Quotes of the day: Charles Lamb

Published Tuesday, February 09, 2016 @ 5:55 PM EST
Feb 09 2016

Charles Lamb (February 10, 1775 – December 27, 1834) was an English writer and essayist, best known for his Essays of Elia and for the children's book Tales from Shakespeare, which he produced with his sister, Mary Lamb (1764–1847). (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A pun is not bound by the laws which limit nicer wit. It is a pistol let off at the ear; not a feather to tickle the intellect.

Alas! can we ring the bells backward? Can we unlearn the arts that pretend to civilize, and then burn the world? There is a march of science; but who shall beat the drums for its retreat?

Asparagus inspires gentle thoughts.

Boys are capital fellows in their own way, among their mates; but they are unwholesome companions for grown people.

Brandy and water spoils two good things.

Cards are war, in disguise of a sport.

Clap an extinguisher upon your irony if you are unhappily blessed with a vein of it.

Credulity is the man's weakness, but the child's strength.

He is no lawyer who cannot take two sides.

Here cometh April again, and as far as I can see the world hath more fools in it than ever.

I always arrive late at the office, but I make up for it by leaving early.

I am determined that my children shall be brought up in their father's religion, if they can find out what it is.

I could never hate anyone I knew.

I'd like to grow very old as slowly as possible.

It is good to love the unknown.

Lawyers, I suppose, were children once.

Let us live for the beauty of our own reality.

Man is a gaming animal. He must always be trying to get the better in something or other.

My motto is: Contented with little, yet wishing for more.

My theory is to enjoy life, but the practice is against it.

New Year's Day is every man's birthday.

Newspapers always excite curiosity. No one ever lays one down without a feeling of disappointment.

Nothing puzzles me more than time and space, and yet nothing puzzles me less, as I never think about them.

Pain is life-the sharper, the more evidence of life.

Riches are chiefly good because they give us time.

The beggar wears all colors fearing none.

The greatest pleasure I know is to do a good action by stealth, and to have it found out by accident.

The human species, according to the best theory I can form of it, is composed of two distinct races, the men who borrow and the men who lend.

The measure of choosing well, is, whether a man likes and finds good in what he has chosen.

The most common error made in matters of appearance is the belief that one should disdain the superficial and let the true beauty of one's soul shine through. If there are places on your body where this is a possibility, you are not attractive- you are leaking.

The red-letter days, now become, to all intents and purposes, dead- letter days.

The teller of a mirthful tale has latitude allowed him. We are content with less than absolute truth.

We gain nothing by being with such as ourselves. We encourage one another in mediocrity. I am always longing to be with men more excellent than myself.

We grow gray in our spirit long before we grow gray in our hair.


(February 10 is also the birthday of Bertolt Brecht, Boris Pasternak, Doug Larson, and William Allen White.)

Categories: Charles Lamb; Quotes of the day

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Future history

Published Monday, February 08, 2016 @ 11:34 PM EST
Feb 08 2016

Categories: Bernie Sanders; Star Trek

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Quotes of the day: Dean Rusk

Published Monday, February 08, 2016 @ 11:13 PM EST
Feb 08 2016

David Dean Rusk KBE (February 9, 1909 – December 20, 1994) was the United States Secretary of State from 1961 to 1969 under presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Rusk is the joint-second- longest serving U.S. Secretary of State of all time, behind only Cordell Hull and tied with William H. Seward. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Continuity does not rule out fresh approaches to fresh situations.

Give a member of Congress a junket and a mimeograph machine and he thinks he is secretary of state.

I wouldn't make the slightest concession for moral leadership. It's much overrated.

Physicists and astronomers see their own implications in the world being round, but to me it means that only one-third of the world is asleep at any given time and the other two-thirds is up to something.

The best way to persuade people is with your ears- by listening to them.

The usual cause of evil in the world is that at any given time half the people in the world are awake.

We have tried to make it clear that the United States is not just an old cow that gives more milk the more it is kicked in the flanks.

We were eyeball-to-eyeball and the other fellow just blinked. (re: 1962 Cuban missile crisis)

When you solve a problem, you ought to thank God and go on to the next one.


(February 9 is also the birthday of Alice Walker and Brendan Behan.)

Categories: Dean Rusk; Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Joseph Schumpeter

Published Sunday, February 07, 2016 @ 7:17 PM EST
Feb 07 2016

Joseph Alois Schumpeter (German: [February 8, 1883 – January 8, 1950)[1] was an Austrian-born American economist and political scientist. He briefly served as Finance Minister of Austria in 1919. In 1932 he became a professor at Harvard University where he remained until the end of his career. One of the most influential economists of the 20th century, Schumpeter popularized the term "creative destruction" in economics. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


Bureaucracy is not an obstacle to democracy but an inevitable complement to it.

