Chicken Little and Daylight-Saving Time


It's March 13. We pushed our clocks ahead an hour on March 10 (well, some of us forgot and were subsequently an hour late for Bridge to Terabithia on March 11). But did anything catastrophic happen to our computer systems out there? Anything bad?

No, huh?

I guess all the hoo and ha were for naught. Sky-is-falling predictions get tiresome (the breathlessly dire coverage of the computer consequences of bird flu make me chuckle). IT professionals have to watch out for the Chicken Little syndrome. Credibility is so tough to earn and so easily lost.

Yes, technology managers must be aware and prepared for events like early daylight-saving time and possible disasters such as avian flu outbreaks. But man, keep it in proportion.


7 Comments for "Chicken Little and Daylight-Saving Time"

  • Harold March 28, 2007 10:30 am

    Some of the 'noise' was just that, noise. But some of the problems were real. I patched everything I could think of. I tested the serious program, time & attendance. It worked. Then I waited and checked on March 12th, (I am salaried and all the +time I put in is uncompensated, besides, I was completely confident in my work.) All main applications were working correctly as I expected. Oops, had one Java application that didn't get patched (was only a display issue). Fixed that and no-one appreciated my planning and work that made this event un-noteworthy. All the hourly workers that would have gotten an extra hour of pay wouldn't have said anything but my employer would have had me on the carpet.

  • FryGuy March 20, 2007 11:57 pm

    Linux servers were easy to update! I only had one minor time problem with a VMware guest OS. The OS was updated with the new time zone data. But either when the time changed the NTP time server I was using didn't update the time properly, or it was a because the guest OS don't have VMware tools installed to sync the time with the host OS.

  • John March 20, 2007 4:07 pm

    We patched "all" Windows systems, but didn't do any other checks, and did no testing. Our JVM for our application servers had to be upgraded, so our application date compares for age of records was wrong. Fixed that. Then it was reported to me that audit timestamps were wrong, the network admin missed the patch on the 64bit SQL box. This was a big one, as we track how often we talk to our trucks on the road. Then found out the patch for one of the terminal servers failed and when dispatchers were entering a period, our default for current time, it was defaulting 1 hr wrong, so we were reporting incorrect delivery times to customers. Nothing died, but it wasn't our usual quality exercise. I was an IT manager during 99/2000 and it blew me away how everyone kidded that we wasted all that time and money. Know anyone that tried to short cut it and got burned? I did. This fellow's company had to change clocks to 01-01-1999 and live with everything being 1 year off for a while....

  • Bob March 20, 2007 4:00 pm

    Not all was flawless. Integration between pesky "partner" applications didn't fare too well. Running Microsoft Outlook against Oracle Calender Server was a bit of a mess. Despite all the upgrades from individual vendors, there wasn't enough cooperation between them to eliminate all issues.

  • shadow March 20, 2007 3:58 pm

    Something bad really did happen. We still had the Windows OS.

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