Y2K it Finally happen to me, quite funny in fact .....

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Yea, it finally happened to me, while shopping at my local small town hardware store getting tar sealant for my new basement, well here's the list; 5 gal roof &foundation coating $13.70 ea

12' 6 mil black poly $4.45 ea

9"super/fab rollers $1.85 ea actually two of these

Pole for roller $3.00 ea

Subtotal $77.81 sales tax $4.67 total $82.48 amt tend 460718.17 change 460635.69 cash

I paused and asked the girl about it and she said OH,it's been happening all week ,it's that Y2K stuff. I then asked her if we needed to go to the bank so I could get my change in cash, she laughed, so did I sorta !

Too bad I couldn't act upon this and get my change in cash !


-- Furie (furieart@dnet.net), March 24, 1999


Furie, how much did you actually tender? 85? 90? 100?

I'm trying to figure out what the software was doing.

-- Native de-bugger

-- Lisa (math@problems.fun), March 25, 1999.

Looks like human error to me.

-- doubt it's Y2K related (Y2k?@not.related), March 25, 1999.

Looks like bullshit to me, paranoid bullshit

-- (who care @nymore.com), March 25, 1999.

No, people, it's not human error, if Furie is relating the facts.

I never said it was Y2K stuff. I just wanted to know the tendered amount, because, as well all know here, bugs are ultimately based on math problems.

460718.17 - 460635.69 = 82.48, the total amount of the sale, so we have something to work with, here.

-- Lisa (lisa@sheez.now), March 25, 1999.


I think that store has a moral and legal obligation to give you your change...every last penny! :>)

(Thanks for sharing this.)


I'd like to know *why* this happened. Thanks for being willing to figure it out! :>)

-- Scarlett (ohara@tara.net), March 25, 1999.

I posted a funny thing that happened to me so all can relate to similiar things to look for. To Lisa ; I gave them a $100.00 bill for the change if that will help.

To who cares; apparently you view things differently than those of us here at this forum. I posted this item because it was a funny event to me and the girl at the hardware store. You don't love your mother do you ???

Scarlett; I only wish I could get my change from the reciept. Too small of town to come up with that kind of cash... :)


-- Furie (furieart@dnet.net), March 25, 1999.

It's obvious that the checker miskeyed the amount tendered.

-- ... (.@...), March 26, 1999.

"she said OH,it's been happening all week ,"

OK, so maybe it's a training issue.

-- Lisa (.@ .), March 26, 1999.

Right difference in amounts, suddenly began - but not before "this week", regularly happening - looks like a computer bug (Y2K or program error - who cares), smells like a bug, acts like a bug, probably is a bug.

The nice part of the problem here is that the number in the response is so grossly wrong that it could not be used or misunderstood. If the umber was"off" by only a little - particularly in credit card or debit card automatic tranactions THAT ARE NOT carefully checked - you just sent your bank a debit transaction of 460,635.69 - or worse: 635.69 - and didn't know it until 15 or 20 other transactions in your account have failed and bounced your checks all over the county.

Now, multiply your difficulty by 120 million accounts who have bounced checks, and by 30 million small businesses that didn't get paid the right amount.

-- Robert A Cook, PE (Kennesaw, GA) (cook.r@csaatl.com), March 26, 1999.

It could be the cash register's keyboard is dirty...I've seen it before.

-- ... (not@bug.atall), March 26, 1999.

Hey, there's a thing called a "z" reading that retailers use to create accounting entries into the ledger.

If these huge numbers are actually used in sales numbers, that's a monstrous problem which, you'd think, would have been fixed by now.

More likely it's a printing bug. Problem is, it's not random BS numbers, remember, 460718.17 - 460635.69 still EQ 82.48, the amt. of sale.

Maybe tax is a factor - ruptured tax tables. I swear I'm going to fix this problem - I just have my own, job-related accounting bugs I'm working on just this minute.

Robert, any ideas?

-- Lisa (maybe@maybe.not), March 26, 1999.

duh...if you have total 82.48 and you enter 460718.17 as amt. tendered, of course you're going to get 460635.69 as change...still looks like a dirty keyboard, keying error, or stupid checker to me.

-- . (dumbchecker@register.duh), March 26, 1999.

The first lawsuit won regarding Y2K involved a cash register system that kept repeatedly crashing. I'll find the link for you shortly.

My business could not process credit cards expiring in 2000 and beyond until the software upgrade was sent to me by my merchant service company. I was never notified there would be an upgrade until my company was faced with a card to process. We could have requested the upgrade, had they let us know our software was non-compliant or had the "chance" of being non-compliant.

It took a week and a half to get the software upgrade. I would not put in falsified data just to process orders. That compromises the integrity of any record keeping that people - like YOU, -- all consumers expect from companies.

