Proved: If *ZERO* remediation had been done - the results would look similar : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

o.k., there might be a few more "19100" and "1900" dates showing up. Big deal.

A *few* more embedded type failures might have occured (so there would be a few more "not-y2k failures" around.) Big deal.

A few more people would have received erroneous bills, 100 year late charges on videos, etc. In other words, a few more good guffaws before the 19 year old manager at the video store simply deletes the $100,000 dollar fine. Big deal.

Here's the proof: 'nothing' appears to have happened in even the most woefully unprepared countries. Countries that essentially did *nothing* appear the same as the US. The results "look the same".


Was Italy as well prepared as the United States? No. But the two countries look the same. Why? Because IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR Y2K EVER TO HAVE APPEARED TO BE ANYTHING.

Were Russia, Ukraine, Venezuela, China, Vietnam, Egypt as well prepared as the US? No, but they *appear* the same. Why? Because IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR Y2K EVER TO HAVE APPEARED TO BE ANYTHING.

Will the various preparedness levels of countries ever show up? Only two possible answers:

No: y2k was a hoax

Yes: later

Anyone who claims to believe that y2k was 'fixed' really believes that it was a hoax. It flat out has not been fixed. That is a *fact*. The only teneble polly position is that fixing y2k doesn't really matter. And, yes, so far that *appears* to be the case.

I could write more but the analysis is so obvious. Y2k has not been fixed. Either it was a hoax (little or no impact was ever possible) or it will still impact.

Hamasaki was and is right. Embeddeds were (more or less) a hoax. I didn't know that, so I have a couple of Aladdins and a lot of rice on hand that I probably won't need. Y2k is not a hoax. I still expect, as a best-case outcome, a significant worldwide recession. I will not rule out a severe depression, but that's primarily because I do not believe the debt/leverage of the world allows a simple recession just as I do not believe it is possible for our 'bubble' to gently correct.

If, at the end of the day, Italy, Venezuela and China all do as well as the US - then I will conclude that y2k was a hoax. I will never conclude that it was 'fixed' - because it wasn't.

-- Me (, January 04, 2000


interesting conclusion.

I have one question though:

How long do you think a major corporation will wait to announce that they have been "bitten" by the "Y2K Bug" so severely that it will negatively affect their ability to do business?

-- plonk! (, January 04, 2000.

They'll announce any problems right away. But first all the top execs will buy puts on the stock.

-- Me (, January 04, 2000.

Hold onto your Aladdins and rice, the current economic situation is not sustainable. This is true for all 'socialized' countries, including Britian and Europe. When the powers-that-be decide to take it down, they will take it down. Apparently, they weren't ready on January 1. They will replace it with the New World Order, complete with a new economic system and currency. Right now, there is a continuing struggle concerning exactly who is going to run it! That may result in another World War.

-- y2kobserver (, January 04, 2000.

Yes, I know and cannot disagree. It would appear on the surface that the lack of events simply defies all logic. However, I never have had a clear picture of what this was going to 'look' like with the only exception being multiple simultanious failures (that would have produced a pretty vivid snapshot!)

Once that scenerio was removed.....everybody jumped ship. WHY? The scenerio has now become *less* predictable. We all waited years and months for the due date, but abandoned our conclusions that the problem even existed within DAYS? My head says "whewww" but my gut is still telling me, "hold on to your pantyhose, baby, it ain't over yet".

-- Will continue (, January 04, 2000.


Good logic but what about the failures that occurred when folks were testing systems early on? Your logic doesn't account for that.

The real PITA for me is that there isn't enough information to really assess the true impact of y2k--not even on a strategic level. Immediate disasters did not occur, will the latent broken code bite us near future? I don't know.

When in doubt, be conservative.

-- (, January 04, 2000.

Regarding failures in testing, there were *some*, but not many high- profile that I can think of.

I originally considered my 'theory' after 9-9-99 failures did not appear (anywhere). Since certain countries admitted to having *begun* work around June, it was clear that they had not 'remediated' such dates in 3 months. It was never a problem.

The excuse being used by some in media and government is that, though Venezuela, for example, did not even *start* until sometime after March and did much less work than the U.S., they actually got it all done because they didn't really have much to do, as it turns out. Rubbish.

