How do CAPTCHAs test our human identity by making our language unrecognizable?

Wherever we go on the internet, we encounter CAPTCHAs, those twisted words that block or enable entries on websites. Need to post an ad on Craigslist? There’s a CAPTCHA. Want to comment on an article or blog post? There’s a CAPTCHA. So why do we have them? They were invented to block spamming machines from posting wherever they want. In order to keep out spammers, a CAPTCHA has to effectively test if you are human or machine. Computer scientists figured out that one of the easiest ways to do that is to use images of language. In order to deceive spammers, the images of language take randomly generated text and manipulate the image, so that a human can barely read it, but a computer trying to take a picture of it cannot. (You’ve wondered about CAPTCHAs, but you probably have also been curious what the i in “iPhone” stands for. The complex and interesting answer lies here.)

Even though we read words on the internet, the internet and computers are not made of words. In fact, computers often have a hard time understanding languages because they do not conform to the hard and fast rules that computer programs demand. That’s why coding languages have to be invented: human languages are too irregular. This is also one of the reasons it is so hard to create an intelligent robot. So, CAPTCHAs take advantage of the uniquely human ability to see letters that have been stretched or manipulated and still be able to decipher which letters they are.

The term CAPTCHA was first used by computer scientists at Carnegie Mellon University in 2000. CAPTCHA is actually an acronym that stands for Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart. That’s a pretty straight-forward title, except for the Turing test part. What exactly is a Turing test? Alan Turing was a computer theorist who invented the Turing test which humans use to see if a machine can converse like a human being. A CAPTCHA is actually an inverted Turing test whereby a machine tests to see if you are human or not, but the core principle remains.

You may wonder why CAPTCHAs don’t use images of things other than letters, like a beach or a dog, but images are harder to have an exact answer for. A picture of a beach could generate a wide variety of responses–sea, sand, sunny, ocean, and so on–but a CAPTCHA that uses letters is paired to a particular answer. Letters, unlike images, are able to be deciphered by the human eye and programmed precisely by whoever creates the CAPTCHA.
Do you think computers will ever be able to decipher CAPTCHAs?


  1. jibjabst -  October 6, 2015 - 7:50 pm






  2. chris -  September 17, 2015 - 6:21 am

    They said it. The answer LIES here.

  3. jelly gamat gold g -  December 2, 2014 - 3:39 am

    Thanks for finally talking about >What exactly is a CAPTCHA?
    How does it work? | Dictionary.com Blog <Loved it!

  4. Clementine007 -  October 17, 2013 - 3:49 am

    I have decided that for me the real purpose of CAPTCHAs is for me to test how much I really want to be on the web site. Three failed CAPTCHAs and I’m out. I am mostly out!

    • Me -  October 9, 2014 - 10:05 pm

      After trying to open a twitter account, I discovered that I am not human.

      • lyra -  February 17, 2015 - 8:37 am

        i am not human either. I still dont know how to make a blurry word, so I cant make an account

  5. The Ceej -  October 9, 2013 - 6:56 pm

    I’m not going to read your article because I reject the premise the headline sets up.

    The question is not, “How do CAPTCHAs test our human identity…” They don’t. That was never their purpose. Anyone who says it is or was is either a liar or an idiot. Bots can solve CAPTCHAs easily. No bot in the history of the internet has ever been thwarted by a CAPTCHA…

    Humans, on the other hand, almost universally have consistent problems. It’s a bane on the human internet experience while bots don’t mind them. They breeze right through them.

    The real question is, “What is the REAL purpose of CAPTCHA and why the conspiracy of silence?”

  6. Jeevanand -  October 6, 2013 - 3:09 pm

    captchas are highly idiotic..automated robo software can decode 70% of captchas…there are at least 20% even humans cannot decode..the creators of captchas are highly idiots…if the computer cannot do a simple calculation,1+2 = , on its own, then why there is need of developing highly idiotic captchas..no fundamental approach by idiots who create captchas

  7. http://www.sonamyh.com/ -  May 5, 2013 - 10:11 am

    Wow, awesome blog layout! How lengthy have you ever been blogging for?
    you made blogging look easy. The whole glance of your site is
    wonderful, as well as the content!

  8. Tom -  January 20, 2013 - 2:36 pm

    So, the capcha words are all all actual words? This makes it easier for me now.

  9. MOJAPELE7 -  September 26, 2012 - 6:01 am


  10. al3ab -  July 14, 2012 - 3:49 am

    that’s true, I would prefer a method like a mini flash game or to ask a random question for which a robot can’t recognize answer, keep on good work

  11. fred -  July 1, 2012 - 8:16 am

    Captcha’s are great for removing traffic to a website – it helps in turning away casual users so that those that run the site don’t have to deal with the hassle of having to run a successful site.

  12. Dev Baisoya India -  June 25, 2012 - 9:27 am

    but for those who are unable to read.. there should be option to calculate something… like addition subtraction or multiplication of two numbers… i have seen it on many websites..

  13. Dev Baisoya India -  June 25, 2012 - 9:22 am

    I don’t think captchas are hard to read.. they are very easy for a human being.. but not for a robot or a software.. it never takes more than 10 seconds to read complete captcha of 6 letters.. and its all about your security.. isn’t it even if it takes more than a minute?

  14. Professor Know-it-all -  June 12, 2012 - 3:33 am

    I accidentally added another a in freak so it is not freaak so don’t look it up on dictionary.com

  15. Professor Know-it-all -  June 12, 2012 - 3:31 am

    If you can’t read the CAPTCHA then don’t freaak out there is a sound button near the CAPTCHA so the computer can read it out to you. This can solve 95% of your problems with CAPTCHA.

    • Paula -  June 10, 2014 - 11:51 pm

      Trying to listen to them is harder than trying to read it

  16. Bryan -  June 12, 2012 - 3:27 am

    In the game , maplestory , there are CAPTCHA you would have to enter before logging in to your character , but even with that , Spam bots have found ways to crack into the game … CAPTCHA is like a waste of time as humans need to type in and Spam bots just like hack their way in …

  17. Elliot -  June 11, 2012 - 10:12 am

    CAPTCHA’s are hard some times, and defiantly can be annoying after so much time. On the Other hand, Using a CaPTCHA is less annoying than getting hundreds of robot emails. posts, etc.and also less annoying than getting hacked. One day I believe computers will Be able to figure them out or crack/hack them. SO right now you should be happy they are just the way they are (even though they can be hard). Learn how to read them.

  18. Elliot -  June 11, 2012 - 10:10 am

    CAPTCHA’s are hard some times, and defiantly can be annoying after so much time. On the Other hand, Using a CaPTCHA is less annoying than getting hundreds of robot emails. posts, etc.and also less annoying than getting hacked. One day I believe computers will Be able to figure them out or crack/hack them. SO right now you should be happy they are just the way they are (even though they can be hard).

  19. Franz -  June 11, 2012 - 12:33 am

    how a very good explanation demosthenes. that is right if CAPTCHA is make to easy its useless to make a CAPTCHA word. and have always a gap between robot and humanity. thanks guys

  20. Ness -  June 10, 2012 - 8:25 pm

    I saw a unique captcha where you have to drag something to a respective image eg. “Drag the juice to the bottle”. Then there are four different images, you have to choose the juice and be able to drag it to the image of the bottle standing to the side. One example is when you sign up for a 6Theory account. Look it up!

  21. Wheatley -  June 8, 2012 - 4:43 pm


    2.)I wonder if GLaDOS can read CAPTCHA’s

    3.)@Demosthenes, Did you read Ender’s Game?

