Joel’s Blog

Engineering, Math, Programming, Politics


I created my Facebook profile a while ago, and I haven’t been curating it much. And with all the changes Facebook makes to the way they display profiles, my “Favorite Quotations” list has gotten hard to find. So I’m moving it here, and getting some use out of this blog of mine.

 “In the same way, whenever a massacre of Armenians is reported from Asia Minor, every one assumes that it has been carried out ‘under orders’ from somewhere or another; no one seems to think that there are people who might like to kill their neighbours now and then.”
—Saki, in “Filboid Studge”

 “The Second Amendment’s language, while speaking of a ‘Militia,’ says nothing of ‘self-defense.’”
—Justice Breyer, dissenting, in D.C. v. Heller.
 (Is this man serious?)

 That’s either a tautology, or it isn’t.

 “Ignorance killed the cat. Curiosity was framed.”
—C.J. Cherryh, in Tripoint

 “The three-legged stool of understanding is held up by history, languages, and mathematics. Equipped with these three you can learn anything you want to learn. But if you lack any one of them you are just another ignorant peasant with dung on your boots.”
—Robert A. Heinlein

 “Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.”
—Jubal Harshaw

 “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”
—Lazarus Long

 “If you promise someone something, keep it.”
—A fortune cookie. I’m not sure if it was meant the way it came out.

 “My country, right or wrong; if right to be kept right, and if wrong to be set right.”
—Senator Carl Schurz

 ‘There’s nothing like eating hay when you’re faint,’ [the White King] remarked to her, as he munched away.
 ‘I should think throwing cold water over you would be better,’ Alice suggested: ‘or some sal-volatile.’
 ‘I didn’t say there was nothing ʙᴇᴛᴛᴇʀ,’ the King replied. ‘I said there was nothing ʟɪᴋᴇ it.’ Which Alice did not venture to deny.

 “Without security, we’re none of us safe.”
—Maxwell Smart, Secret Agent № 86

 “I think this is some new, powerful, programming model, where you call things with structures that could be the same but really aren’t. I guess the idea is that the common elements of the structure are all the same, and declared first, so really, everything should just work out fine, even though the structures are all different. Everything’s fine, don’t worry, lie back and think of England.
 “I think we can call it Pollyanna-morphism.”
—Ron Minnich, on 9fans

—River Tam

 “You’re like a trained ape… without the training.”
—Dr. Simon Tam

“Some people, when confronted with a problem, think, ‘I know, I’ll use regular expressions.’ Now they have two problems.”
—Jamie Zawinski

“Some people, when confronted with a problem, think, ‘I know, I’ll use multiple threads.’ Now two they problems.have ”

 “i² = j² = k² = ijk = -1.”
—Sir Wᵐ Rowan Hamilton

 “The performance of a task with excessive concern regarding its duration-to-completion engenders a virtual certainty of diminished benefit therefrom.”
—Benjamin Franklin
 (except he said it in three words)

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