Craig's Cynical Quotations Page

Cynical (i.e., accurate) quotations about technology, politics, religion, and life. Citations are provided where available. I should point out that I am neither a liberal nor a conservative; I am a centrist and a pragmatist.


The problem with quotes found on the Internet is that they are often not true.

— Abraham Lincoln


All Americans, not only in the states most heavily affected, but in every place in this country, are rightly disturbed by the large numbers of illegal aliens entering our country. The jobs they hold might otherwise be held by citizens or legal immigrants. The public service they use impose burdens on our taxpayers. That's why our administration has moved aggressively to secure our borders more by hiring a record number of new border guards, by deporting twice as many criminal aliens as ever before, by cracking down on illegal hiring, by barring welfare benefits to illegal aliens.

In the budget I will present to you we will try to do more to speed the deportation of illegal aliens who are arrested for crimes, to better identify illegal aliens in the workplace as recommended by the commission headed by former Congresswoman Barbara Jordan.

We are a nation of immigrants. But we are also a nation of laws. It is wrong and ultimately self-defeating for a nation of immigrants to permit the kind of abuse of our immigration laws we have seen in recent years, and we must do more to stop it.

Democrat Pres. Bill Clinton, State Of The Union Address, 1995


In all of recorded human history, there is only one - ONE! - socialist nation that has succeeded: The next one. Physical reality exists. Economic and social theory do not change reality.

xenophage


Art that has to be in a gallery to be art isn't art.

— The Suckist Manifesto


One of these days, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals may declare the Constitution unconstitutional.

— Thomas Sowell, 2003


What “multiculturalism” boils down to is that you can praise any culture in the world except Western culture – and you cannot blame any culture in the world except Western culture.

— Thomas Sowell


The next time some academics tell you how important diversity is, ask how many Republicans there are in their Sociology Department.

— Thomas Sowell


This is the age of the complaining classes, whether they are lawyers, community activists, radical feminists, race hustlers or other squeaking wheels looking for oil. … No society ever thrived because it had a large and growing class of parasites living off those who produce.

— Thomas Sowell


There a three questions that I think would destroy most of the arguments on the left. The first is, “Compared to what?” The second is, “At what cost?” And the third is, “What hard evidence do you have?”

— Thomas Sowell


If you have always believed that everyone should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, that would have gotten you labeled a radical 60 years ago, a liberal 30 years ago, and a racist today.

— Thomas Sowell


Helping those who have been struck by unforeseeable misfortunes is fundamentally different from making dependency a way of life.

— Thomas Sowell


The problem isn't that Johnny can't read. The problem isn't even that Johnny can't think. The problem is that Johnny doesn't even know what thinking is; he confuses it with feeling.

— Thomas Sowell


There are only two ways of telling the complete truth — anonymously and posthumously.

— Thomas Sowell


Is there a word for total screaming genius that sounds modest and a tiny bit sexy?
Doctor. You call me the Doctor.

— Doctor Who


Foreign aid is taking money from poor people in rich countries and giving it to rich people in poor countries.

— Ron Paul


Show me an idealist, I'll show you a hypocrite.

— Gr8Apes


If Socialists understood economics, they wouldn't be Socialists.

— Friedrich Hayek


Hey, the Titanic voyage was 90% successful!

— Darrell Sheets, Storage Wars


Think about how stupid the average person is. Now, realise that half of them are dumber than that!

— George Carlin


In a cult, there is a person at the top who knows it's a scam. In a religion, that person is dead.

— unknown


The number of words in a charity’s name is inversely proportional to the chance that they are actually doing anything charitable.

— Eric Lr


Everyone's got a plan till they get hit.

— Mike Tyson


The age of planes used as missiles lasted exactly one day.

— Anonymous Coward @ Slashdot


Canada: America, but better.

The Canada Party


I see Athiests are fighting and killing each other again, over who doesn't believe in any God the most. Oh, no..wait.. that never happens.

— Ricky Gervais


Knowledge = Power
Power = Work / time
time = Money
Money = Work / Knowledge, so the less you know the more you make!

— (unknown)


Putting aside the obvious problem of going up against the incredible, almost god-like, power of the huge megacorporations that own almost every major government in the world, there is an even bigger problem that you're going to face with your "sustainability" message (especially in the U.S.):

Your first message to the masses is going to be "You have to make real sacrifices."

You won't even get the final "s" in sacrifices out before they tar and feather you and run you out of town on a rail. This is a country where a dollar-per-gallon increase in gas prices almost starts a riot, where "keeping up with the Joneses" is considered a birthright, where not one single President or politician has asked *any* American to sacrifice *anything* in over 40 years. No politician here has EVER won on a message of "I'm going to make things materially worse for you" irrespective of whether or not he adds "But things will be better in the long-term for your grandchildren."

They only way your revolution will ever happen will be by force (force of economic collapse or force or arms, but certainly not by popular vote). No one is going to vote for the guy who is asking them to give up their new car, their big house, their HDTV. You can't guilt someone into making REAL HARD material sacrifices.

Social movements in the U.S. do occasionally succeed in getting minor sacrifices out of the public, but the MAJOR ones that this would require? Good luck with that.

— elrous0 @ Slashdot (2012-03-07)


The [Occupy] movement needs more than a leader. It needs a point. By the time the Occupiers were finished, you had everybody from homeless advocates (and homeless) to raving Marxists, neither of which represent in any way the alleged 99%. At least the Tea Partiers had a tangible set of principles and goals. Being reactionary Libertarian, I despise much of what the Tea Party stands for, but there was at least some sense that there was a direction beyond "we're just against those guys".

Political movements that cannot solidify a single set of goals die out. It's not the leaders alone that do it. The problem with the Occupiers is the same as the peace movement of the 1970s. At the core, one of the founding principles is that everyone has their own idea of where the movement should go. There's a core kind of philosophical anarchism which means that no one is ever really going to become a leader, and if they did, they'd just end up fracturing the movement if they ever did anything faintly leader-like.

Beyond that, revolutions are dangerous things. Smashing existing economic, political and social structures rarely actually ends with something stronger. The American Revolution is an exception, rather than a rule. I much prefer the more evolutionary approach that lead to democracy in Britain, from the Glorious Revolution to the greater and lesser reform acts of the 19th to the 20th century. No burning down buildings or taking emperors and their families out into the woods and gunning them down.

The last thing you want is fanatics. The Tea Party almost brought the US debt into [default] for the first time in the history of the United States through some sort of mad desire to remain ideologically pure. No thanks, don't want that kind of revolution.

— MightyMartian @ Slashdot (2012-03-07)


You can't treat the working man this way! One of these days we'll form a union, and get the fair and equitable treatment we deserve! Then we'll go too far, and become corrupt and shiftless, and the Japanese will eat us alive!

— The Simpsons #4-17, "Last Exit To Springfield"


I have always been amused by a kind of a paradox. Suppose you go around and ask people 'The united States as you know before 1914 had completely free immigration. Anybody could get on a boat and come to these shores and if he landed on Ellis Island he was an immigrant. Was that a good thing or a bad thing?'

You will find that hardly a soul who will say that it was a bad thing. Almost everybody will say it was a good thing. ‘But what about today? Do you think we should have free immigration?’ ‘Oh, no,’ they’ll say, ‘We couldn’t possibly have free immigration today. Why, that would flood us with immigrants from India, and God knows where. We’d be driven down to a bare subsistence level.’

What’s the difference? How can people be so inconsistent? Why is it that free immigration was a good thing before 1914 and free immigration is a bad thing today? Well, there is a sense in which that answer is right. There’s a sense in which free immigration, in the same sense as we had it before 1914 is not possible today. Why not?

Because it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both. If you have a welfare state, if you have a state in which every resident is promised a certain minimal level of income, or a minimum level of subsistence, regardless of whether he works or not, produces it or not. Then it really is an impossible thing.

