Help! My thread is dying...greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
It's the thread titled "On Dale Way and interfaces, a question..." Sorry to whine, but I thought this would get a better response, and I'd really like some answers.
-- Thinman (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 08, 1999
Thinman, click on "new answers" to see your thread, it's not dead yet, people have posted to it today.
-- (email@example.com), November 08, 1999.
It depends on how the system(s) have been modified. Where I work, some systems are in yyyymmdd format, others are in yymmdd where 500000 has been added to the existing date fields. Our software company went with this change since they won't support this system for more than 10 years anyway. They want all their users up on client server applications in the future (if there is one).
In the case of yymmdd format, 990105 (Jan 5th 1999) looks like 490105 in our databases, but when the date is displayed to the user, 500000 is added to give us 990105. Pretty nifty as long as birthdate fields or something like that aren't being used. So in this instance yes, we've been testing since January of this year. We don't expect any problems. It must be mentioned that we had to put this entire system up all at once. A few bad dates would have corrupted things. We had many key's that had to be rebuilt since many keys entailed a date embedded within itself. It was a real pain.
Other systems are in yyyymmdd format. Any data that is accepted still comes into my system in yymmdd format. However, the program that accepts this data has been modified to accept it and expand it to yyyymmdd (windowing), so that it reflects the proper format for my system. So again, we've tested this for 2 years now and it has been running since. We expect nothing new in 2000 either.
The problem comes into play when you're doing windowing exclusively (i.e. data still looks like 990105 in the database). Your subroutines or whatever you're using will not execute until 000105 because the condition hasn't been met (if > 50 then 1950 else 2050 for example). It would only occur if you tested this by rolling dates forward and you actually tested everything using 2000 dates. So in this example if you haven't rolled the dates forward and tested everything, then certainly you can't say everything is fine. A missed subroutine call can produce bad data after 2000 but not before then.
I think a good question to ask now is what method is being used by most companies out there. I keep hearing windowing. But which method of windowing? Adding 500000 or testing for > 50? If the answer is the latter, then as you can see we aren't testing this live.
Perhaps this is why programmers can't agree on much. There are many ways of doing things. Cripe, I got a Java programmer here who thinks y2k is overblown. But you know what he does? He's a young multimedia programmer and he uses few dates. So he sees only his world. I'm not a multimedia programmer. I'm a business application programmer and I use dates everywhere. So I see things entirely different.
I hope this has helped.
-- Larry (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 08, 1999.
It appears to me that you got lots of answers. Am not sure what you wanted. But it doesn't appear to me that you have enough grasp on the technical issues to recognize the answer when you saw it. Perhaps you should start with some more basic questions that will help you understand the technical side of things better. This is not intended to be a slight at all. I spent hours and hours reading and asked all sorts of "stupid" questions before I understood the more complex technical implications. I am still learning more everyday.
-- Dolma Lhamo (Iemail@example.com), November 08, 1999.
I read your original question. What you attempted to nail down was important.
Even with you attempting to keep it on course. I see that example as part of the remediation problem (complexity squared).
Last nite watching a Fairfax county private Cable channel for teachers they were showing teachers how to load the software to remediate windows programs.
I was laughing to keep from crying. The gal stuck the disk into the slot and explained to everyone watching what was supposed to happen next and all she was getting was the flashing red ERROR script. She promptly moved on to the next topic.
Words cannot describe!! In reading Mr. Ways essay the one factor that stuck out was the profound complexity of this HIDDEN bug. Add to that the obvious inability for anyone to concretely be able to answer any pertainent questions with 100% accuracy.
-- d.b. (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 09, 1999.
-- acv (email@example.com), November 21, 1999.