Capitalism inevitably and by virtue of the very logic of its civilization creates, educates and subsidizes a vested interest in social unrest.

Democracy is a political method, that is to say, a certain type of institutional arrangement for arriving at political - legislative and administrative - decisions and hence incapable of being an end in itself.

Economic progress, in capitalist society, means turmoil.

Entrepreneurial profit is the expression of the value of what the entrepreneur contributes to production.

Geniuses and prophets do not usually excel in professional learning, and their originality, if any, is often due precisely to the fact that they do not.

History is a record of 'effects' the vast majority of which nobody intended to produce.

Innovation is the market introduction of a technical or organisational novelty, not just its invention.

Politicians are like bad horsemen who are so preoccupied with staying in the saddle that they can't bother about where they're going.

Situations emerge in the process of creative destruction in which many firms may have to perish that nevertheless would be able to live on vigorously and usefully if they could weather a particular storm.

Success depends on intuition, on seeing what afterwards proves true but cannot be established at the moment.

Surely, nothing can be more plain or even more trite common sense than the proposition that innovation... is at the center of practically all the phenomena, difficulties, and problems of economic life in capitalist society.

The ballot is stronger than bullets.

The capitalist achievement does not typically consist in providing more silk stocking for queens but in bringing them within the reach of factory girls in return for a steadily decreasing amount of effort.

The first thing a man will do for his ideals is lie.

The modern mind dislikes gold because it blurts out unpleasant truths.

The stock exchange is a poor substitute for the Holy Grail.

The typical citizen drops down to a lower level of mental performance as soon as he enters the political field. He argues and analyzes in a way which he would readily recognize as infantile within the sphere of his real interests. He becomes primitive again.

We always plan too much and always think too little.


(February 8 is also the birthday of John Ruskin, Jules Verne, and Abraham Lincoln.)

Categories: Joseph Schumpeter; Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Ronald Reagan

Published Saturday, February 06, 2016 @ 2:01 PM EST
Feb 06 2016

Ronald Wilson Reagan (February 6, 1911 – June 5, 2004) was an American politician and actor, who served as the 40th President of the United States from 1981 to 1989. Prior to his presidency, he served as the 33rd Governor of California from 1967 to 1975, following a career as an actor and union leader in Hollywood. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


(A) taxpayer is someone who has to work for the federal government without taking a civil-service test.

A hungry child knows no politics.

All great change in America begins at the dinner table.

An economist is someone who sees something happen in practice and wonders if it'd work in theory.

Approximately 80 percent of our air pollution stems from hydrocarbons released by vegetation, so let's not go overboard in setting and enforcing tough emission standards from man-made sources.

Cannot swords be turned to plowshares? Can we and all nations not live in peace? In our obsession with antagonisms of the moment, we often forget how much unites all the members of humanity.

Freedom is individual- there is no 's' on the end of it. You can diminish it, but you cannot divide it and choose to keep 'some freedoms' while giving up others.

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.

Freedom is the right to question and change the established way of doing things. It is the continuous revolution of the marketplace. It is the understanding that allows to recognize shortcomings and seek solutions.

Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.

Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other.

Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives.

Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.

History teaches that wars begin when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap.

I favor the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and it must be enforced at gunpoint if necessary.

I have left orders to be awakened at any time in case of national emergency, even if I'm in a cabinet meeting.

I never knew anything above Cs (in school).

I would just warn you that if you get in bed with the government, you'll get more than a good night's sleep.

It is time for us to realize that we're too great a nation to limit ourselves to small dreams.

Middle age is when you're faced with two temptations and you choose the one that will get you home by nine o'clock.

Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with conflict by peaceful means.

Politics is just like show business, you have a hell of an opening, coast for a while and then have a hell of a close.

Politics is not a bad profession. If you succeed there are many rewards, if you disgrace yourself you can always write a book.

Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.

Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they've made a difference to this world. Marines don't have that problem.

Sometimes the right hand doesn't know what the far-right hand is doing.

Status quo, you know, is Latin for 'the mess we're in.'

The defense policy of the United States is based on a simple premise: The United States does not start fights. We will never be an aggressor. We maintain our strength in order to deter and defend against aggression- to preserve freedom and peace.

The future doesn't belong to the fainthearted. It belongs to the brave.

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are 'I'm from the government, and I'm here to help.'

The other day, someone told me the difference between a democracy and a people's democracy. It's the same difference between a jacket and a straitjacket.

The size of the Federal budget is not an appropriate barometer of social conscience or charitable concern.

Unemployment insurance is a pre-paid vacation for freeloaders.

