2012, the end of the world?

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Some people have started freaking out of 2012 being the potential end of the world. I think its silly because everyone knows that 1997 was supposed to be the end of the world. Or was it 1998?

Anyways, I found some interest in documenting the various things that will run out, terminate, change, expire in 2012.

I've added tags at the end of each item as to the likelihood that the event will happen in 2012, the impact it would make on a global scale and the perception that people would associate this with being an apocalyptic event.

Ratings are Negligible, Low, moderate, high and definite.

  • End of the Mayan Calendar - This is one of the big ones. But hey, we didn't care about the Mayans before, so lets use their calendar now to state that the world is coming to an end.
Likelihood: Definite
Impact: Negligible
Perception: Low
  • Potentially the end of first term of US presidency of first woman or first black president - I'm not sure what you call this kind of prediction (Lame maybe?), but I've already started to hear things like "There is a prophecy that the last president of the US will be a woman" or "be a black man". But I think these aren't prophecies as much as just people thinking they are making ironic predictions.
Likelihood: High
Impact: Low
Perception: High
  • IPv4 space crunch - This is a lesser known one to people outside of the networking infrastructure world, but the current predictions are that the Internet will run out of available IP space in 2012. There are efforts to switch to the newer IPv6, but they require everyone on the Internet to change their software/hardware over, and that isn't happening very fast.
Likelihood: High
Impact: Moderate
Perception: Low
  • Peak oil major events
Likelihood: Moderate
Impact: High
Perception: Moderate