Y0K problem - message from Rome

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Message from: Rome January 18, 1 B.C.

Dear Cassius,

Are you still working on the Y zero K problem? This change from BC to AD is giving us a lot of headaches and we haven't much time left. I don't know

how people will cope with working the wrong way around. Having been working happily downwards forever, now we have to start thinking upwards. You would think that someone would have thought of it

earlier and not left it to us to sort out at the last minute.

I spoke to Caesar the other evening. He was livid that Julius hadn't done something about it when he was sorting out the calendar. He said he could see why Brutus turned nasty. We called in the consulting astrologers, but they simply said that continuing downwards using minus BC won't work. As

usual, the consultants charged a fortune for doing nothing useful. As for myself, I just can't see the sand in an hourglass flowing upwards.

We have heard that there are 3 wise guys in the east working on the problem, but unfortunately they won't arrive till it's all over. Some say the world will cease to exist at the moment of transition. Anyway we are

continuing to work on this blasted Y zero K problem and I will send you a parchment if anything further develops.


-- benny (rome@bc.com), January 22, 1999


That is the LAST time I want to see that post... I MEAN IT !!


-- (nobody@home.com), January 22, 1999.


Thanks for the post. This is definitely a popular item...the third thread started on it in the past two weeks.

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), January 22, 1999.

There couldn't have been a Y0K problem - the Romans used Romans numerals - which don't have a zero. The arabs had to invent it, and they weren't "Arabs" yet.

That's why the first year was I. But of course the actual first year should have -IV, or -IIII, depending on how you write negative four in Roman.

However, since the Romans did reset their calendars regularly - what do you they did when before they invented January (Janus - the two-faced god). July (Julius Caeser) or August (named for Augustus). Ever wonder why September (the seventh month). October (eight), November (ninth) and December (tenth) are the 9,10,11, and 12 th months in the year?

Speaking of Roman Numerals - is this year MIM or MCMIX or ?????

It never came up before, because during the 999 - 1000 turnover, too few people in Europe, the only ones who cared at the time, weren't writing books - and the monks could hand-trace anything they wanted since they were reproducing the earlier works which had earlier dates.

-- Robert A. Cook, PE (Kennesaw, GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), January 22, 1999.

Robert -

MCMXCIX(1000+900+90+9), perhaps? Seem to recall that the Romans preferred to represent each digit individually, but not sure. Haven't watched the credits on a recent film to see how Hollywierd is handling this...

And yes, let this Y0K "joke" die. Please. It's just a little too smug for my taste...

Now the Y2K punchline for the old "Math Story Problem, 1950-1999" joke - THAT's funny!

-- Mac (sneak@lurk.com), January 22, 1999.

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