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gahdamnpunk:The critical thinking, the self awareness…Taste and talent JUMPED OUT: Anra Follow @AnraNana Critically and commercially acclaimed director Shinichiro Watanabe on colorism in the Japanese anime industry and the importance of diversity and genuine care in creating art. Watanabe: The anime does deal with samurai, and tion to skin color," Watan in the back of my mind I was always woried it would multiple languages. Lots be seen as nationalistic. That is why I made one of the ave white skin- all the ch main characters someone from the Ryukyus, and put ever liked. I wanted to ha in the bit about a person training in China, and had le bit about it. The same foreign characters appear. If you watch the anime, it'sred in multiple languages, clear that it has nothing to do with it. It is not an an ed. ime designed to "protect Japan's unique traditions and culture." National borders have always been arbitrarily drawn by people, and in ancient times there was a lot of exchange of people and culture with the continent. But then you get into a conversation about the Jomon and Yayoi peoples. dif people weren't used to Q: How would you explain that? Watanabe: There are many theories about who the original Japanese were, but it's pretty clear that we were not all one ethnic group but a mix of various ones. First we had the Jomon. Most of them were hunters and gatherers. Once you enter the Yayoi Period you have 10:28 PM - 18 Jun 2019 15,092 Retweets 35,120 Likes Q: This may be a little off-topic, but what do you think of nationalism? Watanabe: The anime does deal with samurai, and in the back of my mind I was always worried it would be seen as nationalistic. That is why I made one of the main characters someone from the Ryukyus, and put in the bit about a person training in China, and had foreign characters appear. If you watch the anime, it's clear that it has nothing to do with it. It is not an an- ime designed to "protect Japan's unique traditions and culture." National borders have always been arbitrarily drawn by people, and in ancient times there was a lot of exchange of people and culture with the continent. But then you get into a conversation about the Jomon and Yayoi peoples. Q: How would you explain that? Watanabe: There are many theories about who the original Japanese were, but it's pretty clear that we were not all one ethnic group but a mix of various ones. First we had the Jomon. Most of them were hunters and gatherers. Once you enter the Yayoi Period you have lots of people coming here from the continent and bringing agriculture with them. When the imperial sys- "I paid a lot of attention to skin color," Watanabe said in The Jazz Messengers. "Also to using multiple languages. Lots of times when you watch anime, the characters all have white skin - all the characters in fantasy stories all have white skin, which I never liked. I wanted to have lots of characters in Bebop without the white skin, and if people weren't used to that, well, maybe it would even make them think a little bit about it. The same was true for languages. I wanted to have lines muttered in multiple languages, but that would have been just too difficult," he laughed. gahdamnpunk:The critical thinking, the self awareness…Taste and talent JUMPED OUT

gahdamnpunk:The critical thinking, the self awareness…Taste and talent JUMPED OUT

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A true programmer: Hacker Scripts Based on a true story: build engineer has left for another company. The dude was literally living inside the terminal. You know, Xxx: OK, so, our that type of a guy who loves Vim, creates diagrams in Dot and writes wiki-posts in Markdown... If something anything - requires more than 90 seconds of his time, he writes a script to automate that. xxx: So we're sitting here, looking through his, uhm, "legacy" xxx: You're gonna love this xxx: smack-my-bitch-up.sh - sends a text message "late at work" to his wife (apparently). Automatically picks reasons from an array of strings, randomly. Runs inside a cron-job. The job fires if there are active SSH-sessions on the server after 9pm with his login. xxx: kumar-asshole.sh scans the inbox for emails from "Kumar" (a DBA at our clients). Looks for keywords like "help" "trouble", "sorry" etc. If keywords are found - the script SSHes into the clients server and rolls back the staging database to the latest backup. Then sends a reply "no worries mate, be careful next time". xxx: hangover.sh another cron-job that is set to specific dates. Sends automated emails like "not feeling well/gonna work from home" etc. Adds a random "reason" from another predefined array of strings. Fires if there are no interactive sessions on the server at 8:45am. xxx: (and the oscar goes to) fucking-coffee.sh - this one waits exactly 17 seconds (!), then opens a telnet session to our coffee-machine (we had no frikin idea the coffee machine is on the network, runs linux and has a TCP socket up and running) and sends something like sys brew. Turns out this thing starts brewing a mid-sized half-caf latte and waits another 24 () seconds before pouring it into a cup. The timing is exactly how long it takes to walk to the machine from the dudes desk. xxx: holy sh*t I'm keeping those XX: A true programmer