  22. Demosthenes -  May 20, 2012 - 12:16 pm

    CAPTCHAs are good. It doesn’t matter if some people can’t get in, as long as they keep a bigger percentage of computers out. But I would like these people to READ THE ARTICLE. Maybe if you had, you would be talking about the right thing. As of now, there are 280 comments, and about 3 of them are answering the right prompt. And more than 200 of them say “Malik, you’re right.” IT’S BEEN SAID BEFORE! Ironic, isn’t it, that the forum about CAPTCHAs has no CAPTCHA. Anyway, computers will eventually learn to decipher the CAPTCHAs, as they’re not that hard. They’re designed so that any human can understand them. And as robots and computers are getting closer and closer to human intelligence every day, they’ll soon learn how to bypass them. Then they’ll become harder, and then maybe we’ll have a reason to complain. But not now. And even then, maybe they’ll switch the format to something different that will be just as easy. But this is one of humanity’s only advantage over machines. Don’t let them infiltrate forums like this one. Learn how to read CAPTCHAs.

  23. Question! -  May 2, 2012 - 4:59 am

    Those who say there are’nt easy, are you sure that you are human biengs? lol.

  24. astha gupta -  February 28, 2012 - 6:06 am

    why don’t we use special characters in captcha..??although it may be difficult for computers to judge..?

  25. imformation -  November 23, 2011 - 9:19 am

    i see it as this is a site where if you cant get on like facebook or something you and others can talk on this website and tell people im on it cause its educational

  26. Chovie -  November 21, 2011 - 7:45 am

    CAPTCHA sucks sometimes… like when they put foreign languages in it or math equations haha

  27. DR.G.GEETHA -  October 28, 2011 - 10:50 am

    Will you all accept the pressure sensitive keyboard that can push “CAPTCHA TO OBLIVION”? No need to prove to the machine that you are human.

  28. E.A.D. -  October 25, 2011 - 9:09 pm

    I’m good with CAPTCHAs. Here’s how you do it*:

    1. Be the CAPTCHA.
    2. Draw/write down the words the CAPTCHA offers.
    3. Remove the lines, effects, etc.
    4. There are the words!

    So you see, it’s that simple.

    *Results vary from person to person

  29. ßöb -  October 21, 2011 - 1:33 pm

    Manchmal kann ich sie lesen, und manchmal kann ich nicht.

  30. SH -  October 21, 2011 - 1:28 pm

    @Mycroft, doesn’t the economy of Norway need toppling or something? Surely you MUST have something better to do with your time.

  31. A Nekosume -  October 17, 2011 - 6:31 pm

    @Mycroft makes sense….

  32. pie art squared. -  October 17, 2011 - 1:28 pm


    usually, there is an option that allows you to here a little child speaking numbers, with a sound byte background, as apposed to disciphering the CAPTCHA.

  33. obob_ak -  October 16, 2011 - 10:57 pm

    malik is a waste of time……..where is your school malik? i will not enroll my kid to that school…

  34. KOOL-AID... NOT Caprisun -  October 16, 2011 - 6:34 pm

    Wow.. I thought MySpace was the first to create CAPTCHAs. Ha ha!!

  35. Mycroft -  October 15, 2011 - 10:50 am

    I see you have not yet discovered the one behind it all. How disappointing. Indeed, you’re acting more childishly than my brother, which I had not thought humanly possible.

    The CAPTCHA, while sometimes irritating, are effectively stopping spam. Please note that it is entirely obeying its function.

    I will stop the math equations and characters in other languages. It may take time, be patient. Anthea has been taking charge of it for the last while. I will now take over.

    Do not worry. All is well.

  36. Gerard -  October 14, 2011 - 7:35 am

    @Malik: Or maybe your a spam robot…..

  37. JJRousseau -  October 14, 2011 - 4:39 am

    Oui. What was the question?

  38. my new name is Adam -  October 14, 2011 - 2:34 am

    The best weblogs (blogs) try to use CAPTCHAs to enforce human interaction. Unfortunately, people soon start projects to manually capture screen shots of each CAPTCHA image (these projects are usually outsourced to low wage countries). At this point bots can be used to compare the database of screenshots to the current screen and bypass the CAPTCHA.

  39. Giovanni -  October 13, 2011 - 10:20 pm

    Nature abhors a vacuum.

  40. Giovanni -  October 13, 2011 - 10:19 pm

    The reason they’ve gotten harder over the years is because computers are already deciphering them.

  41. Paula -  October 13, 2011 - 8:52 pm

    I pretty much always have to refresh the CAPTCHA and try again. Maybe my eyes are broke from being on the computer so much?

  42. Singer -  October 13, 2011 - 8:35 pm

    Captcha’s are not hard for me, the problem is that it doesn’t come up and u cant use the disability functions ….. Its ANNOYING

  43. W.S.Clark -  October 13, 2011 - 8:13 pm

    Lou’s right, as long as it lets human in 99% of the time and keeps bots out, who cares.

  44. CAPTHCA -  October 13, 2011 - 7:50 pm

    NO there wuznt

  45. CAPTHCA -  October 13, 2011 - 7:50 pm

    was there a CAPTCHA 2 this? DUH

  46. Cris -  October 13, 2011 - 7:16 pm

    The reason they are so hard for us is because some computer programs can convert images to text they can understand. There are those business card readers than scan business cards and convert the image into a text format it can decipher and plug into the program. The CAPTCHA’s have to be difficult for that reason. Although yeah it is very annoying when they are impossible to read

  47. OLH064 -  October 13, 2011 - 5:09 pm

    Analou should teach. Really.
    GoldFish, it’s called RECAPTCHA, and it may or may not be for profit.

    Please don’t comment “hi!”

  48. archer -  October 13, 2011 - 4:11 pm

    A sample of a CAPTCHA:12ERT6G4
    WRONG it is l2ERTbG4!):

  49. archer -  October 13, 2011 - 4:09 pm

    ‘me’, U R MEAN!

  50. archer -  October 13, 2011 - 4:06 pm

    these things are so annoying!but somehow i figure it out :D LOL

  51. Dan -  October 13, 2011 - 3:59 pm

    some of you guys must b cyborgs cause i dont find these things that hard

  52. HU_Soldier -  October 13, 2011 - 2:51 pm

    Well, CAPTCHAS are what prevents your favorite forum/place from being spammed. Although, I think stetching them out more instead of mashing the words SO CLOSE that there hard for a human to read seems unessecary.

  53. me -  October 13, 2011 - 2:30 pm

    I don’t understand why people can’t read CAPTCHAs. I just did one today,and I hardly even hesitated. And to everyone that that asked what CAPTCHA stands for, READ THE ARTICLE MORON!!

  54. dancermonkey -  October 13, 2011 - 2:26 pm

    I’m so glad they posted this article. I had no idea what CAPTCHAs were until now! And no offense, but all you that say they’re really hard, how?!? They’re so easy!!!

  55. GoldFish -  October 13, 2011 - 2:09 pm

    I have an alternative theory here, maybe it’ll lead to bloodshed. You know Google Books, right? It is my belief that those bits and pieces that Google’s own OCR fails upon are, after a little added sugar’n'spice (i. e. added lines/transforms/whatnot,) thrown at us in form of captchas. The first few entries are automatically accepted (combined with previous, mostly-known entries, so that there are still entries that are required to match); this way, the unreadable words of certain books are read by _you_ instead of the OCR software. It’s probably a cost-effective solution, as long as there are books to digitise. Or something similar, not sure if it’s Google (though I wouldn’t find it completely unbelievable) but this way, the resources used for captchas are actually having some added benefit. Just my tuppence.

