Robot Filter, also known as captcha is a test that is assumed to be easy to solve for people, but not for software agents. Robotic Filter is used to log on free email services and sometimes even before dispatching emails to prevent abuse of e-mail service (mailing of spam) using automated programs, bots. Robot Filters are also used in many forms of registrations on websites such as forums and guest books. It can also be used to prevent automatic insertion of advertising links on wiki sites or in comment boxes on blogs.
To prepare a decent research paper on the topic you must know that captcha often consist of distorted or overlapping words or character combinations that the sender must read and write properly in a field. Such garbled characters are relatively easy for people to read (assuming they do not have vision problems), but it is very difficult to solve them for the computer character recognition.
The word captcha sounds in accordance with spelling of the English word capture (catch). It is thus a kind of trap. Sometimes the word is explained as an abbreviation for “C ompletely A utomated P ublic T uring test to tell C omputers and H umans A part,” but it is an afterthought (so-called backronym).
Another variant of captcha is to display two random numbers, such as “3 + 8”, and ask the user to fill in the amount in a field. It is not difficult for a robot to crack this if it understands what it is about, but this may protect against some robots that have not been programmed to recognize this type of captcha.
It has proved very difficult to defeat certain captcha on fully automatic way, but emitters of unsolicited advertising, junk mail, is said to have started offering pornographic material on websites in exchange for the visitor solve a captcha that was first taken from somewhere else. The result is then used to create accounts at a free email service on the web, such as Hotmail, which the spammer uses to receive responses from interested customers.
He need many such accounts, since each account is normally only to receive a few hundred letters.
Other captchas have proved to be easier for the robots to solve than humans.
The method of captcha has been criticized for the exclusion of people who have vision problems. many websites have therefore supplemented the usual visual robot traps with those that do not require the full visual literacy skills.
When the original captcha method was cracked by spammers, the researchers at Penn State in the U.S. now starting to develop the next generation captcha they call Imagination. Imagination consists of two steps where the focus is no longer on the identification of distorted letters and is instead of interpreting images. The test is divided into two stages. In the first step, a picture which is built up of a number of images. The test applies the user to click in the center of one of these images. If the user succeed in this, he may proceed to step two, where a picture of an item is shown and the user have to identify the object from a list of options.
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