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Shes been home more than a week and never said anything to me about it.I went into her room and looked under her pillow. It wasnt there. I looked under her bed, dragging out the storage boxes to get a better view, using my phone as a flashlight.Carla I asked.

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Jane was in college, but I texted and asked her. She stated she never saw an orange piece of paper.Wait, Carla said. We had the house cleaned while we were gone. Ill call them.Carla called the cleaning service wed used and got the woman who cleaned the house on the line.

Nothing but egg cartons, espresso grinds, and Amazon boxes. The orange piece of paper was decomposing somewhere under a pile of garbage in a Los Angeles landfill.Carla requested if losing the paper proved to be a big deal.Not really, I said. Its just a nuisance, thats all. Ill have to send all the bitcoins from the Trezor to an online wallet, reinitialize the Trezor, generate a new word list, and put the bitcoins back on the Trezor.

Its 551445. The Forgetting: April 4, 2017: 7.4 BTC $8,384I plugged the Trezor into my laptop and entered 551445. Wrong PIN entered.I should have made an error entering the PIN, I believed. I tried 551445 again, taking good care to enter the digits correctly this time.Wrong PIN entered.Uh oh. I tried a slight variation: 554445Wrong PIN entered.This is ridiculous, I thought.

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Id entered it at least a dozen times in recent months without having to consult with the paper. OK, its probably 554145. Wrong PIN entered.I looked at the tiny monochrome screen on the bitcoin wallet and noticed a countdown timer had seemed. It was making me wait for a few seconds before I could try out another PIN.

I went to the hardware pocket manufacturers site to learn about the PIN delay and read the terrible news: The delay doubled whenever a wrong PIN was entered. The website stated, The number of PIN entry failures is saved in the Trezors memory. This means that power cycling the Trezor wont make the wait time proceed to zero again.

The burglar would need to sit off his life entering the PINs. Meanwhile, you've got enough time to move your funds into a new apparatus or wallet from the newspaper backup. (Trezor is based in Prague, hence the stilted English.) The problem was, I was the thief, trying to steal my own bitcoins back in my Trezor.

After my sixth incorrect PIN attempt, creeping dread had escalated to heart-pounding panicI might have kissed my 7.4 bitcoins goodbye.I made a few more guesses, and every time I collapsed, my sense of unreality grew in proportion to the PIN delay, which was now 2,048 seconds, or about 34 minutes.

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One hundred guesses would take more than 80 sextillion years.I broke the news to Carla. I told her I couldnt remember the PIN and that I was being punished each time I entered anchor an incorrect PIN. She asked me if Id saved the PIN in my 1Password application (a secure password program ).

When she asked me why, I didnt have an answer.I knew it'd be a mistake to squander a valuable guess in my agitated condition. My mind had become contaminated with scrambled permutations of all PINs. I went into the kitchen to chop veggies for a curry we had been making for dinner.

As I cut potatoes into cubes, I mentally shuffled around numbers as though they were Scrabble tiles on a stand. After a time, a number popped into my mind: 55144545. That was it! I walked out of the kitchen into the workplace. The Trezor nevertheless had a couple hundred seconds left on the countdown timer.

I tapped in 55144545. Wrong PIN entered. Please wait 4,096 seconds to continueI barely slept that night. The small shuteye I managed to have has been full of nightmares involving combinations of the numbers 1, 4, and 5. It wasnt so much that the $8,000 that troubled meit was the pity I felt for being dumb enough to lose the paper and overlook the PIN.

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If I wasnt able to remember the PIN, the Trezor would taunt me for the remainder of my life.The Hunt: April 5, 2017: 7.4 BTC $8,325That morning, bleary eyed, I started looking into ways to get my bitcoins back that didnt involve recalling my PIN or recovery words. If Id lost my debit card PIN, I could contact my bank and Id eventually regain access to my funds.

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No one owns the bitcoin transaction network. Instead, thousands of computers around the world run software that validates the systems transactions. Anyone is allowed to install the bitcoin applications on their computer and take part. This decentralized nature of the bitcoin network is not without consequencesthe main one being that if you screw up, its your own damn problem.I went to /r/TREZOR/ on Reddit and published:don't hesitate to ridicule meI deserve it.

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