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Prof before the move
Mike, at the end of the last electronics class taught in the W building, before the move to the V Building in the Autumn of 2007.  Yes, it had been a long day (10p.m.).
Photo by Blake Westman, 8-16-07

"Democracy is not a state.  It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself."
                  John Lewis
                  Congressman, civil rights activist
                  Last essay: Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation,
                  The New York Times, 30 July, 2020

"Everything is impossible until it happens."
                  Nelson Mandela (1918 - 2013)
                  South African anti-apartheid political leader

"If the world’s oceans represented every place and wavelength we could search for intelligent signals, we have, to date, explored only a hot tub’s worth of it."
                  Jason Wright
                  Associate professor of astronomy and astrophysics
                  Penn St. U.

“We show him this problem, and he looks at it, stares at it for a while, and says ‘Cosine, that’s the answer.’  And I’m like ‘That’s the answer?’  And he’s like ‘Yes, let me show you,’” Bezos said.  “He brings us into his room, he sits us down, he writes out three pages of detailed algebra, everything crosses out, and the answer is cosine.  I said, ‘Did you just do that in your head?’  And he said, ‘No, that would be impossible.  Three years ago, I solved a very similar problem.  I was able to map this problem onto that problem, and then it was immediately obvious that the answer was cosine.’”  According to Bezos, that was the moment he realized he should pursue a different career.  “That was an important moment for me, because that was the very moment when I realized I was never going to be a great theoretical physicist."
                  Jeff Bezos (1964 -     )
                  The 'aha moment that changed Jeff Bezos' life
                  about changing from physics major electrical engineering
                  Taylor Locke
, Make it, 8 Feb, 2020

"The four spacecraft (Pioneer 10 and 11, and Voyager 1 and 2) will come somewhat close to approximately 60 stars over the course of the next 1 million years-and will come within two parsecs of approximately 10 of them.  They also found that Pioneer 10 will likely be the first to pass by a star system—one called HIP 117795.  It sits in the constellation Cassiopeia.  Their calculations show that the spacecraft will pass within 0.231 parsecs of the star in approximately 90,000 years."
                  Bailer-Jones and David Farnocchia
                  Bob Yirka , Phys.org
                  27 Dec., 2019

"U.S. Department of Labor statistics suggest that 7.3 million jobs remain unfilled, many of them high-paying, high-skill positions.  Surveys report that employers are unable to find skilled workers.  A majority of these positions are jobs that, if not formally “IT jobs,” require discrete digital skills — which is consistent with reports that we’re seeing near-zero job growth in what’s supposed to be our most dynamic industry.  According to the TechServe Alliance, IT employment currently is up just 0.06 percent on a year-over-year basis — a net increase of only 3,000 jobs from July 2018 to July 2019."
                  Can higher ed bill reauthorization close America's skills gap?
                  Ryan Craig, The Hill, 4 Nov., 2019

"The first thing it does [additional assignment] is demonstrate if the employee can figure things out for themselves.  If the team member comes back to me with dozens of questions, absolutely you know that they're not a self-starter, or they can't use their resources or network to do some background work.  The first thing when seeking folks to promote is having confidence that they can work it out for themselves."
                  Eileen Hoenigman Meyer
                  Advice & News
                  July 15, 2019

"It's not about the cards you're dealt, but how you play the hand."
                  Randy Pausch, (1960 - 2008)
                  The Last Lecture

"If there's a book you really want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it."
                  Toni Morrison (1931 - 2019)
                  Author, Nobel Prize winner

"Programmers will write the same amount of code regardless of the language they're using."
                  Corbato's Law
                  Fernando "Corby" Corbato (1926-2019)
                  Computer scientist, programmer
                  Inventor of the password

"Machines are expected to displace about 20 million manufacturing jobs across the world over the next decade, according to a recent report from Oxford Economics, a global forecasting and quantitative analysis firm. That amounts to 8.5% of the global manufacturing workforce being displaced by robots."
                  Amazon plans to retrain 100,000 employees
                  Jordan Valinsky, CNN Business
                  July 11, 2019

“Summon the courage not just to hear but to listen.  Not just to act but to act together.  It can sometimes feel like the odds are stacked against you, that it isn’t worth it.  That the critics are too persistent and the problems are too great.  But the solution to our problems begin on a human scale by building a shared understanding of the work ahead, and with undertaking it together.  At the very least we owe it to teach each other to try.”
                  Tim Cook (1960 -     )
                  Business exec and engineer
                  Speech to Tulane grads, May, 2019

