SAN FRANCISCO – Instead of deciphering distorted text, web users will now be able to prove that they are humans with a simple “I’m not a robot” checkbox. Google announced an updated version of the traditional CAPTCHA online human verification system Tuesday.
Don’t be surprised if the next time you try to access a website, instead of asking you to retype an inscrutable series of letters and numbers, you’re simply asked to check a box next to this statement:
“I’m not a robot.”
It’s the latest iteration of an on-going war between spammers and computer scientists. In this round, the scientists won.
Those squiggly, hard-to-read number and letter combinations are called CAPTCHA’s
It stands for “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.”
This is what they do. Computers aren’t supposed to be able to read them, while humans easily can. Except that’s not really the case anymore.
Google is also rolling out a more mobile-friendly CAPTCHA for those working on cell phones. In this, instead of typing in text, users are presented with a picture of something; say a kitten, and then nine other images. They have to tap each image that is also of a kitten.