In message <[log in to unmask]>, Vincent Wright writes:
> Dr Eberhard W Lisse wrote:
> On what research are you basing your opinion, that the Y2K is no
> problem for PCs?
What research do I need? I turn the computer off, and on again and set
the date in the BIOS if need be. :-)-O (This is the short version of
it, of course :-)-O)
> We need to be very careful that we are not lulling people into a
> false sense of security about Y2K. This is not a trivial issue and
> it is very disturbing that this statement is being made on a list
> for African Information Technologists.
I, always, aproach these things from a practical perspective.
Eg if I can't fix my broken ECG monitor/IV Pump/Cardiotocograph (or
whatever) in the hospital (shortage of funds, donated from overseas/no
local contractor, no spare parts, take your pick), why should I worry
if it records the date incorrectly?
How many hospitals in Africa have such sophisticated devices, still in
> I believe it would be more accurate if you would share with people
> that the Y2K problem is a problem for any time/calendar oriented
> controller, processor, microprocessor, or microcontroller.
Conceded, it may well be. In theory (or even in practice). However see
> I have a rhetorical question for you - if Y2K is mainly a mainframe
> problem, are you willing to take an a 2 hour Boeing 747 flight at
> 11:00pm on December 31, 1999? Are you willing to ride an automated
> elevator at this time?
I'd prefer flying in an Airbus, you are quite right :-)-O, though I
have absolutely no doubt that all 747s will fly on. In any case, if
you purchase me a ticket to Germany, I am willing to put it to the
Elevators on New Years Night? I'd rather be at home having a party
But seriously, remember, we are talking about Africa.
How many of these sophisticated devices are actually around?
And how many of those are actually amenable to reprogramming?
And of those how many can we really sort out, in practice,
honestly? (Funds, Expertise, Parts etc)
How much of our resources is it going to take? What impact is
this going to have? How many lives are we willing to loose?
To save one person on the ventilator with an infusion pump and
an ECG Monitor should cost you a couple of thousand US
Dollars. 1 bag of Oral Rehydration Solution powder cost 10 US
Are you getting my drift?
Actually I'd just order enough nursing and medical staff in and then
see what happens. If the older ventilators stoppd operating, we'd
manually ventilate them. If the ECG monitor stopped, we can put on a
stethoscope and listen. If the IV pumps stop working, we monitor the
IV bags much closer.
Apart from the technical side, it's a matter of priorities...
We should concentrate on the main frames first, so that the economies
remain functional. Once that is done we can look at the few devices
that we actually can do something about.
Dr. Eberhard W. Lisse\ / Swakopmund State Hospital
<[log in to unmask]> * | Resident Medical Officer
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