…and that is the ability to quickly perform a search. However, when I simply type http://www.google.com into my browser, I get this sorry page with a Captcha down the bottom. It is starting to become annoying, I haven’t even searched for anything yet – I’m just hitting their homepage.
Actually I think that there is something behind this, because what they are doing is so bone headed that there must be an ulterior motive. I think that they are training a neural net.
OK, so before you label me as a conspiracy theorist lets look at it. Google probably gets more hits than any other site on the web. Now, if they start getting their users to start solving captchas then they basically have one half of a feedback mechanism required for training a neural net. Eventually they’ll come up with a network that can solve captchas and allow the Google search-bot to bypass those simple “are you a human” checks that people have all over the place.
In fact, given the speed with which people will be hitting the Google site they may not even need the neural network because they could just serve up replicas of the captchas that their search-bot is coming across and get a search user to solve it real-time. The Sorry screen is just an interface that Google is using to harness the human brain.
We already know Google is interested in this space, and this is just a way of ramping up their computational capability.