Time will tell. Hamasaki expected *zero* impact from the embeddeds and still thinks that it could all "tip over". I thought he was an embedded polly, but of course he was right. He was wrong on rates (that cobol slingers would be saying "stick 'em up"). No big deal - I think a lot of work went to India - too bad for his fellow professionals and too bad for us I think. If Cory is right, then I believe we will see a depression starting by summer? Note that Jim Lord predicted the most severe y2k impact would be felt 9-18 months out. Yardeni also consistently emphasized supply chain problems as his greatest concern (so how he could concede 'error' at this point is beyond me).

Again, time will tell. I don't need to be a doomer or a polly. I don't need to *do* anything. Time will pass and I will see.

-- Me (, January 04, 2000.


Sounds like wisdom. Good for you!

-- (, January 04, 2000.

Depression has always been my best case scenerio. Of course I've always had a thing for tin foil.


-- Will continue (, January 04, 2000.


Do you think the government would spend major $$$ on a hoax? And just to prove the point...

Today, Lou Waters on CNN reported that the government (I forget which department) conducted a little experiment: They didn't remediate 3 computer systems on purpose (to be used as "controls") and all 3 crashed on Jan. 1st. Amazing results for a problem that doesn't exist.

Sorry, but don't have the time now to go the CNN site (or anywhere else) to look for the full report. If anyone else can find it and post it here or provide a link...

-- sandy (sandy@wait&, January 05, 2000.

There is a third answer: Y2K was real, but it's effects are innocuous. The most honest and intelligent answer that anyone could ever give on Y2K effects was, "Nobody knows what will happen."

Y2K computer bugs were feared to be all over, including such worrisome places as nuclear power plants. Indeed, since the rollover Y2K bugs have been found there, but they were very minor. And, taking a global view, it apparently did not matter whether a plant spent lots of money and time or no money and time, the result was the same: No big deal.

To summarize: Y2K was real, it represented a large potential threat, time and money was spent to fix it in some places on some things but not all places on all things, it really was not fixed and the world entered 2000 woefully unprepared, but it didn't really matter because it never really mattered. At least, so far (day #5) it doesn't matter....

-- King of Spain (madrid@aol.cum), January 05, 2000.

I was involved with testing the systems at our shop for Y2K readiness. The testing uncovered Y2K-related problems and we fixed them. I imagine the same was true for countless other companies. We never reported, as far as I knew, our results to anyone but our company's CEO.

The fact that many people are unaware of how many problems were encountered and fixed seems to be the result of not publishing the tests and the results. There was no umbrella group that required us to report our results and we didn't. Neither did the majority of companies, I imagine. But, there were problems.

I agree there was a Y2K hoax. It consisted of three parts:

1. The Y2K problem is huge and will cause major infrastructure failures

Our testing revealed that problems associated with Y2K were minor. There were problems, but they were easily fixed. I've had more problems due to a system upgrade than due to Y2K.

2. The Y2K problem can't be fixed

I found that proclamation amusing. I encountered it while we were working on doing just that. There were many people who believed this and didn't want to believe that the problems could be fixed. Never quite understood why this was believed, but it was.

3. Reports from companies indicating compliance are lies:

Most companies had set a deadline of mid-1999 for all systems to be tested, fixed, and re-tested. Reports started to filter out indicating we were in pretty good shape regarding Y2K readiness. Some of the Y2K 'doom and gloom prognosticators' called these reports lies.

For anyone actively working on getting ready for Y2K it was apparent by the fall of 1999 that enough testing had been done to state we were in pretty good shape and were ready. I don't understand why this was disbelieved.

Some people have concluded that because the countries who were supposed to be non-compliant had no problems then, Y2K was a total non-issue or fabrication. Based on our test results I believe these countries ran into the same problems we did. They could have fixed them easily with no serious disruption of services. The fact that we haven't heard any problems reported by these countries is not surprising. There would be no need for anyone to be aware of the sorts of problems I saw.

Y2K was a problem that needed to be fixed. It was never what it ultimately became. The problem took on a life of its own beyond anything I've ever seen. I lay the blame for the hysteria at the doorstep of the 'doom and gloom experts' who sold books and were given a lot of publicity.

-- Chris Josephson (, January 05, 2000.