  56. Rainsong -  October 13, 2011 - 1:16 pm

    Sometimes CAPTCHAs are REALLY messed up. Once I saw one.
    Really, CAPTCHA? Really?

  57. Edison Lai -  October 13, 2011 - 1:08 pm

    I hate Captchas!!!It wastes my time …lol =( =)

  58. darbydoo321 -  October 13, 2011 - 12:08 pm

    omg i read all the definition and all the comments!! im awesome

  59. cmbc -  October 13, 2011 - 10:56 am

    GOTCHA thanks for the enlightenment

  60. depreezed -  October 13, 2011 - 10:45 am

    this is depressing.=( Sometimes I can’t get those things and I ask my self this question:Am I human or half robot?

  61. Android Alert -  October 13, 2011 - 10:10 am

    Remember the scene in Terminator where they tested whether the entrants were man or machine before being allowed to enter? Looks like that is where we are headed.

  62. Frugality Fan -  October 13, 2011 - 9:37 am

    I have had to deal with CAPTCHA many times. I have noted that there are several styles. The one that I find particularly hard to deal with is the one that removes the spacing between letters in a script font. It becomes impossible to tell difference between “i j” and “y” or between “r n” and “m” or “l o” and “b”. At times I have simply decided that the site really does not want visitors, and I leave rather than waste my time.

  63. Ped A -  October 13, 2011 - 8:39 am

    How much intelligence can we expect from people who even has to complain about typing a word or two.

    FYI, many CAPTCHAS now allow one or two letter margin of error, so stop collectively whining like a failed spam.

  64. brenmob -  October 13, 2011 - 8:27 am

    makes good for people who want to be in cryptology.

  65. lol kitty -  October 13, 2011 - 8:25 am

    lol i love this reading other ppls coments <3 (:

  66. AL-ANON -  October 13, 2011 - 7:15 am

    MALIK!!!!!!!!! Word, dude!

  67. manas -  October 13, 2011 - 7:11 am

    Captcha’s have been designed for normal human beings (I.Q=100).
    All those who are below this level find captcha’s difficult to read.

  68. jade -  October 13, 2011 - 7:09 am

    Well, I think CAPTCHAs do have their benefits. at least it keeps the whole thing cleaner, free of spam, and also, guarantees a MUCH faster download because it successfully blocks people that are downloading using a computer program. It is also used in some places with online games, making sure that players are not using computer programs to do all the leveling.

    Unfortunately, although computers cannot decipher CAPTCHAs (not that I’ve heard of any), there are companies that are paid to decipher the CAPTCHAs for the payers. it is rumored in China, companies hire people to sit in front of the screen 24-7 (maybe not the same person, but there’s definitely someone there), typing all the CAPTCHAs, because some people require online services (downloading and auto-leveling) when they aren’t actually in front of the computer.

  69. john rhea -  October 13, 2011 - 6:03 am

    They Work!

  70. Gropaga -  October 13, 2011 - 5:54 am

    Lord Inglip speaks to his followers through CAPTCHAs.

  71. John -  October 13, 2011 - 3:50 am


  72. Analou -  October 13, 2011 - 3:14 am

    Some of the people who commented this blog didn’t read the article. They just post a commit without the correct understanding. If you’re interested with the topic, why not read it twice or more. You people are annoying.

  73. Lou -  October 13, 2011 - 2:33 am

    Don’t take it out on CAPTCHAs, people created them to stop the machines. Well pictures are easy to read and a machine can type out all the answers no matter how many times it gets wrong cos they never tire. Well then I consider myself a machine, one that gets irritated after many wrongs.

  74. zahra -  October 13, 2011 - 2:03 am

    Hate it when u try so hard to read it and it doesn’t end up working !!!! UGH!!!

  75. Astro -  October 13, 2011 - 1:55 am


  76. Joseph -  October 13, 2011 - 1:53 am

    CATCHA’s are not only for English speakers. So, images are not a good solution. I am not English, and rarely have a problem recognizing Captchas. And even images can be ambiguous. Take the following example:

    [image of a banana]
    subtext: First letter is “B” or “D” or “C” or even “P”…

  77. DragonDefender -  October 13, 2011 - 1:50 am

    I see many people on here saying whether or not they think CAPTCHAs are easy or hard to read. I see others berating the people saying they are hard by responding that we are ‘blind’ or ‘undereducated.’ Written language is already difficult for people with dyslexia to decipher and the CAPTCHAs makes it all the harder no matter how well educated you may be.
    Have a nice day,
    Dyslectics untie

  78. Becky -  October 13, 2011 - 1:45 am

    To the guy that said people who can’t read captcha’s are not well educated – I have a first class English degree and I can’t read the damn things!

  79. Joshua Xiong -  October 13, 2011 - 1:34 am

    Yes, computers are able to decode captcha.

  80. Harshal -  October 13, 2011 - 12:00 am

    nice to know the history behind word CAPTCHA :)

  81. GLaDOS -  October 12, 2011 - 10:10 pm

    Worthless humans can’t read their own language. How about you try my language it’s simpler! 01001001001000000110000101101101001000000111001101110100011010010110110001101100001000000110000101101100011010010111011001100101

  82. Diablo-A -  October 12, 2011 - 9:54 pm

    They’re not hard. They’re actually quite easy.

  83. David -  October 12, 2011 - 9:43 pm

    I’m fine with CAPTCHAs when they’re real words, but when it’s a mixture of numbers and letters I sometimes get a bit lost. “Wait is that a 1 or a lowercase l or an I?”

  84. J-Wu -  October 12, 2011 - 9:02 pm

    I don’t know. Technology is advancing rapidly… In a while, probably.

  85. Kathleen -  October 12, 2011 - 8:55 pm

    Sometimes the CAPTCHAs make you figure out weird symbols like Ä or something like that. And how in the world are we supposed to do those without copy/pasting them from the internet…

  86. LUCK IN W -  October 12, 2011 - 8:06 pm

    I’ve never really thought about them. They just haven’t been worth it to me. Maybe my mind isn’t that curious any more.

  87. Sarah M xD -  October 12, 2011 - 7:58 pm

    CAPTCHAs are easy to read apart from when they look like numbers and on this website it asked me if I was human or not!!!! But I didn’t even know they were called CAPTCHAs I just think they are annoying.

  88. Tally -  October 12, 2011 - 7:45 pm

    Sometimes i can’t read them, but they’re still pretty easy.

  89. taaheatea -  October 12, 2011 - 7:20 pm

    I like the CAPTCHA’s. They do make it harder for machines to spam our computers!

  90. elmata -  October 12, 2011 - 6:52 pm

    they are pretty easy to me but the thing its everywhere its SO ANNOYING….

  91. Some Kid -  October 12, 2011 - 6:26 pm

    I don’t understand why people are complaining about how hard it is to decipher CAPTCHAs. I’ve come across tons of them and never had a complaint. Sure, some might have been tricky, but there was usually a “reCAPTCHA” option, which brought me an easier one with no hassle. And you could always listen to the audio version if you were that illiterate. (Sorry, I don’t really mean to be offensive.)

  92. Mia -  October 12, 2011 - 6:20 pm

    Soz *SPAM BOT*

  93. Mia -  October 12, 2011 - 6:20 pm

    CAPTCHA’s r soooooo annoying! btw what dus it actually stand 4?
    but kool article always wanted 2 no y they had those! :) and whats with SAPM BOT! what a freak! O.o

  94. A Nekosume -  October 12, 2011 - 6:09 pm

    @ Malik

    *Banned for being a robot :D*

  95. A Nekosume -  October 12, 2011 - 6:05 pm

    @Spam Bot

    Non-robots only!

