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[TiF] The Y1K bug

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  • Arthur Gierczak (alias le routard galact
    CANTERBURY, England A.D. 999 - An atmosphere close to panic prevails today throughout Europe as the year 1000 approaches, bringing with it the so-called Y1K
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 2, 1999
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      "CANTERBURY, England A.D. 999 - An atmosphere close to panic prevails
      today throughout Europe as the year 1000 approaches, bringing with it the
      so-called "Y1K bug" - a menace that, until recently, hardly anyone had
      ever heard of. Prophets of doom are warning that the entire fabric of
      Western civilization, based as it now is upon monastic computations,
      could collapse, and that there is simply not enough time left to fix the
      problem.

      Just how did this disaster-in-the-making ever arise? Why did no one
      anticipate that a change from a three-digit to a four-digit year would
      throw into total disarray all liturgical chants and all metrical verse in
      which any date is mentioned?

      Every formulaic hymn, prayer, ceremony, and incantation dealing with
      dated events will have to be rewritten to accommodate three extra
      syllables. All tabular chronologies with three-space year columns,
      maintained for generations by scribes using carefully hand-ruled lines on
      vellum sheets, will now have to be converted to four-space columns, at
      enormous cost. In the meantime, the validity of every official event,
      from baptisms to burials, from confirmations to coronations, may be
      called into question.

      "We should have seen it coming," says Brother Cedric of St. Michael's
      Abbey, here in Canterbury. "What worries me most is that 'thousand'
      contains the word 'thou,' which occurs in nearly all our prayers, and of
      course always refers to God. Using it now in the name of the year will
      seem almost blasphemous and is bound to cause terrible confusion. Of
      course, we could always use Latin, but that might be even worse. The
      Latin word for 'thousand' is 'mille', which is the same as the Latin for
      'mile.' We won't know whether we're talking about time or distance!"

      Stonemasons are already reported threatening to demand a proportional pay
      increase for having to carve an extra numeral in all dates on tomb
      stones, corner stones, and monuments. Together with its inevitable ripple
      effects, this alone could plunge the hitherto stable medieval economy
      into chaos.

      A conference of clerics has been called at Winchester to discuss the
      entire issue, but doomsayers are convinced that the matter is now one of
      personal survival. Many families, in expectation of the worst, are
      stocking up on holy water and indulgences."
      --------------------
      Well, there is a matter of time in this fiction, isn't it ? So it has its
      place on this list ;-)


      Arthur
      arthuraccroc@...
      http://www.gic.ch/arthur/
      ICQ : 3408412
      --------------------------------------
      "Un jour, l'homme s'échappera peut-être
      dans la quatrième dimension, pour dominer
      le temps. A présent et dans les millénaires
      qui suivront, il aura suffisamment de boulot
      pour conquérir l'espace." - Fredric Brown,
      "La vie sexuelle sur Mars"
      --------------------------------------

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