Now that the basic messages concerning the Year 2000 seem to be reasonably well established, I would like to suggest another area for investigation.
The current solution scenario appears to be throw away your old iron and software and buy new. Or upgrade, or modify, and to heck with the cost.
This may be well and fine for the "First" world countries using "current" technologies and blessed with lots of "chump change". This is not so for the "Third" world.
The Cinderella Project might be defined as follows:
"An investigation and information exchange of zero-cost, minimal-impact computing solutions to address the Year 2000 problem".
This topic is not for the "commercial" or "fashionable" user. It is for those users with economic constraints (or with old fashioned concerns for thrift) where additional budget is not an option.
I suspect that it will still be applicable to 90 percent of home and small business users.
It includes the "older" technologies. I know of many small businesses running on XT's with 20MB hard drives, with software such as Dos 3.2, Wordperfect 5.1 and the like. You cannot buy that software off the shelf any more. The cost of upgrading hardware and software is prohibitive. And in most cases uneccessary.
There are two old engineering maxims:
"If it works, don't fix it", and "It takes an engineer to do for two-pence what any fool can do for two pounds".
**By request we also add "Penny wise, Pound foolish".
Now, a small degree of "fix" will be necessary. But the solution set lies more in the selection of methods, use of "hidden" parameters, and alternative shareware software than in mindless replacement.
Personally, I have decided not to replace any of my existing systems and have been working on that assumption for some time now. I will be sharing the results of my "experiments" and I invite others to do the same.
My selected topics will be published via Usenet (in comp.software.year-2000) and whichever mailing lists choose to run them. They will be identified as "Y2K: Cinderella" and a Topic and/or Number. I suggest that this will be a convenient method for keeping the Cinderella's out of the main stream.
P.S. No prizes will be awarded for guessing the identity of the Wicked Stepmother or the Ugly Sisters. Nevertheless, please feel free to send in your nominations.
P.P.S. While I am happy to receive direct email on this topic, please reply or post comments back to the list or Usenet group where you received the message. This tends to inform the greatest number of people for the least effort.