We cannot play innocents abroad in a world that is not innocent.

We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.

Welfare's purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.

Well, I would- if they realized that we- again if- if we led them back to that stalemate only because that our retaliatory power, our seconds, or strike at them after our first strike, would be so destructive that they couldn't afford it, that it would hold them off.
(when asked if nuclear war could be limited to tactical weapons)

What does an actor know about politics?

What kind of people do we think we are?

When cruelty is inflicted on innocent people, it discredits whatever cause.

You and I are told increasingly that we have to choose between a left or right, but I would like to suggest that there is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down...

You and I have a rendezvous with destiny.


>p>Ronald Reagan is the first modern President whose contempt for the facts is treated as a charming idiosyncrasy.
-James David Barber

In the Reagan years, more federal debt was added than in the entire prior history of the United States.
-Richard Darman

He has the ability to make statements that are so far outside the parameters of logic that they leave you speechless.
-Patti Davis

The fox, as has been pointed out by more than one philosopher, knows many small things, whereas the hedgehog knows one big thing. Ronald Reagan was neither a fox nor a hedgehog. He was as dumb as a stump. He could have had anyone in the world to dinner, any night of the week, but took most of his meals on a White House TV tray. He had no friends, only cronies. His children didn't like him all that much. He met his second wife — the one that you remember — because she needed to get off a Hollywood blacklist and he was the man to see. Year in and year out in Washington, I could not believe that such a man had even been a poor governor of California in a bad year, let alone that such a smart country would put up with such an obvious phony and loon.
-Christopher Hitchens


(February 6 is also the birthday of Bob Marley.)


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Frozen out

Published Friday, February 05, 2016 @ 5:11 PM EST
Feb 05 2016

Windows 10 continues to be a source of ongoing adventure.

Every few days, my machine randomly freezes solid. The mouse cursor is unresponsive and even control alt delete isn't recognized. The only thing to do is hit the power switch and hope the open applications refreshed any recently open files.

As usual, MIcrosoft has no specific solution for this problem. Searches suggested it had something to do with Windoes' active-state power management feature: in power options, PCI Express, set both options to off. We will see. The freezes don't happen daily, If I make it to next Friday, I'll consider it fixed.

Unless you have an urgent need to go to Windows 10, I'd suggest waiting. Word is there will be another build released before the free ugrade offer expires on July 29.

Categories: Windows

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Quotes of the day: metaphysics

Published Thursday, February 04, 2016 @ 8:50 PM EST
Feb 04 2016

A morning-glory at my window satisfies me more than the metaphysics of books.
-Walt Whitman

Corporations are neither physical nor metaphysical phenomena. They are socioeconomic ploys- legally enacted game-playing- agreed upon only between overwhelmingly powerful socioeconomic individuals and by them imposed upon human society and its all unwitting members.
-Buckminster Fuller

History is not the past. It is the stories we tell about the past. How we tell these stories- triumphantly or self-critically, metaphysically or dialectally- has a lot to do with whether we cut short or advance our evolution as human beings.
-Grace Lee Boggs

Humanists hold that ethical values are relative to human experience and need not be derived from theological or metaphysical foundations.
-Paul Kurtz

I was thrown out of college for cheating on the metaphysics exam; I looked into the soul of the boy sitting next to me.
-Woody Allen

In metaphysics, the notion that earth and all that's on it is a mental construct is the product of people who spend their lives inside rooms. It is an indoor philosophy.
-Edward Abbey

It is the pervading law of all things organic and inorganic, of all things physical and metaphysical, of all things human and all things superhuman, of all true manifestations of the head, of the heart, of the soul, that the life is recognizable in its expression, that form ever follows function. This is the law.
-Louis Sullivan

It's so hard to believe in anything anymore. I mean, it's like, religion, you really can't take it seriously, because it seems so mythological, it seems so arbitrary... but, on the other hand, science is just pure empiricism, and by virtue of its method, it excludes metaphysics. I guess I wouldn't believe in anything anymore if it weren't for my lucky astrology mood watch.
-Steve Martin

Metaphysics is a restaurant where they give you a thirty-thousand page menu and no food.
-Robert Pirsig

Metaphysics is almost always an attempt to prove the incredible by an appeal to the unintelligible.
-H.L. Mencken

My studies in Speculative philosophy, metaphysics, and science are all summed up in the image of a mouse called man running in and out of every hole in the Cosmos hunting for the Absolute Cheese.
-Benjamin DeCasseres

One may not regard the world as a sort of metaphysical brothel for emotions.
-Arthur Koestler