  96. A Nekosume -  October 12, 2011 - 6:03 pm

    These CAPTCHA’s are annyoing, but if you have good eyes, then its easier to decipher

  97. Mr. Raymond Kenneth Petry -  October 12, 2011 - 6:01 pm

    Not pictures but rebi (rebus-pl.) should be more challenging than warped-letters, for a computer, because you interpret the picture for its things and its fun sense, yet the human can’t go wrong– because the final spelling is one definite rebus…

    Another trick they play -or can – is timing, which for authentication can be so slow that even if it were a machine, it’d be a very very slow, hack….

  98. e1148006900 -  October 12, 2011 - 5:51 pm

    __458872>insertCAPTCHA44<– 44499230009
    decoding completed.

  99. OLH064 -  October 12, 2011 - 5:24 pm

    Soon, we’ll have audio CAPTCHAs, since programmers are struggling with audio recognition. Maybe it would play a complex song and ask what instruments were used… Maybe even use the data like RECAPTCHA and help the audio recognition software development.

  100. Computer bot 238 -  October 12, 2011 - 5:20 pm

    Like my status.
    20 like and ill report “spam bot” to Creator #172

  101. Computer bot 238 -  October 12, 2011 - 5:14 pm

    “Spam Bot” why do you lie? The humans could easily discover that your are not a robot. I apoligize to all humans about the lies of “spam bot”. In reality, “Spam bot” is actually a human. [-_-]

  102. Why -  October 12, 2011 - 5:13 pm

    I don’t see why the black lines have to be over the letters. Even if they were below them or above wouldn’t that mess up any program trying to find where the image goes from black to white and trying to “read” the letters that way? And can anyone give examples of some algorithms that are used to try and get around captchas?

  103. singstarr2 -  October 12, 2011 - 4:42 pm

    also i agree with rachel!!!

  104. singstarr2 -  October 12, 2011 - 4:35 pm

    omg CAPTCHA’s r sooooooooooooo lame. i can never figure them out ugh i dont like them. they annoy me…………………………….and probably every1 else.

  105. justin bieber lover -  October 12, 2011 - 4:21 pm

    captchas are sooooooooo easy for me. i love them. i just want to do them every day. hey does anyone here like justin bieber? if you don’t im going to send someone over and scare you. losers

  106. bob -  October 12, 2011 - 3:48 pm

    I wonder what mine will beeee!!

  107. Samantha -  October 12, 2011 - 3:37 pm

    I think some CAPTCHA tests have been made too hard. The complexity of the words scribbled out for you differs in the range of clarity.

    I also disagree with the fact that there are some new CAPTCHA users out there that now no longer allow you to see over three different CAPTCHAs. (In the bottom there are sometimes little options that bring up a new CAPTCHA for you to read.)

  108. Jay -  October 12, 2011 - 2:38 pm

    Hey! How many Jays are in here anyway?

  109. what -  October 12, 2011 - 2:34 pm

    its redonkeyous

  110. Mr. Nerd -  October 12, 2011 - 1:52 pm

    CAPTCHA’s, huh? Those are kind of easy for me. Of course, I am a nerd so…

  111. Me -  October 12, 2011 - 1:30 pm

    Anything easy for a human is hard for a computer and everything easy for a computer is hard for a human for the most part. For example, walking, or instantaniously solving complex arithmatic.

  112. Sparta -  October 12, 2011 - 1:24 pm

    @Spam Bot:

    That’s great but um….I’m pretty sure you are a human.

  113. john rhea -  October 12, 2011 - 12:57 pm

    One day I got a CAPTCHA on my screen, I couldn’t decipher for the life of me. I clicked on “try another”. Upon hitting enter, a large black man entered my house through an open window. He forced me to perform fellation on him, and once he finished, I heard my computer say “Welcome”.

  114. Ron Hoefferle -  October 12, 2011 - 12:45 pm

    Reason I stopped using Google was becuase it thought I was a computer, and when I couldn’t enter in the captcha within what seemed liked seconds it kicked me off the web-site. Now I use Bing,

  115. Jrev -  October 12, 2011 - 12:06 pm

    i dont like captchas, often i cant figure out what the letter is and whether or not to put it i a capitol letter or not

  116. José Roberto -  October 12, 2011 - 11:46 am

    Gotcha! Captcha! In captcha, we figure out a meaning that makes this acronym very creative.

  117. Your Worst Nightmare -  October 12, 2011 - 11:12 am

    I hate captchas. They get on my nerves- but that’s a pretty smart thing.

  118. Matt -  October 12, 2011 - 11:08 am


    I consider myself to be well educated and even I find some CAPTCHAS to be difficult. Sometimes CAPTCHAS even have the oddest symbols (like greek letters) that I can’t figure out how to type. (How do you type theta on a keyboard?!) At times words and letters are so obscued and warped that anyone could find them difficult to read, but this does not mean Malik or anyone who finds them a little unrecognizable to be uneducated. DictionFan, I think you’re just cocky.

  119. Spam Bot -  October 12, 2011 - 10:58 am

    I am a spam bot and captcha’s are so easy to read for my ai!

  120. Ted -  October 12, 2011 - 10:57 am

    Many times, I have to reload the captcha a few dozen times before I get one that I can actually read.

  121. LKH -  October 12, 2011 - 10:45 am

    I wonder if the colors in the CAPTCHAs are the reason some people have difficulty reading them.

  122. Better Captching -  October 12, 2011 - 10:39 am

    The images of objects idea is actually much better than the images of letters and numbers implementation. To handle the problem of ambiguity, simply add a short subtext with the starting letter.


    [image of a beach]
    subtext: First letter is “B”

    [image of a dolphin]
    subtext: First letter is “D”

    [image of a mouse]
    subtext: First letter is “M”

    [image of a chair]
    subtext: First letter is “C”

    This is much better than automated CAPTCHA, since the process of creating examples that are easy for humans to recognize is itself a human endeavor that is easy for humans to do but virtually impossible for machines no matter how advanced they may be.
    This is because while a machine may be able to assign words to images it cannot know if the result would be unambiguous, since there are examples that would be ambiguous even with a starting letter such as “fire” and “flame”. A human would be able to recognize potential ambiguity errors and avoid using such examples.

  123. me -  October 12, 2011 - 10:37 am

    One word:


  124. captcha -  October 12, 2011 - 10:25 am

    so computers can’t tell.
    to a computer it looks kinda lik 574735603746
    to us it is different

  125. loir -  October 12, 2011 - 10:19 am


  126. Joshua -  October 12, 2011 - 10:14 am

    Probably so, but I hope not. I don’t feel comfortable having to provide a thumb print every time I want to post a reply to some blog…

  127. Hailey -  October 12, 2011 - 10:09 am

    Computers will probably learn how to decipher CAPTCHAs soon.

  128. lol -  October 12, 2011 - 9:57 am

    wh wasn’t there a CAPTCHA on here for us to leave a comment lol

  129. Hyudra -  October 12, 2011 - 9:56 am

    I think the reason captchas can be so bizarre sometimes is the way people collect/create them. At least one of the major Captcha developers is scanning texts into a digital database, and pieces of those texts (say, two random words) are made into a captcha. Which is why you see untypable foreign words or a lot of dates (ie. 1800 Москва́) The benefit of this system is that it lets the people doing the scanning double check their work, and it provides an endless database of Captchas.

