0607: "2038"

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dharmamama
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby dharmamama » Wed Jul 08, 2009 9:37 pm UTC

Rango wrote:Actually I did not realise that today was 7/8/9 until i wrote that, cool.


I am not nearly geeky enough for this comic.

But - my son and I did capture this:

Image

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Skorpion » Wed Jul 08, 2009 10:04 pm UTC

QuarterToTomorrow wrote:
Rango wrote:Actually I did not realise that today was 7/8/9 until i wrote that, cool.


Today is 8/7/9. The American date format is weird, illogical and just plain wrong.

You might as well apply it to the time

It's funny that you mention time, because that's the point when the "logical" explanation for the d/m/y format falls apart. Consider:

8/7/9 17:56:32

It's not in increasing units anymore, is it? And it doesn't help if you put the time on the left, either, unless you're crazy and you write it as ss:mm:hh.

If you're going to keep using this logic, I suggest you abandon the slashed format and switch to the ISO format:

2009-07-08 17:56:32

Personally, unless I'm entering a date for machine readability or something official-like, I prefer an English format:

July 8, 2009, 5:56 PM
The details are trivial and pointless. The reasons, as always, purely human ones.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby war3_master » Wed Jul 08, 2009 11:11 pm UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:The correct thing to say would be it's Y2K for real this time. Then go on to explain how people who thought 2000 would be an issue had no idea how shit works*, and 1970 + 2^32 seconds is in 2038, and how 2^32 corresponds to 2 digits (0, 1) and 32-bit. By then they should be either panicked or completely baffled.

Any hacker knows what people thought would happen in 2000 really would happen in 2156. :P

*OK, systems that were storing dates in fixed-width text format would have likely had some issues, but they're doin' it rong.

Also the best way to deal with a late comic is to think "there won't be a new xkcd today because it's Tuesday", failing to realize that it's late Tuesday night and because of timezones it's Wednesday in Randall's time. Then come to read the fora and be pleasantly surprised and then feel kinda stupid for having made that mistake.
...or so I've heard <_<

The problem actually comes from the programming languages. The early c code to display the year would look something like this:

Code: Select all

//note: code is untested
//should cause buffer overflow, run at own risk
#include <time.h>

int main(void)
{
  time_t rawTime;
  time(&rawTime); //get seconds since Jan 1, 1970 UTC
  int years;
  years = (rawTime /(60 * 60 * 24 * 365.25)) + 70; //calculate the years since 1900
  char year[5]; //5 bytes to store the year;
  sprintf("19%i",years); //store the year in 19** format
  printf(year); //print the year
  return 0;
}

Of course, this is an oversimplified example. The main reason for this was to save memory being able to store dates as mm/dd/yy. But the problem with the above code is it will work fine for any date after Jan. 1st 1970, until we reach Jan. 1st 2000. Best case scenario the date would be displayed as 19100. Worst case scenario, the buffer overflow would cause the program to crash. This wasn't an immediate problem for most programs, but a few like air traffic control, life support systems, etc. did need an immediate fix for obvious reasons.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Geekoid » Wed Jul 08, 2009 11:42 pm UTC

A couple of things:
1) there was n issue in 2000 with many financial systems. for those of you old enough to recall, losts of money and hard work went on for about 5 years. well, even before then, but mostly the last 5 years. I watched several financial tests systems collpase. In fact, I was flown to Washington and in about 30 seconds brought there new system down the day before it was to roll into production. heh, most profitable 5 minutes of my life.
So yes, there was a problem. Were Airplanes going to fall out of the sky? no**

2) 2012 is just when the 'Mayan'* calendar ends. Does the world end at the end of every December? no, you just get a new calendar. Same thing.
It's not even a theory, hell it practically fails as a hypothesis. It's just an opportunity for cranks to bilk you out of money.



*Mayan is actually a collection of certian groups of people..TMI, I'm sure.