If you have free immigration, in the way we had it before 1914, everybody benefited. The people who were here benefited. The people who came benefited. Because nobody would come unless he, or his family, thought he would do better here than he would elsewhere. And, the new immigrants provided additional resources, provided additional possibilities for the people already here. So everybody can mutually benefit.

But on the other hand, if you come under circumstances where each person is entitled to a pro-rate share of the pie, to take an extreme example, or even to a low level of the pie, than the effect of that situation is that free immigration, would mean a reduction of everybody to the same, uniform level. Of course, I’m exaggerating, it wouldn’t go quite that far, but it would go in that direction. And it is that perception, that leads people to adopt what at first seems like inconsistent values.

Look, for example, at the obvious, immediate, practical example of illegal Mexican immigration. Now, that Mexican immigration, over the border, is a good thing. It’s a good thing for the illegal immigrants. It’s a good thing for the United States. It’s a good thing for the citizens of the country. But, it’s only good so long as it's illegal.

That’s an interesting paradox to think about. Make it legal and it’s no good. Why? Because as long as it’s illegal the people who come in do not qualify for welfare, they don’t qualify for social security, they don’t qualify for the other myriad of benefits that we pour out from our left pocket to our right pocket. So long as they don’t qualify they migrate to jobs. They take jobs that most residents of this country are unwilling to take. They provide employers with the kind of workers that they cannot get. They’re hard workers, they’re good workers, and they are clearly better off.

— Milton Friedman


Talk to Java heads they'll tell you Java is already faster than C++. They can show you some contrived tests to demonstrate this too! Of course they never seem to have a good answer for why if this is the case all performance important apps (like games, audio software, etc.) are written in something else or why Java linpack pulls like 750Mflops on a system where native compiled (from C) Linpack gets 41Gflops. However they are sure it is faster!

— Sycraft-fu @ Slashdot


Poe's Law: Without a winking smiley or other blatant display of humor, it is impossible to create a parody of Fundamentalism that SOMEONE won't mistake for the real thing.

— Nathan Poe


Blaming an economic collapses on greed is like blaming a bridge collapse on gravity. Both are always there; you design your system around them.

— InterGuru (2011-02-15) @ Slashdot


I'm pretty sure that we'll be stuck with Office suite for a long long time still... But saying that this unmasks Linux as not being perfect is like saying your family is not perfect because you brought your kid to the hospital after he was hit by a car instead of hiding the fact... A fork in this case is a wonderful solution to a death by stagnation caused by proprietary idiocy from Oracle.

— alexandre (2011-01-25) @ Slashdot


A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasure. From that moment on the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most money from the public treasury, with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's great civilizations has been two hundred years. These nations have progressed through the following sequence: from bondage to spiritual faith, from spiritual faith to great courage, from courage to liberty, from liberty to abundance, from abundance to selfishness, from selfishness to complacency from complacency to apathy, from apathy to dependency, from dependency back to bondage.

— Alexander Tyler

[Politics is the fine art of bribing voters with their own money.]


When I was a kid I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I realised God doesn’t work that way, so I stole one and prayed for forgiveness.

— Emo Philips


Don't kid yourself. If it would get them .5% better ratings, NBC would broadcast a gorilla skullfucking Brian Williams every night at 9 pm.

— You have got to be kidding me (2010-02-08) @ AVClub.com


And this time, unlike Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98SE, Windows ME, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Vista, Windows 7 really will be secure. Really!

— Anonymous Coward (2009-08-18) @ Slashdot


Thats easy. What the movie failed to mention — intentionally — is that fact the EV1 actually cost GM about $120,000–$150,000 each to make. Knowing that no average joe would make the payments on a car that price, they had a special deal, where they leased the car out to people. They gave the people that leased the EV1's a special lease, so that it worked out to be roughly the same as if they had leased a $30,000 car.

GM did this as a way of beta testing their cars, in the real world by real people. That's also the reason people couldn't keep the cars after their lease. As generally when the lease on a $30,000 car is up, the buyout would be in the $12000–$16000 range. Since these cars were worth way more, they obviously had no interest in giving them away for so cheap.

It was a cute movie, but very purposely deceitful.

— NeilWilliams (2009-08-11) @ CBC


Leave it to GM to produce a $40,000 US “economy” car! The good news is that very wealthy people can save on gas. No wonder they went bankrupt…

— Paul@Perth (2009-08-11) @ CBC


Orwell's “1984” is not about socialism gone wrong. It is about socialism gone right.

— Julia Fenton (2009-08-04) @ The Fourth Age


Most people who are financially successful play the stock market in one way or another. It is not a scam or giant conspiracy. There are two types of people in the financial world. There are those who are educated, confident, and willing to take risks. Then there are the other type. The people who cry, whine, and complain every time they see someone else making money. They just can't accept the fact that someone could do well in their lives without somehow cheating the system. Sour grapes…and the CBC forums are full of these people.

— Merkss (2009-07-28) @ CBC


Typical thinking of the average brainwashed union member. I'll try to enlighten you a bit. Money is simply a means of exchange, it doesn't matter how much of it you have, just what you can buy with it. Our standard of living s based on what the economy produces aka productivity.

When unions exist and remove any kind of meritocracy from the equation we get lazy workers promoted and we decrease the productivity of our economy. In other words we direct too much resources to purchase said good or service.

What unions do is make us all poorer through higer taxes or higher prices. Why would someone start a business or be a doctor when they can just be a garbageman and get $70+ wages and benefits? When our society directs most of its resources towards garbagemen what is left to invest in R&D and new products that create jobs?

Unions simply redirect productive capital to an unproductive union and decrease the productivity of our economy and our standard of living as well. It's a protection racket just like Tony Sopprano would run.

— Cam MacKay (2009-06-23) @ CBC


if (IE) { do tons of fucked up shit } else { everybody else's predictable behavior }

— eldavojohn (2009-06-19) @ Slashdot


I had a cold. I stayed in bed and ate chocolate for a couple of days, and my cold went away. From this I learned that (a) chocolate is a cure for the common cold and (b) having a cold causes you to gain weight.

— SQL Error (2009-06-18) @ Slashdot


I believe global warming is grossly exaggerated as a problem. It's a real problem, but it's nothing like as serious as people are led to believe. The idea that global warming is the most important problem facing the world is total nonsense and is doing a lot of harm.

— Prof. Freeman Dyson (2007-09-29) @ Salon.com


When religion tries to explain itself it gets tied up in knots: Why do you believe in God? I believe in God because the Bible tells me he exists. Why do you believe the Bible? I believe the Bible because God wrote it.

— rtc100 @ CBC


Thank you, Rationalization Man. You have saved the village!

— House, M.D.


The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

— Winston Churchill


If there's one thing that these left-wing posts reveal, it's the near complete detachment from reality of your average arm-chair pundit on the left. I'm never sure if it's propaganda, or thoughtlessness, but it's certainly a sad testament to the state of political discourse in this country.

Once upon a time, the left used to have a singular devotion to the plight of working people and a firm grounding in reality. It supported union rights, worker's rights, job development and economic growth. Nowadays, all I hear from the left is an irresponsible radical environmentalist agenda and outright envy at the main engine of job growth for Canadian blue-collar workers (i.e, the oil sands). In other words, the left has gone from being the party of blue-collar workers to the party of accountants and lawyers—most of whom are far to savvy to vote for economically irresponsible policies anyways.

If you're wondering why you're losing so miserably in your political battles, it's not because your average working man is stupid—as most of you probably think when shooting from the non-pulpit of the internet with the tired platitudes of ideological prophets masquerading as pseudo-scientists—but it's because your arguments are divorced from reality. I don't care if American companies are developing the oil sands. They pay taxes in Canada and they hire Canadian workers. Why do I care if Exxon makes a billion dollars rather than Irving? Incidentally, you would need look no further than the 1980s to see the consequences of Canadian-led development. It put thousands of people out of work because this country does not have the capacity to develop these resources on its own. That's a little fact-checking with history that some of you might consider doing from time to time.