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I found this on an old Git account: Hacker Scripts Based on a true story. xoox: OK, so, our build engineer has left for another company. The dude was literally living inside the terminal. You know that type of a guy who loves Vim, creates diagrams in Dot and writes wiki-posts in Markdown... I fsomething- anything requires more than 90 seconds of his time, he writes a script to automate that. xxoc: So we're sitting here, looking through his, uhm, "legacy xxx: You're gonna love this ooc: smack-my-bitch-up.sh -sends a text message "late at work" to his wife (apparently). Automatically picks reasons from an array of strings, randomly. Runs inside a cron-job. The job fires if there are active SSH-sessions on the server after 9pm with his login xxox: kumar-asshole.sh - scans the inbox for emails from "Kumar" (a DBA at our clients). Looks for keywords like "help" trouble", "sorry" etc. If keywords are found - the script SSHes into the clients server and rolls back the staging database to the latest backup. Then sends a reply "no worries mate, be careful next time" xxx: hangover.sh - another cron-job that is set to specific dates. Sends automated emails like "not feeling well/gonna work from home" etc. Adds a random "reason" from another predefined array of strings. Fires if there are no interactive sessions on the server at 8:45am xoox: (and the oscar goes to) fucking-coffee. sh this one waits exatly 17 seconds(), then opens a telnet session to our coffee-machine (we had no frikin idea the coffee machine is on the network, runs linux and has a TCP socket up and running) and sends something like sys brew.Turns out this thing starts brewing a mid-sized half-caf latte and waits another 24 () seconds before pouring it into a cup. The timing is exactly how long it takes to walk to the machine from the dudes desk. xoxx: holy sh"t I'm keeping those I found this on an old Git account
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theangrymunchkin: musicalluna: cumaeansibyl: all-things-olicity: forloveofreason: shananaomi: jaybushman: spytap: ralfmaximus: faisdm: the-most-calamitous: jibini: top-lotad-breeder: chocogoat: what. why? someone pls explain to me pls i wasnt born yet in 1999 why turn computer off before midnight? what happen if u dont? y2k lol everyone was like “the supervirus is gonna take over the world and ruin everything and end the world!!!” This is the oldest I’ve ever felt. Right now. WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU MEAN YOU WEREN’T BORN YET IN 1999. Ahh the Millenium bug. It wasn’t a virus, it was an issue with how some old computers at the time were programmed to deal with dates. Basically some computers with older operating systems didn’t have anything in place to deal with the year reaching 99 and looping around to 00. It was believed that this inability to sync with the correct date would cause issues, and even crash entire systems the moment the date changed. People flipped out about it, convinced that the date discrepancy between netwoked systems would bring down computers everywhere and shut down the internet and so all systems relying on computers, including plane navigation etc. would go down causing worldwide chaos. It was genuinely believed that people should all switch off computers to avoid this. One or two smart people spoke up and said “um hey, this actually will only effect a few very outdated computers and they’ll just display the wrong date, so it probably won’t be harmful” but were largely ignored because people selling books about the end of the world were talking louder. In the end, absolutely nothing happened. Oh gosh. I’ve been a programmer working for various government agencies since the early 1990s and I can say with some confidence: NOTHING HAPPENED BECAUSE WE WORKED VERY HARD FIXING SHIT THAT MOST DEFINITELY WOULD HAVE BROKEN ON 1-JAN-2000. One example I personally worked on: vaccination databases. My contract was with the CDC to coordinate immunization registries — you know, kids’ vaccine histories. What they got, when they got it, and (most importantly) which vaccines they were due to get next and when. These were state-wide registries, containing millions of records each. Most of these systems were designed in the 1970s and 1980s, and stored the child’s DOB year as only two digits. This means that — had we not fixed it — just about every child in all the databases I worked on would have SUDDENLY AGED OUT OF THE PROGRAM 