• Doron A. Peled
Part of the Texts in Computer Science book series (TCS)


During late 1999, the world waited, with growing concern, for the change of the calendar into the year 2000. The focus was on some potential damage from online computers that control vital systems. This damage could occur because of the mere change of the calendar year and the way years of the twentieth century were traditionally represented in computer memory, using only the least two significant digits from 00 to 99. This surprisingly small detail made some people expect extreme damage. It could have affected electronic systems driven by software, such as verifying traffic control, atomic missiles, nuclear reactors, banking systems, pension plans, electricity and water supply. The US alone spent over 100 billion dollars on combating this, so called, ‘Y2K-bug.’ Just prior to that date change, some people had escaped into self made shelters, while flashlights and bottled water were a popular demand. Joint teams of the US and Russian military spent the night of December 31 1999 at the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). Together they monitored the world’s skies, as a precaution against a possible computer error that could cause an unruly launch of missiles. Midnight, December 31 1999 has passed into the new millenium with no significant events, except for a few minor glitches.


Model Check Formal Method Proof System Pension Plan Software Verification 
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Copyright information

© Lucent Technologies 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Doron A. Peled
    • 1
  1. 1.Computing SciencesBell Labs/Lucent TechnologiesMurray HillUSA

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