** maybe Airbus~

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Linux0s » Wed Jul 08, 2009 11:47 pm UTC

Microsoft will still be offering a downgrade path to 32-bit Windows XP in 2038.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Mavrisa » Thu Jul 09, 2009 2:06 am UTC

almafuerte wrote:...
00:09 -> Comic is finished
00:09 -> Randal checks for Raptors in the kitchen
00:11 -> Randal checks for Raptors in the bedroom
00:14 -> Randal checks for Raptors in the under the table
00:17 -> Randal checks for Raptors in the backyard
00:20 -> Randal posts comic
...


I'm sorry for pointing this out.. but I got a laugh from it... copy paste fail :D
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby The_Barbarian » Thu Jul 09, 2009 2:44 am UTC

Zero51423 wrote:To be on topic, I doubt that any computer system of any true importance of today will still be running in 2038,


Yeah, right. I bet ancient, cobol-running mainframes that had to be patched for y2k will still be running in 2038.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Skorpion » Thu Jul 09, 2009 5:32 am UTC

Some of the software which had to be fixed for the Y2K problem was 30 years old. 2038 is only 21 years away, and I think it'll be another 5 years before most software vendors will be willing to drop compatibility with 32-bit systems, so that puts us at 16 years between when the last 32-bit systems are phased out and the Y2K38 problem. (And that's assuming that the new 64-bit programs are actually using a 64-bit date type.)

But as much as people are calling this "The Y2K problem for real", I expect Y2K38 issues to be easier to fix, since you can fix most of the issues by recompiling your code with different settings. That will expose some bugs that were relying on data types being certain sizes (it happens, even in the most well-written software -- what's the sound of an unexposed bug?) but that work shouldn't be as meticulous as the Y2K work.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Duck » Thu Jul 09, 2009 8:58 am UTC

dharmamama wrote:I am not nearly geeky enough for this comic.
But - my son and I did capture this: (img of 12:34:56 7/8/09)

That's funny, I remember making a special point of looking at my watch at lunchtime in the school playground, to see 01:23:45 6/7/89 tick past (yes, I saw it at 1pm not 1am, so not technically correct, but I was 12 years old - it was as close as I could get!)

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Eternal Density » Thu Jul 09, 2009 12:24 pm UTC

FYI, MGM's all new Stargate site officially launched at 12:34:56 on 7/8/9!
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby neoliminal » Thu Jul 09, 2009 1:39 pm UTC

ian wrote:
SirMustapha wrote:
nickjbor wrote:FTR
"Roland Emmerich (born November 10, 1955) is a German film director, screenwriter and producer, known for his disaster and action films. "
"He is currently directing 2012,[23] an apocalyptic film inspired by the theory that the ancient Mayans prophesied the world's ending in 2012."


Excuse me.

FUCK YOU, EMMERICH. FUCK. YOU.

Okay, thanks.

I loved today's strip.


Fuck him for what? What's wrong with making a movie based around the 2012 prophecy?


I think you missunderstood him. He actually wants to copulate with Mr. Emmerich. That much is clear from the size of the... um... text.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby neoliminal » Thu Jul 09, 2009 2:12 pm UTC

dharmamama wrote:
Rango wrote:Actually I did not realise that today was 7/8/9 until i wrote that, cool.


I am not nearly geeky enough for this comic.

But - my son and I did capture this:

Image


Nice capture, as we say on Flickr.

As for the whole "put the day in front of the month in Europe" thing, just take notice that you are also responsible for Metric Time and Swatch Internet Time.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby jc » Thu Jul 09, 2009 5:54 pm UTC

Geekoid wrote:2) 2012 is just when the 'Mayan'* calendar ends.

Actually, this is the bit of silliness that we should be debunking publicly. All that happens on the appointed day is that the first digit of the Mayan "long count" calendar gets bumped by one. It's the same as when the Gregorian calendar went from 1999-12-31 to 2000-1-1. Except that the Mayan calendar used their "vigesimal" (base 20) numbers, in which a date is 5 digits: 3 digits for the year and 2 digits for the day within the year.

The common way to represent Mayan dates in our notation uses 0-19 for a digit, with dots between the digits. Thus, today's date (from one of the calendar translators on the Web) is 12.19.16.8.19, where 12.19.16 is the year and 8.19 is the day. Note that 8.19 is 8x20+19=179, so this is the 179th day within the current Mayan year. The 2-digit date ranges from 0.0 to 18.5 (=18x20+5=365). Leap days are ignored, so the Mayan calendar loses about .24 days per year, and drifts slowly against the seasons over the centuries.