1-JAN-2000. In other words: these kids would suddenly be “too old” to receive critical vaccines. Okay, so that’s not a nuke plant exploding or airplanes dropping from the sky. In fact, nothing obvious would have occurred come Jan 1st. BUT Without the software advising doctors when to give vaccinations, an entire generation’s immunity to things like measles, mumps, smallpox (etc) would have been compromised. And nobody would even know there was a problem for months — possibly years — after. You think the fun games caused by a few anti-vaxers is bad? Imagine whole populations going unvaccinated by accident… one case of measles and the death toll might be measured in millions. This is one example I KNOW to be true, because I was there. I also know that in the years leading up to 2000 there were ad-hoc discussion groups (particularly alt.risk) of amazed programmers and project managers that uncovered year-2000 traps… and fixed them. Quietly, without fanfare.  In many cases because admitting there was a problem would have resulted in a lawsuit by angry customers. But mostly because it was our job to fix those design flaws before anyone was inconvenienced or hurt. So, yeah… all that Y2K hysteria was for nothing, because programmers worked their asses off to make sure it was for nothing. Bolding mine. Absolutely true.  My Mom worked like crazy all throughout 1998 and 1999 on dozens of systems to avoid Y2K crashes. Nothing major happened because people worked to made sure it didn’t. Now if we could just harness that concept for some of the other major issues facing us today.   this meme came so far since i saw it this morning. god i love tumblr teaching tumblr about history. As a young Sys Admin during Y2K, I can confirm that it was SRS BZNS.  I worked for a major pharmaceutical company at the time.  They spent millions of dollars on consultant and programmer hours, not to mention their own employees’ time, to fix all their in-house software as well as replace it with new systems.  Sys Admins like myself were continually deploying patches, updating firmware, and deploying new systems in the months leading up to Y2K.  Once that was done, though, the programmers went home and cashed their checks. When the FATEFUL HOUR came along, it wasn’t just one hour.  For a global company with offices in dozens of countries, it was 24 hours of being alert and on-call.  I imagine that other large organizations had similar setups with entire IT departments working in shifts to monitor everything.  Everyone was on a hair trigger, too, so the slightest problem caused ALL HANDS ON DECK pages to go out. Yes, we had pagers. For hard numbers IDC’s 2006 calculation put the total US cost of remediation, before and after, at $147 billion - that’s in 1999 dollars.  That paid for an army of programmers, including calling up retired grandparents from the senior center because COBOL and FORTRAN apps from the ‘60s needed fixing. Also note that there were some problems, including $13 billion in remediation included in the figure above.  Some of these involved nuclear power plants, medical equipment, and “a customer at a New York State video rental store had a bill for $91,250, the cost of renting the movie ‘The General’s Daughter’ for 100 years.” Y2K was anything but nothing. @figure-forever tfw you do your job so fucking well that everyone thinks you weren’t necessary in the first place :( salute our COBOL cowpokes and other Y2K wranglers, they saved all our asses another important lesson we learned: a shitload of stuff in the ‘90s was still running programs from the ‘60s and ‘70s. it’s hard to justify the expense and trouble of a massive upgrade when things are working “fine” – easier to say “well, I suppose we’ll need to change at some point, but not now” and if things really are working “fine” you can let them go on for a while but every so often you run into something like Y2K where the software simply wasn’t designed to handle certain eventualities. can’t really blame the programmers, either. if you were writing shit in the ‘60s, would you expect people to still be using it in the science-fiction year of 2000? that’s not a real year! you might be dead by then! so, y’know, you don’t always need the latest and greatest for everything you’re doing – how much power do you really need for an inventory system? – but regular upgrades are a Good Idea nerds quietly saving the world. this is superhero nonsense i love it Y2K is a large reason behind the tech boom of the 2000’s. Think about it, tons of programmers and such suddenly in demand? That “oh it’s ok for now, we don’t need to update” attitude thrown out the window? You get a turn from the let’s keep updating what we have to let’s get something new we have to update less, except that doesn’t stop with a single new thing. It becomes a trend, oh you’re having that issue well buy this new one it will never have that issue, oh you’re