Religion merges into mysticism and metaphysics and philosophy. There have been great mystics, attractive figures, who cannot easily be disposed of as self-deluded fools. Yet, mysticism (in the narrow sense of the word) irritates me; it appears to be vague and soft and flabby, not a rigorous discipline of the mind but a surrender of mental faculties and living in a sea of emotional experience. The experience may lead occasionally to some insight into inner and less obvious processes, but it is also likely to lead to self-delusion.
-Jawaharlal Nehru

The great question in life is the suffering we cause, and the most ingenious metaphysics do not justify the man who has broken the heart that loved him.
-Benjamin Constant

The moral truth here is obvious: anyone who feels that the interests of a blastocyst just might supersede the interests of a child with a spinal cord injury has had his moral sense blinded by religious metaphysics.
-Sam Harris

The philosophy of Atheism represents a concept of life without any metaphysical Beyond or Divine Regulator. It is the concept of an actual, real world with its liberating, expanding and beautifying possibilities, as against an unreal world, which, with its spirits, oracles, and mean contentment has kept humanity in helpless degradation.
-Emma Goldman

The Yankees, the first mechanicians in the world, are engineers- just as the Italians are musicians and the Germans metaphysicians- by right of birth. Nothing is more natural, therefore, than to perceive them applying their audacious ingenuity to the science of gunnery.
-Jules Verne

We live in a time of twin credulities: the hunger for the miraculous combined with a servile awe of science. The mating of the two gives us superstition plus scientism- a Mongoloid metaphysic.
-Edward Abbey

While the easiest way in metaphysics is to condemn all metaphysics as nonsense, the easiest way in morals is to elevate the common practice of the community into a moral absolute.
-Daniel J. Boorstin

Categories: Metaphysics; Quotes of the day; Quotes on a topic

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Quotes of the day: Betty Friedan

Published Wednesday, February 03, 2016 @ 7:05 PM EST
Feb 03 2016

Betty Friedan (February 4, 1921 – February 4, 2006) was an American writer, activist, and feminist. A leading figure in the women's movement in the United States, her 1963 book The Feminine Mystique is often credited with sparking the second wave of American feminism in the 20th century. In 1966, Friedan co-founded and was elected the first president of the National Organization for Women (NOW), which aimed to bring women "into the mainstream of American society now [in] fully equal partnership with men". (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A girl should not expect special privileges because of her sex, but neither should she 'adjust' to prejudice and discrimination.

A woman is handicapped by her sex, and handicaps society, either by slavishly copying the pattern of man's advance in the professions, or by refusing to compete with man at all.

Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.

Chosen motherhood is the real liberation.

It is better for a woman to compete impersonally in society, as men do, than to compete for dominance in her own home with her husband, compete with her neighbors for empty status, and so smother her son that he cannot compete at all.

It is easier to live through someone else than to become complete yourself.

It is perhaps beside the point to remark that bowling alleys and supermarkets have nursery facilities, while schools and colleges and scientific laboratories and government offices do not.

Just as darkness is sometimes defined as the absence of light, so age is defined as the absence of youth.

Men are not the enemy, but the fellow victims. The real enemy is women's denigration of themselves.

No woman gets an orgasm from shining the kitchen floor.

The feminine mystique has succeeded in burying millions of American women alive.

The feminist revolution had to be fought because women quite simply were stopped at a state of evolution far short of their human capacity.

The feminists had destroyed the old image of woman, but they could not erase the hostility, the prejudice, the discrimination that still remained.

The insult, the real reflection on our culture's definition of the role of women, is that as a nation we only noticed something was wrong with women when we saw its effects on their sons.

The only way for a woman, as for a man, to find herself, to know herself as a person, is by creative work of her own. There is no other way.

Who knows what women can be when they are finally free to be themselves.

Women who 'adjust' as housewives, who grow up wanting to be 'just a housewife,' are in as much danger as the millions who walked to their own death in the concentration camps... they ate suffering a slow death of mind and spirit.

You can have it all, just not all at the same time.


(February 4 is also the birthday of Charles A. Lindbergh.)

