# Great quotes

1. Dec 6, 2003

### Monique

Staff Emeritus
I just stumbled into this quote and just had to start a thread on quotes.

Here is mine: "life is a sexually transmitted disease"
author unknown

I never saw life in that light before, but I guess it is true.

2. Dec 6, 2003

### PrudensOptimus

Girls = Evil

I'm sure you have seen the actual proof before, thus no need for me to bring up again.

3. Dec 6, 2003

### jimmy p

How about "*INSERT NAME HERE* would be out of his/her depth in a car-park puddle" ?? i think that is a funny quote

4. Dec 6, 2003

### Ambitwistor

"Being surprised at the fact that the universe is fine tuned for life is
akin to a puddle being surprised at how well it fits its hole"

"If knowledge can create problems, it is not through ignorance that we can
solve them." -Isaac Asimov (1920 - 1992)

"An expert is [someone] who has made all the mistakes, which can be made,
in a very narrow field." --Niels Bohr

"It is wrong to think that the task of physics is to find out how nature is;
physics concerns only what we can say about nature." - Niels Bohr

"The measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he
never would be found out." - Baron Thomas Babington Macauley

"Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge; it is
those who know little, and not those who know much, who so positively
assert that this or that problem will not be solved by science." -- Charles Darwin

"We used to think that if we knew one, we knew two, because one and one are
two. We are finding that we must learn a great deal more about 'and'."
-- Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington

To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the
affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure
the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in
others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a
garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has
breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of
nature, and in such things as these, experiment is the best test of such
consistency." Faraday, laboratory diaries, entry 10,040, March 19, 1849.

"...You cannot prove a vague theory wrong. Also, if the process of computing the
consequences is indefinite, then with a little skill any experimental results can be
made to look like the expected consequences." Richard Feynman, 1964

"Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it."
Andre Gide, French author and critic (1869-1951).

There is nothing wrong with having a belief (or lacking one). It's the confusion of belief
with knowledge - and of knowledge with mathematical certainty - which is the
problem of many people.
-- HR Gruemm

Some people have got a mental horizon of radius zero and call it their point of view
- David Hilbert

Men think epilepsy divine, merely because they do not understand it. But if they
called everything divine which they do not understand, why, there would be no
end of divine things.
Hippocrates of Cos

"It is as respectable to be a modified monkey as modified dirt."
--Thomas Huxley

"To attain knowledge, add things every day; to obtain wisdom, remove things
every day."
-- Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is
nothing left to take away." - Antoine de Saint Exupery

"Although the whole of this life were said to be nothing but a dream and the physical
world nothing but a phantasm, I should call this dream or phantasm real enough, if,
using reason well, we were never deceived by it."
-- Leibniz

"Men become civilized, not in proportion to their willingness to believe, but in
proportion to their readiness to doubt."
-- H.L. Mencken

The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those
who think alike than those who think differently.
-- Nietzsche

Do you seek followers? Would you multiply yourself by ten or a hundred? Seek zeros.
- Nietzsche

There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well
please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take
the consequences.
-- P.J. O'Rourke

"God does not play dice with the universe. He plays an ineffable game of His own
devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other
players [i.e. everybody], to being involved in an obscure and complex variant of
poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer
who won't tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time."
-- Terry Pratchett, Good Omens

"No physicist started out impatient with commensense notions, eager to replace
them with some mathematical abstraction... Instead, they began, as we all do,
with comfortable, standard, commonplace notions. The trouble is that Nature
does not comply." -- Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World

"It is as morally bad not to care whether a thing is true or not, so long as it makes
you feel good, as it is not to care how you got your money as long as you have got it."
-Edmund Way Teale, "Circle of the Seasons", 1950

"Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations that
we can do without thinking about them."

"... which is why I say that Science is the avoidance of the false. While we cannot
be sure of what is True, we can often be sure of what is False."
-- Kevin D. Quitt

"A horrible little boy came up to me and said, You know in your book The Martian
Chronicles?' I said, Yes?' He said, You know where you talk about Deimos rising in
the East?' I said, Yes?' He said `No.' So I hit him."