having issue x buy this new version we fixed issue x as well as that issue, and so on. Not saying it’s a bad thing at all, just saying it really kick-started the hastened technological path we’re on now.: REMEMBER Turn your computer off before midnight orn 12/31/99. BUY theangrymunchkin: musicalluna: cumaeansibyl: all-things-olicity: forloveofreason: shananaomi: jaybushman: spytap: ralfmaximus: faisdm: the-most-calamitous: jibini: top-lotad-breeder: chocogoat: what. why? someone pls explain to me pls i wasnt born yet in 1999 why turn computer off before midnight? what happen if u dont? y2k lol everyone was like “the supervirus is gonna take over the world and ruin everything and end the world!!!” This is the oldest I’ve ever felt. Right now. WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU MEAN YOU WEREN’T BORN YET IN 1999. Ahh the Millenium bug. It wasn’t a virus, it was an issue with how some old computers at the time were programmed to deal with dates. Basically some computers with older operating systems didn’t have anything in place to deal with the year reaching 99 and looping around to 00. It was believed that this inability to sync with the correct date would cause issues, and even crash entire systems the moment the date changed. People flipped out about it, convinced that the date discrepancy between netwoked systems would bring down computers everywhere and shut down the internet and so all systems relying on computers, including plane navigation etc. would go down causing worldwide chaos. It was genuinely believed that people should all switch off computers to avoid this. One or two smart people spoke up and said “um hey, this actually will only effect a few very outdated computers and they’ll just display the wrong date, so it probably won’t be harmful” but were largely ignored because people selling books about the end of the world were talking louder. In the end, absolutely nothing happened. Oh gosh. I’ve been a programmer working for various government agencies since the early 1990s and I can say with some confidence: NOTHING HAPPENED BECAUSE WE WORKED VERY HARD FIXING SHIT THAT MOST DEFINITELY WOULD HAVE BROKEN ON 1-JAN-2000. One example I personally worked on: vaccination databases. My contract was with the CDC to coordinate immunization registries — you know, kids’ vaccine histories. What they got, when they got it, and (most importantly) which vaccines they were due to get next and when. These were state-wide registries, containing millions of records each. Most of these systems were designed in the 1970s and 1980s, and stored the child’s DOB year as only two digits. This means that — had we not fixed it — just about every child in all the databases I worked on would have SUDDENLY AGED OUT OF THE PROGRAM 1-JAN-2000. In other words: these kids would suddenly be “too old” to receive critical vaccines. Okay, so that’s not a nuke plant exploding or airplanes dropping from the sky. In fact, nothing obvious would have occurred come Jan 1st. BUT Without the software advising doctors when to give vaccinations, an entire generation’s immunity to things like measles, mumps, smallpox (etc) would have been compromised. And nobody would even know there was a problem for months — possibly years — after. You think the fun games caused by a few anti-vaxers is bad? Imagine whole populations going unvaccinated by accident… one case of measles and the death toll might be measured in millions. This is one example I KNOW to be true, because I was there. I also know that in the years leading up to 2000 there were ad-hoc discussion groups (particularly alt.risk) of amazed programmers and project managers that uncovered year-2000 traps… and fixed them. Quietly, without fanfare.  In many cases because admitting there was a problem would have resulted in a lawsuit by angry customers. But mostly because it was our job to fix those design flaws before anyone was inconvenienced or hurt. So, yeah… all that Y2K hysteria was for nothing, because programmers worked their asses off to make sure it was for nothing. Bolding mine. Absolutely true.  My Mom worked like crazy all throughout 1998 and 1999 on dozens of systems to avoid Y2K crashes. Nothing major happened because people worked to made sure it didn’t. Now if we could just harness that concept for some of the other major issues facing us today.   this meme came so far since i saw it this morning. god i love tumblr teaching tumblr about history. As a young Sys Admin during Y2K, I can confirm that it was SRS BZNS.  I worked for a major pharmaceutical company at the time.  They spent millions of dollars on consultant and programmer hours, not to mention their own employees’ time, to fix all their in-house software as well as replace it with new systems.  Sys Admins like myself were continually deploying patches, updating firmware, and deploying new systems in the months leading up to Y2K.  