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A Nonny Moose

Quote of the Day

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Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking

-- Albert Einstein.

Dang i am in trouble then.

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A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking

    -- Albert Einstein.

    Dang i am in trouble then.

    Don't feel bad. I don't know anyone who doesn't read a lot. I think the good doctor was speaking before the choice was read or TV. I'm not sure he was much for fiction. Most of his stuff reads like SF anyway.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Everything you've learned in school as "obvious" becomes less and less

    obvious as you begin to study the universe. For example, there are no

    solids in the universe. There's not even a suggestion of a solid.

    There are no absolute continuums. There are no surfaces. There are no

    straight lines.

    -- R. Buckminster Fuller

    And now the gent is immortal. "Bucky balls" and Fullerenes. Kind of blackens one.


    And from the modern to the classical, this:

    I have sacrificed time, health, and fortune, in the desire to complete these

    Calculating Engines. I have also declined several offers of great personal

    advantage to myself. But, notwithstanding the sacrifice of these advantages

    for the purpose of maturing an engine of almost intellectual power, and

    after expending from my own private fortune a larger sum than the government

    of England has spent on that machine, the execution of which it only

    commenced, I have received neither an acknowledgement of my labors, not even

    the offer of those honors or rewards which are allowed to fall within the

    reach of men who devote themselves to purely scientific investigations...

    If the work upon which I have bestowed so much time and thought were

    a mere triumph over mechanical difficulties, or simply curious, or if the

    execution of such engines were of doubtful practicability or utility, some

    justification might be found for the course which has been taken; but I

    venture to assert that no mathematician who has a reputation to lose will

    ever publicly express an opinion that such a machine would be useless if

    made, and that no man distinguished as a civil engineer will venture to

    declare the construction of such machinery impracticable...

    And at a period when the progress of physical science is obstructed

    by that exhausting intellectual and manual labor, indispensable for its

    advancement, which it is the object of the Analytical Engine to relieve, I

    think the application of machinery in aid of the most complicated and abtruse

    calculations can no longer be deemed unworthy of the attention of the country.

    In fact, there is no reason why mental as well as bodily labor should not

    be economized by the aid of machinery.

    -- Charles Babbage, "The Life of a Philosopher"

    This from the man who invented the idea of a mechanical computer.


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Did you also remember that Lord Byron's sister, Ada Lovelace, was the first programmer? The language was named after her.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • The energy produced by the breaking down of the atom is a very poor kind

    of thing. Anyone who expects a source of power from the transformation

    of these atoms is talking moonshine.

    -- Ernest Rutherford, after he had split the atom for

    the first time

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    The energy produced by the breaking down of the atom is a very poor kind

    of thing. Anyone who expects a source of power from the transformation

    of these atoms is talking moonshine.

    -- Ernest Rutherford, after he had split the atom for

    the first time

    That ranks up there with Bill Gates's comments about memory size.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Rutherford was a dyed in the wool Victorian. "Everything's up to date in Kansas City" -- from Oklahoma!


    Be both a speaker of words and a doer of deeds.

    -- Homer


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    "Slaughter 10,000 erroneously rather than let one guilty escape."

    -- A banner slogan of the Red Guards during the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, and reportedly still seen as a legacy relic emblazoned over the presiding judges' benches in a few mainland Chinese courtrooms.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Pretty cruel, but when you have a quarter of the world's population, what are a few mistakes here and there? What we in the west fail to understand is just how cheap life is in that kind of society.


    In India, "cold weather" is merely a conventional phrase and has come into

    use through the necessity of having some way to distinguish between weather

    which will melt a brass door-knob and weather which will only make it mushy.

    -- Mark Twain


    A little more 19th C. scientific opinion:

    Heavier than air flying machines are impossible.

    -- Lord Kelvin, President, Royal Society, c. 1895


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • A note for the current news climate:

    Under every stone lurks a politician.

    -- Aristophanes


    And for the mathies among us:

    Klein bottle for rent -- inquire within.

    The fortune database.

      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • If you will recall, the Jem'Hadar were clones that were addicted to a drug to keep them loyal and merciless for the Dominion. The implications give me the willies.


    Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other "sins" are

    invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful -- just stupid).

    -- Lazarus Long (Robert A. Heinlein).


    For myself, I can only say that I am astonished and somewhat terrified at

    the results of this evening's experiments. Astonished at the wonderful

    power you have developed, and terrified at the thought that so much hideous

    and bad music may be put on record forever.

    -- Sir Arthur Sullivan, message to Edison, 1888


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    If you will recall, the Jem'Hadar were clones that were addicted to a drug to keep them loyal and merciless for the Dominion. The implications give me the willies.


    Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other "sins" are

    invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful -- just stupid).

    -- Lazarus Long (Robert A. Heinlein).


    For myself, I can only say that I am astonished and somewhat terrified at

    the results of this evening's experiments. Astonished at the wonderful

    power you have developed, and terrified at the thought that so much hideous

    and bad music may be put on record forever.