"You can do three things with a computer. You can try to make money and that is
unlikely. You can try to become famous and that never happens. And you can
have fun and that always works."
-- Chuck Moore (inventor of the Forth programming language)

"To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to
stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is
morally treasonable to the American public."
--Theodore Roosevelt, May 7, 1918

"... the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you
have to do is to tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for
lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any
country"
Hermann Goering, Reichsmarschall and Lufwaffe-Chief, President of the Reichstag
during the reign of Hitler.

Tell a man that there are 400 Billion stars and he'll believe you
Tell him that a bench has wet paint and he has to touch it
-- unknown

There are three kinds of men:
The ones that learn by reading. The few who learn by observation.
The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence.
- Will Rogers

"Give a man a fire, and he's warm for a day. Set him on fire, and he's warm
for the rest of his life"
-- Terry Pratchett, Jingo

"The preferred method of entering a building is to use a tank main gun round,
direct fire artillery round, or TOW, Dragon, or Hellfire missile to clear the first room."
-- THE RANGER HANDBOOK U.S. Army, 1992

"We have all heard that a million monkeys banging on a million typewriters will
eventually reproduce the entire works of William Shakespeare. Now, thanks to the
Internet, we know this is not true."
-Robert Silensky

Since it is generally impossible to measure what is important, bureaucrats
instead turn their energies toward making important what is measurable.
-- Gordon D. Pusch

"It's only a metaphor, you idiot, not an isomorphism."
Greg Egan, "The Planck Dive"

"Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over,
pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come."
- Matt Groening

Last edited: Dec 6, 2003
5. Dec 6, 2003

### PrudensOptimus

Speaking of Newton,

"IF I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO SEE FURTHER, IT WAS ONLY BECAUSE I STOOD ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS."

6. Dec 6, 2003

### Ambitwistor

"If I have not seen as far as others, it is because giants were standing on my shoulders".
-- Hal Abelson

7. Dec 6, 2003

8. Dec 6, 2003

### photon

If you up to your ears in it, keep your mouth shut.

9. Dec 6, 2003

### Ambitwistor

"If there was a problem, he would just come unglued and start hollering.
I never knew whether to spank him or fire him."
-- Ed Roberts (founder of MITS, inventor of the Altair 8800) on former employee Bill Gates

10. Dec 6, 2003

### Ambitwistor

"There is no practical reason to create machine intelligences indistinguishable
from human ones. People are in plentiful supply. Should a shortage arise, there are
proven and popular methods for making more."

11. Dec 6, 2003

### iansmith

Staff Emeritus
Wise men talk because they have something to say. Fools talk because they have to say something."
-- Plato

"It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious."
-- Murphy's Law

"If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy person -- they will find an easier way to do it."

12. Dec 6, 2003

### zoobyshoe

"Yes! it is not proof! as in proof of it not, or should we say that the proof not proven is the proof that is not the proof as that is what a not proof actaully is, not, isn't it proven not to be the not proof by the fact of the proof being the proven that is not, such that everyone can know that the not proof proves what is not proven!"

-Mr. Robin Parsons

13. Dec 6, 2003

Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule--and both commonly succeed, and are right...
-H.L. Mencken

Absolute power corrupts even when exercised for humane purposes. The benevolent despot who sees himself as a shepherd of the people still demands from others the submissiveness of sheep.
-Eric Hoffer

What the intellectual craves above all else is to be taken seriously, to be treated as a decisive force in shaping history. He is far more at home in a society that weighs his every word and keeps close watch on his attitudes than in a society that cares not what he says or does. He would rather be persecuted than ignored.
-Eric Hoffer

One realizes that one of the chief differences between an adult and a juvenile is that the adult knows when he is an @ss while the juvenile never does.
-Eric Hoffer

14. Dec 6, 2003

### photon

Gee, thanks for that last one Boulderhead!

15. Dec 6, 2003

### Hurkyl

Staff Emeritus
Early to rise and early to bed makes a man healty, wealthy, and dead.

16. Dec 6, 2003

I'm well aware of my '@sshood', hehe.

17. Dec 6, 2003

### Ambitwistor

Early to bed and early to rise makes a man stupid and blind in the eyes.