A lot of the embedded situation came down to one quote I heard from someone in the power industry: "We just don't know what really is going to happen to all of them when they reach that point in time."

Looking at some of the precautions taken by the local power company, I'll take their assessment as being very logical and their actions to prepare for such an unknown with potentially serious outcomes as being prudent. And I'll find no fault with any individual who to such action at a personal level either. The alternative was to go into a potentially devastating situation with no preparations, an invite to sure disaster.


-- Wildweasel (, January 05, 2000.

Nobody who finished a remediation program anywhere, world-wide, claimed they "found nothing", "wasted their time," "wasted their money", or should have done something else with the time money and effort spent. Most needed more time, more money, and more effort than initially scheduled.

In every case, the company spokeperson claimed exactly opposite what you conclude.

No large company has publically admitted that they applied your theory (y2k-induced failures would not occur) - if you find one, please inform us. Those countries that did little - had little. And there is no publicaity of their failures - many of which are not apparent yet. You are restricting your view to the immediate "news-media" impact of power and telephones. Even financial errors would not be visible at this time to any but the programmers - if indeed they would know yet.

-- Robert A Cook, PE (Marietta, GA) (, January 05, 2000.

Chris Josephson is right on the money. Speaking as someone who actually worked on Y2K remediation at two different companies for periods of time over the last two years, I have to tell you that many problems were found, but they were very fixable. This is the nature of computer problems in general - It's nothing new. What you really have to understand is that we deal with problems and glitches all the time... I've noticed doomers commenting "how could you be so confident there would be no disruptions, you must be lying." The answer is really so simple that it might be hard to get across - I've seen computer problems professionally for years now, been so deeply involved with rollouts, system upgrades, platform changes, you name it, that I know how teams react when a major problem arises. We're paid to not freak out, basically. If you haven't really been close to the situation it's hard to describe it - do you go beserk if you run out of gas in your car? No, you're probably pretty calm about it, because the situation is not a big mystery to you and you've survived worse car-related problems in the past. This analogy is closer to the whole Y2K problem than you think.

I also personally know several IT people who were freaked out by Y2K - they were for the most part Cobol programmers (I'm Unix/Client-server mostly, but know some cobol.) I think they did a lot of good work in the past couple years, but a few of them were immersed a little too deeply in their world and mistook "My batch program could crash if I don't get through these 19000 lines of code" to be "the world will end ...". This might be because to them, that code was their world. And a lot of people listened to them and felt that this legitimized the hype. Once hype gets even a whiff of legitimacy, it feeds on itself, just like paranoia.

There is no big mystery why the Y2K problem turned out to be a non-event to those of us who were truly close to it. If you are still confused, realize that what you are seeing is just the results of a vast remedial effort as the clouds of misinformation and hype evaporate away.

-- Bemused (and_amazed@you.people), January 05, 2000.

You know, I'm a computer programmer. We had off on Monday. On Tuesday we came in, drank coffee, and talked about our New Year. Today is Wednesday and we are starting to get to work. Can't you pollys possibly wait a few months and then come back with all your Monday morning quarterbacking? We haven't hardly tried anything yet. Sheesh.

-- Amy Leone (, January 05, 2000.


Well, for one thing, most people involved in systems programming (like myself,) systems administration, systems support, application support, anything like that have been at work since probably Saturday morning, 1/1, at least to some degree (logged in from home, on call, etc.) So were talking about a signifigant portion of I.S. at almost all fortune 500 companies and major government agencies. We've been watching things carefully, things that have already been tested by us on Y2K warped systems in 1998-1999. I don't know how you were completely exempted from this and were able to sleep in until Wednesday morning if you really are a programmer, but it's possible, I guess, if you have absolutely nothing to do with critical or publicly visible systems.

Anyway, I keep seeing these analogies to football and how it's still early in the first quarter. As far as I, my co-workers here, and people I know in other IS departments WHO ACTUALLY WORKED CLOSELY ON Y2K ISSUES in 1999 are concerned, were pretty much watching the post-game show now. The game wasn't even close. (Don't worry, to extend the analogy, the polly's were offense and the doomers were defense on the same team. ;^)

-- Bemused (and_amazed@you.people), January 06, 2000.

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