Y2K News Magazine
Yes, we all did survive it!
Y2K News Magazine billed itself as the World's Leading Bi-Weekly PRINTED Magazine & Information Source for the Year 2000 Computer Problem. This was their website.
Content is from the site's 1999 archived pages.
After all the hoopla, the dire predictions, the warnings, books for surviving Y2K, and articles surrounding Y2K, it's nice to look back and know we all survived!
Welcome to the Y2K News Magazine Discussion Forums!
Our discussion webs are divided into twenty separate discussions. Please choose a category and join us; share your experiences, solutions and ideas about the year 2000 problem.
The Y2K Problem
The problem is... Legal | Social | International | Survival | Software | Business | Power Grids | Government | Transportation | Communication | Banking | Investment
It is a problem which has reared its head with a variety of names over the last several years - the millennium bug, Y2K, The Year 2000 Problem - but, by any name, the problem remains the same, and it poses a significant threat to our worldwide economy and, possibly, to our own personal survival.
The problem arises from a simple, yet egregious error. Back in the early 1960's computer programmers creating the first electronic computing systems made a decision to minimize memory processor usage by designating the year as a two-digit function rather than a four-digit function.
For example, the year 1998 is recognized digitally by the code "98". The problem becomes ugly when the date rolls over from "99" to "00" on Saturday, January 1, 2000. Many older computers and embedded electronics will recognize the date not as January 1, 2000, but instead as January 1, 1900.
The confusion may result in any number of scenarios. If the processors fail to recognize the "00" as an actual value, they may get stuck in an endless loop, looking for a viable value and causing machinery and electronic systems to stop functioning. Or, systems may recognize the value as 1900 or some other previous date (many default to 1980) and wreak havoc on electronic billing systems and time management systems which run continuously and rely on accurate dates and times to function properly.
Although the specifics of the problem are isolated in the technology, the effects of the problem will spread to all facets of our society.
The government has already issued statements that specific divisions of the Executive Branch of the Government will not be compliant by January 2000.
Leading economists such as Dr. Edward Yardeni are predicting a 60% chance of economic recession as a result of business failures after the year 2000.
Electric power utilities that rely on the nuclear power industry and embedded technology may collapse under the strain of computer failure and Federal shutdowns.
Transportation and Communications systems may fail due to the prominence of embedded microchips in satellites and scheduling systems.
Obviously, the year 2000 problem has the potential to critically affect our worldwide society in a number of concrete ways. Analysts have predicted varied results of the problem, ranging from a non-event to total economic collapse of the planet.
Although the outcome of the problem is uncertain, the problem itself is very real. It is up to each of us to remain informed and educated about the problem, and to be prepared for the possibilities that may become realities.
By subscribing to Y2K News Magazine, the world's leading bi-weekly news magazine for the Year 2000 Problem, you can become an informed member of society and read the news as it happens. As awareness grows, it will be vitally important to distinguish fact from rumor and know exactly how Y2K will affect you, your family, your business, and your community.
The tongue in cheek article regarding calling Batman to save us got rave reviews from the most unexpected places. The post suggested that only Batman could address an evil this devious and widespread and that he would come if we all cooperated. A group of editors posed for the photo each wearing a different Batman t shirt and some also wore masks. They also shared their online t shirt source with their staffs and subsequent photos revealed large crowds all wearing Batman shirts. The point was that if Batman was summoned, he would arrive, even if only in spirit, in the minds of those who could actually address the myriad problems associated with the y2k bugs (yes, plural). The conclusion pointed out that it must have worked because the disaster was nowhere near as bad a predicted, so the Dark Knight was with us and saved the day without actual villains having to be harmed!
What is your community doing to prepare?
From Atlanta to Oregon, Communities Prepare
by D.L. Moore
Across North America and around the world, people are coming together for the common good by forming groups to help mitigate the possible consequences of Y2K. This 2nd in an on-going series on communities preparing discusses 3 different communities' efforts to "find strength in numbers."
