The world may or may not be ending on December 21, 2012. I'm not an expert on the ancient Maya (although I've climbed many Mayan pyramids and have long been fascinated by their history, see proof below), but I've heard a rumor that this week marks the end of the Long Count calendar, meaning a new era begins on Friday, December 21, 2012, bringing a new civilization. Also, potentially a planet called Niburu might crash into the earth (although NASA has confirmed they have seen no evidence of this).

So, what's your plan? Will it be a space ark? A time machine (i.e., a TARDIS)? Wormhole (a la Fringe)? Should you consider sending your data to Mars? How do you even prepare for the unknown, the black swan events that are highly improbably, but highly disruptive?

In truth, a real "black swan" event is completely unpredictable, and therefore impossible to prepare for. What you can prepare for, however, are all the cascading impacts of a largescale event: power outages, network and cell outages, transit disruptions, and even political instability and resource shortages. These are usually the ultimate culprits of downtime, as we saw after Hurricane Sandy, it was the loss of power, network, transportation, and fuel shortages that caused most BT resiliency problems. So, if you've been planning and testing plans for all the most likely causes of downtime, you've done what you can to prepare for the Mayan Apocalypse, or any other black swan event.

On that lighthearted note, I'd like to wish everyone a happy holiday (assuming we survive until then)!