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What is Y2K and What Effect Did It Present On Modern CultureTwo seemingly small digits may turn January 1 2000 from a worldwide celebration into a universal nightmare Affecting companies worldwide many pay millions upon millions of dollars in order for computers to recognize the difference between the years 2000 and 1900 One of the worlds most detrimental dilemmas the year 2000 computer bug is an extensive and interesting problem that everyone must face The definition and implications of the Year 2000 crisis are as unique as the steps taken by modern human culture to prevent themLike all other tasks computers process dates as numbers To the outside world date values can have numerous formats and meanings but to the internal workings of a computer a date is just another set of numbers Kendall 63 When expressing the year part of a date using two digits such as 4596 the possible values for this year part range between 00 and 99 Obviously if the year part were expressed using four digits the values could range between 0000 and 9999 The History and the Hype In real life if one adds 1 to 99 the answer is 100 However if one tells a computer to add 1 to 99 and also specifies that the result must be no more than two digits the answer is 0 or 00 Now consider the effect of this numeric example on a date which expresses year values with two digits If one takes the date 4599 and tells the computer to add 1 to the year part the result would look like 4500 Kendall 68 To most humans this date will suggest that the year part represents the year 2000 But to a computer and this is basically the problem because the numeric representation of the year is effectively zero the year is interpreted as 1900 According to the logical thinking of a computer adding 1 year to 1999 results
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