Ground Zero for the Joseph Project 2000
Larry Baker, pastor of the Prayer and Praise Christian Fellowship and the Cherokee/Pickens County chapter of the Joseph Project 2000 (JP2000) (http://www.josephproject2000.org) in Woodstock, GA. enthuses how his church is "Ground Zero for JP2000." JP2000 was founded earlier this year by Shaunti Feldhahn after she had attended a Y2K awareness event in Atlanta.
At that meeting she met Don Baker, Associate Pastor from Baker's church and the two talked about what would later become JP2000. By mid-July, Feldhahn had laid the groundwork and staffed by volunteers, JP2000 hosted a pastor's meeting the first week of August. Approximately 65 attended, listening how they, too, could prepare their church communities for Y2K and how they could use their preparations as a springboard in ministering to their communities.
JP2000's headquarters are located at the church and to date are still staffed entirely by volunteers. The church serves as the first chapter for JP2000 and they are building on a pantry they already supported as part of a network of churches. With approximately 125 active members, Baker estimates 1/2 of the membership is participating in community preparations for Y2K.
The church is planning to increase the physical storage the church has available for supplies and in mid-December they are planning to dig a well. Situated on 15 acres, the church plans to utilize the acreage for growing crops, should the need arise. One church member has an additional 30 acres that could also be used for crops. In this rural area about 45 minutes outside Atlanta, farm machinery will be available for plowing and harvesting any crops they sow to supplement supplies from the food pantry.
In a concerted effort to address Y2K head-on, the church has begun educating their members through a series of training sessions conducted by Linda Hayes, a former missionary to Haiti and certified Red Cross Disaster trainer. Complimenting Hayes' training is former FEMA employee Marty Kelly who worked for the agency several years ago.
Kelly has been teaching classes and seminars on contingency planning and preparation. Food preparation and storage, electric power substitutes, and how to select, grind and prepare wheat for consumption are only a few of the classes she has hosted or is planning for the future.
Spearheading the community shelters for Y2K has become Hayes' task. As a result of a recent pastors' meeting, 12 churches have decided to form a Y2K preparation consortium to pool financial and physical resources. The buying power is greatly enhanced when several organizations can share the expenses and reduce costs by purchasing in much larger quantities than each could muster alone.
State of Georgia, CIO and Y2K Czar Michael Hale provides an update on Georgia'sprogress in meeting their Y2K compliance goals at JP2000 Y2K conference in Atlanta
Industry expert Jim Lord addresses attendees at JP2000 Y2K conference in Atlanta
On the heels of the August pastors' awareness event, a citywide event was held in September and attended by 3,000+ concerned citizens. Jim Lord, a national Y2K speaker, consultant and author addressed the crowd regarding the hows, whys and whens of Y2K.
Following Lord, Michael Hale, Chief Information Officer and Y2K Project Director for the State of Georgia spoke about Georgia's progress in addressing Y2K-related issues on the state level and their future plans in preparing the state systems to be Y2K compliant.
Nationally known financial advisor and president of Christian Financial Concepts in Gainesville, GA, Larry Burkett discussed how attendees should work to reduce debt and make sure they have copies of important legal documents and financial records. Burkett also challenged attendees to prepare financially and spiritually for Y2K by becoming involved and continue to keep abreast of developments in their communities and around the world.
Christian Financial Concepts founder and President Larry Burkett gives the audience an overview of possible financial disruptions as consequences of Y2K at the JP2000 Y2K conference earlier this fall
Oregon takes on Y2K Preparations
In early July, 3 people came together to discuss Y2K and the possible disruption of goods and services in the town of Bend, OR. From that humble meeting has grown what is now the Bend Oregon Y2K Community Neighborhood Watch Program. Currently the committee consists of approximately 20 members of the community and is sponsored by the Bend, Oregon, Ministerial Association, a consortium of area churches.
The Y2K committee hosted a public awareness event in late October on a Friday evening and Saturday morning. Both sessions were identical and designed to inform those who could attend either one or the other. Jack Anderson from Christian Financial Concepts provided the Y2K overview. Pastor Dan Dillard of the Grace Community Church and chairman of the committee spoke regarding the church's role in Y2K community preparation and support.