2 cents a liter reduction in Diesel is bad policy in a number of abstract “big ideas” senses, but it reduces the price of food on my table. If you can't see that people like me—i.e., working families—are going to take feeding their kids over some “save the world” grand-scheme that isn't going to work anyway, then I'm sorry to say that the Canadian left is dead. What we have instead is a new-age religion with its own prophets, irrational hopes, and intense hatreds. If you start hating people because they don't agree with you, then you're no different than any other ideological zealot. And you'll never win.

— GroundWorking (2008-09-10) @ CBC


Smart people can believe in and do very dumb things. Being smart doesn't mean you have any common sense. When I was at UBC law school I was surrounded by some of the most intelligent idiots in the country.

— BlawBlaw (2008-07-13) @ freedominion


All the best to them. They voted on OOXML without seeing it. Now they'll determine how to maintain it without seeing it. Maybe ISO should stand for Invisible Standards Organization? Maybe one of the participants can let me know where can I submit my invisible defect report?

— Rob Weir @ Groklaw

[The ISO OOXML fiasco continues.]


Not to mention how this applied to Jews, who were even more despised, persecuted, deprived of their hard earned possessions, socially barred etc., and still managed to overcome all of these obstacles without any special governmental aid.

— alexgieg (2008-07-15) @ Slashdot


But some how most bloggers in Canada only see the world through US-tinted glasses ... or more accurately anti-US. It is really annoying how you allow your hatred to cloud your understanding, though not surprising. The most hate-filled people I find are the first ones who say they want peace, just on their terms and no one elses. The US looks out for its interests, that is true. But for the US, the perfect country is a stable one they can trade with, because their economy is based on free market principles. They don't want to take over, they don't want to spread an empire, they want countries to run free and open so they can make money dealing with them. The US described in frequent CBC blogs does not exist. You are talking about Russia and China. They make money off misery.

— Socrates21stC (2008-07-11) @ CBC


Most economic fallacies derive from the tendency to assume that there is a fixed pie, that one party can gain only at the expense of another.

— Milton Friedman


This story reminds me of a Vancouver entreprenuer who had a small business 25-30 years ago. He had a non-union labour staff that he treated fairly and negotiated deals once a year that were agreed to with a handshake. One day a union (can't remember which one but it might have been CAW) came by and convinced the staff to unionize. Since there was no written agreement the union convinced the workers to strike and force the boss to negotiate a new deal. The first day of pickets the boss didn't come in. After the pickets were gone at night, the boss came in, stored and winterized all his equipment, locked all the doors and gates and walked on a plane to Hawaii. The picket line stayed up for weeks before they realized he was gone and months before they realized he wasn't coming back. Priceless.

— Anthony @ CBC (2008-06-10)


There's room on this earth for all of God's creatures.... Right next to the mashed potatoes.

— ChadLaroche @ CBC (2008-06-02)


They've just worked out that it's cheaper to push a few coders into FOSS projects that are non-core but valuable to their business than it is to pay the MS tax for eternity. Let's face it, computer users have given Microsoft more than 150 billion dollars in the last decade. If they had co-operated and contributed a small fraction of that to a community project, they'd have saved money and got a lot better tool. Plenty of other businesses are starting to come to the same conclusion.

— ozmanjusri @ Slashdot (2008-05-30)


ISO: The best standards money can buy!

— (unknown)


Q: How many Microsoft employees does it take to change a light bulb?

A: None. They just change the standard to "Dark".

— (unknown)


Most people in the world understand that education [is crucially important], whether it's how to hunt monkeys in the canopy, or how to speak English to guide jungle tours. It's only in relatively wealthy countries with enough infrastructure and social programs that people can afford to stay stupid.

— lawpoop @ Slashdot (2008-05-24)


“Question: Did Mr Einstein ever explain the exact origin of life? Just asking...”

and how exactly do the theists explain it? Adam had two sons... Where exactly did their wives come from?

— RichardFuoco @ CBC (2008-05-13)


I'm interested to know what everyone finds so great about Battlestar Galactica. Is it the unpleasant personalities? The hopeless, bleak despair? The overarching themes of predestination, lack of free will and inevitable doom?

— EGN @ io9 (2008-01-04)


When goods cannot cross borders, armies will.

— Frédéric Bastiat (1801–1850)


The process was complete, utter, unadulterated bullshit.

— Tim Bray @ tbray.org (2008-02-29), commenting on OOXML at ISO


Using a colloquial tone, professor Dawkins presents many arguments against the God hypothesis. He has frequently been criticized for writing a book on God while not being any kind of theologian; however, he makes no apologies for it as his subject here is not “God the theological construct” but “God the prime mover of the universe”. Another way of putting it is that one doesn't need a degree in “Unicornonology” to argue that unicorns, as a biological species, do not exist.

— B. Leblanc @ Amazon (2007-09-12)


Take the wind industry for instance. Throw a bunch of huge subsidies, tax breaks and easy carbon credits out there and you are going to attract the slimiest shysters imaginable.

No fossil fuel or nuclear plant on the planet has ever been displaced by wind power. In Germany, nearly 19,000 wind turbines cover the country, generating five per cent of its electricity. Yet 26 new coal plants are still planned, and six are on a fast track.

Emissions continue to grow, because the grid has to continue operating as if the wind is not blowing — because more often than not, they aren't generating electricity when there is an actual need.

The wind industry across the world has failed to demonstrate any savings in CO2 emissions at the end of the day. Denmark, the pioneer in the wind industry has actually increased it's CO2 emissions proportionally faster than other European Countries.

— M. Anderson, Ontario @ CBC (2008-03-11)


“Your atheism has no basis in actual reality.”

Notwithstanding your rubber & glue counterargument, I would say that accepting objective reality as-is is the very definition of Atheism.

— Citizen of Earth @ Slashdot (2008-02-07)


The reason I point out the Church's sins, and that of most religions, is because it demonstrates rather well that whatever the particular claims of divine inspiration and guidance, religions are like all other human social constructs. There's no effective difference, either in governance or in command structure, between the Roman Catholic Church, China's Peoples Liberation Army or International Business Machines. The only meaningful difference is the leadership's particular claims as to the origins of their authority.

— MightyMartian @ Slashdot (2008-01-31)


Wait, am I suggesting that if I'd had broadband available, I'd've downloaded Windows? Point is, I would never download Vista, but that's mainly because of the incredibly effective antipiracy measures. Namely that it's shit and I don't want it.

— cream wobbly @ Slashdot (2008-01-31)


Yet today, there are few Biblical scholars — from liberal skeptics to conservative evangelicals — who believe that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John actually wrote the Gospels. Nowhere do the writers of the texts identify themselves by name or claim unambiguously to have known or traveled with Jesus.

— Jeffery L. Sheler, “The Four Gospels”, (U.S. News & World Report, Dec. 10, 1990)


Of course we have seen it. It's all around us. It's in the fossil record. By your logic, nobody has actually seen galaxies evolve because they are looking into the past via the fossil record of the universe—radiation (light, X-rays, etc.)

Evolution can be easily traced back to the earliest creatures capable of leaving imprints of themselves behind. The entire process of developing lungs, limbs, spines, etc. etc. is all right there. Each step of the way. It is not a mystery. Just because it doesn't happen in a timespan and a place you personally can witness doesn't make it not so. The sun didn't form before your eyes did it? Did the mountains spring up so you could witness? Is geology a supposition? An educated guess?

You can demonstrate evolution in the lab with bacteria. You can demonstrate complex hydrocarbons doing all sorts of magical stuff in the lab (how life came to be in the first place.)

Tracing the biology of animals of this planet is a well known, well documented science. It is FACT, because the facts are right there in front of the entire worlds eyes, should they choose to look. Fish moving onto land, developing lungs, etc.

We have broken down the DNA code very well at this point, and can trace our origins that way as well. We can see where we differ and what we share with trees, worms, bacteria, dogs and elephants. Natural selection (the mechanism behind evolution) is everywhere as well. Look at dog and cat breeds. Cattle. Plants. Insects. You name it, you can change the creature itself by breeding.