The next time a credit card terminal won't accept your card with expiration date 2000+ and the clerk offers to put in 1999 just to process your order, ask her how many other transactions are falsified by their company.

Mr. K
***see small companies not being able to upgrade or fix embedded systems for many months, if they wait until 2000 (wait for FOF)***

-- Mr. Kennedy (here@work.now), March 26, 1999.

Two slight revisions here:

We could have requested the upgrade EARLIER, had they let us know our software was non-compliant or had the "chance" of being non-compliant. (and by the way, this happened in the middle of 1998)

The next time a credit card terminal won't accept your card with expiration date 2000+ and the clerk offers to put in 1999 just to process your order, ask him/her how many other transactions are falsified by their company. an attempt to be P.C.

Mr. k

-- Mr. Kennedy (y2kPCfixes@MotivatedSeller.com), March 26, 1999.

dumbchecker, you really think the cashier just went bananas on the numeric keypad? a fit of epilepsy?

And you think she wouldn't (or Furie, even), notice that monster figure in the LED window? Wouldn't she have freaked if "Change Due: 460635.69" was her directive?

Printing bug: that's my story and I'm stickin' to it. Just have to figure out the equation.

-- Lisa (nein@.nyet.nope), March 26, 1999.

Yep, stickin' to it.

-- Lisa (off@off.off), March 26, 1999.

This is all hearsay anyway. Furie hasn't even explained it very well.

-- still think it's a (dumbchecker@cash.register), March 26, 1999.

I can't wait until "dumbchecker" gets a phone bill for $203,004.20

Mr. K
***knows you'll probably pay the ones that are only $20 or $30 off....you won't catch it unless you look closely***

-- Mr. Kennedy (looking@your.bills), March 26, 1999.

Besides, dumbchecker, when keys stick, you get the same numbers repeatedly, i.e. 443322.77.

-- Lisa (lisa@work.workin'_on_A/P), March 26, 1999.


Suspect the only way this is Y2K is if they installed a buggy "compliant" version of their register software. And this bug is likely not date related.

First looks like they ripped you off - adding up gave me a sub of 77.80. Who's pocketting the extra penny? Knowing your sales tax rate will let you verify if they got that right or if they slapped an extra 1/2 percent there...

Whenever I see a problem in numeric field beginning with 4, I think of the classic numeric initialize with blanks error where your value is 4040404040.... But subtracting the 100 from 460718.17 make the initial value of the tendered field at 460618.17. Somewhat puzzling, unless the tenedered field is accumulating and it increases with each trancaction. In that case a classic initialization error would be compounded by stupid programming error.

If you want a conspiracy theory to explain it, we could hypothesize that the software is written by Rip the Customer Off software company. And the errors are intentional, so the merchant gets to pocket extra money from intentional subtle errors that are masked by error so obvious that everyone laughs and never examines the transaction for other errors. How's that for cynical?

Good Luck jh

-- john hebert (jt_hebert@hotmail.com), March 26, 1999.

"But subtracting the 100 from 460718.17 make the initial value of the tendered field at 460618.17. Somewhat puzzling, unless the tenedered field is accumulating and it increases with each trancaction."

Very likely, John. And verifiable, too.... Although that uncleared array probably wouldn't represent the $$ for just that one POS terminal, but sales for the whole store for the week.

Furie, go back and buy 1.00 worth of something. Get the receipt. Then buy another 1.00 something (carpenter's pencil, whatever) while you're still in line and report back the figures on both receipts.

Then we'll call their IT department and they can send John a check!!!

-- Lisa (good@work.john), March 26, 1999.

Gees' I didn't think such a small funny thing would cause such a problem. Sorry I posted the item, But I will go back and buy some more stuff Saturday March 27, to see if it will happen again.

Hey dumbchecker, I explained the situation as it happened, it was funny to me and I posted it, perhaps your name should be "dumbchecker". Were you there? No! So what is written by me is true, I don't need to post anything not true. You must be one of those not allowed into Disneyworld !!!

Lisa, I'll go back to the same store and see if the problem comes up again, I tthink it could be from giving her a $100.00 bill, what do you think???


-- Furie (furieart@dnet.net), March 26, 1999.


What's the latest hardware store report? On your $100 question, hmmm. Nothing comes to mind - but anything is possible. I suspect Lisa's suggestion of a couple small purchases and a buck would be easier on the pocketbook if you were simply curious. If my suspicion of the mechanism of the problem was correct, you'd expect to see the problem across the board. But hey, if you need supplies, the $100, 10, 1 should all work.

Sorry for delay on this, loosing track of all the threads - oh no, maybe its because my brain isn't Y2K compliant - What an unnerving thought - non compliant systems designed because humans are actually a noncompliant design. 9 month till obsolescense... jh

-- john hebert (jt_hebert@hotmail.com), April 05, 1999.

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