Unofficial word from SSA: A-OK : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Unofficial word from US Social Security Administration (SSA): A-OK

For those of you with a direct interest in SSA...

No unexpected news here. Just got an email from my contact within SSA. This person worked over the weekend as part of SSA's Y2K team for their specific unit (however, this is not an IT person). Ran through many methodical tests of various systems. Reports that all major systems with which they work appear to be fully functional at this time. There were no show stoppers within their own unit (or any other unit that this person was aware of).

My contact did say that one minor application used to build some management reports failed under certain conditions - specifically, when the report included data that crosses the century boundry. But this is considered a very minor problem and will be dealt with in the standard fashion - it can easily be worked around until such time as it can be fully corrected.

It's still very early and this is anecdotal information at best - not any kind of official report. But I personally have very high confidence in this source with respect to SSA's internal systems. This person simply does not play 'blindly follow the leader'.

So, hats of to all the SSA personnel. It certainly appears at this time like SSA will experience only very minimal internal problems associated with Y2K. Of course, SSA has been the government's poster child for responsible Y2K management since the beginning, so this information should not come as a surprise to anyone.

-- Arnie Rimmer (, January 03, 2000


Those of us with retired parents are especially grateful to get this good news. Thanks for sharing...


-- Ed Yourdon (, January 03, 2000.

Cool! Not as many years to go before I'm getting those checks as there used to be ....

-- BigDog (, January 03, 2000.

thanks for the post Arnie..... Any word yet on any "Non-Mission Critical" components? Are these functional?, or headed for the scrap heap...

-- kevin (, January 03, 2000.

kevin: I have no information regarding overall 'non-mission-critical' readiness. I did not personally review the testing process so I really can't add much other than to say my source is feeling pretty confident at this point that any problems internal to SSA should be fairly minimal at this point and any that do occur should be able to be handled without taking any extreme measures. My source also has no information at this time with respect to SSA's multitude of vendors and outsourced support structure. However, I would hazard to guess at this point that, with their own house in order, external problems will be much easier to deal with. I know that contingencies for many potential problems were considered and planned for.

I do have a followup on the reporting app that was found to have a bug. It was in a commercial product called Infomaker as it attempting to query an Oracle database. The problem was tracked down to the "to_date ()" function call in the WHERE part of a data query. A recommended work-around that involves simply replacing the call to "to_date()" with an alternate function call "trunc()" has been issued to the various SSA field offices. Apparently, this work-around quickly corrects the problem.

-- Arnie Rimmer (, January 03, 2000.

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