Evolution is science. It is what the facts tell us. This is not a philosophical debate. There are no two sides. It is not a guess. It is about stupidity and blind faith. You can't reject evolution any more than you can reject combustion, or gravity. If people DO reject it, they are simply being ignorant and stupid. Plain and simple.

Basing "science" on something written thousands of years ago by people who were so far from us in their knowledge of the world is ridiculous. It is absurd. Why not simply observe the world? Observe what is right in front of our faces, and learn from it.

— Suicyco @ Slashdot (2008-01-11)


For all the philosophical rambling, none of them, absolutely none of them, escape this simple indisputable fact:

All religious teachings are provided to us by humans.

If God Himself appeared next to me and handed me a copy of the Bible, that would be one thing. But instead, a human handed it to me. And, in fact, a human wrote every word that is in it. This notion of “divine inspiration” (which is supposed to remove the element of human fallibility from the Bible) was communicated to me by ... wait for it ... A HUMAN.

— Anonymous Coward @Slashdot (2008-01-11)


Gentlemen and ladies. I hate inflation. I hate taxes and I hate Communism. Do something about it.

— Ronald Reagan, authorizing the end to 15 years of ‘stagflation’ and starting the longest and most powerful bull run in the history of the US stock markets @CTV

[Of course, the economically-illiterate will tell you that Reaganomics didn't work.]


I find it funny that the anarchist protesters out on the hill and at Montebello have a flag.

— Scott in Ottawa (2007-08-21) @CBC

[Perhaps it's because Anarchists are the first to admit that Anarchy doesn't work.]


Let's face it, the violence of the protesters is pure frustration at the public rejection of their bankrupt ideology.

Their inability to get even one like-minded MP elected anywhere in this huge country is indicative of their miniscule numbers and public support. Even the NDP won't touch them with a ten foot pole.

Throwing rocks is the only way to get any press coverage. "Look at me, I'm Che Gueverra!"

Ah, the blissful ignorance of youth.....
— Mike in Hamilton (2007-08-21) @CBC


It is always dissapointing to see Canadians who squander their democratic rights and freedoms with pointless (and often destructive) bike rides and protests. You leave Canadians like me with a sour taste in my mouth and an unfortunate and contiunual reinforcement of my belief that Canadians are spoiled brats who continually underestimate the complexity of the world and the value of our relationship with the US (and Mexico).
— James in Ottawa (2007-08-20) @CBC


The protestors are mostly a collection of people who have re-labeled themselves as activists. In the past they were called malcontents. They usually are focused on a single issue, and rarely have any solutions to anything.

We protect their right to protest and speak their minds, but some of them have interpreted this as permission to incite violence, destroy property, and loot local business.

Gerry in Vancouver might ask himself if he would rather live under an elected dictatorship, or a dictatorship led by unelected "activists". Personally, I would go for the elected variety. At least I can get rid of them the next election.
— Doug in Surrey, B.C. (2007-08-20) @CBC


Lots of people make the mistake of thinking that Microsoft is a software company. That's wrong. Microsoft is an abuse company that uses software as a method of delivering abuse.
— Futurepower(R) (2007-08-18) @Slashdot


No I am not worried. These things happen all the time. The media has predicted 11 of the last 3 recessions.
— Chris in Alberta (2007-08-16) @CBC


On that basis, women marathon runners, who have been catching up with men since the 1920s, were predicted to overtake men in the 1990s, and presumably would be running beyond the speed of light if it were continued for long enough.
— Dr. Helena Cronin @BBC


IIRC American Indians, many African cultures, and even our old agricultural society were much respectful of the environment.

Bullshit. The American indians simply lacked the technology to have a significant impact on their environment until they got horses, at which point their population expanded and they routinely exhausted hunting grounds, and became far more mobile as a result. As for African cultures, the majority of the Sahara desert became so because of goats, which were protected from predators by humans.

The fact is, it's the industrialized world that first became concerned about the environment, because we're rich enough to have the luxury of considering issues beyond subsistence.
— jcr (2007-08-05) @Slashdot


Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence commeth evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him god?
— Epicurus (c. 341-271 B.C.)


I'm not misogynistic; I hate whiny bitches of both sexes!
— EraseEraseMe @Slashdot


I think it was Smithsonian that ran an article about the impact of cell phones in Africa and how it improved people's nutrition. It's long been too expensive to run phone lines all across Africa. However, once the mining companies starting throwing up cell towers, poor people got a hold of used cell phones on their own. Now they are lining up buyers for their crops in the field, instead of harvesting them, trotting them all the way to market, and then letting them rot in the hot sun.
— lawpoop @Slashdot


Depends on what your definition of poverty is. Try telling someone impoverished in India or China that most of the "poor" in America are in poverty. Yes, capitalism creates large wealth difference. There's no dirty secret there, that's pretty much the definition of capitalism. But as the rich get richer, they drag the poor up with them. That's why someone in the US who we call "poor" is still one of the most wealthy and privileged human beings in the history of the world.
— bogjobber @Slashdot


Why are Libertarians insane? Because they willfully disregard any evidence that their simplistic theories will not and do not work in the real world. The free market is not magic and infallible. It is a complex system of feedback loops that does not posses any sort of true homeostasis and therefore needs external management in order to maintain its state of freedom.
— spun @Slashdot


Judging from the media in recent months, the debate over global warming is now over. There has been a net warming of the earth over the last century and a half, and our greenhouse gas emissions are contributing at some level. Both of these statements are almost certainly true. What of it? Recently many people have said that the earth is facing a crisis requiring urgent action. This statement has nothing to do with science. There is no compelling evidence that the warming trend we've seen will amount to anything close to catastrophe. What most commentators—and many scientists—seem to miss is that the only thing we can say with certainly about climate is that it changes. The earth is always warming or cooling by as much as a few tenths of a degree a year; periods of constant average temperatures are rare. Looking back on the earth's climate history, it's apparent that there's no such thing as an optimal temperature—a climate at which everything is just right. The current alarm rests on the false assumption not only that we live in a perfect world, temperaturewise, but also that our warming forecasts for the year 2040 are somehow more reliable than the weatherman's forecast for next week.
— Dr. Richard S. Lindzen, Newsweek @msnbc


If you get to be thirty-five and your job still involves wearing a name tag, you've probably made a serious vocational error.
— Dennis Miller


First God made idiots. That was for practice. Then He made school boards.
— Mark Twain


But there's no denying Nader's impact. He invented consumer watchdoggedness and helped wake up a dozing press so that it could become what it is today: a force for general hostility against everything.
— Kyle Smith (2007-01-31) @NYPost

[Also includes a more fun quote: “Those who think Moore stands for something will be disgusted to see him reversing course in 2004 with a cry that voting for Nader is ‘Five minutes of feeling good [but] you gotta pay for it the rest of your life.’ So: Moore actually voted for his conscience before he was against it.”]


You failed to do my job for me by protecting my child from his/her own stupidity. Now you must make me rich.
— Anonymous Coward @Slashdot


In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is usually crucified.
— El Torico


This is the concentration camp and crematorium at Auschwitz. This is where people were turned into numbers. Into this pond were flushed the ashes of some four million people. And that was not done by gas. It was done by arrogance, it was done by dogma, it was done by ignorance. When people believe that they have absolute knowledge, with no test in reality, this is how they behave. This is what men do when they aspire to the knowledge of gods.
— Jacob Bronowski, The Ascent Of Man


Some ideas are so stupid, only intellectuals would believe them.
— George Orwell


Atheism is a religion like not collecting stamps is a hobby.
— (unknown)


"My hands were shaking after reading this letter," said Kofi Anan. "I mean, this is a REALLY harsh letter. I think North Korea will disarm by the end of the year. My only concern is that it is too strong. We only want North Korea to disarm. This letter might cause them to surrender their entire country to France. The letter is really that strongly worded. I'm shaking even now just thinking about it."
— Jerhad!com (2006-10-13) @Jerhad!com

[Halt or I shall say "Halt" again!]


