Friday, February 8, 2008


That's how much Jacob's transgression cost him.

The computer repair shop worked two days to clean the hard drive of the nasty virus Jacob downloaded, but failed. In the end, they simply wiped away everything on the drive and reloaded the operating system. Fortunately, it was a new computer with little on the hard drive, other than programs. And Jacob did back up the files, such as his homeschooling assignments, as soon as he realized that he had corrupted the computer.

It would have cost less to simply buy a new hard drive," Jacob bewailed when I told him the cost of repair, which he is paying. He knows how to install these hard drives since he built his own computer. But did it make sense to hand over repair to the one who broke it? And who knew just how nasty a bug he downloaded? I would not have guessed it would be that expensive to repair.

It was creepy," Jacob admitted to me when describing the virus. "When I tried to delete it, it would reappear somewhere else."

It used a jpeg image as the fake background and would have you click somewhere... But you couldn't get rid of it. Very interesting. Never saw anything like it," said the technician in the repair shop. All those attempts to clean were costly, more costly than replacement. But Jacob needed this expensive lesson in disobedience. I hope that he regrets what he did, not regrets getting caught.

I finally got all the software I need to connect from my home PC to the corporate servers, plus the SecurID that changes numbers every minute or so. The Internet isn't the safe playground that my son thought it was; it's trench warfare out there, and companies (as well as people) are doing their best to protect their intellectual assets. Why does it have to be this way?

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What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.”
— Albert Pike, Scottish Rite Freemason (1809-1891)