Anyway, on the day in question in 2012, all that happens is that the Mayan date goes from 12.19.19.18.5 to 13.0.0.0.0. This is a bit of a bigger deal than a new century is in our calendar, because the first digit in the Mayan calendar represents 400 years. There may well be some celebrations of the occasion in Central America. But the calendar definitely won't "end", any more than the Gregorian calendar ended at the end of 1999.

Actually, Pope Gregory's original edict about the new calendar even mentioned the year MM, to illustrate the new rule for leap years. The edict listed it, along with MDC, as a leap year. So Gregory thought that the year MM would happen. Mayanists expect that the year 13.0.0 will happen, too. It'll be the first year in 400 years that doesn't start with the digit 12.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby FoolishOwl » Thu Jul 09, 2009 8:39 pm UTC

Lately I've been trying to make a point of writing the date in the format, "9 July 2009."

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby neoliminal » Thu Jul 09, 2009 10:18 pm UTC

jc wrote:
Geekoid wrote:2) 2012 is just when the 'Mayan'* calendar ends.

Actually, this is the bit of silliness that we should be debunking publicly. All that happens on the appointed day is that the first digit of the Mayan "long count" calendar gets bumped by one. It's the same as when the Gregorian calendar went from 1999-12-31 to 2000-1-1. Except that the Mayan calendar used their "vigesimal" (base 20) numbers, in which a date is 5 digits: 3 digits for the year and 2 digits for the day within the year.

The common way to represent Mayan dates in our notation uses 0-19 for a digit, with dots between the digits. Thus, today's date (from one of the calendar translators on the Web) is 12.19.16.8.19, where 12.19.16 is the year and 8.19 is the day. Note that 8.19 is 8x20+19=179, so this is the 179th day within the current Mayan year. The 2-digit date ranges from 0.0 to 18.5 (=18x20+5=365). Leap days are ignored, so the Mayan calendar loses about .24 days per year, and drifts slowly against the seasons over the centuries.

Anyway, on the day in question in 2012, all that happens is that the Mayan date goes from 12.19.19.18.5 to 13.0.0.0.0. This is a bit of a bigger deal than a new century is in our calendar, because the first digit in the Mayan calendar represents 400 years. There may well be some celebrations of the occasion in Central America. But the calendar definitely won't "end", any more than the Gregorian calendar ended at the end of 1999.

Actually, Pope Gregory's original edict about the new calendar even mentioned the year MM, to illustrate the new rule for leap years. The edict listed it, along with MDC, as a leap year. So Gregory thought that the year MM would happen. Mayanists expect that the year 13.0.0 will happen, too. It'll be the first year in 400 years that doesn't start with the digit 12.



So you're saying that 19.19.19.18.5 is really the date to be looking for as the "end of time" on the Mayan calendar system?
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby kodra » Thu Jul 09, 2009 10:32 pm UTC

This of course assumes that programmers won't continue to use legacy 32 bit code with out updating it for critical systems......

Basically, the same thing that happened with Y2K and cobol.

My retirement plan is maintaining my understanding of C til 2038, and charging outrageous rates to refactor legacy code.

Of course this plan requires C to drop out of prominence, gauranteeing my skills are scarce at the time.

....What? Why would I want to fix the problem when I can make tons of cash later doing the same thing?

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby RoadieRich » Thu Jul 09, 2009 11:01 pm UTC

Max2009 wrote:
odie wrote:ah damn, i thought we were safe after 2000. once again XKCD opens my eyes to some absurd conspiracy theory

It's not absurd, and it's not a conspiracy theory, this is really going to happen, and will really screw things up. Somebody linked to a wikipedia page, check it out. Also, if you don't believe us, run a simulation. Set up a virtual machine where the date and time is January 19 2038, 03:19 and wait 8 seconds. See what happens.