The committee has divided the 35,000 member community - 75,000 with surrounding areas included - into 4 quadrants along the 2 main intersecting streets. Currently they are recruiting for Quadrant Coordinators who will in turn recruit Neighborhood Coordinators from each of the neighborhood groups.
In an effort to not reinvent the wheel, the committee is looking to join the individual neighborhood members into a working micro-community. In this way, each neighborhood can look after their own as much as possible and work in conjunction with other neighborhoods to support and supply their members as necessary.
As of this writing, one additional awareness event drew several hundred people in mid-November that was more technical in nature than their first event and another is planned for December or early January. The November meeting delved into shelter, water and food issues with an in-depth overview of finances and the economy provided by Drew Parkhill, Y2K Editor for The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN).
As their efforts continue to expand, the committee believes they will be able to more actively address community preparation issues and invigorate the neighborhoods to come together for the common good.
Eugene, OR, Starts From the Top - Down
Cynthia Beal, owner of the Red Barn Natural Grocery in Eugene, OR, began reading about Y2K in the summer of 1997. As a small business person she was extremely concerned about not only the company computer, but also the computers of her food suppliers and their transportation companies.
Armed with Y2K computer glitch information, she discovered that her company's computer was not Y2K compliant. She then purchased additional software to supplement her system to later find out it was not compliant either. She then went to the manufacturers of the software and demanded to know what they were going to do about it. Both responded there would be updates in the future for her to install prior to 1/1/2000.
After taking on the software companies, Beal turned her energy toward the local food bank, as the director was a friend, and she hoped they could benefit from her recent Y2K experiences. Incidentally, they were not compliant either and so began what has become quite an extensive community preparation effort due to one woman's computer software dilemma.
In October 1997, Beal began systematically contacting her utility companies to determine if they were Y2K compliant. After that she contacted her bank and while subscribing to Peter de Jager's on-line newsletter for the free month, Beal posted a plea for help in a chat room. That plea was answered by Harlan Smith, a member of Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility. The eMail said that they were going to help her and Eugene in any way they could.
After that eMail a power forum was held with Rick Cowles, formerly of Digital Equipment's Y2K Remediation Project and the Bonneville Power Administrator. The meeting drew approximately 20 people from 3 utilities and their local government. Since then, several members of their local governments have taken up the cause of neighborhood and community preparations for Y2K.
Founded on the concept that the governments should do their best to become Y2K compliant, the Eugene effort is aimed at mobilizing governmental resources and organizing the 17 neighborhoods and their associations that already exist. As of this writing, 2 of 5 city councilpersons and 2 of 5 county commissioners support the initiative. As soon as an additional councilperson and commissioner join the effort, then countywide efforts on the governmental level should commence. Currently, approximately 2000 individuals are joining forces through neighborhood and home groups to build their community preparation efforts into a unified voice.
For the Common Good
All three of the communities discussed here have one goal in mind - Y2K community preparation should the need arise. Each has taken a path that is at once similar yet unique for their own communities. Shouldn't your community prepare for possible Y2K disruptions?
by D.L. Moore
Colorado Springs, December 6, 1998 - Tucked away in a small, non-descript meeting room in Colorado Springs CO, approximately 40 people, representing several national Christian organizations, came together to discuss Y2K, community preparations and the Church.
Sponsored by Mission America, a coalition of 65 denominations based in Minneapolis MN, the meeting was the first such gathering of prominent members of the Christian community who represent literally millions of individuals throughout the United States.
Dr. Cornell "Corkie" Haan, an ordained minister for 34 years, serves as the National Facilitator of Network Ministries for Mission America and served as meeting chair and discussion facilitator for the day.
