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Human Computation Luis von Ahn Carnegie Mellon University.

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Presentation on theme: "Human Computation Luis von Ahn Carnegie Mellon University."— Presentation transcript:


2 Human Computation Luis von Ahn Carnegie Mellon University

3 Verification technology developed in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University CAPTCHA

4 Help! Ive been waiting for 20 minutes, and nothing happens Verification technology developed in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University


6 (From QUICKVOTE Which is the best Computer Science Grad School in the US? CMU MIT vote Berkeley StanfordCornell Washington

7 Verification technology developed in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University

8 CAPTCHA Sweat Shops Spam companies hire humans to type CAPTCHAs all day long $2.50 per hour for each human 720 captchas per hour per human 1/3 cent per account


10 Type the word in the box if you want to see the next picture Free Nude Photos


12 A



15 Can we use this human effort for good? Roughly 200 million CAPTCHAs are typed every day 10s of human time per CAPTCHA

16 Digitizing Books Scan OCR DE xi Ii ARIi.. COPBCtrAGE\, DeC. I l 1 QOn. Tlie royal palace at Frieclericheberg took Ore last oigbt. The himself directed the operations fns extinguishing the lire. The whole structure,, ed.

17 Scanned book Word that OCR cant read Randomly distorted image of word

18 Free





23 Words Digitized Per Day



26 Two Words Instead of One? Typing two English words takes as long as typing 6-8 random characters

27 Where do the Words Come From?


29 400,000,000 (6% of the worlds population)

30 CAPTCHA Sweat Shops Mahiddin: Would you help us find some Captcha Project? reCAPTCHA Support: What kind of CAPTCHA project are you looking for? Mahiddin: We are manually break different type of CAPTCHA right now. We have the ability type every day many Captcha. Tell us how we can help you. reCAPTCHA Support: How fast can you type? Mahiddin: Personally I can type more than 60 WPM. But I have a big team. We can give you lot of product. reCAPTCHA Support: Do you mind helping spammers? Mahiddin: No problem, you can tell me details first.

31 reCAPTCHA Support: One last question: how do you deal with IP address blocking? Please type the following paragraph:

32 Sleeping (7.6h) TV (2.4h) Email and IM (1.7h) Caring for Others (1.1h) Household Chores (1h) Eating and Drinking (1.1h) Electronic Games (1.1h) Other (6.6h) Bathroom (17m) Solving CAPTCHAs (1.9s/day) Reusing Wasted Cycles Learning Something (1h)

33 9 Billion Human-Hours of Solitaire were Played in 2003 Empire State Building Panama Canal 7 million human-hours (6.8 hours of solitaire) 20 million human-hours (less than a day of solitaire)

34 Labeling Images With Words Martha Stewart Flowers Super Evil Still an open problem

35 Image Search On The Web Uses filenames and html text

36 Using Humans The ESP game could label all images on google in a few weeks The ESP game Cleverly

37 Two-player online game Partners dont know each other and cant communicate Object of the game: Type the same word Only thing in common is An image The ESP Game


39 50 million agreements with 200,000 players The ESP Game is Fun There are many people that play over 20 hours a week

40 Labeling The Entire Web Individual games in Yahoo! and MSN average over 5,000 players at a time 5000 people playing simultaneously can label all images on Google in 2 months!


42 Search Results





47 Guesses Over Time britney crazy hot rehab shaved head a male younger than 40

48 saddam mr. wilson man face moustache Sample Labels bush george president man dumb yuck

49 Why do people like the ESP Game?

50 The esp game gives its players a weird and beautiful sense of anonymous intimacy. On the one hand, you have no idea who your partner is. On the other hand, the two of you are bringing your minds together in a way that lovers would envy. The esp game gives its players a weird and beautiful sense of anonymous int On the one hand, you have no idea who your partner is. The ESP game gives its players a weird and beautiful sense of anonymous intimacy.

51 Strangely addictive Its so much fun trying to guess what others think. You have to step outside of yourself to match Its fast-paced Helps me learn English Its like crack!

52 Blogs In other crowning achievements, I haven't played in at least a week, and I am still on the top ten list of players on the ESP game. Number eight if I remember correctly. God, my life is sad.

53 Many fascinating things about the ESP Game: How it uses a game structure to build an index of images on the web What words become taboo from frequent use How interesting some of the images pulled randomly from the web are But by far the most intriguing aspect of the game is how often your random, unknown partner is a complete idiot.

54 I do research on ESP (extra sensory perception), and have an online ESP telepathy test on my website Dear Luis von Ahn, Your game is a fraud Please refrain from using the term ESP, as it makes us legitimate ESP researchers look like a fraud


56 Special Thanks To Aditya Akella Josh Benaloh Lenore Blum Manuel Blum Randy Bryant Sharon Burks Shuchi Chawla Mike Crawford Laura Dabbish Alexei Efros Alan Eustace Bill Gates Shiry Ginosar Severin Hacker Nick Hopper Susan Hrishenko Takeo Kanade Mihir Kedia John Langford Edith Law Bryant Lee Peter Lee Roy Liu Jitendra Malik Udi Manber Ben Maurer Colin McMillen Moni Naor Lenore Ramm Roni Rosenfeld Push Singh Slide Design Luis von Ahn CAPTCHA Crew Luis von Ahn Manuel Blum Nicholas Hopper John Langford The ESP Game Crew Luis von Ahn Laura Dabbish reCAPTCHA Crew Luis von Ahn Ben Maurer Colin McMillen David Abraham Mike Crawford Tag a Tune Crew Edith Law Luis von Ahn Roger Dannenberg Speakers Entertainment Provided By Homestarrunner.Com David Stork Latanya Sweeney Jenn Tam Anthony Tomasic Shingo Uchihashi Manuela Veloso Jeannette Wing Wardrobe Provided By Charles Spiegel This Work Has Been Partially Supported By Intel Microsoft Research Google, Inc The MacArthur Foundation


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