This is a loose collection of quotes I like. Feel free to help me with some of the unkown sources.

A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him. Swami Chinmayananda

Successful people are not gifted; they just work hard, then succeed on purpose. G. K. Nielson

Standards are like toothbrushes, everyone agrees that they’re a good idea but nobody wants to use anyone else’s. Found in an eMail from Chris Jordan on the OGSA mailing list.

Anyone can write a specification, but if nobody implements it, what is it but a particularly dry form of science fiction. Ian Hickson

Planning replaces accident by mistake. unknown

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

First they laugh at you, then, they ignore you, then they fight you, and then you win. Mahatma Ghandi

Es ist schon alles gesagt worden, aber noch nicht von allen. Karl Valentin

Software is a gas ! It expands to fit the container it is in ! Nathan P. Myhrvold

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer. Frank Zappa

Dissertations are not finished; they are abandoned. Fred Brooks

Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning. Rich Cook

Die Erde ist ein Irrenhaus. Dabei könnte das bis heute erreichte Wissen der Menschheit aus ihr ein Paradies machen. Joseph Weizenbaum

Copy from one, it’s plagiarism; copy from two, it’s research. Wilson Mizner

He who dies with the most toys… still dies! Unknown

There are only two hard things in Computer Science: Cache invalidation and naming things. Tim Bray quoting Phil Karlton

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

Tell me and I will forget, show me and I will remember, engage me and I will understand. Confucius (551-479 BC)

People who say they sleep like a baby usually don’t have one. Leo J. Burke

Computers are useless. They can only give you answers. Pablo Picasso

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Arthur C. Clarke

In a Hierarchy Every Employee Tends to Rise to His Level of Incompetence. The Peter Principle, by Dr. Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull

The plural of anecdote is not data. Maybe by George Stigler (see here)

A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. Max Planck

Tradition ist nicht die Anbetung der Asche, sondern die Weitergabe des Feuers. Gustav Mahler

Die Helden seiner Kindheit verrät man nicht! Jürgen von der Lippe

We should forget about small efficiencies, say about 97% of the time: premature optimization is the root of all evil. Donald Knuth

For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don’t believe, no proof is possible. Stuart Chase

They came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for me and by that time no one was left to speak up. Martin Niemöller

OCCAM’S ERASER: The Philosophical Principle That Even The Simplest Solution Is Bound To Have Something Wrong With It. Unknown

In living, as in art, rules are drawn from practice; not the other way around. Wm. Henry Jackson.

I needed a password with eight characters, so I chose Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Nick Helm

If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys. Unknown

Every program attempts to expand until it can read mail. Those programs which cannot so expand are replaced by ones which can. Jamie Zawinski

Kernel programming is a black art that should be avoided if at all possible. developer.apple.com

Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience. George Carlin

Data is not information, information is not knowledge, knowledge is not understanding, understanding is not wisdom. Clifford Stoll

There are two ways of constructing a software design; one way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies, and the other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious deficiencies. The first method is far more difficult. C. A. R. Hoare

Torture your data long enough and it will confess to anything. Unknown

Computer Science is the only discipline in which we view adding a new wing to a building as being maintenance. Jim Horning

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Maya Angelou


Digital devices tune out small errors while creating opportunities for large errors. Earl Wiener (from Wiener's laws)

If this is the solution then I want my problem back! Unknown

The reason that mathematics is always true is that mathematics as such has no inherent relevance to the real world.Ralph E. Evans

There are two things that don’t have to mean anything in order to give us very deep pleasure: one is music and the other is laughter.Emmanuel Kant

The good thing about reinventing the wheel is that you can get a round one.Douglas Crockford