It's not the lack of resources. It's the Stalinist tyranny and socialist economic system. Only children, simpletons, and power-hungry ideologues believe in socialism any more. It is the ideology of the ant hill and the nursery school playground, unworthy of free men. It takes no more intellectual sophistication to believe in collectivism than to believe in Santa Claus, for the same reason and to the same effect. Collectivism has caused more human misery than any other idea of the human mind. With every vote I cast and every dollar I give to politicians, I am guided by my desire to see it crushed and swept off the face of the earth.
— ccmay (2006-10-23) @Slashdot

[Communism is the longest and most painful path between Democracy and Democracy.]


FUCK A PAPER TRAIL. We need PAPER ELECTIONS. Just that simple. Can paper elections be rigged? Of course they can. Can they be rigged as easily, as invisibly, as completely as digital elections? Hell no. What's mind boggling is that there's even a debate here. Get rid of digital voting machines. Hell, get rid of ANALOG voting machines. Piece of paper, ink pen, padlocked metal box. That's how sane people run elections. The notion of there being anything worth debating here is nothing but complete bullshit.
— Anonymous Coward (2006-10-21) @Slashdot

[As a Doctor of Computer Science, I completely agree. All elections are done on paper in Canada. And counting, even by hand, is a fully parallelizable task.]


Five years after the September 11 attacks, President Bush told the nation in his televised address, “If we do not defeat these enemies now, we will leave our children to face a Middle East overrun by terrorist states and radical dictators armed with nuclear weapons.” Whether right or wrong, President Bush did not tell us how we will defeat these unspecified and unnamed enemies, nor when.

In response to the president's address, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid said, “The American people deserved better last night. They deserved a chance to reclaim that sense of unity, purpose and patriotism that swept through our country five years ago.”
— Lou Dobbs (2006-09-13) @CNN

[Bush happens to be telling the truth here. Reid's criticism is that Bush's comments were a downer rather than feel-good back-patting fest and that Reid'd rather not think about such things.]


Early adopters aren't stupid

Oh, sure we're an impulsive crowd, but most are educated and realize when we've been snookered before.

Did nobody in either camp stop and look at how they had royally screwed every early adopter of HDTV? The promise of content that never occured. The delayed, and delayed, and delayed rollout of OTA. The jumble of formats that caused event the best CE to falter under the load of options. The incompatibilities between components. The ubiquitous component interface that every early adopter had on their display sets which are now utterly obsolete due to the need for “content protection”—a perfectly good $7000 50RP set which may be relegated to 480p at the whim of the broadcaster. The promise of 20Mb HD that got chopped into subchannels to rerun Andy Griffith and the Golden Girls in SD simultaneously, at the expense of HD. The iron fist approach to preventing transferring DVDs to Media Servers.

No, the industry has drawn a line, and the early adopters are on the other side. We're the ones who are most adversely affected by the content protection and market jockying. Don't come to me with your hand out for your improved shovel right after you run over my dog. The industry has, through their anti-piracy efforts, significantly alienated a large portion of their first-run consumers. They've managed to eliminate the initial cash infusion that covers the R&D part of the CE process, and now they're stuck with trying to add enough volume to get every household to buy the product just to cover the engineering costs.

The early adopters want to buy this stuff, but we want to play with our new toys, not see how somebody else want us to play with them. Give us back our control, and we'll open our wallets. 'Til then, go fuck yourselves.
— Overzeetop (2006-09-01) @Slashdot

[HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray. Perhaps the manufacturers have already fucked themselves.]


I've been holding my nose and voting democrat for a long time now merely because I think tax and spend is better than borrow and spend.
— soft_guy (2006-08-24) @Slashdot


This is a statement of such historical ignorance it is utterly astonishing. If pacifists had had their way, Hitler would have had a damn site more than "a small corner of the world". British fighting spirit was not enough alone to keep the Nazi's out of UK. It took American armnaments - a steady stream of them starting well before the US entered the war. I hardly think that it's any more pacifist to send boatloads of tanks and ammunition to Britain than it is to send an armored division, do you? So if pacifism had ruled the day, there would have been no arms to Britain and the island would have fallen.

With Britain out of the picture and America still pacifist there's no Western front. The Soviet army managed to stop the German onslaught by a whisker. Given the complete attention of the Germany army, not to mention the finest German commanders like Rommel who would no longer be dueling the Brits in North Africa, the USSR would have fallen.

Is this your idea of a "small corner of the world"? At this point Germany would have contolled everything form the UK to China to S. Africa. And then why stop there? Why not invade S. America next? It's full of resources, isn't it? What's to stop them? The only thing to stop them would have been Japan, also seeking to expand it's empire. And guess what - that means more violence.
— theStorminMormon (2006-08-15) @Slashdot


Within a framework of civil decency, non-violent protests work. But if the British had really wanted to use violence Ghandi would have been dead with all his followers. His non-violent protests worked in large part because it appealed to the better nature of his fellow and Indians and also the British. Civil disobedience and other forms of non-violent resistance require framework and leverage that simply does not always exist, and in the end they put you in the mercy of the person you're trying to resist. If that person really wants you dead, then these tactics will fail miserably.
— theStorminMormon (2006-08-15) @Slashdot


Karl Marx is to philosophy what Reverend Jim Jones is to religion.
— (unknown)


I find this board confusing. A bunch of people with nothing really at stake cannot have a calm and productive conversation about an issue that obviously cannot be boiled down to a simple "right vs. wrong" dichotomy. Yet we all howl for the parties involved—with all to much at stake—to have the same dispassionate, productive conversation that eludes us! The way we are carrying on, no wonder there is such bloodshed. Only the removal afforded by computers prevents it here!
— Ibrahim P., New York City (2006-08-07) @BBC


I always wonder this. I mean, I belive there is a [God], but I don't know for sure. I guess it's just what you want to believe. Beliveving in the Lord has given me faith many times, and I feel like he has helped me when I need it most. I know it could be my imagination, but it makes me feel better to believe it. So I believe it.
— xbabibluangelx (2006-08-02) @IMDB

[This person sums up the religious position of probably a lot of people. I wish *I* had the power to choose what I believe. That would be extremely convenient! Maybe this is the layman's superpower.]


Just imagine that the Mexicans lobbed missile after missile into Texas and California. Would we just say, well, they are poor and oppressed people? No, we would take the actions necessary to protect our citizens. Consider the troubles in the UK, did the UK accept the IRA position, or actively try to hunt them down and bring them to justice?
— Jack (2006-07-14) @BBC

[My canonical example would be Cuba, considering that it is tiny, weak, hostile, and perhaps crazy enough to try such a thing, considering that Castro realizes he is not going to live forever and has been ratcheting up his rhetoric lately. But, you still get a taste of the hypocrisy of American pacifists. “Other first-world democracies should absorb attack after attack from terrorists, but when anyone tries that to us, WE KICK THEIR ASSES!”

The real reason that the Israeli-Arab conflict has lasted so long is that the US has always restrained Israel from conquering its enemies. And it will again, because some dangerously naive people have the bizarre fantasy in their heads that there can be a negotiated peace with radical terrorists. If we really believe such things, then we should let all of our own psychotic serial killers back out onto the streets after they agree not to kill any more people. And let them back out again and again when they do.]


If I had wanted a lowest-common-denominator, unionized job, I would have gone to trade school, become a machinist, and made auto parts for a living. Oh wait — all those companies, that whole freaking industry is going out of business in this country, because of the way the Unions have driven the cost of production through the roof. I hope they've had a good run, because they've collective-bargained themselves out of a job.
— Kadin2048 (2006-05-11) @Slashdot

[If I can't do my job better than anyone else available in the world, then I don't deserve it.]


