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'Are You A Human' CAPTCHA Game Brings Fun To Web Security

The Huffington Post  |  By Posted: Updated: 05/22/2012 12:24 pm


If you've signed in to almost any website on the Internet, you've probably encountered a dastardly CAPTCHA. A CAPTCHA is a common security tool that asks you to type the words or letters you see in a box to prove you're a human; those words or letters are usually swirled or mangled, difficult for a computer or bot to make out but hypothetically easy for a human to read.

A typical CAPTCHA.

I say "hypothetically easy" because these mangled-text CAPTCHAs can often be frustrating, even impossible, to decipher. (There's a Tumblr dedicated solely to so-called "CAPTCHA Fails".) So thank goodness a new company, Are You A Human, has come up with what seems a much more elegant solution: Instead of attempting to decipher some indecipherable text, you are asked to defeat a simple arcade game to prove that you are real.

For example, let's say you're signing up for a hot new social network. Instead of facing an illegible CAPTCHA, imagine a screen that shows you a pizza without toppings, along with pictures of a pepperoni, a mushroom, and an anchovy floating in space. The "Are You A Human" CAPTCHA asks you to select the pepperoni with your mouse and drag it onto the pizza. By dropping the animated toppings onto the virtual pie, you've shown that you're a human. Access granted: You're into the site, no text CAPTCHA necessary.

That is just one of the gameplay modes on Are You A Human's PlayThru CAPTCHA system, which was unveiled in early May and will begin rolling out on the websites of Fathead and Quicken Loans immediately. Webmasters interested in obtaining a PlayThru for their own site can head to Are You A Human's homepage.

You can try one of the PlayThru games below. Next time you sign up for a website, or enter a credit card, or need to confirm your email address, you might be faced with one of these instead of a traditional CAPTCHA. Praise the heavens!

Click "start" in the animation (below) to it out, and let us know what you think in the comments:

Also on HuffPost:

Check out the funniest CAPTCHA fails in the gallery below:
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  • uf**cker

    An unsuspecting man went onto the Coca Cola Website to redeem a prize code, but instead of coming away a winner, he was insulted by the site's unintentionally accusatory security captcha. The randomly generated letters had combined to form 'uf**cker.' <a href="" target="_blank">Coke later issued an apology</a> for this one-in-a-million gaffe.

  • Humping Grandchildren

    Takes 'bouncing on Grandpa's knee' to a whole other level.

  • Flushing Economy

    You know the economy is in the toilets when Facebook's captchas suddenly seem poignant.


    Really, MySpace? Really?

  • Plump Ho

    Here's an assortment of winners from a mini ebook called '<a href="" target="_blank">Worst Captchas of All Time</a>.'

  • Aass Atkr

    A word of warning to all MySpace users: Guard your 'aasses.'

  • Rectal Favoring

    Perhaps they were purchasing <a href="" target="_blank">Rektal Mukus</a> tickets?

  • Coc Ring

    The You Tube Blog keeps it oh-so-classy.

  • Puked In

    Better than being puked <i>on</i>?

  • Mr Lusty

    On, lusty gentlemen!

  • Shot Jews

    Google gets racist. And contrite.

  • Firebombed Airplane

    Facebook gets violent.

  • Rape Now

    So much for Facebook's security updates. Read the full story behind this gem at <a href="" target="_blank">Softpedia</a>.

  • Nibble Abreast

    Hope you brought your appetite.

  • Fail

  • No Dick


    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">mightyhead</a>:<br />that's just not right...

  • to Mortuary

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">shacko</a>:<br />This was the captcha I got while sending an email to the White House on Healthcare Reform. No Kidding.

  • Bongs

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="">SallyCBA</a>:<br />Imagine my delight when I got the greatest captcha ever while entering an online contest.

  • Or is it too simple?

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="">tem2</a>:<br />Simple English Wikipedia is meant for English learners and children. So is this the simple English way to say "Intellectual Data"?

  • Racist Captcha

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">oproski</a>:<br />Interesting to say the least...

  • CraigsList is now giving out sex advice.

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">MG2083</a>:<br />Has anything ever been so true?

  • f u 2!

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Teri Jourdan</a>:<br />

  • How did they know???

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Daniel Aaron Stimler</a>:<br />Who owns Facebook these days anyway? I think Glen Beck needs to follow the money trail!

  • Pay your taxes, sucka!

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Brett VanBenschoten</a>:<br />Seems the LA County tax collector has a sense of humor.

  • Sucka!

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Brett VanBenschoten</a>:<br />Seems the LA County tax collector has a sense of humor.

  • CAPTCHA fail

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">kcarney11</a>:<br />CAPTCHA from craigslist.

  • was stoning?

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">jackuuu</a>:<br />

  • Hebrew?

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Matthew Bodner</a>:<br />

  • Captcha that Virginity

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Gary J Seevers</a>:<br />Let me google that for you...

  • well Said!

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">Rob Craig</a>:<br />Pay-Pal don't think highly of forgetting password

  • niggers raidem

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">tattoovillan</a>:<br />niggers

  • "Butholing"

    <a href=""><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="" /></a><a href="">wyattmarkr</a>:<br />Speaks for itself!


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