I saw a story that GitHub’s CAPTCHA had become ridiculously hard and multiple people weren’t able to solve it within the time limit. GitHub have presumably upgraded their system because the version we’ve come to know and despise (“click on all of the traffic lights”) is now solved faster by AI than by humans.
“Life is a campaign against malice” said the 17th century Jesuit priest and philosopher Baltasar Gracián. How right he was.
You definitely have tried to access some websites and have gotten bombarded with a series of puzzles requiring you to correctly identify traffic lights, buses, or crosswalks to prove that you’re indeed human before you log in.
Known as Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart (CAPTCHA), the technology is intended to protect a website from fraud and abuse without creating friction. The puzzles are meant to ensure that only valid users are able to access the site and not automated invasions.
Google replaced CAPTCHA with a more advanced tool called reCAPTCHA in 2019, but the team’s technical lead Aaron Malenfant told the Verge at the time that the technology would no longer be viable in 10 years’ time because advanced tech would allow the Turing test to run in the background.
His prediction was right. Artificial Intelligence (AI) bots are fast-evolving and are now beating the reCAPTCHA methodology used to confirm the validity and personhood of the users of various websites. They do this by imitating how the human brain and vision work. In fact, AI bots are measuring up to humans, and even beating them, in numerous facets.