Categories: Betty Friedan; Quotes of the day

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Quotes of the day: Computers

Published Tuesday, February 02, 2016 @ 11:19 PM EST
Feb 02 2016

(A) computer is a stupid machine with the ability to do incredibly smart things, while computer programmers are smart people with the ability to do incredibly stupid things. They are, in short, a perfect match.
-Bill Bryson

(The computer) industry is running away from us faster than we can run to keep up with it.
-Variously attributed

A computer cuts your work in half and gives you back the bloody stumps.
-Variously attributed

A computer does not substitute for judgment any more than a pencil substitutes for literacy. But writing without a pencil is no particular advantage.
-Robert McNamara

A computer is essentially a trained squirrel: acting on reflex, thoughtlessly running back and forth and storing away nuts until some other stimulus makes it do something else.
-Ted Nelson

A computer is only as good as the people who are employed to replace the people who were made redundant by the computer.
-Variously attributed

A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.
-Mitch Ratcliffe

A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.
-Emo Philips

A computer would deserve to be called intelligent if it could deceive a human into believing that it was human.
-Alan Turing

A distributed system is one in which the failure of a computer you didn't even know existed can render your own computer unusable.
-Leslie Lamport

A human must turn information into intelligence or knowledge. We've tended to forget that no computer will ever ask a new question.
-Admiral Grace Murray Hopper

A modern computer hovers between the obsolescent and the nonexistent.
-Sydney Brenner

A new computer printer can produce two hundred and fifty pages a minute. It certainly cuts down on the paperwork.
-S.J. Wilcox

All programmers are playwrights and all computers are lousy actors.
-Variously attributed

All that is required for evil to triumph is... users.
-Unattributed computer systems manager

An idiot with a computer is a faster, better idiot.
-Rich Julius

Any idiot can use a computer. Many do.
-Variously attributed

Any problem in computer science can be solved with another layer of indirection. But that usually will create another problem.
-David Wheeler

Any research done on how to efficiently use computers has been long lost in the mad rush to upgrade systems to do things that aren't needed by people who don't understand what they are really supposed to do with them.
-Graham Reed

Artificial intelligence is the study of how to make real computers act like the ones in movies.
-Variously attributed

As far as we know, our computer has never had an undetected error.
-Variously attributed

As practiced by computer science, the study of programming is an unholy mixture of mathematics, literary criticism, and folklore.
-B.A. Sheil

Asking if computers can think is like asking if submarines can swim.
-Variously attributed

At the source of every error which is blamed on the computer you will find at least two human errors, including the error of blaming it on the computer.
-Variously attributed

Bad command or file name. Good typing, though. (Computer error message)
-Variously attributed

Bad things come in threes. However, when dealing with computers, the fourth thing is always the start of the next group of three.
-Variously attributed

Being afraid of monolithic organizations, especially when they have computers, is like being afraid of really big gorillas, especially when they are on fire.
-Bruce Sterling

Brains don't manufacture thoughts in the direct ways that muscles exert forces or ovaries make estrogens; instead, to get a good idea, one must engage huge organizations of sub-machines that do a vast variety of jobs. Each human cranium contains hundreds of kinds of computers, developed over hundreds of millions of years of evolution, each with a somewhat different structure.
-Marvin Minsky

Computer languages of the future will be more concerned with goals and less with procedures specified by the programmer.
-Marvin Minsky

Computer Science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes.
-E.W. Djikstra

Computer Science: A study akin to numerology and astrology, but lacking the precision of the former and the success of the latter.
-Stan Kelly-Bootle

Computer: a million morons working at the speed of light.
-David Ferrier

Computers are like Old Testament gods; lots of rules and no mercy.
-Joseph Campbell

Computers are man's attempt at designing a cat: it does whatever it wants, whenever it wants, and rarely ever at the right time.
-Variously attributed

Computers are such time-saving devices. In fact, I've just spent the last three years trying to print out an envelope.
-Elayne Boosler

Computers can do better than ever what needn't be done at all. Making sense is still a human monopoly.
-Marshall McLuhan

Computers can now keep a man's every transgression recorded in a permanent memory bank, duplicating with complex programming and intricate wiring a feat his wife handles quite well without fuss or fanfare.
-Lane Olinghouse

Computers can still barely open a printer port, much less the pod bay doors.
-Lee Gomes

Computers make it easier to do a lot of things, but most of the things they make it easier to do don't need to be done.
-Andy Rooney

Culturally speaking, mathematicians are about as close to living and breathing aliens as you'll ever see. Weirder than stoners, weirder than computer hackers, weirder than SF fans. My people.
-Rudy Rucker

Definition of expert: x as in unknown, spurt as in drip under pressure. (From Computerworld)
-Variously attributed

Don't anthropomorphize computers. They hate it when you do that.
-Variously attributed

Don't explain computers to laymen. Simpler to explain sex to virgins.
-Robert A. Heinlein

Electronic computers are intended to carry out any definite rule of thumb process which could have been done by a human operator working in a disciplined but unintelligent manner.
-Alan Turing

Enter any eleven-digit prime number to continue. (Computer command prompt)
-Variously attributed

Every time you turn on your new car, you're turning on 20 microprocessors. Every time you use an ATM, you're using a computer. Every time I use a set top box or game machine, I'm using a computer. The only computer you don't know how to work is your Microsoft computer, right?
-Scott McNealy

