Y2K Government Report - Debate Analysis

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After reading you questions and remarks from this debate. It was thought that I should relate the following, to those that have attacked the Benchmark and not aided in fair debate. It would seem that you have not read the report right and have not read the complete section or paragraphed please read the report and the final recomendations plus 5 solutions at http://visit.internet2000-Plc.com.

There are two kinds of experts there are those whom get it wrong and those that get it right. The percentage ratio does not mean a thing as been proved with history time and time again. There was a time when the ratio of people thought the world was flat was about 99% and those that thought it to round 1%. The orginal thinker non the less were thought to be the experts.

Now and again some one appears with a differing view and produces a benchmark, the experts and their believes say but the world is flat and place a ruler on the floor and states "that proves it". This means the experts that know the world is round, have to produce a solid benchmark. that can be checked by the simplest thinking person.

Unfortunatly the Millennium Ready Benchmark is undoutably BENCHMARK.

It would seem that many an augment on the issues of the benchmark have been trying to prove the benchmark is wrong and not to prove its right by trying the benchmark out.

If I had a computer or fax machine, photocopier or a VCR that had a non date retention problem, I would want the benchmark to be true and only be upset if it was not true.

To this point I am question your motives with the follow questions.

Will you lose money if this benchmasrk is true?

Will you lose credability if this benchmark is true?

Or is it just professional jeolousy?

If you answer with a silly remark we will all know that at least one of the three questions are true.


Bob Johnson-Perkins IT Research Analyst.

-- Bob Johnson-Perkins (Bob@Internet2000-Plc.com), December 16, 1998


Have any of you actually went to...


For a site that's trying to sell some kind of software solution to Y2K, it sure seems weird that the site treats Y2K as hype created by consultants. And don't British web sites all have a ".uk" somewhere in the URL?

I'm also glad, after reading your message, Bob, that English is my first language!

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), December 16, 1998.


Once again you attack the grammar. You really are cute.

-- Higher IQ (problemchild@usa.net), December 16, 1998.


Your confidence is inspiring. Your grasp of the situation is not.

Please explain how you propose to a) locate; b) check date sensitivity; c) remediate; and finally d) test in service, all embedded micro-processors, many of which are inaccessible, unreadable, or obsolete.

For your information, I am not now, and never have been, employed in any IT capacity, and I have no interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, in any IT operation.

You apparently do, however. Does this disqualify you?

-- Tom Carey (tomcarey@mindspring.com), December 16, 1998.

"Once again you attack the grammar. You really are cute. "

I don't know IQ. You trust a programmer or an IT guy that can't write a decent english sentence? Don't you wonder how he can write code if he couldn't learn the simple english language? Or how he can understand the complexity of systems if he can't understand the simple english grammar? If he didn't do his homework in english class, did he do his homework in CS?

-- Even Higher IQ (goody2shoes@usa.net), December 16, 1998.

Even Higher IQ, AMEN! No, frankly, I trust very few people that can't speak or type coherently.

-- Randy (flembob@usa.net), December 16, 1998.

"No, frankly, I trust very few people that can't speak or type coherently. "

My comments above only applied to English speaking IT/programmers. There are those who have great intelligence and wisdom, yet haven't learned, or couldn't learn, to write English well. Einstein was one.

-- Even Higher IQ (goody2shoes@usa.net), December 16, 1998.


".com" is not restricted to US sites. Dot coms can be anywhere.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 16, 1998.

... AFAIK.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 16, 1998.

Bob Johnson-Perkins,

Do you, or do you not, acknowledge that the collection of calendar-related computer problems known as "Y2K" includes many which are entirely outside the scope of your report?

In answer to your questions:

Will you lose money if this benchmasrk is true?


Will you lose credability if this benchmark is true?


Or is it just professional jeolousy?

I am professionally concerned that your statements mislead people as to how applicable your benchmark and solutions are to the entire spectrum of Y2K problems.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 16, 1998.

It's amazing how many people still think the world is flat and they all seem to be on this forum?

Answers to rude remarks:

Thank you for the reference to Einstein who admitted not to be a genius but someone with an inquisitive mind. There seems to be a lack of that on this forum. Where are all the real Y2K Analyst's?

As for the trust factor? It's the Benchmark that can be trusted what ever I say just does not count at least this Benchmark is not a theory as it really does work. The Proof is in the eating, what other IT Y2K Analyst can actual say that not many?