Additional luminaries in attendance included (alphabetical by organization):
Allan Beeber, Campus Crusade for Christ, Orlando FL; Chris Mitchell, The Christian Broadcasting Network, CBN News, Virginia Beach VA; Derek Packard, Christian Satellite Events Group (CSEG), Double Vision Studios, Sacramento CA; Ron Wilson, Focus on the Family ministry, Colorado Springs CO; Dale Moseley, Greater Love Disaster Relief & Community Preparation, Bend OR; Margaret Jamal, Hope for America, North Glenn CO; Drs. Mark and Betsy Neuenschwander, International Health Services Foundation (IHSF), Colorado Springs CO; Shaunti Feldhahn, Joseph Project 2000, Woodstock GA;
Cindy and Mike Jacobs, Generals of Intercessories, Colorado Springs CO; Don Jacobson, Multnomah Publishers, Sisters OR; Mike Carlisle, North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, Alpharetta GA; Gordan England, Promise Keepers, Denver CO; Mike Hyatt, VP, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville TN.
Much discussion revolved around Y2K and the implications for community preparation and contingency planning. Mission America currently is working on a national initiative called Celebrate Jesus 2000 with hopes of reaching approximately 3,000,000 to 5,000,000 people with the Gospel by 1/1/2000.
Y2K adds a new dimension to their efforts and at the end of the day a committee chaired by Feldhahn, and composed of Beeber, England, Wilson and the Neuenschwanders will prepare by Jan. 20, 1999 a statement of purpose, vision, values and outline strategies for meeting Y2K and the Church's needs around the country.
"The Mission America meeting here in Colorado Springs represents the latest effort of the Church to respond on a nationwide scale to both the potential disruptions and opportunities to Y2K," said Mitchell in his report for CBN News shown Dec. 9th.
CBN was the first to hold a meeting of national scope with their Y2K & the Church conference in Virginia Beach in October of this year (see Iss. 1 Vol. 10 article). Attended by over 320 people from 35 states, the conference was truly a "national effort".
Will They or Won't They?
Will they or won't they affect how churches around the country address Y2K within their own congregations and their communities - only time will tell. However, time is running out to begin preparing for Y2K and possible disruptions. In the meantime, other Christian-based organizations are turning considerable time and energy towards alerting people to Y2K and training them for the possible consequences of that now infamous
programming "boo-boo" of yesteryear.
Modest Beginnings Lead to City-Wide Meeting
Several months ago, 5 pastors gathered in Sacramento CA to discuss Y2K and possible disruptions to their churches and communities. A few weeks later the group met again but by then their numbers had grown to 20 clergy members.
The Y2K Readiness Seminar Series is in response to the pastors' request for a way to assist churches in other communities all across North America in educating their members and members of their communities about Y2K, community preparation and contingency planning.
If You Attend - What to Expect
If you're reading this article then you've probably been investigating Y2K for yourself, your family and your community. As quite possibly the biggest global event in history, Y2K could be merely a blip on computer screens around the world to manifesting serious physical, social and political consequences - no one knows for sure.
The first seminar brings together several Y2K speakers to discuss various aspects of Y2K and community contingency planning. As with unexpected natural disasters - emerging perhaps a little worse for the wear afterward is due in no small part to pre-disaster preparation and contingency planning.
Christian Financial Concepts President and financial expert Larry Burkett will provide attendees with an overview of Y2K financial implications and how to prepare. Shaunti Feldhahn, founder of The Joseph Project 2000 and the author of the recently published Y2K The Millennium Bug: A Balanced Christian Response will talk about Y2K and the Church.
Michael Hyatt, VP at Thomas Nelson Publishers and author of The Millennium Bug will discuss the effects of Y2K locally and globally. Y2K expert, Jim Lord will address Y2K and the business community.
The speakers will participate in a specially facilitated Q&A session designed so each location has the opportunity to address their questions directly to the speakers during the broadcast. Additionally, several communities around the country who are preparing for Y2K on a church and/or community level will be introduced to the viewing audience including Harbor Light Community Chapel in Harbor Springs MI (see Iss. 1 Vol. 10 article)
and Praise and Prayer Fellowship, the 1st Joseph Project chapter in Woodstock GA (see Iss. 1 Vol. 11 article).