Fast, fat computers breed slow, lazy programmers.
-Robert Hummel

Giving a man space is like giving a dog a computer. The chances are he will not use it wisely.
-Betty Jean Rafael

Google, Amazon, Apple. Any number of cloud providers and computer service providers who can increasingly limit your access to your own information, control all your processing, take away your data if they want to, and observe everything you do; in a way, that does give them some leverage over your own life.
-John Perry Barlow

Having a computer is like having a small, silicon version of Gary Busey on your desk. You never know what's going to happen.
-Bill Maher

Home computers are being called upon to perform many new functions, including the consumption of homework formerly eaten by the dog.
-Doug Larson

Human happiness and human satisfaction must ultimately come from within oneself. It is wrong to expect some final satisfaction to come from money or from a computer.
-Tenzin Gyatso (The 14th Dalai Lama)

I don't care how big and fast computers are, they're not as big and fast as the world.
-Herbert Simon

I have a computer, a vibrator and pizza delivery. Why should I leave the house?
-Variously attributed

I have always wished that my computer would be as easy to use as my telephone. My wish has come true. I no longer know how to use my telephone.
-Bjarne Stroustrup

I like computers. I like the Internet. It's a tool that can be used. But don't be misled into thinking that these technologies are anything other than aspects of a degenerate economic system.
-Jerry Brown

I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.
-Stephen Hawking

I see a bright future for the biotechnology industry when it follows the path of the computer industry, the path that von Neumann failed to foresee, becoming small and domesticated rather than big and centralized.
-Freeman Dyson

I see the player piano as the grandfather of the computer, the ancestor of the entire nightmare we live in, the birth of the binary world where there is no option other than yes or no and where there is no refuge.
-William Gaddis

I think computer viruses should count as life. I think it says something about human nature that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive. We've created life in our own image.
-Stephen Hawking

I think everyone in this country should learn to program a computer. Everyone should learn a computer language because it teaches you how to think. I think of computer science as a liberal art.
-Steve Jobs

I'm personally convinced that computer science has a lot in common with physics. Both are about how the world works at a rather fundamental level. The difference, of course, is that while in physics you're supposed to figure out how the world is made up, in computer science you create the world. Within the confines of the computer, you're the creator. You get to ultimately control everything that happens. If you're good enough, you can be God. On a small scale.
-Linus Torvalds

If moral behavior were simply following rules, we could program a computer to be moral.
-Samuel P. Ginder

If you don't know how to do something, you don't know how to do it with a computer.
-Variously attributed

If you put tomfoolery into a computer, nothing comes out but tomfoolery. But this tomfoolery, having passed through a very expensive machine, is somehow ennobled, and no one dares to criticize it.
-Pierre Gallois

Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining.
-Jeff Raskin

In a way, staring into a computer screen is like staring into an eclipse. It's brilliant and you don't realize the damage until it's too late.
-Bruce Sterling

In computer science, we stand on each other's feet.
-Brian K. Reid

In pioneer days they used oxen for heavy pulling, and when one ox couldn't budge a log, they didn't try to grow a larger ox. We shouldn't be trying for bigger computers, but for more systems of computers.
-Admiral Grace Murray Hopper

In the computer business, there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and benchmarks.
-Variously attributed

In the computer field, the moment of truth is a running program; all else is prophecy.
-Herbert Simon

It might seem easy enough, but computer language design is just like a stroll in the park. Jurassic Park, that is.
-Larry Wall

It would appear that we have reached the limits of what it is possible to achieve with computer technology, although one should be careful with such statements, as they tend to sound pretty silly in five years.
-John von Neumann

It's possible to program a computer in English. It's also possible to make an airplane controlled by reins and spurs.
-John McCarthy

Making duplicate copies and computer printouts of things no one wanted even one of in the first place is giving America a new sense of purpose.
-Andy Rooney

Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft... and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor.
-Wernher von Braun

Memory is like an orgasm. It's a lot better if you don't have to fake it. (re: computer virtual memory)
-Seymour Cray

Most undergraduate degrees in computer science these days are basically Java vocational training.
-Alan Kay

My first impulse, when presented with any spanking-new piece of computer hardware, is to imagine how it will look in ten years' time, gathering dust under a card table in a thrift shop
-William Gibson

My perception was/is that while the rest of the computer world was striving for Fault Tolerant Software, Microsoft was working on Fault Tolerant Users.
-John Robinson

Never ask what sort of computer a guy drives. If he's a Mac user, he'll tell you. If not, why embarrass him?
-Tom Clancy