I know when I am annoyed by something I'm more likely to resist. For example, whenever I meet militant PETA people I really want to go kill baby bunnies, skin them, and wear their bloody firs as a coat... and I'm vegetarian!
— goofyheadedpunk @Slashdot


Remember, anyone can juggle for a second.
— John Alejandro King @covertcomic


It's dangerous to be right when the government is wrong. Or at least it would be, if the government was ever wrong.
— John Alejandro King @covertcomic


If it's native tribes conducting the [harp seal] cull, then it's a wonderful example of multicultural diversity. If white men do it then they are evil bullies compensating for inadequacies elsewhere in their lives. If white women do it then they are sassy and independent and to be admired. I think that covers it.
— Mike Davies, Bury, UK (2006-03-23) @BBC


The California Condor is on the verge of extinction. It is also very ugly. No one cares.
— [Mysturji], Basingstoke, UK (2006-03-23) @BBC

[OTOH, those baby seals are soooo cute.]


Anthropic principle: We see the universe the way it is because if it were different we would not be here to see it.
— proverb


Computer Science is the bastard child of Electrical Engineering and Mathematics.
— Albert Wong? @UBC


> Are you serious or is the site just satire?
Nothing is just satire.
intellectualwhores.com


Angela Dodson: I guess God has a plan for all of us.
John Constantine: God's a kid with an ant farm, lady. He's not planning anything.
— Constantine (2005)


They say love should be unconditional. That's...stupid. Love is too precious to be unconditional.
— Jason MacIsaac (2002), Nice Guys Finish Last


Generally, file systems are not considered “sexy.” When a young programmer wants to do something really cool, his or her first thought is generally not “Dude, two words... file system.” However, I am what is politely termed “different.”
— Narayan Newton (2006-01-25), Mad Pengiun

[Even nerds have nerds.]


I'm convinced that the universe has been created by someone with a particularly vile sense of humor. I would like to propose a theory of “intelligent malicious asshole design.”
— Antares


Actually, Microsoft has a lot of commercial interest in the Win32-platform (Windows-licenses, MSDN-subscriptions, courses, etc.) which is of course endangered by the Web.

That is why they wanted to establish their own network (MSN) with their own proprietary protocols and their own proprietary formats. They failed miserably and now MSN is just a normal ISP and uses Unix protocols and formats like anybody else. Microsoft did not “win” the Browser war; the whole Internet Explorer thing was damage control. After Netscape was dead, Microsoft was stuck with something they didn't really want. (An IE that was dominating but was running with open protocols and formats.) The better IE is, the more attractive the web becomes in comparison to Win32. So of course they let it rot, making IE better would have been counterproductive.

After Firefox started to destroy domination by becoming so big that it can no longer be ignored (over 10% and rising is too much to ignore, even if it's still a minority) therefore Microsoft fell back to damage control mode.
— RoLi (2005-11-29) @Slashdot


It's one thing to say that a flu pandemic is inevitable. But then, so are earthquakes, volcano eruptions, giant asteroids, and the heat death of the universe....
— Tim (2005-11-13) @Slashdot


The children now love luxury; they have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. Children are now tyrants, not the servants of their households. They no longer rise when elders enter the room. They contradict their parents, chatter before company, gobble up dainties at the table, cross their legs, and tyrannize their teachers.
— Socrates (470 BC–399 BC)


I knew I'd hate COBOL the moment I saw they'd used ‘perform’ instead of ‘do’.
— attributed to Larry Wall


Organizations almost always try to skip steps in this process. It's very tempting to do. They think to themselves, “No one would buy version 1—it's too basic. Let's throw in at least a few version 3 features, and maybe a version 4 feature. That will make our product sexy enough to sell.” But if you can't find anyone who needs version 1 of your product—desperately—you've built the wrong product, and no amount of polish or number of added features will change that.
— Charlie Wood @Moonwatcher (2005-08-17)


What has gone wrong? Microsoft, with $40 billion in sales and 60,000 employees, has grown musclebound and bureaucratic. Some current and former employees describe a stultifying world of 14-hour strategy sessions, endless business reviews and a preoccupation with PowerPoint slides; of laborious job evaluations, hundreds of e-mails a day and infighting among divisions so fierce that it hobbles design and delays product releases. In short, they describe precisely the behavior that humbled another tech giant: IBM in the late 1980s. Tellingly, IBM reached a point of crisis just over three decades after it started selling computers to commercial users.
— Victoria Murphy @Forbes (2005-09-13)


Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.
— AC @Slashdot (2005-09)


Perhaps we shouldn't rebuild on the lands that keep getting destroyed... I hear that's what they did in the days before governmental disaster relief.
— slughead @Slashdot (2005-09)


Given enough time and money, eventually Microsoft will re-invent Unix.
— (unknown)

[Or: "Windows is the longest and most painful path between Unix and Unix.]


The purpose of the office of the president is not to wield power, but to draw attention away from it.
— Douglas Adams


Just because your idea of Philosophy is something to talk about while you're smoking pot, doesn't mean that's all there is to it.
— SatanicPuppy @Slashdot


Technically, things may be going fantastically. It doesn't matter. The whole mission is about "Don't screw up! Don't screw up!" and every future mission will be "Don't screw up! Don't screw up!" until inevitably something does get screwed up. Every flight will consist of going into space to do the equivalent of refinishing a bathroom floor.

If NASA starts something new and ambitious with a clear, exciting goal — the media and public will be able to accept risk the way they did with Mercury, Apollo and the early shuttle program. But sending people into space purely for the goal of not killing them? It's a dead end.
— Otter @Slashdot

[The USA is no longer in the manned space-exploration business. Man's only hope for getting off this rock lies with China now.]


The IRA has shown itself to be completely untrustworthy in the past, and any declaration that it now makes needs to be viewed with scepticism.

Prior avowals of giving up violence as its method to achieve its aim have proven to be meaningless, with further murders occuring in less than a week of its declaration.

Gerry Adams of the Sinn Fein has long denied any ongoing membership in the IRA's directorate, yet one now reads that he has agreed to step down from the council that has been the command of the IRA.

A most wily politician, adept at double-talk that seldom ever clearly answers the questions asked, his obvious charisma and powers of persuasion have fooled the Americans and stymied the British for far too long. Previous promises to decommision arms have not come to fruition, with his declaring that such would be conducted in secret, with no accountability or outside witness to the fact.

He has claimed that his political party is a seperate entity to the IRA, does not control the army or shape and direct its future actions, but merely acts in an advisory capacity for the good of all Irish people in the quest to unite Ireland - against the will of the Ulster people - come what may.

It is surely obvious that the political wing and the armed wing are joined at the hip, are the two parts of the whole - an entity that has killed over 3000 people, the majority of whom were the native Irish themselves. The present iteration of downing arms and ending murders makes for good copy, but in reality who can trust the words of such a man, when viewed in his historical perspective?
— Jeremy Fuller @CBC

[Don't worry—the IRA are the *good* terrorists, the *cuddly* mass murderers.]


We no longer stand on the shoulers of giants because we are crippled by midgets.
— Black Art @Slashdot

[Mr. Art sees the innovation processing being hobbled by patents and the first-to-file race. “There is a large amount of huberis involved with the patent process that says 'no one is as smart as me, so anyone who has a similar idea to mine must be stealing it'. The problem is that when you have large numbers of people working on the same problems, you are going to encounter the same solutions over and over again.”]


Wow, I'm being shot at from both sides. That means I *must* be right. :-)
— Larry Wall in <199710211959.MAA18990@wall.org>


/* And you'll never guess what the dog had */
/* in its mouth... */

— Larry Wall in stab.c from the perl source code


I am sick with this. What eBay are doing is profiteering on the backs of the impoverished. The people who are selling it are wretches. But far worse is the corporate culture which capitalizes on people's misery.
— Bob Geldof, on people selling charity Live-8 concert tickets on eBay (2005-06-14) @BBC

[Don't look now, Bob, but you're guilty of exactly the same thing. Funny how much riding room there is on the backs of the impoverished.]