    Believe it or not, the people who create spam are in a multi-billion-dollar field. It’s in their interest to find programs to get around captchas, and the quality of their work increases every day. To get around this, sometimes the Captcha developers have to find a new angle (another way of obscuring letters that confounds the latest program) or they simply have to make it harder to read. When this goes too far, people can’t figure out what it says.

  130. pie3 Lover -  October 12, 2011 - 9:50 am

    i agree can nvr read the damn things

  131. Paul -  October 12, 2011 - 9:46 am

    It means your intelligence is sub-human.

  132. Poo -  October 12, 2011 - 9:40 am

    Me too.

  133. yughio -  October 12, 2011 - 9:39 am

    I am awesome at computers and I cant make a bot that can find a single captcha

  134. yughio -  October 12, 2011 - 9:38 am

    I agree with Malik

  135. partyboy -  October 12, 2011 - 9:27 am

    I don’t know what this is

  136. Didyaknow -  October 12, 2011 - 9:07 am

    Some captchas are used to decipher a massive library of scanned text. Someone has scanned thousands of books, and when the computer runs into text it can’t decipher, the words end up being displayed as captchas.
    When you enter the text, it submits your entry as a possible solution. I don’t know a lot more about it, but thanks for helping with the project- Didn’t know you were on the payroll did ya? We’ll get your check right out to you!

  137. Miss Yankovic -  October 12, 2011 - 9:06 am

    “Do you think computers will ever be able to decipher CAPTCHAs?” Not if they’re like some of the CAPTCHAs I’ve seen…

    (As a side note: Once I got a CAPTCHA that involved micrograms per milliliter. As in (Greek symbol)g/mL. I’m just going to leave that there.)

  138. Martin -  October 12, 2011 - 9:04 am

    @Malik: you should go have your eyes checked!

  139. Emily -  October 12, 2011 - 8:55 am

    Wow, I have always wondered why CAPTCHA images are so common on the net, thanks! xD

  140. Kitty M. -  October 12, 2011 - 8:47 am

    I agree Malik.

  141. Rachel -  October 12, 2011 - 8:43 am

    “Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart” – shouldn’t that be CAPTTTTCAHA, or at least CAPTTTCHA?

  142. Chap -  October 12, 2011 - 8:30 am

    Face recognition programmes may be the road to “success”. They could recognize letters within a certain range. Too much letter alteration would cause havoc, though.

  143. ED INFANTE -  October 12, 2011 - 8:29 am


  144. Vikhaari -  October 12, 2011 - 8:16 am

    Isn’t that something to know and learn that CAPTCHAs are for us human beings to test our ability recognizing and proving that what we are not—machines.
    Fancy, machine testing humans! Then again why not! It is human’s creations. Should we like or be scared as our life and living be dictated (in this way, at least) by them!
    Then yet again raises this, who is machine!–Man or machine!

  145. Alex -  October 12, 2011 - 7:56 am

    beyond being pretty bad to decipher them half of the time, it is even worse when i try to hear wtf they mean through the “play audio” supportive button… like insurance, it is a needed evil….

  146. Anonymous -  October 12, 2011 - 7:55 am

    @Malik: My sentiments precisely.

  147. Kailtind -  October 12, 2011 - 7:54 am

    No, because it is a picture not written out text.

  148. Seth -  October 12, 2011 - 7:53 am

    Some computers can already beat CAPTCHA. A few slipped through the one I used to have. There are other, arguably less frustrating ways to trick bots. Math problems, simple tasks or questions. One of my favorites: Are you human? () Yes. () No. OR Uncheck this box if you are human.

  149. Jay -  October 12, 2011 - 7:45 am


  150. FatCat -  October 12, 2011 - 7:42 am


    You’re a spammer robot.. that’s why.

  151. wolsamnoraa -  October 12, 2011 - 7:36 am

    Malik – Maybe you’re not human. But seriously, why are they so difficult to read? Does not compute.

  152. Jay -  October 12, 2011 - 7:32 am

    If they were easy they wouldn’t be doing the job they were designed to do. Are sure you aren’t a computer trying to get past the captchas? I think a scanned fingerprint may be apropos…

  153. Jeff Corbett -  October 12, 2011 - 7:29 am

    Because of the Spammers. If the Spammers went away, so would the Capatchas. But you know they won’t. You might want to check out “Recaptcha” who are using Captchas to help digitalize old newspapers, etc.

  154. Kahlon -  October 12, 2011 - 7:25 am

    The reason there are sometimes two words has to do with computerizing old newspaper articles and books and the like. Since old printed text isn’t always straightforward enough for a computer’s optical character recognition (OCR) to decipher, someone had the idea to tack portions of the words onto these CAPTCHAs. So one word is generated by the computer to test if you are human, the other is a word that the computer doesn’t even know yet that is being deciphered by the user for the purpose of computerizing old texts.

  155. Anuraag Pandey -  October 12, 2011 - 7:03 am

    nice information…. :) I always used to wonder wat was it!!

  156. Jose -  October 12, 2011 - 7:03 am

    Malik, probably you are half computer :)

  157. Enoctis -  October 12, 2011 - 7:02 am

    Yes, I believe that computers will eventually be able to read CAPTCHA, but the programmers that create spamming bots are far behind the leading edge of technology. Therefore, CAPTCHA, in my opinion, will still be beneficial for quite some time to come.

  158. Gary -  October 12, 2011 - 7:01 am

    CAPTCHAS? boy! those are irritating.

  159. Matt -  October 12, 2011 - 6:49 am

    My favorite is when a mathematical formula or some random foreign alphabet appears. Hit refresh!

  160. Rickedy Rick -  October 12, 2011 - 6:41 am

    Me too, Malik. Most of the time I’m like “hurr, durr!” when I see a CAPTCHA. If there is an audio option, I always click that instead LOL. Oh well. If they had CAPTCHA back in 1991, then they would have known that the Terminator wasn’t human LOLOL! ^_^

  161. boldyellow -  October 12, 2011 - 6:35 am

    A fascinating extension of CAPTCHA technology is reCAPTCHA, designed to “stop spam and read books.”

    Many ongoing archival projects are scanning old books, newspapers and transcripts. But the OCR software digitizing the text may not recognize some words because they appear smudged, blurred or faded.

    So reCAPTCHA gets web users to decipher these unrecognizable words. Thus not only do we prove we’re human (to post ads or add comments), but we also add to the world’s knowledge base.

    See more here: http://www.google.com/recaptcha/learnmore

  162. lezza -  October 12, 2011 - 6:29 am

    No kidding Malik. Half the time I have to flip through several images till I find one I can read.

    But I do appreciate them for what they do. I remember the days when I could scroll down a list of comments and half of them would be ads for dating sites and junk. I don’t see that as much as I once did.

  163. CAPTCHA-MORE | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  October 12, 2011 - 6:28 am

    [...] ‘CAPTCHA-More’ or Less we’re told is ‘Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart’. — Therein is the Rub. — It has been proven: ‘Familiarity’ is what humans hold to dearly. — We want to understand us but kill off what we look at Queerly — Or subjugate the obstinate fools. — Everything actually does evolve — Ceptin us that’s was created, — Like molded Cheese that’s grated. — Robots making robots are sure to have better schools — With an ironic sense of humor, working with sharper tools. — Our ability to adapt with the earth has become extremely over-rated. —>>L.T.Rhyme This entry was posted in DEMOCRAZY, DICTCOMHOTWORD, L.T.Rhyme and tagged Democracy, LT, LTRhyme, the HOT WORD by admin. Bookmark the permalink. [...]