18. Dec 6, 2003

### photon

^
oulder

19. Dec 7, 2003

### zoobyshoe

"Why not?-What?-Why not?-Why should I not send it?-Why not?-Strange? I don't know why I shouldn't-Well, then-you will do me this favor.Why not?-Why should you not do it? Why not?-Strange! I shall do the same for you, when you want me to. Why not? Why should I not do it for you? Strange! Why not?-I can't think why not?"

-letter to his cousin, Maria

20. Dec 7, 2003

### Kalimaa23

Some Feynman then...

"Mathematics is to physics as mastrubation is to sex."

"Physics is like sex. Sure, it may yield some practical results, but that's not why we do it."

21. Dec 7, 2003

### KLscilevothma

"Recipe for success: Study while others are sleeping; work while others are loafing; prepare while others are playing; and dream while others are wishing."
--- William A. Ward

"The price of success must be paid in full, in advance."
-- Brian Tracy

"Progress, however, of the best kind, is comparatively slow. Great results cannot be achieved at once; and we must be satisfied to advance in life as we walk, step by step."
-- Samuel Smiles

"The most influential person who will talk to you all day is you, so you should be very careful about what you say to you!"
-- Zig Ziglar

edit: 3 more quotes in my signature

22. Dec 7, 2003

### KLscilevothma

losers?

...What the Tigers also don't understand is that no one is disgusted by losing. If they did understand that, they wouldn't try to pretend it wasn't happening. There are 30 teams in baseball, and each year the 29 of them that are not the Yankees lose. The Boston Red Sox, who haven't won a World Series since 1918, aren't losers, because they play for the love of the game. I'm just kidding; the Red Sox are total losers. But even the Yankees aren't World Series champions in almost 75% of their seasons. Life is mostly losing. It's a series of imperfect essays full of jokes that don't quite work, of dreams that go unfulfilled, of passions that dwindle and ultimately, death. And if you don't figure out how to strive with the acceptance of guaranteed failure, how to find fulfillment in the eternal recurrence of imperfection, then you can have a brand-new stadium with a Ferris wheel, and no one is going to come...

from TIME, September 29, 2003.

23. Dec 7, 2003

### Zantra

for all the old timers(over 20..ish)

People like you and I, though mortal of course like everyone else, do not grow old no matter how long we live...[We] never cease to stand like curious children before the great mystery into which we were born.
--Albert Einstein in a letter to Otto Juliusburger

And some more Al quotes:

It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity

We have to do the best we can. This is our sacred human responsibility.

I think and think for months and years, ninety-nine times, the conclusion is false. The hundredth time I am right.

I cannot conceive of a personal God who would directly influence the actions of individuals, or would directly sit in judgment on creatures of his own creation. I cannot do this in spite of the fact that mechanistic causality has, to a certain extent, been placed in doubt by modern science. [He was speaking of Quantum Mechanics and the breaking down of determinism.] My religiosity consists in a humble admiratation of the infinitely superior spirit that reveals itself in the little that we, with our weak and transitory understanding, can comprehend of reality. Morality is of the highest importance -- but for us, not for God

The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.

The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing

Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a [person] does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses their intelligence

A finely tempered nature longs to escape from the personal life into the world of objective perception and thought

I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it.

The significant problems we face can not be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.

Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character

And some Mark Twain favs of mine:

It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not deserve them.

Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company

Let us be thankful for the fools. But for them the rest of us could not succeed

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great

I have never let my schooling interfere with my education

When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.

And misc...

Learn as if you were going to live forever. Live as if you were going to die tomorrow.
--Mahatma Gandhi

Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.
--Ernest Hemingway

Let him who would move the world first move himself.
--Socrates

When it is time to die, let us not discover that we never lived.
--Henry David Thoreau

Each man is capable of doing one thing well. If he attempts several, he will fail to achieve distinction in any.
--Plato

The learning and knowledge that we have, is, at the most, but little compared with that of which we are ignorant

Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will fin d a way around the laws.
--Plato

24. Dec 7, 2003

### Andy

"lol"

Anon

"Captain America's been torn apart, now he's a court jester with a broken heart"