Monday, June 30, 2008

Interacting with reality

In the past few weeks reality has crept into my life full force.

I don’t normally talk about my private life. In fact I avoid it. I even limit how much info I put in the “about me” areas. But having just lived through it all, it seemed right to share. Share a bit anyway.

You see my partner of 4 years, whom I was engaged to, and I separated. Very adult reasons and we will remain friends however as with any relationship breakup – it’s incredibly sad.

Unfortunately in that same week, our house was burgled. They took all my jewellery, my daughter’s macbook and my personal laptop. The fact that I hadn’t backed up my laptop was a sorely learnt lesson (3 years of digital family photos gone forever and if you have kids you will know that’s a bitter lesson for anyone to learn).

The interesting point through all this though – and why I decided to share – has been passwords. Gosh.

Just before all this happened I had taken the very wise step of collecting all my passwords into the one place. Sensible. If you are a facebook friend you may even remember me chatting about the software I had decided upon. It worked well – I agreed with Lee that the interface wasn’t that exciting – however it was simple to use. Unfortunately though, the password manager software went with the stolen laptop. As did all my passwords.

Now, I appreciate they will just wipe my harddrive and sell the shell or “something” equally boring. Plus I can’t imagine they’ll do too much with my facebook password (etc) but to be honest I had taken myself into a comfort zone where I didn’t NEED TO REMEMBER.

And remember I don’t.

I’m sure you’d all in the same boat if it happened to you? How many passwords do we have to remember each these days? A lot. At work I have an 8 character alpha/numeric combo that changes every 30 days. It needs to be unique each time I change it ie wont accept part of the previous password. And that’s a password for just one login?

I then have my online banking, PIN, facebook, plurk, twitter, google analytics/maps/services, skype, UTube, flickr (which I have sworn about a lot already, so I won’t go there), blog, ping, linkedin, technorati, FTP, email, webmail, client FTP’s, to name just a couple. To be frank, I am still stumbling over ones I had forgotten about!!

Thanks goodness I didn’t have a security code for the house.

DOH. I should have and kept the burglars OUT!!! I will in the new place.

In confession, most of these services have made it relatively easy to retrieve a password for a tech savvy girl (OK, except flickr). But gosh – in reality, how many people are tech savvy like me?

We expect the masses to pick up and adopt some of these trends that we sprout on about. I have to say that I have complete empathy and a slightly better understanding of some of the difficulties that the regular joe experiences. So I’ve come down from my ivory tech savvy tower and joined the real world. We need to do something to make all this easier guys. What's going on???

As a plug, I have to say I have appreciated as a service. From this one platform I have been able to update my various different service statuses AND my blog with ease – all together. Now, that’s cool and at least I was able to stay in touch.

So, I’m back. And real.


Nadine Touzet said...

Oh DEAR Charlie,

It never rains but it pours, right?

I had my eBay and Hotmail accounts tampered with recently, and that was only 2 accounts, but I went through the whole song of changing all my essential passwords.

Yes, I sympathize about the pictures. These are certainly the things you would never have wanted to lose. My house was broken into some years ago, it's unpleasant, to say the least, and they stole some equipment, but nothing as soft as pictures.

Hugs, sweetheart.

adeline said...

Dear Charlie,

I think you can officially declare this year as "Annus Horribilis".
You castle didn't burn but I am with you, pictures of our little ones are gold.
Thanks for your post. Good reminder for everyone.

JimBob said...

Dear Charlie, Sharing so much - hmmm.
Thank you for your comments they are all hard lessons well learned. Most of us are vulnerable.