A method to tolerate URL mistyping
Original Publication Date: 2002-Oct-29
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-20
The other day, I forgot my VM Computer system password. I called the system administrator, who reset it and sent me the new password by Lotus Notes Mail. It was Hwy-1O1 . I tried this password with Upper case H, lower case w and y, hyphen, then the numbers one, zero and one. The system complained that I was typing an invalid password. I thought I had mis-typed and repeated two more times, surprise, I found myself locked out of the system. I walked over to the system administrator, asked him to reset my password one more time, and to write down the new password. The password written on a piece of paper was: W1NNER . I walked back to my office, tried to log on thrice unsuccessfully, got locked out again. My colleague found "cool stuff" at a web site wrote down the url for me: www.trouble.com.0l045559O9567010 . I typed it in. DNS complained that there was no such url. I battled with the browser for 15 minutes, then gave up. If this has happened to you before, you will understand how much time was wasted and productivity lost. The problems described arises due to the fact that visual discrimination errors occur when discriminating between 0 and O; and l and 1. Variable size fonts and the use of multiple fonts, automatic font conversion and human error are the principal cause factors. The different types of errors could be categorised as follows.