Once that was done, though, the programmers went home and cashed their checks. When the FATEFUL HOUR came along, it wasn’t just one hour.  For a global company with offices in dozens of countries, it was 24 hours of being alert and on-call.  I imagine that other large organizations had similar setups with entire IT departments working in shifts to monitor everything.  Everyone was on a hair trigger, too, so the slightest problem caused ALL HANDS ON DECK pages to go out. Yes, we had pagers. For hard numbers IDC’s 2006 calculation put the total US cost of remediation, before and after, at $147 billion - that’s in 1999 dollars.  That paid for an army of programmers, including calling up retired grandparents from the senior center because COBOL and FORTRAN apps from the ‘60s needed fixing. Also note that there were some problems, including $13 billion in remediation included in the figure above.  Some of these involved nuclear power plants, medical equipment, and “a customer at a New York State video rental store had a bill for $91,250, the cost of renting the movie ‘The General’s Daughter’ for 100 years.” Y2K was anything but nothing. @figure-forever tfw you do your job so fucking well that everyone thinks you weren’t necessary in the first place :( salute our COBOL cowpokes and other Y2K wranglers, they saved all our asses another important lesson we learned: a shitload of stuff in the ‘90s was still running programs from the ‘60s and ‘70s. it’s hard to justify the expense and trouble of a massive upgrade when things are working “fine” – easier to say “well, I suppose we’ll need to change at some point, but not now” and if things really are working “fine” you can let them go on for a while but every so often you run into something like Y2K where the software simply wasn’t designed to handle certain eventualities. can’t really blame the programmers, either. if you were writing shit in the ‘60s, would you expect people to still be using it in the science-fiction year of 2000? that’s not a real year! you might be dead by then! so, y’know, you don’t always need the latest and greatest for everything you’re doing – how much power do you really need for an inventory system? – but regular upgrades are a Good Idea nerds quietly saving the world. this is superhero nonsense i love it Y2K is a large reason behind the tech boom of the 2000’s. Think about it, tons of programmers and such suddenly in demand? That “oh it’s ok for now, we don’t need to update” attitude thrown out the window? You get a turn from the let’s keep updating what we have to let’s get something new we have to update less, except that doesn’t stop with a single new thing. It becomes a trend, oh you’re having that issue well buy this new one it will never have that issue, oh you’re having issue x buy this new version we fixed issue x as well as that issue, and so on. Not saying it’s a bad thing at all, just saying it really kick-started the hastened technological path we’re on now.
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tamashiihiroka: forloveofreason: shananaomi: jaybushman: spytap: ralfmaximus: faisdm: the-most-calamitous: jibini: top-lotad-breeder: chocogoat: what. why? someone pls explain to me pls i wasnt born yet in 1999 why turn computer off before midnight? what happen if u dont? y2k lol everyone was like “the supervirus is gonna take over the world and ruin everything and end the world!!!” This is the oldest I’ve ever felt. Right now. WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU MEAN YOU WEREN’T BORN YET IN 1999. Ahh the Millenium bug. It wasn’t a virus, it was an issue with how some old computers at the time were programmed to deal with dates. Basically some computers with older operating systems didn’t have anything in place to deal with the year reaching 99 and looping around to 00. It was believed that this inability to sync with the correct date would cause issues, and even crash entire systems the moment the date changed. People flipped out about it, convinced that the date discrepancy between netwoked systems would bring down computers everywhere and shut down the internet and so all systems relying on computers, including plane navigation etc. would go down causing worldwide chaos. It was genuinely believed that people should all switch off computers to avoid this. One or two smart people spoke up and said “um hey, this actually will only effect a few very outdated computers and they’ll just display the wrong date, so it probably won’t be harmful” but were largely ignored because people selling books about the end of the world were talking louder. In the end, absolutely nothing happened. Oh gosh. I’ve been a programmer working for various government agencies since the early 1990s and I can say with some confidence: NOTHING HAPPENED BECAUSE WE WORKED VERY HARD FIXING SHIT THAT MOST DEFINITELY WOULD HAVE BROKEN ON 1-JAN-2000. One example I personally worked