Canadian Consulting Engineer

Mad about millennium hype

I was most disappointed to receive the December 1999 issue of CCE and find that you and several other authors have fallen into the trap of believing the next millennium begins on January 1, 2000. As t...

January 1, 2000   Canadian Consulting Engineer

I was most disappointed to receive the December 1999 issue of CCE and find that you and several other authors have fallen into the trap of believing the next millennium begins on January 1, 2000. As the editor of a magazine prepared for supposedly educated professionals you should know better. The next millennium actually starts on January 1, 2001.

Why? The simple reason is that there was no year 0. In order for a millennium to be a millennium it has to contain 1,000 completed years. Therefore the second millennium will end at the end of the year 2000 and the third millennium will start at the beginning of 2001.

Unfortunately you are not alone in your misconception. In Ontario even the Ministry of Education has gotten it wrong, as did the Canadian Principals Association which endorsed the so-called Year 2000 Millennium Agenda that has been sold to countless students across the country.

As professionals it is our duty to get the facts right. Promoting false information about the millennium is not only foolish it is dead wrong.

Bruce Wilson, P.Eng.

Barrie, Ont.

You, as most of the media and the advertising business joined the Y2K hype to make a few bucks (CCE December 1999).

First, we had the Y2K problem. Then you got the idea to tell people that the start of year 2000 also would be the start of the next millennium and century. We should all know that by the end of 1999, 999 years have passed of this millennium. Did you celebrate your 20th birthday at the beginning of your 20th year, the day after your 19th birthday?

Do you know that in Ottawa, the National Capital Commission Millennium Clock is set (incorrectly) to count down to January 1, 2000, at which time it will be reset to count down (correctly) to January 1, 2001. You may note that we do not hear much about this countdown any more.

I think that by now lots of people are realizing that the Y2K/Millennium celebration is nothing but a hype and that they will celebrate a year from now. You will not be invited.

J.V. Jensen, P.Eng.

Villholth Jensen & Associates Consulting Engineers, North Vancouver, B.C.


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