Metrics ? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Hi All

I keep banging my shins on the term METRICS but can't seem to get a handle on exactly what it means. Can anyone out there provide a concise definition of this term specfically as it relates to IT systems.


-- Clueless (, October 31, 1999


Are you talking about metric units af measurement? ie, meters, liters, deg Centigrade, etc?

-- (silly@milli.meter), October 31, 1999.

metrics = means to statistically measure IT project tasks, generally.

-- longtime (, October 31, 1999.

Everything you always wanted to know about metrics but were afraid to ask

-- (hot@link.Guru), October 31, 1999.

I suspect that the term is from the usage 'The metrics do not support the position that Y2K will be 'so and so'.' As used in this sense, it refers to the data collected by a process, test, etc. The metrics are the 'yardsticks' by which one measures a process or other activity.

-- just another (, October 31, 1999.

When IT people talk about metrics, they are generally talking about lines of code, and the number of lines of code that a programmer can write or fix per unit of time. Take all talk of metrics with a grain of salt. The use of numbers gives the discussion a spurious sense of scientific accuracy.

The initial assumption in Y2K was that one programmer could "remediate" (find all the dates and make them Y2K compliant) about 100,000 lines of COBOL code per year. If you added up the number of lines of COBOL in the US economy and divided by the number of COBOL programmers, it was clear that we were doomed. There weren't enough programmers or enough time.

However, a number of automated tools and search engines were developed that allowed one programmer to remediate more like 1 million lines of COBOL code in a month (at least as far as programming). In addition, the estimate of the lines of COBOL code was probably too high - the Y2K remediation teams started out by weeding out old programs that were no longer used, or which produced reports that no one really needed.

This does not mean that Y2K is solved. Even with automated search engines, the remediated code still contains dates that the search engine missed, or errors that the programmer introduced. This is what testing is all about. And no one has developed an automated tool that works very well with assembler or some of the more exotic languages.

-- kermit (, November 01, 1999.

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