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    Re: millenium - 2000 or 2001?
    From: Geoff Kuenning
    Date: 1999 Dec 27, 5:26 PM

    > Those of us who had to really analyze number systems in order to
    > design computers have always recognized that one started counting at
    > zero.  (Although there was a misguided bunch who had both negative
    > and positive zeroes in their implementations.)
    
    This is a common misconception among computer programmers who choose
    to be rabidly nerdy.  "I write my loops starting at zero, so zero is
    the only place to start counting," they proclaim.
    
    Wrong.
    
    Humans count from 1.  They *MEASURE* from zero (note where your tape
    measure starts).  The confusion among geeks arises because when you
    are writing a computer program that counts something, it is often
    better to write the code so that it measures that thing, so starting
    at zero makes sense.
    
    As to the millennium, as others have pointed out it's all arbitrary.
    You can scream for mathematical precisions all you want, but the
    reality is that there are going to be big parties *this* year and it
    seems silly to sit at home saying "humbug" instead of enjoying
    oneself.  Will there be big parties next year as well?  Probably.  I,
    for one, won't complain if I have fun twice instead of once.
    
    And now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go play with my FIRST-born
    child.
    --
        Geoff Kuenning   geoff{at}cs.hmc.edu   http://fmg-www.cs.ucla.edu/geoff/
    
    Software, like bridges, should be elegant and visually pleasing as
    well as functional.  Ugly constructs, designs, and languages should be
    avoided like the plague.
    

       
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