Monday, November 27, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 222

"Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor." --Wernher von Braun, rocket engineer (1912-1977)

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 221

"We are at the very beginning of time for the human race. It is not unreasonable that we grapple with problems. But there are tens of thousands of years in the future. Our responsibility is to do what we can, learn what we can, improve the solutions, and pass them on." --Richard Feynman

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Sunday, November 26, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 220

"Wood is highly ecological, since trees are a renewable resource. If you cut down a tree, another will grow in its place. And if you cut down the new tree, still another will grow. And if you cut down that tree, yet another will grow, only this one will be a mutation with long, poisonous tentacles and revenge in its heart, and it will sit
there in the forest, cackling and making elaborate plans for when you come back.

Wood heat is not new. It dates back to a day millions of years ago, when a group of cavemen were sitting around, watching dinosaurs rot. Suddenly, lightning struck a nearby log and set it on fire. One of the cavemen stared at the fire for a few minutes, then said: "Hey! Wood heat!" The other cavemen, who did not understand English, immediately beat him to death with stones. But the key discovery had been made, and from that day forward, the cavemen had all the heat they needed, although their insurance rates went way up."

--Dave Barry, "Postpetroleum Guzzler"

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 219

"The living language is like a cow-path: it is the creation of the cows themselves, who, having created it, follow it or depart from it according to their whims or their needs. From daily use, the path undergoes change. A cow is under no obligation to stay." --E.B. White, writer (1899-1985)

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 218

"Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful." --Joshua J. Marine

"The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem." --Theodore Rubin

"He who binds to himself a joy, / Does the winged life destroy; /
He who kisses the joy as it flies, / Lives in Eternity's sun rise."
--William Blake, poet, engraver, and painter (1757-1827)

"Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." --Will Rogers, humorist (1879-1935)

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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 217

"The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death." --Thomas Paine

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 216

"As far as I'm concerned, 'whom' is a word that was invented to make everyone sound like a butler." --Calvin Trillin, writer (1935- )

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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 215

"I met, not long ago, a young man who aspired to become a novelist. Knowing that I was in the profession, he asked me to tell him how he should set to work to realize his ambition. I did my best to explain. 'The first thing,' I said, 'is to buy quite a lot of paper, a bottle of ink, and a pen. After that you merely have to write.'" --Aldous Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)


Friday, November 17, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 214

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." --Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel), Dartmouth alumnus, author, and illustrator (1904-1991)

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 213

"Adversity has the effect of eliciting talents, which in prosperous circumstances would have lain dormant." --Horace

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 212

"I can't listen to that much Wagner. I start getting the urge to conquer Poland." --Woody Allen

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Monday, November 13, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 211

"The scientific name for an animal that doesn't either run from or fight its enemies is lunch." --Michael Friedman

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Quotations from Brainy Smurf 210

"Platitude: an idea (a) that is admitted to be true by everyone, and (b) that is not true." --H.L. Mencken

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 209

"There is not such a cradle of democracy upon the earth as the Free Public Library, this republic of letters, where neither rank, office, nor wealth receives the slightest consideration." --Andrew Carnegie, industrialist (1835-1919)

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Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Heinlein's Rules for Writers, as Told by George R. R. Martin

On his third podcast, GRRM speaks of Robert A. Heinlein's Rules for Writers. Simply, they are these.

To be a (paid) writer you must:
1. Write.
2. Finish what you write.
3. Market what you write.
4. Refrain from rewriting except on editorial order.

GRRM also suggested this:
5. Start with short stories in your genre of interest.
6. Keep your day job.


Quotations from Brainy Smurf 208

"Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask, 'Where have I gone wrong?'/ Then a voice says to me, 'This is going to take more than one night.'" --Charles M. Schulz

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Monday, November 06, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 207

"People never lie so much as before an election, during a war, or after a hunt." --Otto von Bismarck, statesman (1815-1898)

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Friday, November 03, 2006

Pie chart that resembles Pac-Man

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 206

"Whenever people say 'We mustn't be sentimental,' you can take it they are about to do something cruel. And if they add 'We must be realistic,' they mean they are going to make money out of it." --Brigid Brophy, writer (1929-1995)

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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Quotations from Brainy Smurf 205

"The illegal we do immediately. The unconstitutional takes a little longer." --Henry Kissinger

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