March 8, 2007 - Posted at 8:46 p.m. CST
JONESBORO, AR -- You've probably heard the proverb, "early to bed, early to rise...makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." But what you probably didn't know is that Benjamin Franklin wrote that as a preface to Daylight Saving Time.
Congress decided in 2005 to extend the period by three weeks in spring and one week in the fall. Their reason...providing more daylight in the early evening would reduce energy use. But the shift could cause trouble with older computer software set to automatically advance three weeks from now.
When the sun sets Saturday and the clock springs forward Sunday morning at 2:00, a new version of Daylight Saving Time begins. Some are calling it a potential mini Y2K... its target: time management.
"Especially in the corporate setting or the educational setting where so much is calendar driven. You could come in after daylight savings time and your calendar could be one hour off, which could be critical for certain individuals. It is very, very important to make sure those files are appropriately patched and maintained up to speed," said ASU Information and Technology Service CIO Mark Houeting.
This room at ASU's Information and Technology services is the heart of the University.
"It drives everything from control systems for buildings to paying employees to registering students and online courses and our collaboration with them, so it has been an issue for us," admitted Houeting.
ASU has had an entire unit working on the problem for about three months.
"What we've had to go back in and do is through a maintenance cycle an apply patches to anything that had a processing unit to tell it that the time was going to change on a new weekend in the spring, rather then the old weekend, so we actually had to physically lay hands on every device on campus," said Houeting.