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2000 - Millennium Bug (...that wasn't)

History0x_2000_Millenium Bug_min.JPG

Title: 2000 - Millenium Bug (...that wasn't)

About: Leading up to the dawn of a new millenium, there were serious concerns that computer systems would not be able to deal with dates beyond December 31, 1999.

When complicated computer programs were being written between the 1960s - 1980s, computer engineers used a two-digit code for the year. The "19" was left out. Instead of a date reading 1970, it read 70. Engineers shortened the date because data storage in computers was costly and took up a lot of space.

As the year 2000 approached, computer programmers realized that computers might not interpret 00 as 2000, but as 1900. Activities that were programmed on a daily or yearly basis would be damaged or flawed.  All industries could potentially be affected, but especially finance, power infrastructure and transportation.

Software and hardware companies raced to fix the bug and provided "Y2K compliant" programs to help. The simplest solution was the best: the date was simply expanded to a four-digit number. 

In the end, there were very few problems. A nuclear energy facility in Ishikawa, Japan, had some of its radiation equipment fail, but backup facilities ensured there was no threat to the public. The US detected missile launches in Russia and attributed that to the Y2K bug. But the missile launches were planned ahead of time as part of Russia's conflict in its republic of Chechnya. There was no computer malfunction.

Countries such as Italy, Russia, and South Korea had done little to prepare for Y2K. They had no more technological problems than other countries, like the US, who spent millions of dollars to combat the problem.


Due to the lack of results, many people dismissed the Y2K bug as a hoax or an end-of-the-world cult.

Decade: 2000s

Year: 2000

Region: Worldwide

Country: USA

Discovery: Invention

Society: Culture

Type: Historical Event

Impact: 2

Artist: Fernando Nunez


Group: Genesis

Number: 100/100

Price: 0.2 ETH


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