Never let a computer know you're in a hurry.
-Variously attributed

Never tell a computer to forget it.
-Larry Niven

Never trust a computer you can't throw out a window.
-Steve Wozniak

No computer has ever been designed that is ever aware of what it's doing; but most of the time, we aren't either.
-Marvin Minsky

Not even computers will replace committees, because committees buy computers.
-Edward Shepherd Mead

Once a computer achieves human intelligence it will necessarily roar past it.
-Ray Kurzweil

Once the computers got control, we might never get it back. We would survive at their sufferance. If we're lucky, they might decide to keep us as pets.
-Marvin Minsky

Part of the inhumanity of the computer is that, once it is competently programmed and working smoothly, it is completely honest.
-Isaac Asimov

PCMCIA stands for either Personal Computer Memory Card International Association or People Can't Memorize Computer Industry Acronyms.
-Variously attributed

Read, read, read and put away computers. Forget the Internet, that's all crap.
-Ray Bradbury

Reading computer manuals without the hardware is as frustrating as reading sex manuals without the software. In both cases the cure is simple though usually very expensive.
-Arthur C. Clarke

Science is everything we understand well enough to explain to a computer. Art is everything else.
-Donald Knuth

Science is to computer science as hydrodynamics is to plumbing.
-Stan Kelly-Bootle

Technological man can't believe in anything that can't be measured, taped, or put into a computer.
-Clare Boothe Luce

Telling computer guys that they need to have permission to quote things is like having to tell little children about Death.
-Ted Nelson

That's the thing about people who think they hate computers. What they really hate is lousy programmers.
-Jerry Pournelle

The British don't make computers because they never figured out how to make them leak oil.
-Variously attributed

The Buddha resides as comfortably in the circuits of a digital computer or the gears of a cycle transmission as he does at the top of a mountain.
-Robert Pirsig

The computer industry has frequently borrowed from mythology: Witness the sprites in computer graphics, the demons in artificial intelligence, and the trolls in the marketing department.
-Jeff Meyer

The computer industry is a chicken on growth hormones, sloshing around in a nutrient bath with its head cut off.
-Peter Sugarman

The computer is a moron.
-Peter Drucker

The computer revolution hasn't started yet. Don't be misled by the enormous flow of money into bad defacto standards for unsophisticated buyers using poor adaptations of incomplete ideas.
-Alan Kay

The computer saves man a lot of guesswork, but so does the bikini.
-Evan Esar

The computer should be doing the hard work. That's what it's paid to do, after all.
-Larry Wall

The difference between e-mail and regular mail is that computers handle e-mail, and computers never decide to come to work one day and shoot all the other computers.
-Jamais Cascio

The entire body of computer science can be viewed as nothing more than the development of efficient methods for the storage, transportation, encoding, and rendering of pornography.
-Variously attributed

The first time a person gets a screwdriver, he's going to go around the house tightening all the screws, whether they need it or not. There's no reason a computer will not be similarly abused.
-Theodore K. Robb

The goal of Computer Science is to build something that will last at least until we've finished building it.
-Variously attributed

The idea behind digital computers may be explained by saying that these machines are intended to carry out any operations which could be done by a human computer.
-Alan Turing

The most likely way for the world to be destroyed, most experts agree, is by accident. That's where we come in; we're computer professionals. We cause accidents.
-Nathaniel Borenstein

The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it.
-Edward R. Murrow

The only thing God didn't do to Job was give him a computer.
-I.F. Stone

The only truly portable computer language is profanity.
-Variously attributed

The personal computer... went to individuals first before it went to corporations... The corporations are sitting, wishing this whole friggin' thing (electric cars) to go away. Which is exactly what the computer companies' attitude was to personal computers.
-Andrew Grove

The protean nature of the computer is such that it can act like a machine or like a language to be shaped and exploited.
-Alan Kay

The Web brings people together because no matter what kind of a twisted sexual mutant you happen to be, you've got millions of pals out there. Type in 'Find people that have sex with goats that are on fire' and the computer will ask, 'Specify type of goat.'
-Richard Jeni

The whole history of computers is rampant with cheerleading at best and bigotry at worst.
-Larry Wall

The world is just filling up with more and more idiots! And the computer is giving them access to the world! They're spreading their stupidity! At least they were contained before- now they're on the loose everywhere!
-Harlan Ellison

There are more computers running Windows than VMS. There are also more cockroaches than humans.
-Variously attributed

There are two kinds of computer users: those who have lost data and those who will lose data.
-Variously attributed

There is a computer disease that anybody who works with computers knows about. It's a very serious disease and it interferes completely with the work. The trouble with computers is that you play with them.
-Richard P. Feynman

