Forty or even 30 years ago, the only thing that concerned us about the last few years of this century and the first few of the next came out of science fiction movies and television shows. We were thrilled by the adventures of Flash Gordon and the dazzling special effects of the time.

Adventures like Flash Gordon's are still science fiction, but powerful, sophisticated, and possibly confused computers are now a reality-one that may create havoc at the stroke of midnight on Jan. 1, 2000.

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