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[aprssig] Re: Windows US Daylight Time Change Screwup Looming

Mark Fellhauer sparkfel at qwest.net
Mon Feb 5 17:33:23 UTC 2007


At 03:40 AM 2/5/2007, Rich Mulvey wrote:

>    Not to rain on your parade too much, but the reason why Y2K turned out 
> to be a non-event was because the experts were right, and millions of 
> man-hours were expended on fixing the problems.  If they hadn't, I can 
> guarantee with personal knowledge that a few million customers of some 
> rather large financial institutions would have had some extraordinarily 
> unpleasant surprises in the weeks and months coming up to 
> Y2K.  Afterwards, they would *really* have had some bad days, unless they 
> had large sums of money hidden in their mattresses.
>
>    It always astounds me how many people point to Y2K as an example of 
> "experts blowing things out of proportion because nothing happened" - 
> when the reason that nothing  significant happened was because a huge 
> legitimate problem was recognized, identified, and fixed in time.  I 
> can't speak to the effect on other industries, but I can guarantee that 
> people would have noticed when all of their retirement plan money and 
> other savings magically disappeared.


There's a difference between pointing out a serious flaw and taking 
corrective steps to fix the problem, than what I saw, which was experts 
predicitng mass calamity DESPITE the best efforts of man...

In the weeks prior to Y2K people were still being told not to fly or ride 
elevators, they were told that even if the 911 system worked, fire trucks 
and ambulances would not start due to computer controlled engines, 
etc.  Companies were cashing in and millions of Americans were stockpiling 
food, hoarding guns and ammo, and hiding in basements and bunkers.

You know, I'm one of those guys who was involved in those millions of man 
hours of corrective work.  I spent the latter half of the 1990's doing Y2K 
compliance work for the insurance, medical, and legal industries at night 
(many insurance office software was MS DOS based right up to 1999), and 
during the day I worked for many aerospace and electronics companies.

On New Year's Eve, I was manning the phones at a call center  of a major 
computer manufacturer with 600 other people (one of half dozen call 
centers).  I got sent home early.  We all did.  At 6:00 AM on New Year's 
Day I was back.  Call volumes were extremely light despite predictions to 
the contrary.   Every person that called in <<thought>> his problem was Y2K 
related, even if was for a printer not plugged into the wall outlet...

I got one Y2K related call before I was again sent home early.  "Megaphone" 
a Win95 based fax and voicemail software application ceased functioning due 
to Y2K issues.

Mark







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