Sometimes, some-thing will chafe against my sense of decency, intelligence or rationality long enough, and out comes a rant.

Chose your rant:

  1. Welcome to the Third Millennium
  2. Boycott Amazon.com
  3. Microsoft

Jan. 1 of the Year 2000 was not the start of the Third Millennium.

Maybe you started the Third Millennium on January 1, 2000, but those of us slogging away in the Gregorian calendar didn't arrive until January 1, 2001.

This latter group includes:

the United States Naval Observatory

the Royal Greenwich Observatory

Here are each of these sites' explanations of why this is:

I was all for having a big party both nights, but the more i heard people, including some monster-big news organizations, describe the potential computer problems caused by computers storing the year in two-digits (00 vs. 2000) as The Millennium Bug, the more i doubted their ability to accurately report news. Reporting that the Third Millennium started on Jan. 1 2000, was like reporting that the new year begins the morning of December 31st. Close, but wrong.

Ironically, it was this (lack of) attention to detail that helped cause the Year 2000 problem in the first place. (People decide it isn't worth the additional, though meager, amount of work to be 100% accurate, even when they know the work they were doing is inaccurate and that those inaccuracies will eventually come back to haunt someone.)

I pointed this out (via email) to an international news organization (Reuters), and the response i got was essentially, Yeah, whatever, if you want to get technical about it.

As far as i can tell, most major media organizations referred to it as The Millennium Bug, whenever it struck their fancy, even though it was factually incorrect and misleading.

And one more thing, 1 January 2001 will be the start of the Third Millenium, not the Second.
(Years 1-1000 were the first, years 1001-2000 are the second, years 2001-3000 will be the third.)

Looking for someone to blame? It's the Catholic Church's fault. They made up the Gregorian calendar.

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