3D-based Captchas become reality

YUNiTi.com announces the first implemented method of Captcha.

The newly implemented Captcha method that's based on 3D images. Dong Ngo/CNET

I wrote a blog about a new way of creating Captchas by using 3D images that Taylor Hayward, a blogger, came up with and thought it would be really cool when implemented. Now, 3D Captchas seem to have become a reality--however, not from Hayward.

Incidentally, the folks at YUNiTi.com, a social Web site, have been working on the same idea for a few weeks and have implemented the method on their Web site.

The site announced Wednesday that it has created a 3D Captcha method that is unbreakable by current computer technology, yet much easier for humans to identify.

Captchas is short for Completely Automated Public Turing tests to tell Computers and Humans Apart. This is a way to make sure the input is not generated by a computer.

Similar to Hayward's idea, this new technology relies on our ability to identify objects in 3D instead of using alphanumeric characters. YUNiti's 3D Captcha, however, has three objects in the challenge and extends the list of images to any object, not limiting it to animals as in Hayward's idea. This increases the challenge's level of complication to prevent computers from successfully making the correct guesses.

I tried a new Captcha at the Web site and it worked very well. You just need to click on the placeholders for each object, then you are presented with a list of objects to choose from. After four mouse clicks, I passed the Captcha the very first time.

Marcos Boyington, co-founder and primary software engineer of YUNiTi.com, told CNET News that he and his brother came up with the idea without knowing of Taylor Hayward's method. Boyington believes this was joint discovery of the same concept by people in different parts of the world. He said he is seeking contact with Hayward to talk about collaboration opportunities.

You can try the new Captcha by visiting YUNiTi.com.

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews networking and storage products, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.

 

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