Once again, the hungry, terrorised, children of Africa are pooling their efforts to help others. They will, once more, perform on our TV screens to help rescue the sagging reputations of that needy and deprived group of balding, clapped-out rock stars who still long for the crowds that once listened to them.
— Peter Hitchens in the Mail on Sunday (2005-06-12), commenting on Bob Geldof's Live-8 concerts


There's really very little difference between radical environmentalists and religious fundamentalists. Both want to control what everyone else does and thinks based on their own unreasonable and unprovable beliefs. “The end of the world is nigh” indeed.
— PaxTech @ Slashdot (2005-06-10)


This is how liberty dies—with thunderous applause.
— Senator Padmé Naberrie Amidala Skywalker, Revenge of the Sith

[I think George could have made his Dubya dig better by having Padmé start with “So this is how democracy dies—”. “Liberty” is too abstract a concept.]


Did you hear about the special edition of Raiders Of The Lost Ark? The guy with the scimitar shoots first.
— nomadic


Fox exec Andy Setos told me that we were there to create “a polite marketplace” where no one would be allowed to disrupt his [digital television] business model without getting his permission and cooperation first (*cough* planned economy *cough* commies *cough*).
— Cory Doctorow on BoingBoing


We are all self-made, but only the rich will admit it.
— (unknown)


The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly... it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over.
— Joseph Goebbels - Nazi Minister of Propaganda


People tend to overestimate change in the short term and underestimate it in the long term.
— Robert X. Cringely (1997-06-12), apparently quoting “Amara's Law”


Does the UN need an overhaul? Somebody has a sense of humour. It needs scrapping. It serves no useful purpose and has failed at nearly every opportunity when it could have done something. As it stands it is a very expensive ‘talking shop’ and a stage for tin-pot dictators and genocidal regimes to ‘strut their stuff’.
— John, France (2005-03-21)


“People are nervously asking themselves a question: Could [President Bush] possibly have been right? The short answer is yes,” wrote Fareed Zakaria, author of The Future of Freedom, in Newsweek magazine.

“Bush never accepted the view that Islamic terrorism had its roots in religion or culture or the Arab-Israeli conflict.

“Instead he veered toward the analysis that the region was breeding terror because it had developed deep dysfunctions caused by decades of repression and an almost total lack of political, economic and social modernization,” Mr Zakaria wrote.
BBC article (2005-03-08)


Monogamy: Belief so strong that millions of people end perfectly good relationships in order to start another.
— (unknown)


I wonder.... Can Darl McBride drink a glass of water while Maureen O'Gara speaks?
roadfrisbee @ Groklaw.net (2005-02-23)

[Or, insert your favorite corporate con-artist/sycophant “jouralist” pair.]


Its easy to understand why the cat has eclipsed the dog as modern America's favorite pet. People like pets to possess the same qualities they do. Cats are irresponsible and recognize no authority, yet are completely dependent on others for their material needs. Cats cannot be made to do anything useful. Cats are mean for the fun of it.
— P.J. O'Rourke


Now, now my good man, this is no time for making enemies.
— Voltaire (1694-1778), on his deathbed in response to a priest asking that he renounce Satan.


If God didn't exist, it would be necessary to invent him.
— Voltaire


Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices.
— Voltaire(?)

(*cough* priests *cough*!)


It is the final proof of God's omnipotence that he need not exist in order to save us.
— Peter De Vries

[And here I, as a mathematician, always believed that zero times infinity equals zero.]


It only takes 20 years for a liberal to become a conservative without changing a single idea.
— Robert Anton Wilson


Just goes to show that a great company with a great reputation, skilled professionals, and a solid product line are no match for really bad management.
— rip (2005-02-09), referring to CEO Carly Fiorina stepping down from HP


The whole religious complexion of the modern world is due to the absence from Jerusalem of a lunatic asylum.
— Havelock Ellis, 1914


Let every nation know whether it wishes us well, or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.
— President John F. Kennedy

[A lefty who understood that totalitarian dictatorships are bad news.]


In Pierre Trudeau, Canada has finally produced a Prime Minister worthy of assassination.
— John Diefenbaker


Religion is a by-product of fear. For much of human history, it may have been a necessary evil, but why was it more evil than necessary? Isn't killing people in the name of God a pretty good definition of insanity?
— Arthur C. Clarke


Suppose we've chosen the wrong god. Every time we go to church we're just making him madder and madder.
-- Homer Simpson


Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.
-- Voltaire


Yet, through it all, Sun was still partying like it was 1999. We all know that Sun's executives got the memo about many of its customers not wanting to buy servers that cost more than most luxury cars that are no faster and no more reliable than a typical Dell server. [...]

Sun doesn't have the mindshare of the next generation of unix/linux gurus, those who learned on linux on their home PC, not in some computer room on a donated sparcstation. And when you go from linux to Solaris, you're in for a rude awakening. The default userland of Solaris is still stuck in the early 80s for the most part, thanks to an adherence to backwards compatibility that borders on fanaticism.
-- tots (2004-09-30) "Setting Sun"

[Tell it like it is, brother! Amen.]


"... Because of the value that comes from the ambiguity of what the U.S. may do to an adversary if the acts we seek to deter are carried out, it hurts to portray ourselves as too fully rational and cool-headed ..." "The fact that some elements (of the U.S. government) may appear to be potentially 'out of control' can be beneficial to creating and reinforcing fears and doubts within the minds of an adversary's decision makers ..." "That the U.S. may become irrational and vindictive if its vital interests are attacked should be a part of the national persona we project to all adversaries."
-- A CNN Report on a 1995 study "Essentials of Post-Cold War Deterrence" by the USA Defense Department's Strategic Command


Oxymoron of the Day: 'Democratic Imperialism'.
-- unknown

[We shall bludgeon them with freedom, maim them with rights, and strangle them with prosperity. The streets shall flow with rivers of self-determination!]


If most financial analysts watched a puppy growing for the first month of its life, they would conclude that a year later it will be 400-foot-tall monster trashing downtown Tokyo.
-- unknown


Right now, I'm devoting a great deal of time and study to that problem. And I intend to issue a position paper on that. A position that is at once simple, yet complex; firm, yet flexible; and above all, fair to every American.
-- Les Nessman, WKRP in Cincinnati

[Also, Senator Kerry's answer to most difficult questions (2004-10-22).]


When you're young, you look at television and think: There's a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that's not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want. That's a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want. It's the truth.
-- Steve Jobs


A nation that coins the phrase "road rage" and watches reality TV shouldn't be surprised when its elected officials are less than civil.
-- CNN (2004-10-15)


In 1972, Peter Gzowski, then summer host of This Country in the Morning, held a contest to complete (in the manner of "As American as apple pie") the saying "As Canadian as...". Heather Scott, a seventeen-year-old summer music school student at the time, heard of the contest, and immediately came up with the phrase that has since become so famous. "As Canadian as... possible under the circumstances."
-- R. W. Scott, Heather's father (2004-05-18)


Fascists divide in two categories: the fascists and the anti-fascists.
-- Ennio Flaiano


The prospect of technological leverage will of course raise the specter of unemployment. I'm surprised people still worry about this. After centuries of supposedly job-killing innovations, the number of jobs is within ten percent of the number of people who want them. This can't be a coincidence.
-- Paul Graham (2004-09), What The Bubble Got Right

[If the doom-sayers were right, there would only be ten jobs in the world today.]


So when the announcement was made at a press conference in the UK that Newham, a borough of London, had just decided not to go open source after all and instead to sign on with Microsoft because their software was cheaper than open source and more secure, the room spontaneously burst out laughing.
-- Pamela Jones, Groklaw (2004-08-17)

[Tee-hee-hee. It's a sure sign that something is well-known when even journalists get it.]


The anti-globalization crowd is about the most hypocritical bunch of people without any clue about what they're talking ever (mostly liberal arts crowd without even the most basic understanding of economics and usually no need to have it anyhow cause their parents will pay for their life one way or another) I can think of. They'll hold global meetings claiming that other people who do the same have no right to do so (I'm not even going into discussing just how good PR it is to blow up cars and McDonald's stores). It's also most interesting that the people affected the most by globalization (low class, factory workers and the like) aren't nearly as vocal about it as the people who BENEFIT of it.

