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Y2K Part 2

In less than a day, the 3-week early DST change in the US will occur. Airplanes will fall from the sky, your bank account will be reduced to nothing, ATMs will run out of cash, nuclear missiles will launch and your Tivo will be hurled into a wolrd of recording the show after the one you wanted it to.

Actually, you'll probably just lose an hour of sleep tomorrow morning. Unless you have kids. Then you will lose two.

The media has really hyped this problem up, in a style reminiscient to the Y2K bug. Sure, there may be a few missed appointments on Monday, people may have some issues with Outlook (I got 6 invites from a client for the same meeting last week.) But by and large, the impact of this change will be less than that of realizing it's 8:00, not 7:00 and still light out.

Verizon Wirelss is doing all they can to get their customers ready. They sent a text message to my phone the other day, which conveniently had a link embedded in it to its DST Resource Page. What they failed to think through is that the link led to a regular-sized web page, complete with HTML that doesn't render well on the device which they sent it to. Not only did the page take forever to load, but once it did, it was impossible to navigate the Javascript-driven menus once it did. Thanks for that!

All was not lost. Just this morning, I received an e-mail informing me of the same imminent demise that the early DST change will bring. My favorite quote from that e-mail:
"The Verizon Wireless network will seamlessly support the change to DST. While most customers’ devices will experience no impact, customers with BlackBerry devices and most PDAs/smartphones running Palm OS or Windows Mobile will be required to update or patch their devices."

Really? So the so-called "Smartphones" - which are all considerably more expensive, have more features, and overall are much harder to use then their "dumber" counterparts - are not smart enough to realize the the network time has changed? Wow.

What Verizon Wireless recommends is to install the latest DST Patches from Microsoft. Sure, that makes, sense, let me pop on over and read about the potential impact of such a patch:
"All Windows Mobile powered device users affected by the time change should give extra attention to meetings and appointments scheduled between March 11 and April 1, 2007, and between October 28 and November 4, 2007. View any appointments that fall into these date ranges as suspect until you communicate with all meeting invitees to make sure that the item shows up correctly on everyone's calendar."

So not only do we have to worry about this problem this week, but once again in the fall? And the best they can do is recommend that I treat any appointment that I have in the next month as "suspect"? Should I call the authorities? Will the terrorism alert level change if I don't? Hmmm...

And my personal favorite piece of advise throws us all the way back to 1992, the last time that I bought filler paper for my Franklin Planner:
"Prior to applying the DST files, print out your weekly calendars for the affected time periods so that you can keep track of which meetings were scheduled before and after you run the tool."

Time to head out to Staples!


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