posted on Jul, 27 2009 @ 12:24 AM
Originally posted by animeking
The 2038 issue won't effect people too much because by then most people would've switched to 64bit systems, which are immune to the 2038 bug. It
doesn't effect modern windows System because the system it uses is different. :/ And not all electronics it be effected either, just unix or
unix-like systems, and maybe other OSs which use a similar system in their programming.
Having a 64-bit CPU doesn't really matter. The issue is that the clock uses a 32-bit signed integer to count the number of seconds since 1970. Even
in systems that have it properly setup as a 64-bit integer now, there is still software that truncates that to a 32-bit, since that's how we've done
things for decades. That 32-bit value is usually a signed integer, so it's really only like having 31-bits, and that overflows in 2038. That is a
problem for more than just reporting or processing the current date, because programs and operating systems also use this value behind-the-scenes for
various things that the average person wouldn't expect. This affects a number of systems, not just Unix variants and Windows, but the impact on
consumer and office stuff is small. Worst case, set the date back a year or so, and reboot. The concern is really more for big servers and mainframes
because of their dependence on timing, and using a false past date causes things to get messy.
The good news is that this is very very fixable, and some work has already been done. It's just not fixed in everything yet, and we still have tons
of time. As I said in one of the Titor threads, a competent programmer could fix this 10 years ago, today, or in 27 years... There are quick-and-dirty
ways to fix this in software in an emergency, as well as proper long-term solutions. Also, an IBM 5100 has nothing to do with it, and the System/360
mainframe that it functioned with has long been obsolete (it's from the 60's), and the very few that are left in existence today aren't working.
The last one was in a museum, and that is its only value anymore. A 15 year old 486 has more computing power than one of those anyway, and it takes a
lot less energy to run. Titor's story is just a mix of fiction with obscure computer trivia. I'd even bet that a System/360 is immune to 2038 anyway
(but likely has issues with other dates), because that problem affects systems that start counting at 1970, which was after the System/360 had already
been out for several years.
Y2K was a bunch of BS too. I said it back then, but no one believed me, and they chose to listen to the ignorant media and get all panicked over it.
You know, I'm just a silly software developer who has actually had his hands on this kind of stuff... What do I know? Clearly, the "expert" on the
news is the smart one, and the world will in-fact end in 2000!
2038 will be no different... people will fear-monger in order to make a buck.
[edit on 27-7-2009 by TurboDC4]