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Year 2000 White Paper

From their inception the APPX and SPEED II Application Design environments have accommodated software designs that process century information. APPX and SPEED II also incorporate facilities and tools allowing conversion of applications not using century information into applications that do address century information.

These include:

  • Century as a native date type.
  • Inheritance: APPX Domains greatly reduce the number of datafile, workfile, and workfield dates that must be redefined to include century.
  • Restructure: When adding century to existing two digit dates, APPX with a few keystrokes restructures enduser data to incorporate the new four digit storage format.
  • System-wide Date Masking (APPX only): A single system level change eliminates the need to individually mask individual fields in order to exclude entry and display of the century. This means that no screen or report 'real estate' must be changed in order to accommodate the processing of century data.
In addition, APPX releases 3.4 and above provide additional tools and methodologies further simplifying y2k conversion. These tools include:
  1. Specialized Domain and Field date editors. These editors support:

    • Rapid identification and editing of the scope (whether a date contains a century) and override mask (what it looks like on screens and reports) for date fields and domains.
    • Ability to generate override masks for fields already containing century components.
    • Ability to rapidly add century to dates currently including year, but not a century.
    • Ability to rapidly identify and edit date Domains and Fields, which may already contain override masks.
    • Integrated Cross-Reference, allowing rapid identification of locations where date fields are used.
  2. A utility identifying locations of likely departures from the APPX standard ILF date handling techniques, which will require additional examination:

    In most cases, SPEED II and APPX's standard date handling objects and functions handle the original application designers' needs for date manipulations meaning that dates may, but are not required to, contain century information. In those cases where date handling was not implemented with standard SPEED/APPX date functions, it is necessary to examine the application design in greater detail, and modify non-standard date operations that may be affected by the change of century.

    APPX will provide utilities to help identify application design elements that should be examined. This will include a utility to detect date/non-date interactions, as well as a utility to identify instances of non- date fields that may be being used in a non-standard way for date operations.

  3. Pivot Year:

    Related to the System-wide Date Masking feature above is the concept of a 'pivot year' which is a form of data windowing. Pivot year controls the assumed century in circumstances where APPX must determine the century of dates of data not containing century information.

    The use of Pivot Year allows APPX systems using System-wide Date Masking to default the century component of a date appropriately, depending on whether the 'YY' is higher or lower than the Pivot Year.

    By default APPX Pivot Year is not set. With the default, if a date requires calculation of the century component, APPX fills in a century using the current system date.

    The default may be overridden by setting the environment variable APPX_PIVOT_YEAR. When set, this triggers a calculation of the century based on the value of the environment variable and the current system date.

    A second environment variable, APPX_PIVOT_ITEMS, is also available. This variable may be set instead of APPX_PIVOT_YEAR to limit pivot year logic to dates on input images. Date calculations in ILF code are not affected by this variable. APPX Software. Inc. recommends that only on of these variables be set at any time.

    Please refer to our Y2K Implementation Guide for further detail.

It is important to understand that these tools are designed to assist customers in conversion of their applications. Customers remain responsible for their own applications, and analysis of code for y2k compliance. APPX Software Inc. may not have determined all possible impacts of year 2000 issues on your customized applications.

SPEED II / Wang VS considerations:

Releases of SPEED II prior to 7.3 do not have Date Masking capability, and the Pivot Year concept doesn't apply to occurrences of date fields on data entry screens and reports. SPEED II designers will therefore have to allocate additional screen and report 'real estate' to allow for the presentation of dates modified to include century.

As of release 7.3, SPEED II will not contain the APPX special y2k editors, but does contain Y2K utilities and Date Masking. Users staying with SPEED II need to use the standard SPEED II design utilities to perform the functions accomplished by these APPX enhancements.

Users migrating from SPEED II to APPX, however, will be able to take full advantage of the APPX enhanced y2k tools.

To run in the next century, it is our understanding that users must upgrade to Wang Laboratories’ VS/OS release 7.53 or greater. This release will require SPEED II release 7.2, available later this year, as prior versions of SPEED II will not support VS/OS 7.53.

Applications Considerations:

APPX Customers using the ASI 'T-apps' applications under current maintenance will receive, upon request, a copy of the T-apps with century support, at no additional charge.

We have published a Y2K implementation guide, which provides recommended steps to allow most customized APPX applications to process century information. We believe this procedure will address the majority of conversion issues likely to be raised as we approach the year 2000.

In addition, APPX Software Inc. sponsors an e-mail listserver encouraging free communication among supported customers on topics relating to y2k conversion issues.

This white paper is provided to you for educational purposes only and without charge. It does not modify our existing agreements with you. Without limiting the foregoing, this white paper does not constitute additional warranties or representations, extend any warranties, development of your customized applications, and APPX makes no representation or warranty whatsoever as to whether your customized applications will be y2k compliant by using the tools or following the procedures set forth in this white paper.


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Topic revision: r1 - 2012-02-29 - ChrisBrower
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