Monday, January 03, 2005

Y2K: give thanks to the Geeks who saved your butt

American RadioWorks - The Surprising Legacy of Y2K
... Koskinen points to evidence that the fix was needed. Some computers that didn't get fixed stopped working on New Year's Day. He says some of those glitches would normally have been big news, but since people were expecting the end of the world, they didn't seem like that big a deal. Koskinen was in the Y2K nerve center in Washington, D.C. that night, monitoring systems all over the world. He says the public doesn't realize how many things went wrong.

Koskinen describes the scene as he saw it unfurl. "The low level wind shear detectors at every major airport go out at 7:00 on Friday night, the defense intelligence satellite system goes down, the French intelligence satellite goes down, the Japanese lose the ability to monitor a couple of their nuclear power plants, and come Monday morning, there are thousands of businesses that when you buy something with your credit card charge you every day of the week.

Yes, the Y2K crisis was real. It's the curse of prevention, whether in medicine or in business, that one never gets credit for a disaster deterred.

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