Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Battle of the Passwords

Well, my son is grounded from his computer again.  This shouldn’t be a big deal right?  The kid whines, tells you how much he hates you, slams his bedroom door, blah blah blah.  I’m sure that’s what happens in normal households, but in a house full of engineers…it turns into what I call “The Battle of the Password”!
“And in this corner, wearing 17 years experience in engineering and computer security….DAD!!!”

“And in this corner, wearing 4 years of latest technology knowledge and a passion to prove to his parents that he knows everything…A TEENAGE BOY!!!”

What happens next?  Both parties calmly go to their separate corners and start plotting their plan of attack.  The boy starts plotting ways to either steal his laptop back, convince his sister to give him hers for awhile, or rummage through the home office and build a new one.  True story…its happened.
Dad on the other hand leads with a very simple move; he changes the password on the wireless router.  No password…no Internet access.  Easy right?  WRONG!!!  Why is this wrong?  Because the person who suffers in this move is ME!  Oh yeah, it works great to keep the boy from getting online (for about a day), but it also keeps everyone else from it as well.   Grrrr…..

Of course it can’t be a simple password either.  No, no…it has to be something I will never remember like supercalifragilisticexpialidocious##936$@\*0.   And obviously I never get it right, then have to wait for Dad to get home so that he can effortlessly type it into my machine and get me back online.  Because you know the world might end if I’m away from the Internet for any significant length of time.  Hey, it could happen.
The winners of this Battle Royal vary.  Sometimes Dad wins with his super secret password changes, and other times the boy wins by getting his sister to lend him her laptop so that he can hack into the settings and figure out what the password is.  Oh yeah, trust me…it’s happen. 
So for the next three weeks, my daughter and I will be watching this intellectual slugfest waiting for one of them to cry uncle.  Which could take forever since neither of them is ever willing to concede.  *sigh*   I live with geniuses.

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