on: vaccination databases. My contract was with the CDC to coordinate immunization registries — you know, kids’ vaccine histories. What they got, when they got it, and (most importantly) which vaccines they were due to get next and when. These were state-wide registries, containing millions of records each. Most of these systems were designed in the 1970s and 1980s, and stored the child’s DOB year as only two digits. This means that — had we not fixed it — just about every child in all the databases I worked on would have SUDDENLY AGED OUT OF THE PROGRAM 1-JAN-2000. In other words: these kids would suddenly be “too old” to receive critical vaccines. Okay, so that’s not a nuke plant exploding or airplanes dropping from the sky. In fact, nothing obvious would have occurred come Jan 1st. BUT Without the software advising doctors when to give vaccinations, an entire generation’s immunity to things like measles, mumps, smallpox (etc) would have been compromised. And nobody would even know there was a problem for months — possibly years — after. You think the fun & games caused by a few anti-vaxers is bad? Imagine whole populations going unvaccinated by accident… one case of measles and the death toll might be measured in millions. This is one example I KNOW to be true, because I was there. I also know that in the years leading up to 2000 there were ad-hoc discussion groups (particularly alt.risk) of amazed programmers and project managers that uncovered year-2000 traps… and fixed them. Quietly, without fanfare.  In many cases because admitting there was a problem would have resulted in a lawsuit by angry customers. But mostly because it was our job to fix those design flaws before anyone was inconvenienced or hurt. So, yeah… all that Y2K hysteria was for nothing, because programmers worked their asses off to make sure it was for nothing. Bolding mine. Absolutely true.  My Mom worked like crazy all throughout 1998 and 1999 on dozens of systems to avoid Y2K crashes. Nothing major happened because people worked to made sure it didn’t. Now if we could just harness that concept for some of the other major issues facing us today.   this meme came so far since i saw it this morning. god i love tumblr teaching tumblr about history. As a young Sys Admin during Y2K, I can confirm that it was SRS BZNS.  I worked for a major pharmaceutical company at the time.  They spent millions of dollars on consultant and programmer hours, not to mention their own employees’ time, to fix all their in-house software as well as replace it with new systems.  Sys Admins like myself were continually deploying patches, updating firmware, and deploying new systems in the months leading up to Y2K.  Once that was done, though, the programmers went home and cashed their checks. When the FATEFUL HOUR came along, it wasn’t just one hour.  For a global company with offices in dozens of countries, it was 24 hours of being alert and on-call.  I imagine that other large organizations had similar setups with entire IT departments working in shifts to monitor everything.  Everyone was on a hair trigger, too, so the slightest problem caused ALL HANDS ON DECK pages to go out. Yes, we had pagers. For hard numbers IDC’s 2006 calculation put the total US cost of remediation, before and after, at $147 billion - that’s in 1999 dollars.  That paid for an army of programmers, including calling up retired grandparents from the senior center because COBOL and FORTRAN apps from the ‘60s needed fixing. Also note that there were some problems, including $13 billion in remediation included in the figure above.  Some of these involved nuclear power plants, medical equipment, and “a customer at a New York State video rental store had a bill for $91,250, the cost of renting the movie ‘The General’s Daughter’ for 100 years.” Y2K was anything but nothing. Reblogging because this is a side to the story I had never heard. : REMEMBER Turn your computer off before midnight orn 12/31/99. BUY tamashiihiroka: forloveofreason: shananaomi: jaybushman: spytap: ralfmaximus: faisdm: the-most-calamitous: jibini: top-lotad-breeder: chocogoat: what. why? someone pls explain to me pls i wasnt born yet in 1999 why turn computer off before midnight? what happen if u dont? y2k lol everyone was like “the supervirus is gonna take over the world and ruin everything and end the world!!!” This is the oldest I’ve ever felt. Right now. WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU MEAN YOU WEREN’T BORN YET IN 1999. Ahh the Millenium bug. It wasn’t a virus, it was an issue with how some old computers at the time were programmed to deal with dates. Basically some computers with older operating systems didn’t have anything in place to deal with the year reaching 99 and looping around to 00. It was believed that this inability to sync with the correct date would cause issues, and even crash entire systems the moment the date