Re: TW role in Y2K issues

Subject: Re: TW role in Y2K issues
From: Steve Fouts <stefou -at- ESKIMO -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 7 May 1997 14:10:58 -0700

Eric Haddock, Q.P. <eric -at- engagenet -dot- com> wrote:
> Maybe I missed something about year 2000 but I thought its effect was
>contained in antiquated mainframe software which... [snip]

Most IBM compatible PCs are incapable of handling the change.
So any PC software that uses the system clock to tell it what
day it is could be in a world of hurt. Interestingly, Mac OS
was designed in 1984 to correctly handle dates until the middle
of the next century.

> I don't see any that apply to technical writers in general. The problem
>isn't ubiquitous so its effect will be only in certain companies and
>certain situations.

You are both right and wrong. I don't see it as a TW issue either. It is
almost entirely an IS issue. But it is ubiqitous. The problem is that no
one has any idea just how much of the program logic built into various
bits of software is going to be affected.

Our own 2K team where I work circulated a questionaire regarding year
2000 issues. My whole involvement in it was in suggesting a few date
representations that were better for international markets.

Beyond that, I get to do a few updates as the programs switch from YY
to YYYY, and the rest of the headache is very firmly in IS. Just where
are we going to find space in a packed data array to store the
century? Sure glad it's not my job.

_______________ _____
/ ___ __/__\ \ / / _\ Steve Fouts stefou -at- eskimo -dot- com
/___ \| | ___\ | / __\ "The best time for planning a book
/ / \ | \ / \ is while you are doing dishes."
/_______/__|_______\_/________\ -- Agatha Christie

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