Category Archives: Quotations

Words worth keeping.

quotes of the day

“As in any crisis, I looked around for chocolate. But found tea instead. Which was almost as good. And my brain exploded. Which wasn’t so good.”
(NannyOgg contemplates attacking an L+1 group)

“It’s odd that people think of programming as precise and methodical. Computers are precise and methodical. Hacking is something you do with a gleeful laugh.”
(Paul Graham, on why hackers have a high ROI)

second thought of the day

“The silence I’m talking about, the silence we as writers must have to be productive, is silence inside ourselves. That silence travels anywhere. We carry it with us as if it were a private retreat in the mountains nestled next to a crystalline, ice-cold lake, surrounded by forests and pervaded by peace. And this silence is hard to find and hard to hold. It is as elusive as a rainbow, as easily shattered as sugar glass, as rare as a white stag, as skittish as a wild colt. A single worry about an unpaid bill or an appointment with a dentist or a remembered argument can destroy this silence for an hour or a day, and no amount of gritting teeth and frowing at monitor with fingers poised on keyboard will lure it back.”
(Holly Lisle, on finding silence)

Coding is much the same, even when you wish very much that it weren’t.

thought of the day

“Readers swallow these inconsistencies because people are also adaptable, and if you’re already suspending your disbelief to allow magic, it’s not too hard to stretch it a little further and believe that an Empire could stand unchanged for five thousand years. But when you make a reader do that, you’re cheating them, and your story, out of a world of depth. This doesn’t mean you can’t have ancient Empires in your novel to great effect, it just means that you have to make them real, and you do that by letting people be people.”
(Rachel Aaron, on building worlds)

thought of the day

“The result is a state of still restlessness; of calm excitement. I laugh out loud simply because I can.”
(kifudancer, doing it correctly)

quote of the day

“Science is not like religion; it’s not about finding true doctrines. It’s about demolishing wrong ones. Ideas are two a penny; it’s the efficient destruction of error that leads us to truth. And we really need such a method. The truths at the heart of Newtonian mechanics, evolution, electromagnetism, quantum mechanics and bioinformatics are often so counterintuitive and disturbing that we only accept them when absolutely every other possibility has been shot down in flames. To understand the mechanism, you first have to burn away the myth.”
(Ross Anderson, Cambridge – the Unauthorised History)

thought of the day

“As a manager, you are caretaker of No for you group. When it is time to do the right thing by stopping, it’s your job to bust out the No. You defend your team against organizational insanity with No.”
(Rands, on being a new manager)

thought of the day

“If I were to try to read, much less answer, all the attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I know how—the very best I can; and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won’t amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right will make no difference.”
(Abraham Lincoln, on how much attention to pay to critics)


“You can never know everything, and part of what you do know will always be wrong. Perhaps even the most important part. A portion of wisdom lies in knowing this. A portion of courage lies in going on anyway.”
(Robert Jordan, Winter’s Heart, al-Lan Mandragoran to Rand al’Thor)

thoughts of the day

“Never regard study as a duty but as an enviable opportunity to learn to know the liberating influence of beauty in the realm of the spirit for your own personal joy and to the profit of the community to which your later works belong.”
(Albert Einstein)

“It is an undeniable privilege of every man to prove himself right in the thesis that the world is his enemy; for if he reiterates it frequently enough and makes it the background of his conduct he is bound eventually to be right.”
(George Kennan)

thought of the day

“But there too from the first was the light; and life will prevail against death, though hell may bar the way.”
(Richard Fernandez, on the nihilistic terror as a political tool)