Many businesses will be surprised to learn that the Year 2000 glitch isn’t just a software problem and will rear its ugly head in common, everyday places.
It’s the embedded systems — specially designed computer chips and processors — that are likely to wreak havoc on society.
These embedded systems operate PABX phone systems, VCRs, automated teller machines, street light controls, elevators, security systems, time clocks, heating and cooling systems. These systems control manufacturing processes, mail distribution, parking garages — they’re practically everywhere.
“There are some systems out there that are going to get some people killed or hurt if they’re not fixed,” says Mark Diggs, president of Software Innovators Inc., a Little Rock programming firm.
The problem with embedded systems is this: It’s expected some 90 percent will be OK and won’t have significant problems after the millennium. The other 10 percent, if they can be located ahead of time, likely will need to be replaced or upgraded.