-EDIT-
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No problem in ubuntu under virtualbox on a macbook...
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby ThemePark » Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:05 am UTC

RoadieRich wrote:
Max2009 wrote:
odie wrote:ah damn, i thought we were safe after 2000. once again XKCD opens my eyes to some absurd conspiracy theory

It's not absurd, and it's not a conspiracy theory, this is really going to happen, and will really screw things up. Somebody linked to a wikipedia page, check it out. Also, if you don't believe us, run a simulation. Set up a virtual machine where the date and time is January 19 2038, 03:19 and wait 8 seconds. See what happens.

-EDIT-
You need to be running a *nix system, but if you aren't then you probably don't belong here.


No problem in ubuntu under virtualbox on a macbook...

Good, now try setting the year to 2038, like he said.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby RoadieRich » Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:47 am UTC

ThemePark wrote:
RoadieRich wrote:
Max2009 wrote:
odie wrote:ah damn, i thought we were safe after 2000. once again XKCD opens my eyes to some absurd conspiracy theory

It's not absurd, and it's not a conspiracy theory, this is really going to happen, and will really screw things up. Somebody linked to a wikipedia page, check it out. Also, if you don't believe us, run a simulation. Set up a virtual machine where the date and time is January 19 2038, 03:19 and wait 8 seconds. See what happens.

-EDIT-
You need to be running a *nix system, but if you aren't then you probably don't belong here.


No problem in ubuntu under virtualbox on a macbook...

Good, now try setting the year to 2038, like he said.

Oops... seems I fail at basic reading... Although it appears to happen about 5 mins earlier than it should...
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Random832 » Fri Jul 10, 2009 4:51 am UTC

RoadieRich wrote:Oops... seems I fail at basic reading... Although it appears to happen about 5 mins earlier than it should...


s/he just got the time wrong. It's 03:14:07.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Benson » Fri Jul 10, 2009 6:24 am UTC

'; DROP DATABASE;-- wrote:The correct thing to say would be it's Y2K for real this time. Then go on to explain how people who thought 2000 would be an issue had no idea how shit works*, and 1970 + 2^32 seconds is in 2038, and how 2^32 corresponds to 2 digits (0, 1) and 32-bit. By then they should be either panicked or completely baffled.

Any hacker knows what people thought would happen in 2000 really would happen in 2156. :P

*OK, systems that were storing dates in fixed-width text format would have likely had some issues, but they're doin' it rong.

Exactly. And systems storing dates in fixed-width text format (and/or 2-digit BCD fields) is likely to have been written sloppily enough elsewise to wreak major havoc on its data file instead of failing gracefully, so fixing them was all the more crucial. :twisted:

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Tomace » Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:37 am UTC

One of my colleagues pointed out to me today that the Microsoft Excel date code for 6 July 2009 is 40000.
It's funny how xkcd comics tend to be timed to coincide with dates that are relevant. I wonder whether it is coincidence, cleverness, or a source of inspiration.
Interestingly, although the Excel code is 40000, it was actually only the 39999th day since 1 Jan 1900. Bonus points for who can tell me why.

Edit: Yes, should've said 1900 (duh!)
Last edited by Tomace on Sat Jul 11, 2009 8:39 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby e^iπ+1=0 » Fri Jul 10, 2009 11:44 am UTC

neoliminal wrote:
jc wrote:
Geekoid wrote:2) 2012 is just when the 'Mayan'* calendar ends.

Actually, this is the bit of silliness that we should be debunking publicly. All that happens on the appointed day is that the first digit of the Mayan "long count" calendar gets bumped by one. It's the same as when the Gregorian calendar went from 1999-12-31 to 2000-1-1. Except that the Mayan calendar used their "vigesimal" (base 20) numbers, in which a date is 5 digits: 3 digits for the year and 2 digits for the day within the year.

The common way to represent Mayan dates in our notation uses 0-19 for a digit, with dots between the digits. Thus, today's date (from one of the calendar translators on the Web) is 12.19.16.8.19, where 12.19.16 is the year and 8.19 is the day. Note that 8.19 is 8x20+19=179, so this is the 179th day within the current Mayan year. The 2-digit date ranges from 0.0 to 18.5 (=18x20+5=365). Leap days are ignored, so the Mayan calendar loses about .24 days per year, and drifts slowly against the seasons over the centuries.

