I should know better. I've worked both in IT and technical writing for over a decade now, and have seen similar catastrophic data loss many times. Did I learn anything?
I spent days scouring the internet for tricks to revive the drive. I even tried to solder it back together (which appeared to be successful), but all it did was make the broken drive hot enough to burn my hand. But losing data is like losing someone close to you... and you must go through the grieving process mentioned in Elisabeth Kubler-Ross' book, On Death and Dying
- Denial - You can fix this jump drive enough to get the data off of it. All I need is it to let me copy a few files... You're not so stupid as not to have backed this up this week... right?!?
- Anger - Damn cat! How dare you jump on MY computer! POS jumpdrive! How could you break after such a perfect flip and then crashing down to the floor so far from the desktop above!? Haven't they tested these types of scenarios in Quality Control?!?
- Bargaining - Please, please, PLEASE let me have backed this up to an obscure folder somewhere on the external HD... I PROMISE to set up extensive alarms and reminders in my Outlook and Palm Pilot to nag me incessantly to back-up if you'll JUST LET ME RETRIEVE MY FILES THIS ONE TIME! Please?
- Depression - I can't believe I was sooooo stupid. Those files were a ticket to the best-seller list for me... I'll never be able to create anything as brilliant as this again...
- Acceptance - Now?