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1998-04-29 06:53:27


Intel's President Warns of a Looming Government Crisis



The President of Intel, the world's largest chip designer and manufacturer, has warned of an "ugly situation" facing the U.S. government.

In contrast, the brand-new head of the government's y2k project says that the government's agencies will be ready.

This is from the WASHINGTON POST (April 24).

* * * * * * *

The federal government faces an "ugly" situation if it does not step up efforts to correct the year 2000 programming error in its agencies' computers, the head of the world's largest chipmaker said yesterday.

Andrew S. Grove, chief executive of Intel Corp., gave an assessment far more pessimistic than is commonly heard from Silicon Valley executives. Congress should convene weekly hearings with each branch of government, he said, to discuss how they are attacking the problem, which threatens to drive computers haywire when the 1990s end. . . .

Meeting yesterday with Washington Post reporters and editors, Grove said he put this proposal yesterday to a U.S. senator whom he declined to identify publicly. On hearing it, the senator "blanched because they are so far away," Grove said, adding that his own corporation is spending about 20 percent of its information technology budget on correcting year 2000 problems.

"The problem's going to be pretty bad," Grove said.

John Koskinen, who chairs the president's council on year 2000 conversion, disputed Grove's assessment, saying the government will be prepared. He recently finished meeting with officials from 40 government agencies to discuss the problem. "Based on these meetings, I am confident that all of the mission-critical systems of the government will function effectively," Koskinen said.


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