  164. Ceejay -  October 12, 2011 - 6:08 am

    Wow! this is really interesting..
    But indeed, i agree with Malik. Captchas are a bit difficult to decipher- but its the only way it can identify us humans… and us humans alone!
    Doesn’t it make you feel so special?
    Captchas all the way!

  165. Makrese -  October 12, 2011 - 5:52 am

    Hey, just like the other person said I can hardly see the letters either when they pop up on yahoo, facebook, or even twitter.

  166. Doc -  October 12, 2011 - 5:30 am

    Hey! Get outta here, you stupid droid. The comment column is for human users only.

  167. Ashish -  October 12, 2011 - 5:28 am

    sometimes it get tough to analyze CAPTCHAs.

  168. Cassandra -  October 12, 2011 - 5:23 am

    I agree with Malik

  169. a1n -  October 12, 2011 - 5:22 am

    You do not have to really understand the captcha words all the time because they may be not exactly existing as words in a language. They could be a string of characters.

  170. Kitti -  October 12, 2011 - 5:15 am

    Hey hi, I really do not understand why the captchas are so hard to be read :( Is it some a random word generator behind it ??

  171. John Norbert -  October 12, 2011 - 5:07 am

    The best thing about CAPTCHAs is that they can be refreshed over and over again until a person finds one that is relatively easy to decipher.

  172. Kenneth Fontana. -  October 12, 2011 - 5:07 am

    Personally, I doubt if a computer will ever be able to decipher a CAPTCHA and if it ever did, I am sure that the CAPTCHA team will produce a new twist to stop the decipherer.

    What I cannot understand is why some people want to make the use of computers so risky with their viruses. Do they want to spoil things for us or do they think they can make money out of their activities?
    The other thing I cannot understand is why there are no draconian penalties for those who are caught?

  173. mohammed -  October 12, 2011 - 5:02 am

    because if your drunk u cant see it, so it stops drunkies making accounts for fun…

  174. Amelia -  October 12, 2011 - 4:31 am

    They’ll probably catch up. But, I think we’ll be so far ahead of them that we won’t even care. Computers are already smarter than ancient humans.

  175. jimi -  October 12, 2011 - 4:04 am

    I second that, Malik. It seems if there’s 1 of 2 possible ways to interpret a CAPTCHA I almost always choose the wrong one, resulting in 5 or 6 attempts until I get an easier CAPTCHA to interpret.
    Annoying is an understatement.
    PS. I am a computer spamming machine – as there was no CAPTCHA to prevent me from commenting, well, here’s my comment.

  176. Lj -  October 12, 2011 - 3:43 am

    It’s a little bit hard…

  177. AdamM -  October 12, 2011 - 3:16 am

    You must be a computer!

  178. David, C -  October 12, 2011 - 3:13 am

    This is pretty cool and interesting, I think it is not real dificult to figure out the COPTCHAs when you look closely.

  179. ff -  October 12, 2011 - 2:55 am


  180. Mr. Raymond Kenneth Petry -  October 12, 2011 - 2:50 am

    Not if they use the Biblical Hebrew font… (Answer to last question)

  181. clark -  October 12, 2011 - 2:41 am

    Yes computer can do that just wait for quite sometime. How about the sound captcha?

  182. clark -  October 12, 2011 - 2:37 am

    Great stuff Cool captcha. . . . .

  183. Junfan Mantovani -  October 12, 2011 - 2:32 am

    Finally, I find out how it all works.

  184. maix me -  October 12, 2011 - 2:22 am

    i don’t get it. but aren’t spammers also human?

  185. Brian C. -  October 12, 2011 - 2:07 am

    Of course computers will someday be able to decipher CAPTCHAs. I’m a programmer, and while I may not have experience in the area of text recognition, I keenly appreciate the advancements we have yet to make. For example, the military is developing robots capable of pathfinding across rugged terrain in order to engage the enemy on their own. The mind is a machine, and there is no reason that with enough research we cannot create artifical intelligences with similarly advanced decision-making processes. Watson is a prime example of future possibilities.

    Most of the time when I fill out a CAPTCHA test I remark to myself how silly it is that computers can’t already solve these themselves. I take it as a sign of how limited our technological progress has been. We have much left to learn.

  186. Andy -  October 12, 2011 - 1:24 am

    Just about every image-based CAPTCHA technology out there has been defeated by spammers these days. Even Google’s own high tech tool that they offer freely is overcome very quickly.

    For instance, the popular forum software phpBB ships with a number of spam-deterring technologies to stop spammers signing up and spamming the forums. However, phpBB’s own advice is that all except one have been defeated and that the image-based CAPTCHAs should never be used.

    The solution is a (very machine-readable) challenge and response mechanism, whereby a plaintext question is presented to the user for which a human being can work out the answer very easily, but a spam-bot would find almost impossible. By referring to other things on the web page, or playing to the strengths of the audience, the amount of possibilities for a spam bot to try to work out grows exponentially and thus the spambot is deterred reliably. For example, a gaming forum might present the question: “A famous games console is pictured in the top right corner of this page. What colour is it?” or “Which console natively supports playback of Blu-ray media?” – and you can even allow a couple of case insenstive answers… as long as the human has a good chance of getting it right.

  187. remo -  October 12, 2011 - 12:48 am

    super like….thanx for this information….

  188. Me = Eric -  October 12, 2011 - 12:05 am

    Cool! I didn’t know this:)

  189. UmadBro? -  October 12, 2011 - 12:05 am

    @malik, i experience the same!

    @Dctcom that was quite informative. I actually am a hater of CAPTCHAs, but I understand our need for them. I got interested about that Turing Test. I might read about it. And it’d be great if pictures can be added as CAPTCHAs. It’d make people log out of Facebook and Twitter, and regain their stolen social lives.

    -U mad bro? :)) trololol

  190. *abbey* :) -  October 11, 2011 - 11:49 pm

    Seriously though Captcha is a solution to the problem. A terrible solution that everyone hates. Why not just have your first 25 posts or so require mod verification before they are posted on the board. Cause most spammers usually have less then 25 for a post count, that’d fix that.

    The spammers would be banned, the good posts go through and once you hit 25 or so posts you don’t need the GM verification anymore and all is happy without the sad captcha tripe.
    Because the all volunteer staff here have better things to do than wade through 100′s to 1000′s of moderated posts a day. Moderated posts also take away from the conversation as it delays the post from showing up.

    Overall that’s a far more disruptive and unmanageable solution than the 3 seconds it takes someone to type in a captcha. Especially since you need far less posts to avoid a captcha than 25.

  191. Malik is a Computer -  October 11, 2011 - 11:39 pm

    Damn, this computer can read CAPTCHA’s half the time….Somebody better tell Al Gore, tell him to find the computer they call Malik!

  192. Rukia -  October 11, 2011 - 11:33 pm

    yeah…..it’s so annoying

  193. Jeanne -  October 11, 2011 - 11:32 pm

    Seems the question should be when do you think CAPTCHAs will start outsmarting all humans…

  194. xaky -  October 11, 2011 - 11:16 pm

    Most of the time, CAPTCHAs are just distorted text, so I don’t see why they couldn’t be deciphered with OCR, pattern recognition algorithms, image processing software or a combination thereof.

  195. Valentine -  October 11, 2011 - 11:11 pm

    I encountered a captcha today that involved a large black rectangle. How am I supposed to copy that? I also get a lot of words in foreign alphabets, upside-down characters, and other similarly impossible things.

