Satiric radio commentary for the 90s from the man who drained Lake Michigan and filled it with hot chocolate!!!

Defusing the Software Time Bomb

Stan Freberg here. Here's still another reason we should have avoided being so dependent on computers. Experts are warning that when the year 2000 rolls around, computers all over the world will misread the date and trip the clock back to the year 1900. Oh-oh. Be right back. [:60 SPOT BREAK]

Yes, computer experts around the globe are in a race to defuse a software time bomb, which may create havoc when 12:00 a.m. on the morning of January 1st, 2000 arrives.

Scientists say the problem lies in the fact that most computers use only the last two digits of the year to compile data: "96," "97," etc. By the year 2000, only the "00" will be read, and will be interpreted to stand for the year "1900."

Somebody said to me, "Whoa, what happened back in 1900?" D-UH! We didn't HAVE computers then!

A Department of Commerce spokeman says many hardware and software systems will have ceased to work. Airplane safety will be jeopardized, as flight plan data will be out of whack. Millions of paychecks will be ruled invalid, by bank computers that find the date unacceptable. Hmm.

Well, we have three and a half years to do something. The state of Nebraska is ahead of everybody. They've set aside 24 million to try and fix the problem. The state legislature'll collect the money over the next few years by adding 2 cents to its cigarette tax.

All right! Keep smoking, everybody! We'll whip "C-Day"--"Computer Day"--somehow!

Stan Freberg here.

Copyright ©1996, Stan Freberg/Freberg, Ltd. (but not very) Distributed by Dick Brescia Associates and Radio Spirits, Inc.