canadian difference : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

will there be any difference for canadian ie. is the u.s. more aware of the problem than canada (so far i've only heard the americans talking of the year 2000 problem)? Will u.s. banks and transportation be more up to date than canada?

-- (, January 30, 1998


Hi -- I live in Alberta and have been following the Canadian response. I can only say that it is very difficult to access information but we do seem to have some sectors which are working on the issue. How far along they are is hard to judge but I can say that here in the West the public in general is unaware of any potential problems. The Alberta government has set up a Year 2000 information site (that doesn't contain much beyond the usual projection dates) and provincial education has a similar site. Of interest is the statement on both sites that there is only time to work on critical systems and that we must be aware that critical systems may fail if the projects are delayed. The education site was set up on July 10, 1997.

The federal Auditor General's report contains information about the state of government departments and cautions that disaster and emergency services are not sufficient to deal with the situations which may arise if systems fail.

This is a quote from a study undertaken by the ITAC,"A study was conducted on behalf of ITAC (Information Technology Association of Canada) to determine the state of readiness of Canadian business and government computer systems to handle date-related transactions in Year 2000 . The study was conducted during the first and second weeks of February, 1997 and concludes that:

Many small businesses are likely unaware of the problem. Business generally is under-prepared and under-reacting. Governments may not be responding to the problem quickly enough, primarily because the issue has not captured senior executive attention.

Resources and critical skills are in short supply relative to demand and will result in escalating costs and difficult trade-offs.

The Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) is concerned about the level of awareness of and preparedness for the Year 2000 problem related to computing and telecommunications systems." I have noticed that in November and December 1997 a number of government sponsored Emergency Preparedness sites went up on the Web. They don't contain a lot of information but I intend to monitor them to see what focus is on them.

The Regional Health Authority of Calgary was quoted in the Herald on Dec.7, 1997 as handling a "nighmare". They need to spend "at least $20 million over the next two years to adapt hundreds of out-of-date computers in seven different systems to cope with year-2000 problems." They have contacted IBM to see about spending $100 million dollars on new equipment rather than patch up the old system. "... a Calgary computer expert in year-2000 problems, says the health suthority has left it too late to do everything it needs within two years." There are 16 more Regional Health Authorities in the province. I don't think it very likely that the health system in Alberta will be working after 2000. Supposedly TransAlta utilities has a handle on their problems and will be sharing with other utiliy companies. I haven't seen confirmation about that but I think information may be on Rick Cowles site.

Those are all the things I can think of off the top of my head. Feel free to get in touch with me if you need more specific information or if you have information to share. I too am struggling to find out what is happening in Canada and to connect with others.

-- Shirley Clement (, January 30, 1998.

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