From: Robert Harley (Robert.Harley@inria.fr)
Date: Mon Jan 03 2000 - 09:06:08 PST
Adam Rifkin -4K (adam@XeNT.ics.uci.edu) wrote:
>I gotta admit, the letdown of Y2K has been extraordinary. Ed Yourdon
>and all the other alarmists can <verb> my <noun> for panicking people
>for no good reason.
Well some people *cough* have been saying for years that vast
quantities of money were being wasted and that nothing would happen
apart from minor isolated incidents. But why pay attention to free
advice from a few solitary big mouths with a clue, when you can
instead pay 10^N dollars to some high-falutin' consultancy without a
clue but with a vested interest in pretending there's a disaster
waiting for those who don't pay up?
Umpteen billions have been thrown at creating entire bureaucracies to
"study" the bug for years, pay inflated salaries to so-called "experts",
produce highly exciting reports and "solve" a non-issue.
Some of the expense was well spent and should have happened anyway,
updating software to new versions for instance. But most was spent
grossly inefficiently. Not just somebody else's money but tax-payers'
and share-holders': yours, mine.
Those responsible cannot now claim that it is thanks to them that
nothing happened since their mantra frequently included such refrains
as "it is already too late to prevent disaster. Not enough time, not
enough programmers, hundred of millions of lines of code to scan (at
$10 per line, thank you very much). Yourdon was particularly far from
the mark with such erudite pronoucements as "the government of the
U.S., as we currently know it, will fall on 1/1/2000" or "New York,
Chicago, Atlanta and a dozen other cities are going to resemble Beirut
in January 2000".
Of course some, such as G****** Group, are already trying to cover
their asses. These people _are_ to blame so hold them to account.
I presume they have filled their contracts with so many disclaimers
that legally they are safe and snug. But it is important that there
be a major public backlash against such idiocy to prevent it happening
You can watch as the same crowd, and new people following in their
footsteps, create new scares in the coming months and years by turning
up the heat on new-fangled menaces such as cyber-warfare or whatever.
You can watch your money being wasted setting up "strategic stability
centres", cracking down on evil-doers, meeting and reporting and
trying to appear busy shuffling paper around and around.
You can watch it happen all over again, or you can prevent it from
happening again by kicking, yelling and screaming each and every time
you see scare-mongering quacks inventing new fears by pontificating
about the invisible dangers of some nebulous force or other.
PS: For a good laugh, go back and read old Y2K hype. Less amusing is
how they regularly poke fun at those who said there was little to
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