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'Anti Robot' Registrations

From: Matthew Smith <matt@kbc.net.au>
Date: Sun, 25 Jan 2004 10:03:52 +1030
Message-ID: <401300E0.6050501@kbc.net.au>
To: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

Greetings All

I have seen on this list, on more than one occassion, discussions about the 
technique used by Yahoo and others to prevent 'robot' registrations by 
presenting a graphic of a word or number that has to be keyed into a form.

As there is no appropriate alt text to these images (which would defeat the 
point, making them machine-readable), this obviously constitues an accessibility 
problem.

This may have been done before, but what I propose for such an application is this:

A sentence is selected at random, say from a book (Project Gutenberg text?) or a 
series of random words.

An input field with the message "please select the fifth word from the following 
sentence" is displayed, followed by the sentence/words.  It would probably be 
useful to put an anchor by the input field so that the user could skip back to 
it easily once they had read the sentence/words.

I can see that a 'robot' could be programmed to recognise ordinals, but by 
varying the text, it would make it harder for 'robot' programmers to make sense 
of what is being asked.

Comments?

Cheers

M

-- 
Matthew Smith
Kadina Business Consultancy
South Australia
http://www.kbc.net.au
Received on Saturday, 24 January 2004 18:33:57 UTC

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