Answer to a sensible remark:

The non IT specialist that feels he knows all about Embedded systems have you tested any? I have and that includes some of those hidden away as those that could have a problem can be accessed and benchmark by keyboard or electronic keys. Most of these are not battery backed and do not the date time stamp. There is a very small percentage that could in fact possible cause any problem. I have also stated clearly that these embedded systems require to be analyzed by independent body the facts and only the fact then made public knowledge. The golden rule seems to be only when a time and date keyboard type entry are required that there is a need to investigate. I have written several papers on embedded systems for the water companies within UK, they have already investigated their own problems on this issue, the Y2K budgets where cut drastically. I always insist that people use a benchmark and test things out. The simple fact is that any computerized equipment can easily (within reason) be checked within the 21st Century environment that everybody is so scared about. (the process of simulation being so simple) That is the logic of the matter, things are not going to change when the actual event takes place. The only problem is administration and that nothing is left to chance. It is clear to me that there has been much Y2K indoctrination, we have a problem that is people just can not think for them selves and trust the people of whom shout the loudest or give the biggest smile (the white teeth grin).


The important point is how those that answered the original question showed their real colors, some where clearly very pale, small minded and just not up to par. Others just had to have the last say.

It is very amusing to see those answered the question even though it implicated their true intelligence and obvious bitterness and just plain stupidity to rise to the bait.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Bob Johnson-Perkins

-- Bob Johnson-Perkins (Bob@internet2000-Plc.com), December 16, 1998.

# # # 19981217

Bob Johnson-Perkins:

Upon thouroughly re-reading this entire thread, I offer the following constructive ( general ) objective analysis:

Fact: Your English is atrocious.

Reasonable Deduction: As such, it is highly unlikely that anyone would hire, let alone accept, such a poor standard of communication skills. ( Shame on them if they do/did!! )

Fact: There are many "embedded" systems ( that process dates arithmetically, internally ) that were poorly designed, documented, and implemented ( i.e., no method of _external_ access to internal datum ).

Reasonable Deduction: It is not possible to identify, assess, and/or "benchmark" these systems ( devices ). ( Admitted by many industrial sectors of the infrastructure today. )

Fact: Many of the "embedded" systems are inaccessible ( i.e., oil rig controllers ) or too numerous _and/or_ unique ( one-time; typically legacy, "orphaned" ) in their deployed configuration ( i.e., natural gas pressure regulator/controllers ).

Reasonable Deduction: By their own ( public! ) admission, these systems were "discovered" ( thought of! ) too late for effectuating a timely Y2K-remediation effort:

1.) Access the device(s) [ Inventory ]; ( _Miles_ below ocean floors ( i.e., oil rig/piping monitors/regulators ); or, too _numerous_ ( i.e., NG regulators ) for available resources/time. )

2.) Evaluate -- if possible [ Assessment ]; ( Engineers designed many systems where testing is not a feature. I have heard engineers ( M.E. and E.E. -types! ) refer to this dubious "feature" as using "brute force" to "get the job done" and "keep costs down." )

3.) Contract for, manufacture replacement parts/sub-systems [ Remediation ]; ( Most ( A-to-D/D-to-A ) system controller devices involve long, and unique ( heterogeneous ) development-to-market cycles within an ( otherwise ) interdependent, integrated system. )

4.) Test ( end-to-end! ) the replacement parts/sub-systems [ Testing ] ( Some environments are impossible to perform ''live'' "testing" ( e.g., power grids, telecommunications, etc. ) without doing irreparable harm to the ''live,'' production environments. )

5.) Deploy the replacement parts/sub-systems [ Implementation ] ( Not enough resources ( e.g., people with required _skills, _time, and _money ) to do the end-to-end job. )

Finally: _Benchmarks_ ( the term you seem to have a fixation. )

Only one "benchmark" counts, in the final analysis: Will the ( whole ) dang system function ( i.e., process date algorithms correctly )?

Unfortunately, the answer for far too many systems on this account is: __We'll never know -- until it's too late!__

Contingencies for most of these scenarios are not within the realm of preacticality, given the time and resources remaining before the systemic-ELE transpires.

I harbor no "professional jealousy" -- intimidation-baiting if I've ever seen it -- re your demonstrated level of qualifications. Not one shred of jealousy!

I can assure you, however, that based on your sample posts in this forum, I would never, ever, allow myself to become associated with you in a professional situation. There are analysts, and then, there are anal-ysts!! ... You, my friend, have lead a protected life. It would be interesting to know more about your "protectors" ( connections ).

Perhaps I'll sometime tell you what I really think on this subject, Bob Johnson-Perkins.

