If I was a bad standup comedian, I would begin this blog post with: “Passwords, am I right?”
We all have trouble with passwords. It’s bad enough when we mistype them, or can’t remember what they are, or have them in our books but can’t read what it says (or didn’t update the entry). Then, someone decided multifactor authentication was a good idea. I remember one morning trying to cancel my classes for the day because of too much snow; I sat down at my laptop, trying to login, and then needed to go back downstairs for my phone.
Of course, this is not to mention those damn “prove I’m not a robot” pictures (click on motorcycles sitting on traffic lights next to boats), or when you create a new password, are then asked to login, and discover your new password doesn’t work. But I just made it three seconds ago!
All this is preamble to a new short film I’m working on. The working title is Passwords. We see a soldier in a nuclear bunker being somewhat distracted. Suddenly he gets a call with orders to disarm the doomsday device that has somehow been activated. Of course, he needs a password to do so. And therein lies the fun, although somewhat dark fun, as he struggles to stop the end of the world. Does he succeed with two seconds to spare? Stay tuned!
By the way, “wordpass” was the typical password one of my friends often used. I am sure that that choice has fallen by the wayside, now that we need to include one upper-case letter, one lower-case letter, one number, and one non-alphanumerical character which might or might not work depending on that system’s requirements. To quote comic book characters in similar frustrating situations: “$&@?!”