    -- Sir Arthur Sullivan, message to Edison, 1888

    He would have shot himself today.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Did you ever hear any of Sir Arthur Sullivan's music? Surely you've sung 'Hail, hail, the gang's all here' or 'Onward, Christian Soldiers'? And have you ever heard a good performance of 'The Lost Chord'?

    By the way, the first has different lyrics in The Pirates of Penzance.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • The lawgiver, of all beings, most owes the law allegiance. He of all men

    should behave as though the law compelled him. But it is the universal

    weakness of mankind that what we are given to administer we presently imagine

    we own.

    -- H. G. Wells

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Never appeal to a man's "better nature." He may not have one.

    Invoking his self-interest gives you more leverage.

    -- Lazarus Long (Robert A. Heinlein)

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • In light of the other thread on cell phone usage, a piece of history:

    In recognizing AT&T Bell Laboratories for corporate innovation, for its

    invention of cellular mobile communications, IEEE President Russell C. Drew

    referred to the cellular telephone as a "basic necessity." How times have

    changed, one observer remarked: many in the room recalled the advent of

    direct dialing.

    -- The Institute, July 1988, pg. 11

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    I think that the perspective one uses to approach the trends in human communication plays a significant role in how one perceives the current state of affairs. If the only thing you look at is the negative consequences, the embarrassing faux pas moments, the risks of misuse, etc., one can easily be left with the impression that current trends are only going to lead us places we don't want to go. While this is certainly an understandable response, it also sounds like a modern equivalent of the belief among ancient Greeks that widespread availability of books would destroy humanity. (And most of us would agree that widespread availability of books has been a generally positive thing.) If current trends are viewed from a historical perspective, one might argue that they are nothing more than the current answer to a problem that plagued humanity for as long as humanity has walked the earth.

    Humans are social creatures, and as a general rule, have a need to communicate. When the person is nearby, communication is relatively easy. You talk to the person and he talks back. However, we aren't content to talk to just the people near us. We want to be able to communicate with people who are not in a distance to easily afford communication. Over the millenia, we have employed many different techniques to extend our ability to communicate, with the various techniques gradually getting more sophisticated. Postal services could carry the written communication of many people, but the services were slow and there were practical limits to the distance one could carry the mail, so Morse invented the telegraph to solve these problems. Suddenly it was possible to send messages long distances very quickly, but telegraph wires didn't easily go everywhere that we wanted to communicate, like across the Atlantic, so Marconi invented the radio to solve these issues. Telephones and televisions were likewise developed to solve communication problems. As revolutionary as it was, the internet was invented for the exact same reason that all the previous technologies were developed--people desired a new technology to address communication problems that they were having.

    This leads us to where we are today. The internet has irreversibly altered the course of human communication. For the first time in human history, we have the ability to communicate anything, any time, anywhere. The internet was created to connect people and facilitate the sharing of ideas and that is what it is doing today (albeit on a scale no one was anticipating). The social internet is merely the next step in the communication evolution that the internet has enabled, and it is no surprise that the idea has gained traction as it enables humanity to communicate in ways that were never before possible, and achieve things that were never practical before. The technology has had several stumbling moments, but that is to be expected with any new technology that people are unfamiliar with. As time progresses and people become more familiar with the pro's/con's and strengths/weaknesses of the system, we can expect to find it put to more practical use and used in a more responsible fashion.

    In other words, what we are witnessing is the birth of a major new technology. While it is entirely justified to view it critically and be wary of the various pitfalls that come with the technology, it is unreasonable to denounce it as a failure. Just like a person can be irresponsible as a teenager and develop into a very responsible adult, new technologies can (and often do) undergo a similar transition.

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • An interesting essay. I try not to make many points in this thread, but the point I wanted to make here is that cell phones have been around since 1988. That's longer than many of us have been alive. The Internet (ARPAnet) has been around longer than that.

    In the 24 years that cell phones have gone from clunky packages like a walkee-talkee, to the neat shirt-pocket units we have today. The character of human society has changed radically, mostly for the better. Of course, there are always a few bad apples in the barrel and the opportunity to do harm is increased by the speed of communication and the aspects of multiple record. It is necessary to rise above this, and remember that in the end time wounds all heels.


    Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value.

    -- Marechal Ferdinand Foch, Professor of Strategy,

    Ecole Superieure de Guerre

    This is the mentality of the French Military establishment when they built the Maginot Line.


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    @hym

    I guess when you really think about the facebook world is doing a lot of good, I know its mostly snatches of daily lives, but maybe that’s the information about people that needs to be spread thru the world, not the rhetoric.


      Edited by Easy Bakes  

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • Indomitable in retreat; invincible in advance; insufferable in victory.

    -- Winston Churchill, on General Montgomery

    Interesting, from the same man who claimed the greatest cross he had to bear was the cross of Lorraine (Gen. De Gaulle).