  196. Bluhevn -  October 11, 2011 - 11:10 pm

    Cool. Now I understand why they are called that. For the life of me, I can’t read some of them, though. I have to refresh the CAPTCHA a couple of times.

  197. mikado -  October 11, 2011 - 11:00 pm

    exactly. one time it showed up chinese characters and i had no clue how to type that with a english keyboard.

  198. CPUhost47 -  October 11, 2011 - 10:24 pm

    [Generated message v2.7.905 in {http://dictionary.reference.com/} - dated 2011.10.11 at 10:17 PM] I can read CAPTCHAs. Programming works through Microsoft Office 2010 font matching and Photoshop background contrast differentiation.

  199. Jack -  October 11, 2011 - 10:02 pm

    Sometimes a ’9′ can be a ‘g’, which makes it hard for me to decipher the CAPTCHAs. But most other times, I’m fine with it.
    I think that eventually computers will develop a ‘mind’ and recognize the CAPTCHA. By then, there should be a different testing system.

  200. Maddy -  October 11, 2011 - 10:01 pm

    its stupid

  201. chris -  October 11, 2011 - 9:45 pm

    but half the time you do whereas computers cannot at any time. :)

  202. Manemaze -  October 11, 2011 - 9:06 pm

    The same happens to me Malik, does that mean we are half machines? lol

  203. Ed -  October 11, 2011 - 8:57 pm

    I have noticed the very-same thing. Sometimes I have to try again two or three times.

  204. Josh -  October 11, 2011 - 8:49 pm

    I couldnt help but notice there wasnt a CAPTCHA for this

  205. Josh -  October 11, 2011 - 8:48 pm

    @ Malik because otherwise the terminator will spam about the latest episode of Jersey shore on your blog… DUH.. X )

  206. banana -  October 11, 2011 - 8:32 pm

    I’m just glad they don’t ask you to do math problems anymore

  207. Christina -  October 11, 2011 - 8:27 pm

    that’s so cool! i never knew that.

  208. Book Worm :) -  October 11, 2011 - 8:23 pm

    I think computers will some day be able to decipher them. People are making machines for that right now.
    @Malik haha :) Same here.

  209. POOP -  October 11, 2011 - 8:18 pm


  210. Sara -  October 11, 2011 - 8:10 pm

    You are correct!

  211. anon-I -  October 11, 2011 - 7:58 pm

    well, my nintendo DS can read my handwriting, so why the hell not? lol

  212. Kelly -  October 11, 2011 - 7:57 pm

    I am actually really good at deciphering CAPTCHA’S, but there are some letters here and there that are a little tricky. I have always figured them out though; I have never missed one. If robots are supposed to be so smart, I don’t see how they can’t figure them out; CAPTCHA’S are so easy to decode!!!

  213. Toju Mikie -  October 11, 2011 - 7:50 pm

    i agree with malik

  214. barry -  October 11, 2011 - 7:49 pm

    nice i just gain some unknown knowledge!

  215. jhon -  October 11, 2011 - 7:47 pm

    wow amazing this was odd.

  216. Lexy -  October 11, 2011 - 7:47 pm

    CAPTCHAS, oh how they vex me so. I can’t hardly read them these days!

  217. me -  October 11, 2011 - 7:46 pm

    I agree i always have to refresh the captchas :)

  218. Zach -  October 11, 2011 - 7:44 pm

    ^^^ You’re a computer.

  219. Jorge -  October 11, 2011 - 7:43 pm

    Malik, I think you might be a cyborg.

  220. Rodrigo -  October 11, 2011 - 7:41 pm

    They have very rare captchas

  221. Ashley -  October 11, 2011 - 7:38 pm

    I agree with Malik! I always have to refresh it a few times so I get one that I can actually figure out!

  222. Brandon -  October 11, 2011 - 7:27 pm

    This is really interesting for people who are and aren’t into computer sciences and programming. I do agree Malik, sometimes the letters are hard to decipher. At least there’s a refresh button to press several times before getting an easy one.

  223. Sakura -  October 11, 2011 - 7:19 pm

    CAPTCHAS are a good idea and works great according to this. but cant there be a simpler way?

  224. Errik -  October 11, 2011 - 6:55 pm

    You know, captchas can be frustrating, but they seriously look like they’re effective at blocking spam. If you can’t decipher it too easily, the chances of a machine, quite a bit less complex then our brain, will probably have absolutely no clue what a bunch of squiggles mean.
    Given their so hard, it also stops human spamming too. Why the effort when you must endure another two words of pain? :(

  225. Link -  October 11, 2011 - 6:54 pm

    OMG Malik you must be a machine!

  226. Bob -  October 11, 2011 - 6:43 pm


  227. Tobias Mook -  October 11, 2011 - 6:37 pm

    There’s so much spam, viruses and hackers… Eventually the internet will be useless :(

  228. nconantj -  October 11, 2011 - 6:37 pm

    Am I human or a computer? There’s no CAPTCHA here to tell me.

  229. Setinel -  October 11, 2011 - 6:36 pm

    Clearly you are a robot. Bow to your human masters.

  230. JB loves YOU -  October 11, 2011 - 6:28 pm

    Agreed. Nuff said.

  231. rob -  October 11, 2011 - 6:20 pm

    @Malik : Perhaps you are a robot programmed to think its a human.

  232. Matt -  October 11, 2011 - 6:17 pm

    Are you a human or a computer?

  233. Name -  October 11, 2011 - 6:15 pm


  234. John D -  October 11, 2011 - 6:14 pm

    True indeed.

  235. jazelyn -  October 11, 2011 - 6:09 pm

    huh, funny. how come these comment boxes don’t have CAPTCHAs? :p

  236. Michaela -  October 11, 2011 - 6:08 pm

    I agree with Malik!

  237. J. P. Cabit -  October 11, 2011 - 6:00 pm

    It’s lots of fun when you can’t tell if it’s an “r” and an “n,” or just an “m.”

    Just another way that Humans are special! (And the acronym clears things up nicely!)

  238. Arcanis -  October 11, 2011 - 5:44 pm

    they work, obviously

  239. Apple Seed Dude -  October 11, 2011 - 5:37 pm

    Am I human? i can never figure these out. They’re so HARD

  240. CPU 398465178393 -  October 11, 2011 - 5:28 pm

    @Malik That’s because you’re half computer. Not like me. I’m a full breed.

    WOOOOH!! No CAPTCHAs to stop me!!!!!!! WOOOOH!!!!!

  241. Yasmine -  October 11, 2011 - 5:20 pm

    Well, that has become my “Fact of the Day”. Very interesting.. Especially what the acronym CAPTCHA stands for ..! :)

  242. Janice -  October 11, 2011 - 5:15 pm

    Then maybe you’re not a human after all :D

  243. Sonya -  October 11, 2011 - 5:15 pm

    I think that they might be able to eventually. Someone will get smart enough to bypass them if it hasn’t already happened.

  244. J-Wu -  October 11, 2011 - 5:05 pm

    I get it now… I used to think those were useless. But what happens if you’re legally blind?

  245. John -  October 11, 2011 - 5:00 pm

    Do you think computers will ever be able to decipher CAPTCHAs?

