Friday, July 04, 2008

Strong Password

I was experiencing more than my usual share of challenges coming up with a new password that followed all the required rules - Nothing in common with the last 6 passwords, combination of alpha and numeric, atleast 2 numbers, no more than one special character and so on. When they make you go through this drill several times in a year, you wonder why they would not put you out of your misery, identify and autheticate you biometrically instead.

So after 10 or more attempts to come up with a password I might actually remember after I had created it, I made one that would be impossible to forget and bring back memories of love and loss from college days each time I typed it - or at least so I thought.

As it turns out, I am able to remember my password and each time I type it I am jolted out of the here and now to return to a place and time I can't fully remember anymore. The password has become a trigger for time-travel and acute yet nameless nostalgia. No specific memories come back to me but the sum total of the experience and the person who was very signficant to me at the time, come back in its essence. It pries open memories that I have shuttered for years.

In all, I have never had a change of password provoke such a visceral reaction. Clearly, I will need to change it to something more mundane so the natural order of my life is not imperiled each time I log on to my computer. I am glad to see that I am not alone in being password creation challenged. There are only so many fall back questions anyone can fall back on in time of need.

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