"The human ear, like those of other mammals, is so extraordinarily sensitive that it can detect sound-wave-induced vibrations of the eardrum that move by less than the width of an atom."
                  Mechanism helps explain the ear's exquisite sensitivity
                  David L. Chandler, M I T
                  16 Jan., 2019

"Lying is a cooperative act.  Think about it, a lie has no power whatsoever by its mere utterance;  its power emerges when someone else begins to believe the lie."
                  Pamela Meyer
                  Author of Liespotting, 2011

"Humor is the universal solvent against the abrasive elements of life ... that's what humor is."
                  Alan K. Simpson (1931 -     )
                  Former WY congressman

                  Eulogy to G.H.W. Bush, 5 Dec., 2018

"The paomnnehil pweor of the hmuan mnid.  Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae.  The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm.  Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe."
                  Passed on by Kevin Hare,
                  Sept., 2003.

“No 9000 computer has ever made a mistake or distorted information.  We are all, by any practical definition of the words, foolproof and incapable of error.”
                  H.A.L. Artificial Intelligent computer
                  2001: A Space Odyyssey,

"So we went to Atari and said, 'Hey, we've got this amazing thing, even built with some of your parts, and what do you think about funding us?  Or we'll give it to you.  We just want to do it.  Pay our salary, we'll come to work for you.'   And they said, 'No.'  So then we went to Hewlett-Packard, and they said, 'Hey, we don't need you.  You haven't got through college yet.'"
                  Steve Jobs (1955 - 2011)
                  on getting Atari and HP interested in personal computers

“The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race.  It would take off on its own and re-design itself at an ever-increasing rate.  Humans, who are limited by slow biological evolution, couldn’t compete and would be superseded.”
                  Steven Hawking (1942 - 2018)
                  Theoretical physicist and cosmetologist                 
2014 speech

"It is also interesting to note that Hewlett-Packard (where he worked before quitting in frustration) wouldn’t let Wozniak do any work with computers or research and development "because he didn’t have a college degree".  If I were David Packard, I’d hunt down and boil in oil the managers who failed to identify Wozniak as a budding genius.  After all, the company could have sent him to school if it were that preoccupied with sheepskin.  I wonder what HP would do with Einstein if he were new to the staff."
                  John C. Dvorak (1952 -     )
                  Author, columnist
                  Pioneering Hardware, Inside Track, 1984

"He knew what his mother and my mother knew:  hatred corrodes the container it's carried in."
                  Alan K. Simpson (1931 -     )

                  Former WY congressman
                  Eulogy to G.H.W. Bush, 5 Dec., 2018

"Dreams weren't meant to come true.  
That's why they call 'em dreams.
Oh, you beautiful fool."

                  Kathy Mattea (1959 -     )
                  Vocalist, musician

                  Love Travels Album, 1997

"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few."
                  Shunryu Suzuki
                  Zen master

"Every idiot can count to one."
Bob Widlar (1937 - 1991)
                  Linear engineer on digital electronics

"I don't like the phone because my [parents] are on their phone every day ... I hate my mom's phone and I wish she never had one."
                  Elementary-School child
                  Louisana, May, 2018

"Life's battles don't always go
To the stronger or faster man,
But sooner or later the man who wins
Is the one who thinks he can."

                  Napoleon Hill (1883 - 1970)
                  American "self-help" author

"Teaching a student who wants to learn is the most gratifying activity, and the most gratifying result is when they get a job."
                  Mike Robinson (1951 -     )

"More and more human ventures are now going into cloud ones and zeros and less and less into traditional physical objects.  And many large and inefficient objects are now being replaced with smaller and more efficient and far more versatile ones.  ...

This has profound implications for the search for intelligent life elsewhere.  For simply, the more advanced the civilization, the fewer and the smaller the artifacts, all replaced by ones and zeros.  

So , all the zillions of watts of Captain Video, Roller Derby  ...  once beaming out their unintentional 'Hey - we - are - here' power to all the universe are no longer present.  Or soon are likely to disappear entirely."
                  Don Lancaster (1940 -     )
                  Author and tech "guru"
                  May 18, 2018

"You have got to pay attention, you have got to study and you have to do your homework.  You have to score higher than everybody else.  Otherwise, there is always somebody there waiting to take your place."
                  Daisy Fuentes  (1966 -      )
                  Model and TV host

"The most prominent requisite to a lecturer, ... is a good delivery; ... I am sorry to say that
the generality of mankind cannot accompany us one short hour unless the path is strewed with flowers.''

