Reporter 440, 11 October 1999

Counting the years to the 21st century...

Chris Trayner

Electronic and Electrical Engineering

Reporter 439 described University life in the 21st century starting late, but appeared to be referring to January 2000. Whatever the arguments on the turn of the Millennium may be, the definition of centuries is clear.
The 19th century started in AD 1901, just as the 1st century started in AD 1. The only way the 21st century could start in 2000 would be for the 20th to have only 99 years. In an age when audits are ever more pervasive and thorough, it seems unlikely that one could get away with this.

...and the number of working days

Lesley Aitken


I am puzzled by the final item on the last page of Reporter 439 dated 27 September 1999, headed 'Millennium extension'.
The implication is that University management is generously bestowing upon its loyal and hardworking staff an extra day's holiday over the Christmas break. However, January 3 is a statutory bank holiday as January 1 is a Saturday.
Is this the first indication of the existence of the Millennium bug?

Best Reporting on the world's web

Esther Mills

Freelance journalist

Yours is the best web site (for news) that I have found. Others are really shoddy in comparison to your well-designed site.
Thank you for all the time and effort that goes into the Reporter. It makes my job a lot easier!

Old computers get second byte at life

Barry Holroyd

School of Medicine

'Wasteful department skips recycling'. So writes Dr Eva Frojmovic (Jewish Studies) in Reporter 439 of September 27.
What an awful waste, especially of computing 'odds and ends'. These could have been given to the Leeds City Council Unit at Roseville Road, which restores and recycles old PCs and components, and in doing so, gives work and experience to the unemployed.
The Assistant General Manager, Mr Derek Hale, would love to hear from those disposing of unwanted PC equipment. He can be contacted at Roseville Enterprises, 65 Roundhay Road, Tel 0113-214 3144 and he can arrange to send transport to collect the unwanted equipment.

More IT recycling

Pam Davies

Edward Boyle library

The report on the Meanwood Beck diesel incident (Reporter 438) includes a recommendation that "A senior member of staff should have explicit responsibility for environmental performance".
One useful role for this person should be as a central source of information on constructive uses or destinations for the University's unwanted goods and materials, in contrast to the skips which Dr Frojmovic observed (Reporter 439). As an example, there is a scheme which will collect and renovate or recycle old IT equipment, through Save Waste And Prosper (SWAP). They can be contacted on 0113 243 8777.

AUT perspective firmly fixed

Stephen Clark

Transport Studies

May I through your letters page ensure that a misinterpretation does not arise out of your piece "Fixed reviews fixed" (Reporter 439).
Readers may construe from the last paragraph that the local association of the AUT has agreed the "Draft Principles on the use of Fixed-term Contracts".
This is most definitely NOT the case since the "principles" contravene national AUT policy on the matter. Even without this national policy, the wording of the principles are so vague that justifications for the use of a fixed-term contract for almost ANY post within the University are possible.

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