Regards, Bob Mangus # # #

-- Robert Mangus (rmangus@mail.netquest.com), December 17, 1998.

Bob Johnson-Perkins,

Why won't you answer my question?

Do you, or do you not, acknowledge that the collection of calendar-related computer problems known as "Y2K" includes many which are entirely outside the scope of your report?

I answered your questions.

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 17, 1998.

Bob Johnson-Perkins,

A few responses:

>Where are all the real Y2K Analyst's?

I have worked on Y2K projects as a senior programmer/analyst. I have worked with an embedded system. I recognized the basic Y2K problem in programs I was using in 1979, and brought it to the attention of my management then. I have about 30 years experience in computer programming and analysis, on several different types of computers, from a vacuum-tubed monster to PCs.

Many other responders in this forum have experience similar to or greater than mine. >The simple fact is that any computerized equipment can easily (within reason) be checked within the 21st Century environment that everybody is so scared about. (the process of simulation being so simple)

Sometimes, checking is not easy or simple.

>That is the logic of the matter, things are not going to change when the actual event takes place.

But when the actual event takes place, we will experience the effects of all the interrelationships that cannot be tested in advance. That _is_ a change, a big one.

>The only problem is administration and that nothing is left to chance.

"that nothing is left to chance", though, is impossible. It is not humanly possible to foresee all possibilities in advance. One simple demonstration of this is the very existence of the Y2K problems.

>The important point is how those that answered the original question showed their real colors, some where clearly very pale, small minded and just not up to par. Others just had to have the last say.

I'm not sure which was your "original question", but I noticed that you incorporated some of my recommendations in your revisions.

Will you answer _my_ question (repeated in my preceding posting)?

-- No Spam Please (anon@ymous.com), December 17, 1998.

Could this "Bob Johnson-Perkins" be a troll? His web site has a lot of articles saying that Y2K is all hype.

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), December 17, 1998.

Bob, I don't anticipate many problems with non-compliant hardware, all of our PCs that failed roll-over will accept a 2000 date, likewise servers, one will be replaced however. There was only one router OS date problem, again this has been upgraded. We have found however many packages and applications (PC C/S environment) that needed repair or replacement, in fact 74 out of 300. For instance we just tried to set an old server running SCO UNIX (non-com), Oracle (NC) and "missing Link" (compliant) Oracle fell over, this onyl has historic data and we will try to set the server date back, likewise another old Human Resources system. We have had to completely revamp our Internet Firewall (SUnOS 4.1.2 Solstice Firewall-1 both NC to Sun Solaris 2.6.1 and Checkpoint Firewall). The Resume system (Resumix ResSearch 4.1.1) was completely non-compliant as is Talisman, the latter's y2k version is now one year late. I expect the supplier to go out of business. I know nothing about embedded systems, though I do not expect a problem in that area (power supply etc). I do expect many disruptions in any sort of conventional business IT set-up (the type I know about). If companies have not fixed y2k I expect many of them to be overwhelmed by errors, not necessarily all.

-- Richard Dale (rdale@figroup.co.uk), December 17, 1998.

These under sea embedded systems though numerous in number, equate to several know types. The manufactures of such equipment should be able to catalogue them? Or are we saying that each one is different, I think not. It is thought that we will end up with a few dozen different brands or types of embedded systems. If there is any problems it is thought that the oil and gas companies keep very good records of all such equipment including manufacturer, year and serial number. As with the UK Water Companies that are not saying much at this time and seem to be keeping very quiet about their own findings and the reason why their budgets are so low.

At no time have I made any statement saying that I am an expert or anything similar That I feel that just because I have a logic view on the matter at hand, that I know best, its just that prior to throwing money at a problem governments and organizations should sit back and think with great care and not rush in like bulls in a china shop.

The first thing that happened when I made a friendly statement on this very forum is that the main problem seem to be my use of English and that this should be the main attack on my opinion and my intelligence. For one reason or another more rude points where made than any with sound scientific logic. There however have been many private communication with those that had much more sense and better manners. There one point I must stress is that I have been in the Industry for some years, even prior to the introduction of Personal Computer systems. I do have a string of qualifications and the varied experiences that do qualify me to say much on the matters of the Y2K problem. I feel insulted by many of the remarks and feel these insults have been made by people with little minds. All problems are normal solved by simple solutions gained by lateral and logical thinking.