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • If we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it,

    and involve others in our doom.

    -- Samuel Adams

    Pulled the Wiki article for our colleagues who are not Americans. A father of the U.S.A.

    Says a lot about how things never change, eh?

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    Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value.

    -- Marechal Ferdinand Foch, Professor of Strategy,

    Ecole Superieure de Guerre

    Reminds me of a debate some Japanese politicians had a few months ago about building giant mecha for self defense.

    http://japandailypre...g-gundam-275352

    Japanese government officials to discuss building a real, working Gundam

    By Adam Westlake / June 27, 2012 / 17 Comments

    full-size-gundam-odaiba-tokyo-head-200x133.jpeg

    Now that the tax debate is out of the way, the members of Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) can get down to the real issues. Like discussing the possibilities of the country building a real, full-sized, working Gundam. This is no joke. Two members of the LDP want to take a serious look at what it would take to construct the two-legged, walking mech from the infamous, long-running Gundam anime series.

    Beginning on Thursday, the LDP will hold a 12-hour marathon on Nico Nico, a Japanese video platform similar to YouTube, and two members of the party, Masaaki Taira and Hideki Niwa, will have a discussion titled “The Gundam Development Project.” Also joining them will be Harutoshi Fukui, the writer for the Mobile Suit Gundam UC series of novels. It was estimated in 2008 that the cost to build a real working 60-foot tall Gundam, and not just a life-size statue like what was built in Odaiba, Tokyo, would cost around $725 million. But that is just the price for parts and materials, and doesn’t include what it would cost to build such a ridiculous thing.

    This display is most likely just an attempt for the LDP to attract a younger audience, mostly composed of science fiction and anime fans. It would become obvious fairly quickly that possibilities of building a walking, piloted humanoid robot, with arms and the ability to use weapons, are between slim and none.

    http://www.escapistm...o-Build-Gundams

    Japanese Politicians Announce Plan to Build Gundams

    JOHN FUNK | 26 JUNE 2012 11:56 PM

    52

    98784.jpg

    Someday the Japanese military might actually field giant robots.

    Japan loves Gundam; we all know this. Some of us have even written entire articles about it. In fact, Japan loves Gundam so much, a major political party has announced that it is considering an actual, real-life Gundam development program for its military.

    Speaking on a political talk show broadcast on web site NicoNico Douga, members of the Japanese Liberal Democratic Party including key figures like party VP Tadamori Oshima and former general secretary Bunmei Ibuki said that the LDP was "seriously considering" a project to turn Yoshiyuki Tomino's giant fighting robots into a reality. They did not say that there were plans to find the perfectly emotionally-damaged teenager to fly the thing, but it was probably implied.

    It bears noting that the Japanese LDP is not some fringe political party, either. The center-right LDP controlled the Japanese parliament almost continuously until its defeat in the 2009 elections. At that point, it began to splinter, but still remains a potent political force. Some might see this as a cynical ploy to appeal to right-wingotaku to bolster the LDP base instead of any real plan to field giant fighting robots, and in all fairness that some probably has a point.

    Reactions online in Japan have been mixed. "Why not start by making some robots which can clean up after a nuclear accident, morons," wrote one commentator in reference to the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Another criticized the impracticality of fielding billion-dollar machines that could be taken down with some tripwire, Battle of Hoth-style. "Gundams would be useless in a real war. If their intent is anything more than to curry favour with otaku they should start looking at what would be." Others were more optimistic. "People ridiculing this are the same people who would have been ridiculing the car a century ago!" exclaimed one. And yet another simply had qualms with the LDP's choice of giant robot. "Why Gundam all of a sudden now? You start with Zaku, Zaku!"


      Edited by Hellken  

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • The Japanese should stick with Godzilla.


    Revolution, n.:

    In politics, an abrupt change in the form of misgovernment.

    -- Ambrose Bierce The Devil's Dictionary.


    1934 Hrs. This popped up on my desktop from the famous sayings data base:

    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.

    Thomas A. Edison.

      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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    eleanorroosevelt100940.jpg

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    A Nonny Moose    7,757
  • Original Poster
  • If atheism is to be used to express the state of mind in which God is

    identified with the unknowable, and theology is pronounced to be a

    collection of meaningless words about unintelligible chimeras, then

    I have no doubt, and I think few people doubt, that atheists are as

    plentiful as blackberries...

    -- Leslie Stephen (1832-1904), literary essayist, author


    Absolute: Independent, irresponsible. An absolute monarchy is one in which

    the sovereign does as he pleases so long as he pleases the assassins. Not

    many absolute monarchies are left, most of them having been replaced by

    limited monarchies, where the sovereign's power for evil (and for good) is

    greatly curtailed, and by republics, which are governed by chance.

    -- Ambrose Bierce The Devil's Dictionary.


      Edited by A Nonny Moose  

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