                  Michael Faraday
                  Chemist, physicist, teacher.

"Nationally, just 6 percent of community college students get a bachelor’s degree within five years, according to data from 2004 through 2008 from the National Center for Education Statistics.  For students whose parents have degrees, the outcomes are slightly better, but not by much."
Kyle Spencer
                  Middle-Class Families Increasingly Look to Community Colleges
The New Your Times, April 5, 2018

"We were not made great as a country by indulging or even exalting our worst impulses, turning against ourselves, glorying in the things which divide us, and calling fake things true and true things fake.  And we did not become the beacon of freedom in the darkest corners of the world by flouting our institutions and failing to understand just how hard-won and vulnerable they are."
Jeffry Lane Flake (1962 -     )
                  Former AZ Senator
                  Speech to Senate, 10-24-17

There ain't no reason things are this way
It's how they've always been and they intend to stay
I don't know why I say the things I say
But I say them anyway

Workin' your fingers bare to the bone
Breakin' your back, make you sell your soul
Like a lung, that's filled with coal
Suffocatin' slow

The wind blows wild and I may move
But politicians lie and I am not fooled
You don't need no reason or a three piece suit
To argue the truth

                  Brett Dennen
                  Ain't No Reason
                  "So Much More" album, 2006

 "Pluralitas non est ponenda sine neccesitate."
                  "The most simple result is correct."
                  William of Ockham (Ockham's Razor)

“It takes courage to grow up and turn out to be who you really are.”
                  ee cummings (1894 - 1962)

“If the path before you is clear, you’re probably on someone else’s.”
                  Joseph Campbell (1904 - 1987)

"Sadly, my hobby is what I do for work, so I don't go off and go fishing.  I go home and veg, and then I go back to work."
                  Andrew Stanton (1965 -     )
                  Director, screen writer, producer

"Do something you really like, and hopefully it pays the rent."
"As far as I'm concerned, that's success."

Tom Petty (1950 - 2017)
                  Musician, lyricist

"In a universe that is many billions of years old, with star systems separated as much by time as by space, civilizations might emerge and develop and burn themselves up simply too fast to ever find one another... the mass extinction we are now living through has only just begun.”
                  David Wallace-Wells
                  Author, blogger

“So if you have a smartphone, and you still have an expectation of privacy, you’re fooling yourself.”
                  Laura Schewel
                  StreetLight Data (vehicle data collection service)
                  New York Times article Cars Suck up Data by John Quain, 7-27-17

"Our system doesn’t depend on our nobility.  It accounts for our imperfections, and gives an order to our individual strivings that has helped make ours the most powerful and prosperous society on earth.  It is our responsibility to preserve that, even when it requires us to do something less satisfying than ‘winning.’  Even when we must give a little to get a little.  Even when our efforts manage just three yards and a cloud of dust, while critics on both sides denounce us for timidity, for our failure to ‘triumph.’"
John McCain (1936 -2018)
                  Senator representing Arizona
                  Decorated veteran, hero
                  Speaking to the US Senate, 25 July, 2017

“Hatred can rot a person’s wisdom and conscience.  An enemy mentality will poison the spirit of a nation and inflame brutal life and death struggles, destroy a society’s tolerance and humanity, and hinder a country’s advance toward freedom and democracy.”
                  Liu Xiaobo (1955 - 2017)
                  Dissident, intellectual, political prisoner, Nobel Peace Prize winner

“Partisanship remains a stronger force than ideology.  Things won’t get better in politics until people care more about principles than teams.”
                  Justin Amash (1980-     )

"When you have something that's good for society, but terribly harmful for given individuals, we have got to make sure those individuals are taken care of."
                  Warren Buffett (1930 -      )
                  Business magnate, investor, and philanthropist, 2017

"You can rarely see precisely where you want to go from the beginning.  In retrospect, it’s always written like that.  But it’s rarely like that.  The fantastic thing about our employees is they get excited about something, and they want to know how it works.  What it will do.  What its capabilities are.  If they want to know about something in an entirely different industry, they start pulling the string and see where it takes them.  They’re focused more on the journey, which enables so many great things to happen."
                  Tim Cook (1960 -      )
                  Apple CEO
                  Dec. 2016

