Y2K Marks the END of RELIABILITY and PREDICTABILITY for computerized tasks.greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
THE BIGGEST LOSS we face as a world seeded with so many potentially malfunctioning embedded chips and programs interwoven into the fabric our infrastructure and society is the absolute loss of the ability to trust or predict if or how those operations will perform from day to day. What will perish IS OUR TRUST IN ANYTHING GENERATED OR CONTROLLED BY A COMPUTER as we begin an endless battle to straighten myriads of computer errors which threaten to collapse our personal as well as business records. And the errors will not stop or wait till we clear up one before more arrive daily faster than we can get through to someone with the will or power to correct them. Straightening the nightmare will consume all our free time for personal business and a great deal of our productive work hours for business snafu's. I dread what is coming even if power and phones do not go out.
-- Ann Fisher (email@example.com), April 20, 1999
I see that as the biggest gain. Maybe what we will begin is an endless striving to learn more about ourselves, our planet, and our own self-sufficiency. Maybe what we will gain is the ability to look back on Y2K and go, "We blew it. We paid the price. We learned. We're doing better now."
PJ in TX
-- PJ Gaenir (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 20, 1999.
Dear PJ in TX Its nice to see your hatred for technology posted on the Internet.
-- k (email@example.com), April 20, 1999.
What an interesting comment. You should show that to your therapist. Is a positive look at getting in touch with reality and the world around you, necessarily an emotional "hate" of machines? That's a very strong word. I don't hate anything. And I fail to see where you get such an assumption based on my comments.
I can afford to be optimistic. It's 2:30am. I am usually a miserable grouch about everything at this time so I thought I'd give the locals a glimpse of another side. :-)
(And that's only SOME of the people living in my body, hahaha.)
Seeing as how I'm a web developer on the computer a good 11+ hours a day, hating technology would be a stretch for me. And in truth, I want to live in Star-Trek land. I think it would be nice though if humanity survived long enough to get to the 23rd century. And if some common sense and "in touch with the planet" doesn't happen soon, we might not.
For those who can only see in black and white, ignore the following shade of gray:
There is difference between using technology and being used by technology.
There is a difference between using technology to boost you higher vs. depending on technology without which you fall to nothing.
I think for the USA at least, the good news might be that on a scale of 1 to 10, we'll be all over the map in different areas, and might average out at a 5. Enough to keep (or eventually regain) critical infrastructure and needed technology. Yet serious enough to make us think -- and hard -- before we let ourselves get so far from "reality" and so hypnotized to the false facade of machine generated, stores-hand-it-to-me "civilization" that we ever risk our own or our children's future on a machine again.
It will SUCK for living in it. But you know what? I can't change that. I can only prepare as best I can. I've spent nearly a year depressed and frightened about it. I'm done with that now. I am going to be optimistic. I am going to enjoy my life and I am going to look at the coming times as an "adventure" that I chose to be born to experience. My little girl depends on me as the strength and the provider. I'll not show her a cowering terrified sheep. I will teach her honor and grace under fire and a little altruism mixed with a lot of realism. I've decided that. This disgustingly polly optimism I have lately is just a symptom of these decisions.
PJ in TX
-- PJ Gaenir (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 20, 1999.
PJ - gotta agree with you - the elimination of blind faith in technology is something for which our society is long overdue. Contrary to the troll kiddy's post, one does not need to hate technology in order to hold it suspect and require it to prove it's usefulness. The results of not doing so include current news events such as the genetic development of 'terminator' seeds, and the ongoing attempts by the current federal administration to push through various eugenics programs under the guise of 'health care'.
skepticism is healthy - especially in terms of dealing with technology.
-- Arlin H. Adams (email@example.com), April 20, 1999.
Way to go, PJ!
As you said:
"before we let ourselves get so far from 'reality' and so hypnotized to the false facade of machine generated, stores-hand-it-to-me 'civilization' "
That's calling it right on the nose.
And Ann, what caught me was:
"more arrive daily faster than we can get through to someone with the will or power to correct them. Straightening the nightmare will consume all our free time".
Just going through the rollover with fewer bank accounts and credit cards and things owed us and library books to return (I already had my first "year-overdue" notice from a reserved book I hadn't picked up yet -- not from y2k but from their mis-entry of the year in the request I had even made online)
I mean, how many ongoing bureaucratic snafus does it take to wear YOU down? I'm just out of a small business of four years that had me on the ropes -- limited mental functioning -- after the first year (I admit -- birth of a child in there and its effect on wife had a lot to contribute to my condition).
Nearly two years of it battling with AT&T billing mistakes, month after month wore me down.
IS THERE A BILLING FEE "agreement" we can send them (banks, utilities, etc.) that is legally enforceable, kind of like the ones to "junk telemarketers" that has proven collectible? Kind of like, "you can waste my time, but only at $100 per hour".
-- jor-el (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 20, 1999.
Though I am not really "looking forward" to the problems that will be created by the roll-over, I also am going to deal with it as an adventure and work for a better future. My hope is that the future will be slower for my children and grandchildren. Life today can be too fast with so little time for what should really count. Once the initial troubles are taken care of, I hope we can get down to the important things like building better relationships. I am ashamed to say that I do not know my neighbors (1/4 mile away) because there always seems to be something I need to do after work and before bedtime.
-- winna (??@??.com), April 20, 1999.
Good points PJ!
Technology can either be used for empowering or controlling ... same as information.
Life is always an "adventure" if we live it that way. Maybe we'll collectively learn the upcoming lessons, rather than just individually and just in small numbers.
Y2K is also just the next in line of a series of upcoming life lessons ... on a planetary scale.
Question is ... can we pass the test with elegance, or collapse of our emerging humanity?
-- Diane J. Squire (email@example.com), April 20, 1999.
Well put, PJ! Carmichael (again) on technology -- as we know it, of course:
"Obviously y2k is a "technical issue" as well as a social issue and a management issue. How do we deal with something that is all three? Currently the technical has to do with fixing and contingencies. Management has to do with perceptions and looking good. Society has to do with survival and is not invited into the conversation."
"...y2k is part of the whole system of governance, technology, money and corporations. These are all part of the texture of law and indeed create the "moral ethos" in which we live. The roles we play in "free enterprise" are not well integrated with the roles we need for "social responsibility". Citizens have become consumers. Elders have become retirees. Leaders have become takers. The great roles, statesman, philosopher, poet, saint (Ghandi and Simone Weil were in this century, but no more) are hard to play in a counting-room farce."
(from his Y2KWEEKX week 37 issue 32 April 19, 1999)
-- Tom Carey (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 20, 1999.
When did we have reliability and predictability in the first place?
-- vbProg (vbProg@MicrosoftAndIntelSuck.com), April 21, 1999.