We found a way to make Google security software adorable. Three times.

Mission

To create and evolve a series of colorful, entertaining animated videos that could visualize Google’s reCAPTCHA, a technical online security product for verifying a user’s identity that’s engineered to be less noticeable.

Bot Line

Gotta CAPTCHA all

CAPTCHA is the virtual door that exists between you and the thing you really want to do—like make a safe and secure online purchase. But CAPTCHA lives completely in a digital world. We decided that an animated approach would be the easiest way to help people understand the technology. To keep things intelligible, but relatable, we borrowed the 8-bit Space Invader characters used on the reCAPTCHA website to represent malicious malware. We never gave them back—the Invaders became a major motif in the following videos.

Introducing the no CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA

Nothing to see here… no, really.

For the second video, we were asked to visualize the concept of “invisibility.” We brainstormed a little Rube Goldberg–esque machine to represent the complicated processes happening behind the scenes. Our motion designer, Tom, began exploring cute new ways to depict our pesky Invaders with antics like sneaking through an airport security line with a sweet ‘stache. A few cats started showing up as well, but that wasn’t exactly planned.

reCAPTCHA: Tough on Bots, Easy on Humans

One more time, with feeling.

Google asked us for a third video, but the only new thing was that reCAPTCHA was available on Android API. We took this as a creative challenge and pushed the animation by introducing new Invader shenanigans.

Introducing the reCAPTCHA Android API

The payoff

The videos received nearly 2.5 million views on YouTube. But our biggest gain was the creative latitude to develop and refine our animation skills.

Recaptcha Web Context