"You don’t have to risk your life to cast a ballot.  Other people already did that for you."
Barack H. Obama II (1961 -      )
                  44th President of the United States
                  Commencement Address, Howard Univ., 5-7-2016

"In the year 2016, the top one percent of the people on this planet own more wealth than the bottom 99 percent, while the wealthiest 60 people – 60 people – own more than the bottom half – 3 1/2 billion people."
                  Bernard Sanders
                  U.S. Senator
                  Vatican speech, 4-15-16

"...the answer to fear and a broken system is to fix the system and address the fears."
                  José H. Gomez
                  Archbishop of Los Angeles
                  Open letter to state assembly, 6-16-2015

"The poor can least afford bad design."
                  Jan Chipchase
                  Frog Design, Inc., 2015

"If you did not want much, there was plenty."
                  Harper Lee (1926 - 2016)
                  Go Set A Watchman,
                  HarperCollins, 2015

"Whether we bear a white or a red rose, whether for Richard or Henry ... we recognize at the graveside that all our journeys lead us to this place, where reputation counts for nothing and all human striving turns to dust."
Gordon Campbell, University of Leicester Professor
                  Speech at reinternment of King Richard III (3-26-2015)

"Today a lot of people are using smart devices instead of doing the math in their own head.  These days, the thinking you need is how to use the device that does the thinking for you."
                  Steve Wozniak (1950 -      )
                  Apple co-founder
                  Paul Smith, Financial Review, May 28, 2014

“I do not know what you have said; I only know what I have heard.  You do not know what I have heard; you only know what you have said.”
The Blind Lemon Jackson Bar
                  Berkeley, CA, 1966

“If you start with the assumption that everything in the future is going to be different than it is now, then it’s not true that anyone else knows any more than you guys do about what’s going to work in the future.
Mark Zuckerberg (1984 -     )
                  Facebook CEO
                  9-18-14 Sequoia High School, Redwood City

“The little girl I knew is growing up and I feel so ... unemployed.  I suppose we both couldn't be five forever."
Mike Robinson (1951 -     )
                  at "grandchild's" grad party

"It is easier to tone down a wild idea than to think up a new one."
Alex F. Osborn (1888 - 1966)
                  Advertising exec, coined term "brainstorm" in 1939

"Anything that's invented between when you're 15 and 35 is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it."
                  Douglas Adams (1952 - 2001)
                  Author, humorist (Second Rule)
"When it comes to electronics, a 'hacker' is a person who just doesn't know how to leave well-enough alone." 
                  M. Robinson (1951 -     )
                  electronics enthusiast                                      

"Nothing makes me more productive than the last minute."
                  Unknown author
                  Seen on a T-shirt

"Crayons are wonderful.  They can take you more places than a starship."
                  Guinan (played by Whoopy Goldberg)
                  Star Trek Next Generation, 1992

"The internet, in particular, offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity. This is something truly good, a gift from God." ...

"This is not to say that certain problems do not exist. The speed with which information is communicated exceeds our capacity for reflection and judgement,  ..."

"The world of communications can help us either to expand our knowledge or to lose our bearings."   ...

"While these drawbacks are real, they do not justify rejecting social media; rather, they remind us that communication is ultimately a human rather than technological achievement. "
                  Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Pope Francis (1936 -      )
                  Selected text from speech
                  for World Comm. Day, June 1, 2014

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.  For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
                  Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)
                  Theoretical physicist, genius

"I self-published simply because I wanted to own my work and I wanted to make it available to readers.  I expected nothing.  I wrote as one might garden or knit, simply because they enjoy the act of creation. … I'd be doing this on the street with a hat by my feet if I had to.  I'd be building callouses and nodding my thanks to anyone who tossed a coin my way."
                  Hugh Howey (1975 -     )
                  Self Publishing is the future - and great for writers
                  Salon.com, 4-4-13

“I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer, born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace and propelled by compressible flow.”
                  Neil Armstrong (1930 - 2012)
                  Engineer, professor,
astronaut, pilot
                  First human on the moon
                  National Press Club speech, 2000

"If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the precipitate."
                  Don Lancaster (1940 -     )
                  Electronics guru and author, June 14th, 2011

"My favorite programming language is solder"
                  Bob Pease (1940 - 2011)
                  Analog engineer and guru, author

"If you really want to understand how something works, build it yourself."
                  Jim Williams (1948 – 2011)
                  Electronics experimenter/guru

