The familiar annoyance of two word text ‘puzzles’ to prove that you’re human – staple of the internet for over a decade – is no more. Google has replaced its supposed bot-deterrent text-based reCAPTCHA with an image match system to confirm a user’s authenticity.
The old two-word system – which served a secondary purpose of helping Google’s OCR software to decipher words it struggled with when digitising books – was meant to be bot-proof, but advances in digital character recognition made the process redundant.
“CAPTCHAs have long relied on the inability of robots to solve distorted text,” Vinay Shet, product manager of reCAPTCHA at Google, explained. “However, our research recently showed that today’s artificial intelligence technology can solve even the most difficult variant of distorted text at 99.8 per cent accuracy. Thus distorted text, on its own, is no longer a dependable test.”
Instead, users will be asked to match similar images of animals (mostly cats. The internet loves cats). The old word recognition system will still be used as a back-up test.
Over the past few years that you’ve completing reCaptchas to sign up to websites, complete orders and a few other things, how many times have you had to squint just to try and work out what the second word was?
For years your average internet user has had to adjust their vision just to sign up to the simplest of websites and Google had no answer for it. From signing into your Gmail account to signing up to forums, reCaptcha has caused mayhem all over the internet since its invention.
The original Captchas were designed to only give you an easy answer once Google confirms that you’re a human via a cookie from their AdSense advertising program, which begs the question: why does Google need you to confirm you’re a human if you’ve already passively proved to them you’re a human?
After considering this, reCaptcha was born. A new design, new algorithm and a whole new crazy selection of illegible phrases that you’re forced to read to get your new accounts signed up for.
After Google saw the sheer amount of complaints about their current system, they’ve stepped up their game and redesigned (again!) their reCaptchas to make them more readable for humans (huzzah!).
This has no only come as a job to consumers everywhere as they no longer feel the need for reading glasses just to sign into their email accounts, but Google’s complaints have already seen a slight decrease in numbers – meaning that the new system is starting to show that it’s working!
How do you feel about these changes? Let us know in the comment section below!