All Under One Roof
The broadcast is broken into 6 segments and begins at 8:30 a.m. Pacific time on Jan. 23rd. The sessions are as follows:
Segment 1: Evidence of the Y2K Problem
Segment 2: 3-Family Preparation Scenarios
Segment 3: The Importance of Teamwork
Segment 4: Why & How Churches Should Prepare
Segment 5: Small Business - Preparing Your People
Segment 6: Y2K Lighthouses Project
Segment 6 teaches Christian families how they can help their unchurched neighbors become prepared physically and spiritually for Y2K.
Taking It to the Masses
As Y2K complications begin to surface, more and more communities will need to address possible Y2K-induced problems on a community-wide basis. Heretofore, satellite broadcast distance learning has been the domain of educational institutions.
By harnessing technology, CSEG is working to bring Y2K readiness information to churches and communities all across North America by providing the benefits of delivering time and event sensitive Y2K information without the hassles and delays of organizing local, state and regional Y2K conferences.
BCY2K - Making a Difference in Boulder
HARBOR SPRINGS, MI, January 28, 1999 - Rev. William "Bill" Mindel, pastor of Harbor Light Community Church in Harbor Springs, MI, has announced their Y2K Community & Individual Preparation Conference slated for Friday, February 26th and Saturday, February 27th.
Speakers will include noted Y2K authorities Dr. James Gauss. Randall Rice, David High and Rev. Mindel. Those interested in attending should call (616) 347-5001, Monday-Friday 9-5 p.m.
The Boulder County, Colorado Y2K Community Preparedness Group (BCY2K) began rather inauspiciously in early Spring, 1998. A group of friends came together in an informal meeting discussing possible Y2K computer problem scenarios and how they might impact their community. From that humble beginning, Boulder County and Boulder City's Y2K efforts have increased more than a hundredfold, to include participation from governmental agencies to individuals and neighborhood groups from every corner of the county and beyond.
But how did they do it in such a short time, you ask? Well, their determination and organizational savvy are two traits that have helped propel them to the national forefront in what communities can do to help prepare themselves and their citizens for Y2K.
A Circle of Friends
Sitting in that circle of friends last spring was John Steiner and his wife Margo King. Both describe themselves as activists, networkers and "professional" catalysts. As founding members of BCY2K, Steiner and King brought previous community concerns, including environmental issues and creating sustainable communities, to the group's Y2K efforts.
By April, BCY2K had developed a mission statement to help them maintain focus over what was to become an extensive and intensive journey down the road of Y2K community preparation. Kathy Garcia (email - firstname.lastname@example.org), founder/coordinator of Boulder's Holiday Food Basket, which feeds approximately 800 families and distributes toys and coats, became the neighborhood organizer for BCY2K.
In May 1998, BCY2K contacted Paloma O'Riley, the co-founder of The Cassandra Project (http://www.cassandraproject.org), a nationally recognized Y2K community preparation organization dedicated to equipping individuals and communities with the necessary information to prepare for Y2K. The Cassandra Project furnished preparation information to the group and O'Riley provided guidance in preparing Boulder for Y2K.
BCY2K immediately began work on defining task forces to research and develop strategic Y2K community preparations plans. Task forces include:
• Healthcare and delivery systems
• Emergency services and security
• Outreach: media and educational materials
• Neighborhood, constituency, community organizing
• Essential financial services, alternative economies
• Y2K Volunteer Network
• Crisis intervention, counseling, social services
Y2K and the Community-at-large
Together, BCY2K, The Cassandra Project and the University of Colorado at Boulder (CU) hosted a "Y2K Computer Problem Public Awareness and Preparedness Seminar" August 20 - 23, 1998. Preeminent authorities from around the country addressed issues such as finance, electricity and utilities, healthcare, the economy and telecommunications, providing attendees with an in-depth understanding of possible scenarios and consequences of Y2K.
Speakers included: Jim Lord (personal finance), Roleigh Martin (critical societal infrastructure), Paloma O'Riley (individual and community preparedness), Kathy Garcia (neighborhood organization), Joel Ackerman (healthcare), Steve Davis (city and county governments); Cathy Moyer (Free Market Society), Chris and David Hubbard (medical preparation), Lewis Hagler (home preparedness: A Mormon Approach), Cynthia Beal (the Food Chain), Colleen Corbo and Annie Brook (psychology of crisis), Ron and Susan Kertzner (emotional preparation) and Sally Martin (dealing with elected officials), to name a few.