"Every idiot can count to one."
                  Bob Widlar (1937 - 1991)
                  Op Amp designer/linear engineer (on digital electronics)

"Sincerity is everything.  Once you have that faked, everything else falls in place."
                  Don Lancaster (1940 -     )
                  Electronics guru and author, Jan. 28th, 2012

“If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realize how complicated life is."
John von Neumann (1903 - 1957)
                  Mathematician, computer scientist

"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls, and looks like work."
                  Thomas Edison (1847 - 1931)
                  Entrepreneur and inventor

"Opporknockity tunes but once."
                  Don Lancaster (1940 -     )
                  Electronics guru and author, Jan. 18th, 2009

"I can't fire her.  We pay her too much to fire her."
                  Former supervisor
                  when asked about assembler's poor work performance

"Hi, Mike."  
"Hi, Earl."

"I need a P.C. Board designed."
(handing Mike the sketch)
"O.K., when do you need it."
"I'll wait."

                  (Earl pulls up a chair)

                  A.G.S chief engineer to
                  engineering aide Mike R. (2001)

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.  The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.“
Mark Twain (1835 - 1910)
                  Author and humorist

"It's pretty clear nowadays a college education doesn't always get you a job, but it almost always gets you in debt."
                  Korva Coleman,
                  Host, Tell Me More, NPR

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
Carl Buechner (1926 -      )
                   Minister & author

"... and I didn't even meet her in a bar!"
Man describing the virtues of his new wife
                  Discussion while cleaning motorcycles (Frisco, Colorado, summer, 2011)

“The person who knows HOW will always have a job.  
  The person who knows WHY will always be his boss.”

                  Alanis Morissette (1974 -     )
                  Singer, song-writer, producer and actress

"It's only the last turn of a bolt that tightens it - the rest is just movement."
                  Shigeo Shingo (1909 - 1990)
                  Productivity consultant, industrial engineer

"I don't know what I want, but ..."
                  Retail customer's most favorite opening
                  Well-known electronics chain, late 1970's

"If I have seen further . . . it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."
                  Sir Isaac Newton (1643-1727)
                  physicist, mathematician, astronomer

“For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request.  Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink."
Neil Armstrong's Family (August 25, 2012)

"The single observation I would offer for your consideration is that some things are beyond your control.  You can lose your health to illness or accident, you can lose your wealth to all manner of unpredictable sources.  What is not easily stolen from you without your cooperation is your principles and your values.  They are your most important possessions and, if carefully selected and nurtured, will well serve you and your fellow man.”
                  Neil Armstrong (1930 - 2012)
                  USC commencement speech, 2005

                  Engineer and astronaut

"Look again at that dot.  That's here.  That's home.  That's us.  On it, everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives.  Every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there--on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam."
                  Carl Sagan (1934 - 1996)
                  Author & scientist
                  Pale Blue Dot
, Random House, 1994

"Uh."  Shovel.  "Uh."  Shovel.  "Uh."  Shovel.
"Why am I the only guy grunting while we're shoveling?"
we learned a long time ago that it doesn't help."
                  Master Plumbers to Mike Robinson
                  While shoveling sand for new pipe  4-8-10

"People will talk for hours saying nothing much and then linger at the door with words that come with a rush from the heart.  Doorways, it seems, are where the truth is told."
                  Alan Alda (1936 -     )
                  Actor & comedian,
                  Speech, Conn. College 5-20-80

"Live your life and forget your age."
                  Norman Vincent Peale (1898-1993)
                  Preacher and author

"If you don't do the 'bad' job well, you won't do the 'good' job well."
                  Mike Robinson (1951 -     )
                  after poor service from an
                  unhappy employee at
                  a nearby pharmacy

"The Sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent upon it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the Universe to do."  
                  Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)
                  Physicist, mathematician, astronomer, philosopher

"In college I read what they told me and was much the better for it."
                  John Updike, author (1932 - 2009)
                  Esquire, 2008

"Mikey, let's FIX something!"
                  Granddaughter to old teacher on
                  Christmas visit, Dec., 2009   

"I'm a 150 and you're a 140 and you're never catching up!"  [presumably IQ]
                  Four-year-old granddaughter to old teacher 

"Hey, Sweetie, don't you think I'd look great in that?" [Looking at a tux in a store window]
"No, but Jack would."
[Her teen-age sister's boyfriend]
                  Six-year-old, brutally honest, granddaughter
                  to old teacher    

"If you hide your ignorance no one will hit you and you will never learn."
                  Ray Bradbury
(1920 -      )
                  Sci-fi author

"Mine is not the kind of a job I worked all my life to get just so
I don't have to do it."

