Skip to content

A command line interface for preventing bots via ascii image recognition


Notifications You must be signed in to change notification settings


Repository files navigation


A command line interface for preventing bots via ascii image recognition


Follow the prompts. $ python3

You'll need to download some images that are nice and recognisable (minimum of 3 per subject). Only a single photo of a windmill (example_objects/windmill/windmill*.jpeg) is provided.

Also included is a server version. You can run the server with python3, and connect to it with nc localhost 6963.

I recommend lowering the width of the printed image (in and/or which is supplied as an argument to img2ansi.convert.


example run


  • python3
  • PIL (pip3 install PIL)


  • Find some site that doesn't require JS to search images. At the moment, the memory usage is quite high just because we're running a full chrome instance for this
  • Larger wordbank (also try to pick ones that aren't really too ambiguous)
    • i want a larger image bank, but this is not really a TODO for this repo
  • Scale the ascii down (there's probably a library to do this). The image currently doesn't fit!
    • we can now generate ascii art at any size. There is an argument to _toAnsi that determines how wide the image is (in
    • increasing it too much likely means that its more likely that a bot could guess what the image is
  • Improve the ascii art generated, might need some image processing to increase contrast, and remove the background
    • this may be bad having too much contrast! this means that bots could make the ascii into images, and reverse img search..
  • Write this into client/server tool
  • Pluggable scramblers. I'm talking writing ^H and lots of seeking. Might require some conversion to ncurses, so we can write to the screen arbitrarily
    • pluggable, so that other people can write this stuff
    • we want scramblers to thwart people who are piping the output and stuff. of course they can reconstruct it
    • we want a module to change colours a bit, and warp the images a bit.
  • Logging, I want to know who and when, and timings for their reponses
    • my current method of lsof doesn't work.... it requires sudo rights for that


A command line interface for preventing bots via ascii image recognition







No releases published