There is no data to support that computers make business more productive... most companies have merely found faster and cheaper ways to do dumb things.
-Gary Loveman

This computer makes me all frowny with pure nougat-filled hatred!
-Jhonen Vasquez

Unlike human beings, computers possess the truly profound stupidity of the inanimate.
-Bruce Sterling

Usenet is like Tetris for people who still remember how to read. (Button from the Computer Museum, Boston, MA)
-Variously attributed

We are reaching the stage where the problems we must solve are going to become insoluble without computers. I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them.
-Isaac Asimov

We build our computer (systems) the way we build our cities: over time, without a plan, on top of ruins.
-Ellen Ullman

What the Internet has done is let us know how many millions of Americans can afford a computer, but haven't yet mastered that tricky 'your- you're' thing.
-John Fugelsang

What we need is a president who is at least twelve kinds of nerd, a nerd messiah to come along every four years, acquire the Secret Service code name Poindexter, install a Revenge of the Nerds screen saver on the Oval Office computer, and one by one decrypt our woes.
-Sarah Vowell

When I see an old movie, like from the '40s or '50s or '60s, the people look so calm. They don't have smart phones, they're not looking at computer screens, they're taking their time. They'll sit in a chair and just stare off into space. I think some day we'll find our way back to that garden of Eden.
-Rudy Rucker

Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad.
-Variously attributed

Why is it drug addicts and computer aficionados are both called users?
-Clifford Stoll

Without software, a computer is just a lump of plastic- whereas with software, it's a lump of plastic that can permanently destroy critical data.
-Dave Barry

Writing is a slow and a difficult process mentally. How you physically render the words onto a screen or a page doesn't help you. I'll give you this example. When words had to be carved into stone, with a chisel, you got the Ten Commandments. When the quill pen had been invented and you had to chase a goose around the yard and sharpen the pen and boil some ink and so on, you got Shakespeare. When the fountain pen came along, you got Henry James. When the typewriter came along, you got Jack Kerouac. And now that we have the computer, we have Facebook. Are you seeing a trend here?
-P.J. O'Rourke

XML is crap. Really. There are no excuses. XML is nasty to parse for humans, and it's a disaster to parse even for computers. There's just no reason for that horrible crap to exist.
-Linus Torvalds

You can test a person's importance in the organization by asking how much RAM his computer has. Anyone who knows the answer to that question is not a decision maker.
-Scott Adams

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Quotes of the day: Havelock Ellis

Published Monday, February 01, 2016 @ 11:53 PM EST
Feb 01 2016

Henry Havelock Ellis, known as Havelock Ellis (February 2, 1859 – July 8, 1939), was an English physician, writer, progressive intellectual and social reformer who studied human sexuality. He was co-author of the first medical textbook in English on homosexuality in 1897, and also published works on a variety of sexual practices and inclinations, as well as transgender psychology. He is credited with introducing the notions of narcissism and autoeroticism, later adopted by psychoanalysis. He served as president of the Galton Institute and, like many intellectuals of his era, supported eugenics. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


'Charm' - which means the power to effect work without employing brute force- is indispensable to women. Charm is a woman's strength just as strength is a man's charm.

'Homosexual' is a barbarously hybrid word, and I claim no responsibility for it.

A man must not swallow more beliefs than he can digest.

All civilization has from time to time become a thin crust over a volcano of revolution.

All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.

Dreams are necessary to life.

Every artist writes his own autobiography.

Every man of genius sees the world at a different angle from his fellows, and there is his tragedy.

If men and women are to understand each other, to enter into each other's nature with mutual sympathy, and to become capable of genuine comradeship, the foundation must be laid in youth.

Imagination is a poor substitute for experience.

In philosophy, it is not the attainment of the goal that matters, it is the things that are met with by the way.

Jealousy, that dragon which slays love under the pretence of keeping it alive.

Man lives by imagination.

The absence of flaw in beauty is itself a flaw.

The byproduct is sometimes more valuable than the product.

The greatest task before civilization at present is to make machines what they ought to be, the slaves, instead of the masters of men.

The place where optimism most flourishes is the lunatic asylum.

The sun, the moon and the stars would have disappeared long ago, had they happened to be within the reach of predatory human hands.

The whole religious complexion of the modern world is due to the absence from Jerusalem of a lunatic asylum.

There has never been any country at every moment so virtuous and so wise that it has not sometimes needed to be saved from itself.

To be a leader of men one must turn one's back on men.

What we call 'morals' is simply blind obedience to words of command.

What we call 'Progress' is the exchange of one nuisance for another nuisance.

When love is suppressed hate takes its place.


(February 2 is also the birthday of James Joyce.)

Categories: Havelock Ellis; Quotes of the day

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