changed. People flipped out about it, convinced that the date discrepancy between netwoked systems would bring down computers everywhere and shut down the internet and so all systems relying on computers, including plane navigation etc. would go down causing worldwide chaos. It was genuinely believed that people should all switch off computers to avoid this. One or two smart people spoke up and said “um hey, this actually will only effect a few very outdated computers and they’ll just display the wrong date, so it probably won’t be harmful” but were largely ignored because people selling books about the end of the world were talking louder. In the end, absolutely nothing happened. Oh gosh. I’ve been a programmer working for various government agencies since the early 1990s and I can say with some confidence: NOTHING HAPPENED BECAUSE WE WORKED VERY HARD FIXING SHIT THAT MOST DEFINITELY WOULD HAVE BROKEN ON 1-JAN-2000. One example I personally worked on: vaccination databases. My contract was with the CDC to coordinate immunization registries — you know, kids’ vaccine histories. What they got, when they got it, and (most importantly) which vaccines they were due to get next and when. These were state-wide registries, containing millions of records each. Most of these systems were designed in the 1970s and 1980s, and stored the child’s DOB year as only two digits. This means that — had we not fixed it — just about every child in all the databases I worked on would have SUDDENLY AGED OUT OF THE PROGRAM 1-JAN-2000. In other words: these kids would suddenly be “too old” to receive critical vaccines. Okay, so that’s not a nuke plant exploding or airplanes dropping from the sky. In fact, nothing obvious would have occurred come Jan 1st. BUT Without the software advising doctors when to give vaccinations, an entire generation’s immunity to things like measles, mumps, smallpox (etc) would have been compromised. And nobody would even know there was a problem for months — possibly years — after. You think the fun & games caused by a few anti-vaxers is bad? Imagine whole populations going unvaccinated by accident… one case of measles and the death toll might be measured in millions. This is one example I KNOW to be true, because I was there. I also know that in the years leading up to 2000 there were ad-hoc discussion groups (particularly alt.risk) of amazed programmers and project managers that uncovered year-2000 traps… and fixed them. Quietly, without fanfare.  In many cases because admitting there was a problem would have resulted in a lawsuit by angry customers. But mostly because it was our job to fix those design flaws before anyone was inconvenienced or hurt. So, yeah… all that Y2K hysteria was for nothing, because programmers worked their asses off to make sure it was for nothing. Bolding mine. Absolutely true.  My Mom worked like crazy all throughout 1998 and 1999 on dozens of systems to avoid Y2K crashes. Nothing major happened because people worked to made sure it didn’t. Now if we could just harness that concept for some of the other major issues facing us today.   this meme came so far since i saw it this morning. god i love tumblr teaching tumblr about history. As a young Sys Admin during Y2K, I can confirm that it was SRS BZNS.  I worked for a major pharmaceutical company at the time.  They spent millions of dollars on consultant and programmer hours, not to mention their own employees’ time, to fix all their in-house software as well as replace it with new systems.  Sys Admins like myself were continually deploying patches, updating firmware, and deploying new systems in the months leading up to Y2K.  Once that was done, though, the programmers went home and cashed their checks. When the FATEFUL HOUR came along, it wasn’t just one hour.  For a global company with offices in dozens of countries, it was 24 hours of being alert and on-call.  I imagine that other large organizations had similar setups with entire IT departments working in shifts to monitor everything.  Everyone was on a hair trigger, too, so the slightest problem caused ALL HANDS ON DECK pages to go out. Yes, we had pagers. For hard numbers IDC’s 2006 calculation put the total US cost of remediation, before and after, at $147 billion - that’s in 1999 dollars.  That paid for an army of programmers, including calling up retired grandparents from the senior center because COBOL and FORTRAN apps from the ‘60s needed fixing. Also note that there were some problems, including $13 billion in remediation included in the figure above.  Some of these involved nuclear power plants, medical equipment, and “a customer at a New York State video rental store had a bill for $91,250, the cost of renting the movie ‘The General’s Daughter’ for 100 years.” Y2K was anything but nothing. Reblogging because this is a side to the story I had never heard.
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