                  Charles M. Schultz
(1922 - 2000)

"I'd put my money on the sun and solar energy.  
What a source of power!  I hope we don't have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that."
                  Thomas A. Edison (1847 - 1931)


"The way you tell an extroverted engineer is that they stare at YOUR shoes
rather than their own."

                  Don Lancaster (1940 -     )
                  Author, engineer & "guru"
                  Oct. 14, 2008

It is no longer possible or economical to repair most electronic equipment thanks to ICs.  The cost of labor, . . . and the difficulty of replacing ICs have made it more practical to just discard a bad piece of equipment rather than repair it.  It costs less and you get a newer and better replacement product as a result.  Not a bad deal."
                  Louis E. Frenzel, Jr.,
                  Professor, author, engineer

"We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology."
                  Carl Sagan (1934-1996)
                  author, astronomer, astrophysicist, cosmologist

"Time waste differs from material waste in that there can be no salvage.  The easiest of all wastes and the hardest to correct is the waste of time, because wasted time does not litter the floor like wasted material."
                  Henry Ford (1863 - 1947)
                  Inventor, manufacturer, capitalist

"Do you realize if it weren't for Edison we'd be watching TV by candlelight?"
                  Al Boliska
                  actor, writer

"This 'telephone' has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication.  The device is inherently of no value to us."
                  Western Union internal memo, 1876
                  (Out of the telegraph business 2006)

"Whether composed of 10 or 10 million parts, an efficient system does not have "a lot" of interconnected pieces.  It has just enough."
                  Dan Ward,
                  The Simplicity Cycle, 2008

"The design process is about whittling away distractions, making the obscure feel obvious, making the obvious feel implicit, and doing it without anyone noticing.  To the untrained eye, your best work looks like you've done no work at all.  If you've done a stellar job, then your design will feel utterly obvious."
                  Neil Mix,
                  The Elegance Paradox

"The present is a movie, but the past is a photograph.  And that is just how we like it.  We never have to look to the next frame or pan the camera.  We just choose the single image that holds us in its warm glow and ignore the messy rest.  It may be a lie, but it is a welcome one.  Unfortunately, it also means that we can never really go back.  We can never answer the question: Was any time in the past really happier than now?  As nice as it would be to know the answer, we would never trade that knowledge for the greater happiness that nostalgia provides."
                  Michael S. Malone (1954? -      )
                  Journalist, author
                  The Valley of Heart's Delight, John Wiley & Sons, 2002

"Everything that can be invented has been invented."
                  Charles H. Duell (1850 - 1920)
U.S. Patent Office, 1899

"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers."
                  Thomas Watson (1874 - 1956)
                  Chairman of IBM, 1943

"Start by doing what's necessary, then what's possible,  and suddenly you are doing the impossible."
                  Francis of Assisi
                  Giovanni Francesco Bernardone (c.1181-1226)
                  Roman Catholic patron saint (animals & the environment)

"Now he's old and grey with a flour sack cape tied all around his head,
He's still jumpin' off the garage and will be 'till he's dead,
All these years people said he was actin' like a kid,
He did not know he could not fly . . . so he DID!"
                  The Cape,
                  Guy & Susanna Clark & Jim Janosky
                  EMI April Music, Inc., 1993-94

"The Law of Ideality explains that the amount of complexity in a system is a measure of how far away it is from its ideal state.  In fact, upon reaching perfect ideality, the mechanism itself no longer exists.  Only the function remains.  Sort of like doing away with a can opener and using a pop-top instead."
                  Dan Ward,
                  The Simplicity Cycle, 2008

"How loved, how valu'd once, avails you not,
To whom related, or by whom begot,
A heap of dust alone remains to be,
Of all you are and all the great shall be."

                  Tombstone epitaph, author unknown
                  Sierra County, CA  6,300 ft.

"If you could see your ancestors all standing in a row,
Would you be proud of them or not, or don't you really know?

Some strange discoveries are made by climbing family trees,
And some of these you know do not particularly please.

If you could see your ancestors all standing in a row,
There might be some of them you wouldn't care to know.

But there is another question that requires a different view.
If you could meet your ancestors, would they be proud of you?"
                  Tombstone epitaph, auithor unknown
                  Sierra Co., CA  4,300 ft.

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