Tag Archives: GIGO

First I Made It, Then I Broke It, But I Think It’s Fixed Now

Part of the fun of having set up my own domain this year has been the challenge of adapting to more advanced programming demands. And since my brain remains more than a little analog, it’s been a big challenge. So this is where I tell you a funny story in which I display how little you need to know in order to call yourself a digital historian/digital humanist.

I wanted to set up my own domain and migrate my blog here because it seems more legitimate to me than the WordPress.com option. Legitimacy here represents a not-necessarily-correct judgment about technical literacy, and plenty of people might well disagree with me.

Not surprisingly, the real challenge that kept me from posting over much of the past five months had precious little to do with programming. In fact, it had an awful lot to do with the ever increasing number of passwords that we generate in our digital age. Sigh.

Because you see, I decided that the passwords I could generate with my analog brain were more hackable than made me comfortable. Also, my stack of 3×5 cards was getting way too big. So I use an app that does a better job of both producing strong passwords and not breaking my back: mSecure. I don’t use the cloud function because…. I just say that it doesn’t make sense to me to store passwords there….

Joy of Challenges

But oh, the humanity! For one thing, the WordPress login appears in an entirely different place in this version than it does if you use WordPress.com. Why, oh why, is it so far down on my screen? I’m sure I could fix that at some point….

“I spy with my little eye” v. GIGO

For another, organizing usernames/passwords in the mSecure works differently than the 3×5 cards. With the cards, I can shuffle them and scan for what I’m looking for in a comfortable old analog way. Whilst the app is just a database, and my ability to find things within it depends on how well I build the entry for a particular password.

Lessons Learned?

Which brings me to the perhaps-not-all-that-funny part of the story. I have not been able to find either the login link or the username/password for this blog for the past five months. At least I’m beginning to remember that it’s way low on the page and I need to scroll down. I’m confident this will improve with more frequent use.

But the thing that was really standing in my way over these past few months was the whole lost username/password thing. And so the real “Kathryn’s foibles”/GIGO lesson here is about doing a better job of paying attention to how I label entries in the mSecure database. I know that lots of people have lots of different ways to keep track of password, and that’s not really the issue I mean to highlight.

What I’m describing here is a lesson I learned about the power of thinking ahead when you organize your data. (Gasp!) Or revising the way that you have labeled your entries once you find they don’t work for you.

And I learned this lesson as a result of the way that creating my own domain generates a whole new set of usernames/passwords. Definitely a learning opportunity.

 

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