Programmer Comments Please- our County eithier stupid or lying I think : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I'm only a PC user but have a couple specific questions after attending our city's first y2k task force meeting.

The county rep said in some cases they are accepting vendor certification. The specific example he gave was Siemen switches. Do any of you folks have any testing experience with these?

Secondly when asked about the possibility of contaminated data causing any problems with the county computers (which are guaranteed 100% remediated tested etc according to this fella) he indicated that editor programs are the gatekeepers that keep incorrect data from being transferred.

If the data is supposed to contain x# bytes and the incoming stream has x plus 1 the program will automatically shut down therefore no corruption would be possible.

Course it seems to me if this were true just the constant shutting down of the program would be a poroblem in and of itself but what do I know?

Any technical insight would be greatly appreciated.

This guy hit every block on the checklist as to pat answers. There were many reps from the neighborhood asso and I don't think they were buying but more specific info would help them make their risk assessments.

The county's biggest focus was to "combat" the gloom and doomers. If you want to store more than 3-7 days of supplies you were an nimplied doomer- sad.

Many thanks,


-- EC (, March 18, 1999


Don't worry about your city/county business computer systems, unless they directly affect the availability of (in order):

1. water/sewage
2. fire/ambulance services
3. police

Your city officials don't know any more than anyone else overall, so don't take their 3-7 days prep recommendation as gospel. Amount of prep should be a personal decision. You don't have to advertise your plans.

-- Codejockey (, March 18, 1999.

Yes, gatekeeper programs will make sure that no wrongly configured data stream will contaminate. And no gatekeeper program will be able to tell if the data itself is correct or incorrect. Because it could be incorrect not in database formats, but in actual values, even database auto checking routines for incoming data will not catch incorrect values.

-- Mitchell Barnes (, March 18, 1999.


In Userspeak that translates as:

"Data calculated incorrectly, using a 2 digit year for example, giving a numerical but incorrect answer (like 5 years old not 95) or - 2 years old, will still arive, and contaminate the database"

chuck, who had to learn Userspeak a LONG time ago

-- Chuck, a night driver (, March 18, 1999.

Your fire and police will possibly be on two separate computer aided dispatch systems. These should be upgraded or replaced if they are not Y2K compliant (probably weren't).

Most cities/counties seem focused on the IT aspects-- this is in line with "minimal" problem expectations that reigned up to 3 months ago, and also in line with minimization of costs.

Cities/counties also seem not to regard data encoding interface problems as worthy of note or significant (not good).

I think the cities/counties/states are now falling for the "panic is #1 problem" line being put out by the feds these days. They/we are being steered into a leadership vacuum (not good).

-- Ann Y Body (annybody@nowhere.disorg), March 18, 1999.

Odds are local gov't has neither the expertise nor financial resources to do other than they are telling you. They have to take manuf certifications because they don't have the talent on staff to do otherwise and they don't have cash reserves or voter support to do a tax levy to get "consultants" who claim to know which end is up.

Odds are they are doing the best they can with what they have. Heck those folks are friends and neighbors - they have family too...


-- john hebert (, March 20, 1999.

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