We are also getting away from the real augment and that is BIOS ROMs, Personal Computer Systems and Benchmarks. As stated prior in good ,or ,bad English. We have asked government to appoint an independent organization, NOT Visionaries IT, to benchmark and supply more information on Embedded Systems. There are also lots of other recommendations that will once again lead me to make a statement to the UK Parliament Select Science and Technology Committee instead of just supplying the background document. It is also clear that the proposed Millennium Act penned by Visionaries IT last year may now be passed through UK parliament as another benchmark to protect the consumers and shareholders. Very pleasing that may be to the young MP for Bournmouth of whom like myself see the problems before they really started.

It is so strange that this augment ends up at the bottom of the sea why not in space concerning all those thousands of satellites and of course those that have fantasies about flying saucers etc. must be wondering about their Alien friends and how they will survive their Y2K problems. My God you are so amusingly smug and very naive. The world by the way, is round and experts do change their minds when presented with the facts as with Peter De Jager and my friends within CITU the Cabinet Office UK and the DTI Millennium Committee at the DTI.

And to one snide comment "Is this the best the British can produce" possibly, but I must admit, that we do not have many IT Analyst left. they all emigrated to Silicon Valley US of A. It would seem they are too busy to bother with the minor hardware problems of the Y2K and feel that the hype is just to silly and amusing to address. Presently Microsoft is trying to mop up the rest by opening his lab at Cambridge University. It would seem we are the only race that understands the Basic rules of Computer Science and coolly look at problems to coolly find solutions. (sorry I could not resist the above paragraph, it was made in jest as I have great respect for many of my American peers that also find the hype very amusing but stay silent due to work load and the chance of getting new equipment at last and having an excuse for over running the IT budget)

The MAIN problem is software related all the risks relate to bad or thoughtless programming and the original memory problem that many of us had to trim down program size to make room on the Mainframes of the past.

Let see some solutions, some real thought and some real scientific guts to experiment within a Year 2000 environment. Believe me were theres a will, there is a way and we are all ways learning.

Yours sincerely

Bob Johnson-Perkins

-- Bob Johnson-Perkins (Bob@Internet2000-Plc.com), December 17, 1998.

(There is one linear thinking mind if I ever saw one. But what do I know, I'm only a nurse.)

Isn't the internet wonderful Mr. Perkins? I bet you never had anyone around you criticize your ways and thinking in such blunt manners.

-- Chris (catsy@pond.com), December 17, 1998.

Thanks for the information Richard

Please Vist http://visit.internet2000-Plc.com and download a copy of MilScan this contains not only the fastest Y2K Software Scanning but the Millennium Ready safeguards to include the Millennium Ready Alarm Clock that will provide each of your systems protection by updating the system clock and date on the minute throughout the retention period. Your company has a free licence for all 200 PC Systems. Please call 01303 276099 to open the package and further information on time servers.

The only requirement we require back is that you tell us the speed of scanning over your LAN Network to include your views on the Final usefulness of Software Audit List. We have clipped 42 Minutes on a 400 Gigabyte NT Network. Norton Toolbox took 48 Hours.

Thanks for testing the benchmark and showing that you know the World is round.

We will be publishing your remarks on the test results concerning the Software findings shortly.

Thank you once again.

Merry Christmas


-- Bob Johnson-Perkins (Bob@Internet2000.Plc.com), December 17, 1998.

Your comments address one part of the entire Y2K troubles, and your benchmark test addresses possible solutions to one small part of the "hardware-end" of the probelm, as it affects a particular "section" with a common hardware/BIOS/RTC/Op system.

To the extent that a small part of the problem is being fixed, or can be fixed if this solution is applied (given enough "advertising" on your part), congratulations.

But even in that part of the small business world that does use PC's (and not "mainframes"), addressing a hardware problem affecting older machines does not solve the errors that occur when their applications (written in basic, excel, lotus, C, C+, VB, what-have-you) fail.

For example, a lumber company in my home town needed remediation. To staty in business, they had to replace (upgrade) their PC's, network, accounting, management, inventory, CAD, and business database programs. None of these would have been solved just by applying your benchmark. Data translation alone required significant efforts.

At home, I have two older PC's. One (a 386) will fail completely and needs to be replaced. The second (a slower 486) running DOS 6.22 and Win3.1, needs to be carefully walked a reboot,reset date, reboot, rest date sequence. But once reset and restarted, it will continue running. So even in my simple case, the simple existance of your benchmark doesn't solve my "home" network problem of two PC's.

-- Robert A. Cook, P.E. (Kennesaw, GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), December 17, 1998.

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