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   The Year 2000
   PowerBuilder Problem...

  In August of 1998, when I took over as Editor-In-Chief of the PowerBuilder Developers Journal, I immediately scheduled an issue to focus on the Y2K problem. I started researching the issue in depth to find out how the problem will impact the PowerBuilder development community. While researching the problem I found many companies which provide Y2K consulting and analysis tools, but I found exactly zero which provide training.

  Most companies which offer Y2K services are focusing on outsourcing services rather than assistance-type services.The high cost of these services mean that most of these types of resources are being consumed by large companies with deep pockets. That leaves the medium and small companies out in the cold. Many companies can't afford to pay 25 cents per Billable Line of Code to outsource the analysis and remediation efforts.

  Another thing I found was that PowerBuilder developers and their managers assume that their applications are Year 2000 compliant because the software development tool and database they use are both compliant. This position is very common but also very dangerous.

  It is true that their applications are not susceptible to Year 2000 miscalculations caused by PowerBuilder or the database engine. However, in the client/server world far more date miscalculations are caused by coding errors than by non-compliant tools. This means that the Year 2000 "bug" in our industry is not the same bug as the one in the mainframe industry. Though we store 4 digits for the year we will still experience date miscalculations when dates on or after January 1, 2000 are used. It also means that our industry experiences a smaller percentage of date bugs per thousand lines of code than mainframe systems. Though our average of only 200 date bugs per 100,000 BLOC is good from a ratio perspective, it can still be devastating from a business perspective.

   Building Blocks for
   Year 2000 and Beyond
  One of my goals is to see that developers get educated in good coding practices and techniques. When I saw that there was a huge need for training in the Y2K area I decided to fill the gap. The intent of the seminar  is to equip attendees to fix existing programs and use smart date manipulation techniques in their coding. Since the problem won't end on January 1, 2000, then the solution shouldn't either. The information and recommendations in this seminar will have long lasting effects on all who attend.


Are You Prepared for Y2K? Take the Quiz!