With Japan gone, can Man survive ?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Well, Japan may not be so badly off. Fragment of article from The Washington Post Dec 28, 1998:

Japan's Special Case
Although the Christian calendar has been in popular use in Japan for a century, the official numbering of years is according to the emperor's reign name. Emperor Akihito, whose reign name is Heisei, ascended the Chrysanthemum Throne in 1989, and that year became Heisei 1. Thus, Anno Domini 2000 will be Heisei 12.

As for the unofficial but commonly used Western dating system, comptuer experts in Tokyo spotted the problem earlier than others. The Japanese Information System User Association proposed as far back as 1992 that all programs written in COBOL, the most common language used in business systems, should adopt four-figure dates. Bankers had reached the same conclusion before that.

Moody's Investor Service, which had raised flags earlier this year about the readiness of Japanese banks to survive the bug, expressed confidence this month that the year-2000 syndrome wouldn't harm the Japanese banking system itself.

"In the 1980's, Japanese banks were riding pretty high," Ryan O'Connell, senior vice president at Moody's, was quoted as saying. They could afford to spend money to fix a computer problem that still seemed far away."

Mr. O'Connell said most big Japanese banks upgraded their computer systems in the late 1980's, and many but not all allowed four digits for the year field, elminating the year-2000 problem.

-- Runway Cat (Runway_Cat@hotmail.com), February 12, 1999


It only takes one.

-- Lobo (hiding@woods.com), February 12, 1999.

Nevertheless, I think I know where I might want to be in 2000.

Oh, wait a moment- doesn't everything cost phenomenal amounts in Japan? PNG, you should know this..

-- Leo (lchampion@ozemail.com.au), February 12, 1999.

I came across this yesterday, and posted it at:



Japanese Watchdog Agency Threatens Penalties For Y2K Laggards; Major Japanese Banks Trailing Badly On Y2K Fixes


(AP-Augusta Chronicle)

The main point of this story is this:

**A Japanese government watchdog agency is threatening to punish financial institutions which fail to prepare adequately for the so- called millennium computer bug problem.

**The Financial Supervisory Agency will penalize banks and other financial companies that cause problems for their customers due to computer trouble stemming from the switch from 1999 to 2000, an agency official said Wednesday.

And the story goes into further detail on that subject. However, the report ends with this very interesting information:

**Also Wednesday, the Federation of Bankers Association of Japan said its member banks and experts have begun discussing ways to establish a backup system that would prevent individual bank's problems with the Y2K bug from affecting the entire system.

**The FSA said that as of December, nearly half of the top 19 Japanese banks had completed needed updates for just a quarter of their main computer systems. Only two banks had updated more than 75 percent of their systems.

Now that is not good news. It is very strong evidence that the Japanese banking system- very important to the region of Asia as well as the rest of the world- is far behind on its Y2K efforts. The Japanese themselves are clearly worried about it, since they're already starting to think about backup systems (which would be wise contingency planning anyway).

This will be a key situation to keep an eye on.

-- Drew Parkhill/CBN News (y2k@cbn.org), February 12, 1999.

Japan has two y2k worries greater than their banks. Their energy source is a floating pipeline connected to the Mid-East oil fields. They have a population greater than their land can naturally sustain.

-- Mitchell Barnes (spanda@inreach.com), February 12, 1999.

Mitchell wrote: They have a population greater than their land can naturally sustain.

Whew! Thank GOD we're not in that situation... Flip the channel will you honey

-- Blue Himalayan (bh@k2.y), February 12, 1999.



-- E. Coli (nunayo@beeswax.com), February 12, 1999.

RC: I'll send you the original japanese article on this topic. sorry, busy today. the shift to packaged software in the 90's debunked this lone article about using the Heisei calendar. Oh, sure. all my bills are heisei but they are usually external conversion routines (which can make remediation quicker!). Major companies and international banks don't use the heisei calendar.

The simple solution for many banks is......(are you ready for this???).....They will just retreat from international operations and leave it to the few that will be ready. My (soon to be ex) bank announced they will pull out of all international business (including loans, investments) everything... and reduce domestic branches from 140 to 50. Bank of Yokohama.

More later and I'll update my site with an infrastructure review in a few days.

-- PNG (png@gol.com), February 12, 1999.

Thanks PNG! I'd also be interested in your views about the Western calendar remediation, as later in the article, beyond the intro heisi stuff, it does point out that most systems use Western internally, but that they've been remediated already! First I'd heard that particular claim.

-- Runway Cat (runway_cat@hotmail.com), February 12, 1999.

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