This project started a few years ago when I needed a good anti-spam filter for some web forms I was managing for my mediation site. I wrote a web app which used familiar images to generate a Captcha-type gateway to form submission, but without the impossible to read letter/number/symbol combinations. It was in use on many of my sites, and sites I built for friends, family and clients, but I never thought about turning it into a web service. I don’t recall receiving any spam through any site that had that app installed (not a guarantee, just my experience).
Here’s an example:
By the way – it has alt & title attributes to help disabled visitors. The audio recordings on traditional Captcha forms that I see on the web aren’t any more help to me than the cryptic writings themselves, but I digress.
My friend, Keith Kaminski, suggested that I take it to the next level. I spent two weeks, with some long nights, making it into a web service which could be easily installed by novice web masters, and creating a user account interface that allowed configuration of images, security settings and multiple-domain management. I really like the way it came out and I’ve actually re-installed it (the web service version) on almost every one of my sites and the sites of friends simply because I actually like using it. If you want to see a sample in action, take a look at my contact form on this site. On that one, I have the following settings: 2 primary images, 2 secondary images (I chose a blank image for my secondary image), required multiple choice rather than type-in and used default settings for everything else. It literally takes less than 1 minute to install it (in most cases). If you want to add custom styles to it, it has associated css handles for that. That’s enough for now – I’ll probably write more about CuteCapture soon.