I often run across little bits of wisdom that I want to save, but posting them on a social media site means they quickly become buried by newer bits of wisdom and they soon go completely out of mind. This page provides a place for me to put things I find as well as a way for me to gather those loose bits together and reference them more easily.

Create Things

"When you don't create things, you become defined by your tastes rather than your ability. Your tastes only narrow & exclude people. So create.” -- Why The Lucky Stiff

On Death

"We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here. We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?" -- Richard Dawkins, Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion and the Appetite for Wonder, 1998

On media and its societal effects

"Even the most outspoken of the critics must admit that long before we had print and film media to "spread the word," mankind was engaged in all forms of cruel and despicable behavior. To attribute war, killing, and violence to film, TV, and role-play games is to fly in the face of thousands of years of recorded history" -- Gary Gygax, Role-Playing Mastery, 1987

On corporate responsibility

"Companies once felt an obligation to support American workers, even when it wasn’t the best financial choice. That’s disappeared. Profits and efficiency have trumped generosity.” -- NY Times, "Apple, America, and the Squeezed Middle Class", Jan 22, 2012 quoting Betsey Stevenson, chief economist at the Labor Department in 2011

On speech giving

This quote is often attributed to Winston Churchill (without any source), and recently has been in the news held up by some as sexist and offensive. It's difficult for me to understand this thinking as sexuality and attraction between the sexes is a fairly important part of being human (since you can't have more humans without it) and I see such talk as a hyper-sensitive reaction to all the horrible stuff that has come out in the news recently.

"A good conversation is like a miniskirt; long enough to cover the subject but short enough to be interesting."

What the bible calls a fool

"He wantonly celebrates strongmen and takes every opportunity to humiliate and demean the vulnerable. He shows no curiosity or capacity to learn. He is, in short, the very embodiment of what the Bible calls a fool." -- "Christianity Today", Andy Crouch, Oct 10, 2016.

Military Industrial Complex

"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist." -- Public Papers of the Presidents, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Jan 17, 1961 Dwight D. Eisenhower: Farewell Radio and Television Address to the American People

Linus Torvalds answering Peter Moon's question: "Don't you feel you missed the chance of a lifetime by not creating a proprietary Linux?"

"No. I'm actually perfectly well off. I live in a good-sized house, with a nice yard, with deer occasionally showing up and eating the roses (my wife likes the roses more, I like the deer more, so we don't really mind). I've got three kids, and I know I can pay for their education. What more do I need?

"The thing is, being a good programmer actually pays pretty well; being acknowledged as being world-class pays even better. I simply didn't need to start a commercial company. And it's just about the least interesting thing I can even imagine. So instead, I have a very good life, doing something that I think is really interesting, and something that I think actually matters for people, not just me. And that makes me feel good." -- Interview with Peter Moon, ComputerWorld, Oct 22, 2007

Albert Einstein when asked to describe radio

"The wireless telegraph is not difficult to understand. The ordinary telegraph is like a very long cat. You pull the tail in New York, and it meows in Los Angeles. The wireless is the same, only without the cat." -- Albert Einstein, in Scientific American magazine, September 2002 issue, "Einstein's Hot Time", by Steve Mirsky, not accessible 2018.

John Adams line in 1776 by Peter Stone

I have come to the conclusion that one useless man is called a disgrace, that two are called a law firm, and that three or more become a congress!