Anyway, on the day in question in 2012, all that happens is that the Mayan date goes from 12.19.19.18.5 to 13.0.0.0.0. This is a bit of a bigger deal than a new century is in our calendar, because the first digit in the Mayan calendar represents 400 years. There may well be some celebrations of the occasion in Central America. But the calendar definitely won't "end", any more than the Gregorian calendar ended at the end of 1999.

Actually, Pope Gregory's original edict about the new calendar even mentioned the year MM, to illustrate the new rule for leap years. The edict listed it, along with MDC, as a leap year. So Gregory thought that the year MM would happen. Mayanists expect that the year 13.0.0 will happen, too. It'll be the first year in 400 years that doesn't start with the digit 12.



So you're saying that 19.19.19.18.5 is really the date to be looking for as the "end of time" on the Mayan calendar system?

Nope. An extra digit just gets added: 1.0.0.0.0.0

It's like going from the year 999 to 1000.
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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Random832 » Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:51 pm UTC

Tomace wrote:One of my colleagues pointed out to me today that the Microsoft Excel date code for 6 July 2009 is 40000.
It's funny how xkcd comics tend to be timed to coincide with dates that are relevant. I wonder whether it is coincidence, cleverness, or a source of inspiration.
Interestingly, although the Excel code is 40000, it was actually only the 39999th day since 1 Jan 2010. Bonus points for who can tell me why.


Don't you mean the 39999th day since 1 Jan 1900? It wouldn't have anything to do with this, would it?

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby adaviel » Sat Jul 11, 2009 2:18 am UTC

print localtime ( 2^31 + eval(date -d "1944-12-02 08:45:52")) -> Thu Dec 20 11:00:00 2012 Huh??
google ("Roland Emmerich") -> Ah, so...

But if we are all living inside a giant computer simulation (like in the Matrix), and the clock overflows, that could be interesting ...
Or if they just didn't use enough bits for linear dimension .. go too far away, X overflows, and you end up back the other side of where you came from

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Tomace » Sat Jul 11, 2009 8:40 am UTC

Random832 wrote:
Tomace wrote:One of my colleagues pointed out to me today that the Microsoft Excel date code for 6 July 2009 is 40000.
It's funny how xkcd comics tend to be timed to coincide with dates that are relevant. I wonder whether it is coincidence, cleverness, or a source of inspiration.
Interestingly, although the Excel code is 40000, it was actually only the 39999th day since 1 Jan 2010. Bonus points for who can tell me why.


Don't you mean the 39999th day since 1 Jan 1900? It wouldn't have anything to do with this, would it?


Thanks Random. Yes, it would have everything to do with that. I never knew the whole history of why they made it like that though, so that's for enlightening me!

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby phider2 » Sat Jul 11, 2009 3:42 pm UTC

katsi wrote:Since people in general and most of the people here get themselves newer and better computers, I think that in 29 years this will not be a problem anymore. Or will the computers in 2038 be really of the same design as computers are now?

Yeah, but then you have people like me who collect ancient computers, and are mildly annoyed that they can't put the right date in. I used to have a computer running DOS 3 that wouldn't take 21st century dates.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Duck » Mon Jul 13, 2009 8:47 pm UTC

adaviel wrote:But if we are all living inside a giant computer simulation (like in the Matrix), and the clock overflows, that could be interesting ...
Or if they just didn't use enough bits for linear dimension .. go too far away, X overflows, and you end up back the other side of where you came from

nah, the accuracy just decreases and your atoms start clumping to the nearest measurable location.

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Re: "2038" Discussion

Postby Chrisism » Fri Dec 11, 2009 12:08 pm UTC

Duck wrote:
adaviel wrote:But if we are all living inside a giant computer simulation (like in the Matrix), and the clock overflows, that could be interesting ...
Or if they just didn't use enough bits for linear dimension .. go too far away, X overflows, and you end up back the other side of where you came from

nah, the accuracy just decreases and your atoms start clumping to the nearest measurable location.


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