Thursday, January 14, 2010

Y2K in Retrospect

I found this comment on an article [This Dumb Decade: The 87 Lamest Moments in Tech, 2000-2009] about how "lame" the y2k problem was to be particularly revealing and relevant to the sort of complacency that is easily encouraged by successful behind-the-scenes work.

The y2k problem was a snoozer because a LOT of geeks worked a LOT of hours in 1998 and 1999 to fix the problem before it happened. I was in a y2k war room and when midnight passed our first customer without the lights going out in Canberra (our product was controlling the Snowy Mountains Project electrical grid) we all cheered. Outside the y2k war rooms of thousands of companies whose software was supporting the world’s industrial base, nobody heard that cheer, but we damn well won that war before the first (potential) shot was fired.

I think here about the Swine-flu "non-issue". . . .

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