Held over four days, the Thursday and Friday sessions drew people from all walks of life from Boulder County and beyond. Several local utilities, governmental agencies and other community groups were in the audience. The Saturday and Sunday sessions were special presentations by CU faculty members and Margaret Wheatley, author of Leadership and the New Science, on community planning approaches for Y2K. More than 700 attended different session seminars throughout the conference. During the conference, a great deal of informal networking occurred that ultimately helped seed BCY2K's community organizational efforts.
Working from the Top - Down
The Monday after the conference, BCY2K members met for the first time with members of the Multiple Agency Coordinating System (MACS), which is led by the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) for Boulder County. The county is comprised of nine towns and each town contributes MACS representatives from their local police and fire departments, Red Cross chapters, risk management and planning departments, CU and school districts. MACS currently has three private citizens among their ranks working on Y2K community preparations.
"What is as unique as our location is the cooperative spirit of local government, our citizens and local media." said Richard Varnes, City of Boulder Y2K Project Manager. " The BCY2K has partnered with businesses, utility companies, the city and county, the newspaper and their fellow citizens to prepare for Y2K and possible natural disasters. Throughout the U.S., such progressive cooperation is rare for any reason, let alone Y2K."
Already working with local governmental agencies and departments through MACS, BCY2K received additional support from the City of Boulder. BCY2K uses city stationery for written communications and the Boulder City FYI line includes an area dedicated to BCY2K's Y2K community events.
BCY2K has gone on to sponsor educational meetings with local farmers/growers, religious leaders and communities, Hispanic community leaders and groups; healthcare providers and Boulder Community Hospital and human service agencies. Remarkably, young people from around the county have come together to form a Certified Emergency Response Team (CERT) to help with all natural disasters in addition to assisting low income families and the elderly in weatherizing their homes or trailers.
"One of the most important aspects of our efforts is bringing the community together. A very real benefit to Boulder has been building a stronger community fabric." said BCY2K neighborhood organizer Garcia. "Working with the various groups helps strengthen our entire county while building community awareness for Y2K and preparedness."
"Empowering people to confront not only Y2K and other natural disasters is important. Community preparation has been a catalyst for other cooperative initiatives in various communities. Who knows where all this cooperation will lead. Perhaps Boulder will emerge a stronger community as a whole through this process." Garcia reflected.
After the August conference, BCY2K began an every six weeks series of town meetings. On October 4th, over 400 people (standing room only) attended their town meeting that included representatives from Public Service (utilities), US West (telephone), City of Boulder, OEM, The Cassandra Project and Boulder Community Hospital. Local OEM head Chief Larry Stern told the audience they needed to take Y2K seriously and prepare individually and as a community.
Following that meeting the "flood gates were open", so to speak. Every week 3-4 community groups or organizations join BCY2K's Neighborhood initiative. Said Steiner and King, "The more we can do to raise awareness and the more people we can get involved and actively participating in building community preparedness and sound contingency planning for Y2K or other natural disasters, the more we can be prepared for whatever happens." Beginning in 1999, BCY2K began holding meetings every month in various locations throughout the county.
"Boulder is a remarkable city and county by being so forward thinking and proactive in planning for Y2K." O'Riley said. "I hope the care and effort they are expending here can be replicated around the country. Both the city and county endorse the effort of BCY2K and The Cassandra Project to educate and facilitate community preparations for Y2K."
King adds, "Y2K is a clear wake-up call that we live in a society that is very fragile and brittle. Whether Y2K is serious or not, environmental issue, i.e. global warming to non-sustainable living are forcing us to turn our attention to building communities that are viable and resilient into the next century."
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The days ahead will demonstrate that informed action is the key to survival. Y2K News Magazine is your resource for readiness, a reference for effective participation in the making of your own future.
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