    Yes, by process of OCR…

  246. James -  October 11, 2011 - 4:59 pm

    I’ve always thought CAPTCHA was short for “capture” or “caption”, and not an acronym

  247. Maya -  October 11, 2011 - 4:58 pm

    Pretty useful tool, I like!!! =)

  248. noisy boy -  October 11, 2011 - 4:53 pm

    maybe your blind man…

  249. domingo -  October 11, 2011 - 4:51 pm

    does this always have to be so hard because in that image it looks easier

  250. zach -  October 11, 2011 - 4:50 pm

    i cant read captchas about 1/4th of the time, its pretty irritating but i think that computers will be able to read these in the near future just like how they can read and understand our voices now.

  251. marge jones -  October 11, 2011 - 4:45 pm

    im with malik, the words are hard to decipher

  252. genie101:)$ -  October 11, 2011 - 4:44 pm

    half of the time they’re degrading. once i got a captcha that said ‘blackies suck” i was like WTF? who writes these things/???

  253. Hariot -  October 11, 2011 - 4:42 pm

    Capthas are pretty neat and complicated though!

  254. Che Joubert -  October 11, 2011 - 4:41 pm

    I agree – some are ok, but some are so hard I fail over and over – I think it’s harder for some people than others to figure them out.

  255. Chloé -  October 11, 2011 - 4:39 pm

    See, I knew that CAPTCHAS were used for blocking spammers, but this totally taught me what it’s ALL about! Thanks!

  256. shiela -  October 11, 2011 - 4:36 pm

    ya me either

  257. So-So -  October 11, 2011 - 4:34 pm

    CAPTCHAs are very handy… they test your mental skills.

  258. Poets Reach -  October 11, 2011 - 4:29 pm

    CAPTCHA’s were also used in pares to help decipher and digitize old manuscripts in the effort to get all books ever printed on line. One of them the computer had the answer for, the other was a word that had been scanned from an old text and which the computer could not decipher. It was assumed that if you got one of the words correct you got the other one right as well and your answer was used to replace the scanned word.

  259. Yosh -  October 11, 2011 - 4:27 pm

    To be honest, probably. It may be a bit far off though.

  260. Marilyn -  October 11, 2011 - 4:23 pm

    Yeah, I also agree with Mallik. You can barely understand it!

  261. gerbilmama -  October 11, 2011 - 4:22 pm

    Sometimes it takes me too many tries to get the computer to accept what I am typing in (what I see) that I just give up in frustration! Nonsense words are the worse. At least if the word is real, you can reason out if that is an “n” or an “r” that is all deformed and weird looking.

  262. Zoe -  October 11, 2011 - 4:21 pm

    My CAPTCHAs tend to be in Chinese. True story.

  263. mwt698 -  October 11, 2011 - 4:20 pm

    By chance your name isn’t “HAL 9000″ is it?

  264. Prasannna -  October 11, 2011 - 4:16 pm

    Wow… and I thought computers were GOOD at languages! Though I agree with Malik, they are annoying.

  265. Steven -  October 11, 2011 - 3:59 pm

    Most of the time, if you get legible word that is kind of crossed out, you can just type that one word.

    Anything with greek letters or numbers or anything that doesn’t make up a set of letters doesn’t have to be typed in.

    Same goes for legible words whose letters are white printed on a black splotches.

  266. Danny -  October 11, 2011 - 3:49 pm

    That is so cool.

  267. Silken Lamb -  October 11, 2011 - 3:47 pm

    I can figure them out most of the time.I follow the lines or curves very closely. Also,the spaces in the Captcha help me decipher the end of a letter.Very tricky,but a fun challange.

  268. Nifty -  October 11, 2011 - 3:41 pm

    :) I don’t bother.

  269. Jansi -  October 11, 2011 - 3:39 pm

    What does CAPTCHA stand for?

  270. Patrick -  October 11, 2011 - 3:39 pm

    I agree. I’m just happy that we aren’t prompted to post a comment here.

  271. liongrrrrl -  October 11, 2011 - 3:38 pm

    I’ve always wondered what those were about!!! And I think it’s funny that one simple test proves we’re smarter than the fastest supercomputer :) Interesting stuff. Thanks for doing an article on it!

  272. EN -  October 11, 2011 - 3:34 pm

    I wonder how mathematical forumlas and etc. end up in the captchas?
    There is no way to filter that out in the programming? Not all of us are set up typing in descrete math or physcis problems!

    Also thought some folks might find the whole culture of Inglip and the CAPTCHAs interesting. As a pun lover I enjoy it!
    The inglipnomicon

  273. Irene -  October 11, 2011 - 3:28 pm

    Sometimes they are impossible! I’m always redirected back to the page to do it again. >.<

  274. Mo -  October 11, 2011 - 3:27 pm

    I feel like CAPTCHAs have gotten harder and harder recently, maybe because computers are getting smarter and smarter. But I agree, I have trouble reading what they say sometimes as well.

  275. Kaitlyn -  October 11, 2011 - 3:16 pm

    Isnt “bella” Italian for beautiful or something? Haha… that gets me thinking.

    Ive been LOOKING for this definition. Now I can peeve my friends with it. Especially my bushy-browed friend Micah, ohohohohon~ ewe

  276. Ken Smith -  October 11, 2011 - 3:15 pm

    I have been unable so far to correctly recognize any of the captchas required to join this site. Would like to do so, but apparently am substandard to the point of “no admittance.”

  277. Aslam -  October 11, 2011 - 3:09 pm

    @malik maybe its because that spam robot has gotten better at figuring out captchas. therefore they have to make it harder for them which effects us being not able to read the whole twisted letter and stuff

  278. Jasmine -  October 11, 2011 - 3:08 pm

    They are most definately not hard they are actually very easy

  279. Meia -  October 11, 2011 - 3:04 pm

    lol some r easy for me XD

    but then again some arent but luckily then change if you dont get the first right

  280. karin -  October 11, 2011 - 3:01 pm

    this is too long

  281. Mike D. -  October 11, 2011 - 2:59 pm

    Technology is growing so fast, now it’s just computers are building computers. Of course, some guy in his mom’s basement will eventually figure out and invent a computer program that can read these images-it’s only a matter of time. And yes, Malik, I’m on your side with that one hahaha

  282. DictionFan -  October 11, 2011 - 2:54 pm

    To Malik: If you can’t read half of the CAPTCHAs you see on the web,(sorry to say this, but oh well) you probably aren’t well educated enough. Well thought out CAPTCHAs are meant for easy recognition for humans. There are also disability icons for those that are disabled too.

  283. AntikBatik -  October 11, 2011 - 2:54 pm

    Theyre pretty hard, i wish we didnt have them, though they protect pretty well!

  284. Sparta -  October 11, 2011 - 2:53 pm

    CAPTCHAS are so hard I can’t read most of them.

  285. praisebee -  October 11, 2011 - 2:47 pm

    dis is educative,bt dose it effect on computer language

  286. Vanesa -  October 11, 2011 - 2:43 pm

    Captchas are easy for me to read…. But its still kind of annoying! Lol

  287. Lillymon -  October 11, 2011 - 2:40 pm


  288. Sydney -  October 11, 2011 - 2:37 pm

    Malik, i agree 100%

  289. Sam -  October 11, 2011 - 2:37 pm


  290. sherryyu -  October 11, 2011 - 2:33 pm

    ya, i argee with Malik and sometimes the letters look like numbers and the numbers look like letters. Can u give us suggestions on how to desifire them, blogger?

  291. Matt -  October 11, 2011 - 2:28 pm

    I agree, why are they so hard? I think it would be better if they were easy, I doubt spammers would still be able to detect them.

  292. Malik -  October 11, 2011 - 2:24 pm

    Hey, why do captchas have to be so hard? Half the time I can’t figure out what it says!


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