A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Solving CAPTCHAs – the text puzzles with distorted letters that many sites use to ensure that you are human – has become a daily reality for many Internet users. Sadly, these tests are often a major source of frustration, too. And while CAPTCHAs are used to provide a decent level of security for site owners, many of these systems have now been broken or are getting gamed by hackers who simply hire cheap workers to solve them manually. NuCaptcha, a Vancouver, B.C.-based company, aims to change all of this with a new video captcha system that launches today.With NuCaptcha, users see a moving text over an animated background. NuCaptcha then shows three red letters as part of a sentence that flows through the video, and users type these three letters to solve the video CAPTCHA. As an accessibility feature, NuCaptcha also offers voiceover audio. Developers will be able to choose between different themes for their sites. NuCaptcha is also thinking about giving developers the option to bring their own brands and videos to the CAPTCHAs on their site in the future. The company’s system should also work on devices that don’t support Flash, though we weren’t able to test this yet.Reducing Frustration and Increasing ConversionAccording to a recent study (PDF), about 25% of users’ attempts to solve CAPTCHAs from reCAPTCHA simply fail. For businesses that use services like reCAPTCHA, this means that a quite a few of potential users are likely to abandon the registration or shopping process. For other CAPTCHA services from Yahoo, Google and Microsoft, and on sites like Digg.com and Slashdot, which implement their own systems, these numbers are somewhat lower, but even there, more than 10% of attempts to solve a given CAPTCHA end in failure.NuCaptcha argues that 99% of its users are able to solve the company’s video CAPTCHAs. While we can’t test the company’s numbers, we did get a chance to test the system, and the tests were indeed very easy to solve.How NuCaptcha Fights Hackers and Human “Solvers”As the company’s CEO and co-founder Michel Giasson told us earlier this week, it is extremely easy for humans to solve these moving CAPTCHAs. Machines, however, have a very hard time with this. To discourage paid human “solvers,” the company uses sophisticated machine learning algorithms to detect potential abuse of the system and then slows the video CAPTCHA down to the point where solving it becomes too time consuming and costly. According to Giasson, professional human CAPTCHA solvers need about four seconds per CAPTCHA. When NuCaptcha suspects that sombody is abusing the system, it can slow its text scroll down to the point where it takes more than 15 seconds to even display the CAPTCHA text. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Tags:#news#NYT#security#web frederic lardinois Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
The devil is in the detail: small-scale sexual segregation despite large-scale spatial overlap in the wandering albatross
Sexual segregation in foraging habitat occurs in many marine predators and is usually attributed to competitive exclusion, different parental roles of each sex or niche specialisation associated with sexual size dimorphism. However, relatively few studies have attempted to understand the patterns and underlying drivers of local-scale sexual segregation in marine predators. We studied habitat use, diet and feeding ecology of female and male wandering albatrosses Diomedea exulans, fitted with GPS and stomach-temperature loggers during the chick-rearing period (austral winter) at South Georgia in 2009. During this period, when oceanographic conditions were anomalous and prey availability was low in waters near the breeding colony, the tracked wandering albatrosses showed high consistency in their foraging areas at a large spatial scale, and both males and females targeted sub-Antarctic and subtropical waters. Despite consistency in large-scale habitat use, males and females showed different foraging behaviours in response to oceanographic conditions at a smaller scale. Males appeared to be more opportunistic, scavenging for offal or non-target fish discarded by fishing vessels in less productive, oceanic waters. They exhibited sinuous movements, feeding mostly on large prey and consuming similar amounts of food during the outbound and return parts of the foraging trip. In contrast, females targeted natural productivity hotspots, and fed on a wide variety of fish and cephalopods. They commuted directly to these areas; most prey were ingested on the outbound part of the trip, and they often started their return after ingesting large prey at the farthest point from the colony. Together, these results indicate that sexual segregation in core foraging areas of wandering albatrosses is driven by sex-specific habitat selection due to the low availability of prey in local Antarctic waters. This segregation results in different feeding behaviour at local scales which may be explained by differing breeding roles and degree of parental investment by each sex, with females investing more than males in reproduction. Further investigations are necessary to confirm the existence of this pattern through time under contrasting environmental conditions and to identify the drivers responsible for local-scale sexual segregation in wandering albatrosses.