Cook County Blurb (Illinois) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Taken from Cook County News: (sorry no link)

County Preparing for Year 2000

A homeowner pays taxes but nevertheless receives a delinquency notice. An eviction takes place when a cancellation order is not received timely. A hospital is unable to replenish its drug inventory, endangering its patients. Picnic permits disappear from the record, spoiling the fun of the event. These and other horror stories are what concern over computers handling dates beginning with January 1, 2000 is all about. It is better known as the Y2K problem.

Cook County continues to prepare for possible Y2K problems. A Year 2000 Steering Committee reports that the County presently is at 80% percent compliance on software. These critical software applications drive the County's core business processes, court, financial, real estate and many more.

The County is at 99% compliance in relation to hardware. Hardware consists of the centralized mainframe, operation systems, and desktop computers that use software. The County will spend some $14 million to bring its systems up to 100 % compliance by New Year's Day.

Certain projects, such as the County Treasurer's new cashiering system, will not be fully implemented until November. The Steering Committee is closely monitoring these systems. The Committee is also creating contingency plans to ensure a successful transition for operations in the millennium.

-- Deborah (, November 18, 1999


"The County is at 99% compliance in relation to hardware. Hardware consists of the centralized mainframe, operation systems, and desktop computers that use software."

If they have 1000 computers, including the "mainframe", and all BUT the mainframe are compliant, would that be 99% compliance?

Scary thought huh?

-- CygnusXI (, November 18, 1999.

Isn't it amazing how many organizations can be at 99%? That last 1% must be nearly impossible. :)

-- wondering (wondering@nottoo.far), November 18, 1999.

No date for this "news"?

Hmmmmn. 99% compliant - at last! - but only for hardware.

Means they have inventories everything, and have replaced everything "known" to break. Good.

Absolutely barren of specific, verifiable data (numbers and program names and the services these programs and databases provide!) on the software side. "Until November" as a complete date, with ONLY 80% software complete - since it is now mid-November, with very few working days left - for "certain programs" leaves a LOT of wiggle room for the "announcer" to leave things unsaid.

And what is unsaid is very, very troubling. It takes 2-3 years to complete the typical year 2000 program for most companies and cities: NOBODY of any size anywhere has gotten done faster. IF 20% is left incomplete now - with 40 days to go, then 15-25% of their programs are likely to fail early next year: there simply isn't time to get the 20% done that is not finished.

It doesn't look good. If they were done, they certainly didn't say so - again, except for hardware. And by mentioning hardware, it appears to indicate that software is much further behind.

-- Robert A. Cook, PE (Marietta, GA) (, November 18, 1999.

Hi, Robert there wasn't a date mentioned. This is from a 'Cook County News' mailing I received (this week) from the County Commissioners office.

Also, I have heard that Cook Co. is the largest County in the country (if it is not, it's close ;-) fifteen million, does not sound like very much of a budget & I remember Aurelia Puchinski requesting an increase in her budget for replacing computers in her office. There was much screaming that she didn't need it. Considering my tax dollars are paying to fix this, I hope fifteen mil is plenty...but like you said if they were finished they would certainly be happy to shout it from the rooftops. (sigh) We'll find out soon enough.

-- Deborah (, November 18, 1999.

received this week means it's up to date: certainly "officially" accurate as of November 1-5 timeframe.

Oh hell. If so: they are in deep trouble: 80% done - by their optimistic estimate. (Most software projects don't get around to admitting they are in schedule trouble until 3 weeks prior to delivery = this means that the 80% complete figure is based on people reporting what "hope to" finish, not what has actually been done.

I don't remember Cobb County's figure: I think 8-10 million for a county of just at 800,000 that did actually get through.

If so, 15 million for that many people doesn't sound like enough to get the job done, although you cannot scale things directly by any means. Converting a database isn't significantly more expensive when the database is larger.

However, more people means more equipment and services in more different places that each have to be fixed ....

-- Robert A. Cook, PE (Marietta, GA) (, November 18, 1999.

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