Exhibits At the Museum

This Day in History

Today: July 23, 2014

September 19, 1989

Y2K Bug Found Ahead of Time

In a possible prelude to the outcome of the Year 2000 (Y2K bug), a hospital computer system in Washington, DC, collapsed because of the overflow of a 16 bit word. September 19, 1989, was 32,768 days after January 1, 1900, when the computer's clock had been set to start counting. The system overflow forced hospital employees to reach back into their pre-technology memories and perform many tasks by hand.