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[techbooks] REVIEW: "Solving the Year 2000 Crisis", Patrick McDermott

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  • Rob Slade, doting grandpa of Ryan and Tr
    BKSY2KCR.RVW 990424 Solving the Year 2000 Crisis , Patrick McDermott, 1998, 0-89006-725-2 %A Patrick McDermott %C 685 Canton St., Norwood, MA 02062 %D
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 14, 1999
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      BKSY2KCR.RVW 990424

      "Solving the Year 2000 Crisis", Patrick McDermott, 1998, 0-89006-725-2
      %A Patrick McDermott
      %C 685 Canton St., Norwood, MA 02062
      %D 1998
      %G 0-89006-725-2
      %I Artech House/Horizon
      %O 800-225-9977 fax: 617-769-6334 artech@...
      %P 310 p.
      %T "Solving the Year 2000 Crisis"

      (Okay, it's late. All I can say is, I just got it.)

      Part one gives an outline of the problem itself. Chapter one looks at
      the various types of things that can go wrong. This is reasonably
      clear, although it could have had a few more examples. There are a
      number of factors that make the problem note quite as bad as some
      suggest, and these are discussed in chapter two. On the other hand,
      chapter three points out why it is not going to be easy. Chapter four
      talks, rather briefly, about some of the disaster scenarios, and why
      they won't happen. Overall, the section is a very good explanation of
      the technical aspects of the problem, but is weakened by ignoring the
      cumulative affects of multiple failures in independent systems.

      Part two examines solutions to the problem. Chapter five looks
      tersely at replacement of old systems. Expansion of date fields is
      discussed in chapter six. Windowing, in chapter seven, is presented
      as a quick but possibly dirty fix. Chapter eight reviews the
      possibility of compressing data in order to extend the life of the
      program while maintaining existing data structures. It is possible,
      as chapter nine points out, that you can get away with not fixing Y2K
      errors, since they can be worked around. Special cases of windowing
      (encapsulation) and replacement (abandonment) are reviewed
      respectively in chapters ten and eleven. The previous material having
      looked at methods, chapter twelve discusses searching out the code
      that needs to be addressed. Chapter thirteen presents the need for
      assessments and choices in finding a solution.

      Part three looks at the people you will need. Chapter fourteen talks
      about issues of staffing. Assuming you want someone else to do it for
      you, chapter fifteen looks briefly at consultants and outsourcing.
      Tools that might help are reviewed in chapter sixteen. Chapter
      seventeen takes a stab at making a guess at roughing out how much this
      is all going to cost you.

      Part four looks at the Y2K fix project. Chapter eighteen is an
      excellent overview of the type of information you will need to plan
      the project. Decisions on what to fix and what to abandon are
      discussed in chapter nineteen. Using the fact that Y2K issues are
      simple but pervasive, chapter twenty suggests a factory approach.
      Chapter twenty one is a quick guide to project planning.

      Part five reviews business issues. Chapter twenty two looks at the
      aspects facing the small business, and the resources it has. While
      parts two to four generally apply to large systems, chapter twenty
      three presents a quick check for PC and desktop use. Points of
      failure important to your business should be identified as suggested
      by chapter twenty four. Testing of your preparations is covered in
      chapter twenty five.

      Although the bulk of the book was written for those faced with the
      technical task of correcting Y2K programming problems, the material is
      very readable, and generally presents the issues briefly, but
      reasonably. In terms of presenting the problem, the book is on a par
      with "The Year 2000 Software Problem" by Jones (cf. BKY2KSWP.RVW).

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 1999 BKSY2KCR.RVW 990424

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
      rslade@... rslade@... slade@... p1@...
      The opposite of a correct statement is a false statement. The
      opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth.
      - Niels Bohr (1885-1962)
      http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade

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