. Why should you have to be able to read a wildly blurred, “hucmydmn spydkiel” just to see ZZ Top rock the downtonw mall?

      • heathersnyder1 says:

        My thoughts exactly! But, I guess if I’m going to stalk my favorite Classic Rock Band members, then I need to start training my eyes to read blurry, squiggley text better. I shall do CAPTCHA eye exercises until tears start streaming down my face. Or, I could just hit the “try another” button each time and hope that time doesn’t run out on getting great seats for the concerts.

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