Letter: Bomb won't explode

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The Independent Online
Sir: Your front page spread on Friday 19 September regarding the "defusing of the Year 2000 computer timebomb" has long been a cause of (needless) concern. Microsoft, in its ultimate quest, will inevitably come up with a last-minute solution: `Windows 2000' - which will circumnavigate the "timebomb". Millions of corporate organisations and businesses will have no alternative but to update their systems software yet again - at a price.

The solution is surely much simpler: forget the Millennium. At 23.59 (or a little before) on 31 December 1999 we all reset our computer clocks to 2001. Forget Taskforce 2000, forget the megabucks being drained from the Lottery funds for Kubla Khanesque Konstructions in Greenwich and cancel the year 2000. Of course, overnight we'll all be a year older, digitally - in less than the time it takes your average systems manager to knock back a glass of Chardonnay - but it won't cost a bean. (Incidentally, I've already tried resetting the clock on my Apple Macintosh Power PC to the year 2000, and it works fine.)

Nicholas Lumsden

London E9