***Michael Hyatt*** - Don't Bet On A 'Silver Bullet' ---greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
--- [Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only] FRIDAY, DECEMBER 17, 1999 By Michael Hyatt
Don't bet on a 'silver bullet'
Every couple of weeks, it seems, the press reports that someone has found a solution to Y2K. When you read the article, you quickly discover that the so-called solution is simply one more software tool designed to automate some aspect of Y2K software remediation. There are literally thousands of these tools available today. While many of them are effective in speeding up the process of Y2K repairs, none of them are a cure-all, and they certainly aren't a "silver bullet."
The fact is a silver bullet is impossible. This is true for at least three reasons.
1. There are too many computer languages. According to Jeff Jinnett, a Year 2000 expert, in his testimony before Congress:
There is no technological silver bullet for the Year 2000 computer problem. The reason for this is that although silver bullet technologies may be developed to automate and speed up corrective work on certain software languages, there may be as many as 500 different software languages in current use and automated corrective tools will not be developed for all of these languages (emphasis added).
Worse, although these 500 different software languages may currently be in use, many of them are no longer understood. The programmers are either retired or dead.
2. The source code is often missing. The source code for many programs no longer exists. Without the source code -- the language that humans read and write as opposed to the compiled code that machines read and write -- programmers can't make any changes to the program. Their only options are to rewrite the program from scratch or to try and "de-compile" it, which is messy and often inaccurate.
3. You usually can't reprogram embedded chips. Even if you could develop a software tool that would address the problem with all 500 computer languages, and even if you had the source code, a silver bullet could not be used on embedded chip systems. That's because most of these chips cannot be reprogrammed; they must be replaced if they are found to be non-compliant.
-- snooze button (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 17, 1999
Hey Michael... (Hopefully someone will snag his attention to this)
Oopsss... I posted that "Silver Bullet" story here yesterday but go take a look at the linked Picture in that thread ... this explains it all
Y2K --- SILVER BULLET FINALLY DISCOVERED ... From the PNS Newswire (Dick Moody, email@example.com, 1999-12-16)
It was NOT real. It was a fake PR news release designed to get you to go to the linked page to see Moe Howard (3 Stooges) reading a book on Windoze 95 made easy or something like that...It's a great pic for a Y2K laugh... I never dreamed anyone would casually pass it by and think it real, though, and then write a column on Silver Bullets.
Sorry for any misunderstandings though. However, the pic IS funny. Or as Curly would say... Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk,Nyuk.
-- DickMoody (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 17, 1999.