Year 2000 problem

(redirected from Y2k scare)

Year 2000 problem,

 

Y2K problem,

or

millennium bug,

in computer science, a design flaw in the hardware or software of a computer that caused erroneous results when working with dates beyond Dec. 31, 1999. In the 1960s and 70s programmers who designed computer systems dropped the first two digits of a year when storing or processing dates to save what then was expensive and limited memory; such a system recorded the year 2000 as 00 and could not distinguish it from 1900. In sorting, comparison, and arithmetic operations, the year 2000 would be treated as if it were equivalent to 0 rather than 100, causing incorrect results. The algorithm used to calculate leap years was also in some cases invalid, creating an additional problem in calculating the correct date after Feb. 28, 2000. Because the designers of such computer systems expected them to be replaced before the beginning of the year 2000, using a two-digit date was not regarded as a problem. Thousands of older computer systems, called legacy systems, were still in use in the 1990s, however, particularly in the finance and insurance industries, creating a potential operational and financial nightmare, which was termed Doomsday 2000Doomsday 2000,
term coined by Canadian computer consultant Peter de Jager in 1993 to describe the operational and financial impact of a defect of contemporary computer hardware and software, known as the Year 2000 problem, that caused computer programs to incorrectly perform
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. In the late 1990s business, government, and other computer users spent thousands of hours and millions of dollars to correct the Year 2000 problem, and only minor problems were experienced after Jan. 1, 2000.
References in periodicals archive ?
We had made many preparations in 1998 to be ready for the Y2K scare.
1 as the Y2K scare,'' said Brad Haddock, a BSA national executive board member who chairs the policy implementation committee.
Luckily, the Y2K scare came along, and people scared themselves for another 4 years, just to enjoy that whole "we are idiots" feeling once again.
Oh yes, the Y2K scare of 1999 which threatened computer Armageddon and was later described by the Wall Street Journal as "the hoax of the century.
Most of us don't remember the Y2K scare back in 1999, but we do remember the movie, 2012, that predicts the end of the world in December next year according to the ancient Mayan calendar.
It reminded me of the great Y2K scare in 1999--when everything was supposed to go haywire (planes dropping out of the sky, etc.
The current concern in the broker community about the MLR and the exchanges feels a lot like that Y2K scare.
Unfortunately, unlike the Y2K scare, reports of world-wide recession were not exaggerated and effects of the global slowdown are taking hold around the world.
Sheffield was surprised at how few Virginia schools attending that fall conference had started any preparations, and he offers his own advice: "When they say, 'This is like the Y2K scare (when it was predicted that computer systems around the world would shut down),' I tell them that their planning is not going to be in vain, and that their efforts can go along way towards other emergencies.