Update: A friend has offered to take my card to a specialist who may be able to recover the photos. Thanks for your help!
Today I found an effective way to lose my appetite without inducing nausea: find out that my two-ish-year-old 16 GB CF card isn't readable on my camera or my computer. The illustration above shows how I felt on the inside. On the outside, I went ;_;.
It wouldn't be so bad if I didn't have photos on it that I wanted, but since I procrastinated I probably have two weeks of photos on it. Somewhere. Deep down in its...guts. Made of...FAIL.
Since y'all are smart with the brainmeats, I figure some of you may have advice on what to do before I resort to one of these data recovery places. If so, I would love to harness your smarts. Here's some more info about the problem that may or may not be helpful.
The card is a SanDisk Extreme CF 16 GB 60 MB/S UDMA card. My camera is a Canon 7D. One moment it was all fine, then the next, the camera would no longer read the card. Not like I dropped the card in a puddle, ran over it with a car, smothered it in peanut butter, took it out of the camera while it was being read, etc. I put a different CF card in my camera and it works fine.
The first time i tried to read the 16 GB card on my computer (iMac, OS X) it appeared in Finder, but when I tried to access it, Finder crashed. The card no longer appears in Finder after I connect it to my computer. So. Hm. Yeah. I know there are programs that can try to recover data, but as my computer doesn't even detect the card, I'm guessing that's not going to work.
Doobeedoo. [twiddles fingers]
Well. Yup. If anyone has advice, please let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org). Thank you!