My guess about the 28th: An announcement that requires all equipment to be shut down for the rollowver. : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I've been thinking about all this talk about industry shutting down systems, and it struck me that although this is actually a very sound concept. My guess is that there will be an announcment on the 28th that requires all industry to shut everything possible down.

I had posted before that my guess is that most embedded chips are tracking time for a relatively short duration - i.e. 1 sec to 30 days without too much concern for the actual date, although the date is needed for accuate calculations. Once all chips storing dates and times that are used in calculations have moved to the 00 year time frame, the calculations will be fine.

The problem is during the transition period of 1 sec to 30 days which could cause any sort of failure (including destruction of equipment) while the calucations are incorrect. However if all equipment is turned off and then on after the rollover and then on again, the clocks will have rolled forward and will re-initialize the times stored in the chips with the 00 year times.

This is where I think the "3 day" storm comes in, because it will take the grid about 3 days to re-adjust and deal with all the equipment comming back on line. Also I think the grid itself may be shut down. This is why the military will then be out. Because all security systems will of course be off-line and gangs will have a real field day, so interstates etc will probably all be locked down to prevent movement during this time.

Of course the shut downs would have to begin early on the 31st so they can be complete by 7:00pm EST and 4:00pm PST because the grid runs on GMT.

There are obviously many problems but as we are stuck between a rock and a hard place we have the "simple" decision of choosing the lesser of two evils. I think this would be far less catastrophic than letting the train rumble on.

Comments? (almost sounds like the solution from Tom Clancy's "Debt of Honor")

-- Interested Spectator (is@the_ring.side), December 23, 1999


Makes perfect sense. What the hell did you say?

-- (huh@what.hmmm), December 23, 1999.

Then why announce it? Might as well demand that the sun rise tomorrow.

-- Servant (, December 23, 1999.


I said turn equipment off before the rollover and turn it on afterwards. It won't fix everything but can eliminate a lot of problems. Comprende?


Its not a question of why announce it, its a question of making a directive requiring everybody to shut down in order to reduce the effect of false date calculations in embedded chips. Its not a "perfect" solution. Many systems may have trouble re-starting. The grid may not be entirely shut down, although large parts may be. And database software still needs to be fixed as they store dates permenantly. But I think for a very large chunk of embedded chips, this would eliminate rollover problems.

-- Interested Spectator (is@the_ring.side), December 23, 1999.

What happens to the grid while all of this is going on? Nothing at all will go wrong (i.e. things getting fried)?

-- Larry (, December 23, 1999.

I understand the Pres. will speak on the 28th but I have not heard a set time for his grand entrance. Does anyone know of his schedule for that appearance ?

-- Rob (, December 23, 1999.

Three days of no electric, and watch New York City, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, for that matter all major cities go up in flames with the rioting, looting and whatever else might happen.

Hello! Here comes the military, to settle things down. Here comes the "National Emergency."

-- Richard (, December 23, 1999.

This is unlikely. The power grid can be affected by a drop in demand just as much as a spike in demand. If everybody shuts down, it's going to have to a be a very well coordinated event. I just don't see it happening.

-- Just Another Lurker (, December 23, 1999.

Well, it was just a thought, but for some reason I'm getting the impression more and more companies plan to do just this on their own.

-- Interested Spectator (is@the_ring.side), December 23, 1999.

If factories are shut down for 3 days look at all the lost revenue the power companies will lose. I wonder what three days of lost production will do to the inventory supply. And, since this may not have happened before, gearing these factories up again may not be a simple process. I see prices shooting up to make up for lost revenues and massive layoffs.

-- just a guess (justaguess@justaguesss.xcom), December 23, 1999.

But this may be better than loosing revenue for weeks if equipment gets trashed and needs to be replaced. Yes it may be difficult to restart some of these plants but it is an interesting decision. What would you do: Leave everything on with a fairly good chance that everything will be messed up (depending on your particular equipment etc) until repairs etc can be done, or shut it down and restart with a much better chance that everything will work after a day or two of babysitting the startup?

-- Interested Spectator (is@the_ring.side), December 23, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