The only (provable, BTW) way to get the 3rd world up to speed (aside of pumping trillions of dollars down there which in the end would be spent on weapons or trickle into some corrupt leaders pocket anyhow) would be to drop all protectionist duty on agricultural goods, essentially kicking *up* globalization a few notches, not trying to slow it down. But seeing that this would drive European and American farmers out of business (which wouldn't be the worst of all things either considering just how much the US and EU spend on them each year), this isn't gonna happen anytime soon.
-- "None" (2003-11-15)

[Mr. Nail Head, meet Mr. Hammer.]


Do unto others as they do unto you.
-- unknown


Never forget that the primary purpose of the news media is to sell advertising.
-- unknown


The majority of pacifists either belong to obscure religious sects or are simply humanitarians who object to taking life and prefer not to follow their thoughts beyond that point. But there is a minority of intellectual pacifists, whose real though unacknowledged motive appears to be hatred of western democracy and admiration for totalitarianism. Pacifist propaganda usually boils down to saying that one side is as bad as the other, but if one looks closely at the writing of the younger intellectual pacifists, one finds that they do not by any means express impartial disapproval but are directed almost entirely against Britain and the United States ...
-- George Orwell, Orwell's Notes on Nationalism (May 1945)

[Some things never change. The usual lefty-looney game is to treat the United States, the Taliban, Saddam Hussein, Kim Jong-Il, George Bush, etc. as being completely morally equivalent. They are all equally as bad. Kicking a terrorist's copy of the Koran is morally equivalent to cutting a journalist's head off. If you truly believe this, then you need to take a step back and ask yourself, "When did I lose my marbles?".]


Those who beat their swords into plowshares will plow for those who don't.
-- unknown


Did you ever notice that when Microsoft is talking about how open source will destroy the software industry, it says you can't make money off of something that is free, but when Microsoft is trying to persuade enterprises to not adopt open souce, it says it is not free and emphasizes how much you have to pay some company to support it?
-- codeboy @ Linux Today (2004-06-24)

[The major technical challenge with being a pathological liar is keeping all of your lies straight.]


The telephone is a technological device that is, in the context of wooing women, only to be used to set up your next date. You should only spend five minutes max on that sucker and then get the hell off the line. Yes, guys, beware. Talking on the phone is dangerous. It's like juggling with nitro. One slip and the next thing you know, things are blowing up in your face. Never have an extended chat-fest on the phone with a girl you are courting. Or as my Cousin, Sal 'The Fish' Love would say, "The less she knows about you, the more she'll want you."
-- Doc Love, Translating Womanese Into English

[If a woman says to you, "I really enjoy talking to you and I am having fun getting to know you more, and I want to continue to get to know you more, but I want to take it slow and take my time. Do you understand what I am telling you?", the correct response is "So, what's his name?".]


Alexis de Tocqueville observed that it is easier for the world to accept a simple lie than a complex truth.
-- Peter H. Salus, Unix historian

[Microsoft vs. IBM]


Naturally the common people don't want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to a greater danger. It works the same in any country.
-- Hermann Goering @ the Nuremberg Trials (1945)

[Though I have to question the relative ease with different types of government.]


"I was reffereing to the fact that Paul Allen and Bill Gates started Microsoft porting Basic interpreters from a "borrowed" open source base."

Why stop at that? Where Micro-Soft's original corporate home was is very intresting. The Sundowner Motel in Albuquerque. The Sundowner was a seedy little Motel that was widely used by drug dealers and Hookers for their business.

Microsoft was born in a Whore House! Dosen't that explain their Business ethics?
-- thales @ Slashdot (2004-05-17)


The first rule of PATRIOT act is, you do not talk about PATRIOT act.
-- metachor @ Slashdot (2004-05-13)


Despite what sheltered individuals such as yourself may believe, the military isn't fundamentally about killing people. The machinery and act of killing people is incidental, and subordinate to its primary aim as a tool by which to absolutely impose by a collective act of will an outcome on people who don't want to accept negotiation or rational argument.

Killing is often necessery, and the tools and preparations and training for killing form a big part of military training. Sometimes killing happens inadvertently due to supidity, or carelessness or racism, or maybe because some private has been at that .50 cal awake for 3 days, under a degree of stress that someone from a pampered and priviliged existance has trouble comprehending.

Members of the military are merely a broad spectrum from the society they are drawn from, and there are many very clever, intelligent, funny, caring human beings in most militaries, all the way through to people who really are at the shallow end of the gene pool, are ethically and morally deficient, and easily suggestible. At the end of the day, regardless of their background, abilities, or motivation for joining, these people have given up some of their freedom and human rights, and an unlimited liability to their society, so people like you have the right to call them sick fucks, and sleep in a warm bed safe at night.

To the survivors of some of the places I and some of my fellow soldiers have been deployed to, when option a) was continuing to be collectively abused and repressed by violent thugs, and option b) was for soldiers to drive them away, clear the roads of landmines, and allow the NGOs to start rebuilding their country, the benefits were far more direct and tangible than inventing a cure for cancer.

The military is nothing but a tool for a government to use, and if you don't like how your government uses your military, and you have the luxury of living in some form of democracy, take a good hard look at yourself, and the government you elected.

Although there are pertubations, democratic countries generally get the quality of government they ask for.
-- AC @ Slashdot, non-US soldier for 16 years (2004-05-09)


If some one sees "High School Graduate" on a resume, how are they to know if they got "passed along" or if they are a mensa type? High school diplomas have degraded to certificates of attendance.
-- Fortress @ Slashdot (2004-05-01)
If there really is a creator, how could anyone think that such a superior being would have anything to do with all of the hate and ignorance in the bible?
-- Bruce Perens @ Slashdot (2004-04-27)
[Some people might think that I'm not an environmentalist], but I don't have time to worry about the Earth right now because I'm too busy worrying about the world.
-- Dennis Miller (2004-04-27)
Sun is irrelevant. Java is has always been a solution in search of a problem. There are better solutions, and Java is not selling big servers like Sun had hoped. Sun should go back to their roots. They became a powerhouse by selling BSD Unix running on Motorola CPUs. They are now spending billions developing SPARC and Slowaris, while DELL eats them alive.
-- Tim Dion (2004-04-20)
I think this is the first recorded instance of the ship leaving the sinking rats.
-- Albanach (2004-04-16)
[Commenting on BayStar pulling its $20M out of SCO. The only question is how Microsoft will continue to fund the SCO crusade against Linux. Or maybe this action is the result of Microsoft realizing that SCO's pathetically weak case was doing more harm than good and finally pulling the plug.]

Why should I care what an actor says about anything other than acting?
-- Brandybuck (2004?)

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the road less traveled by and they CANCELLED MY FRIKKIN' SHOW. I totally shoulda took the road that had all those people on it. Damn.
-- Joss Whedon (on Angel's cancellation)

How is prostitution all that different than what most people would call a date? I mean, to get some on a date you gotta buy drinks, dinner, movie, flowers, etc... whereas with a prostitute you just give her the money and she can buy herself dinner, drinks, flowers, etc... Either way it costs you X dollars to get laid. I guess society just approves of the barter system when it comes to sexual relations.
-- 1029 (2004-02-13)
[Actually, I tend to think that prostitutes prefer to use the money to buy Crack.]

look; gawk; talk; date; wine; unzip; strip; touch; finger; head; mount; fsck; more; yes; spray; umount; sleep; leave
-- unknown
[These are all Unix commands.]

It's free. It works. Duh!
-- Paul Nelson (2004), Riverdale High School (Oregon), describing the rationale for using Linux in the classroom.

Besides, it's a myth that timekeeping is what analog watches are for. They are worn as jewelry for men. It's a vain, metrosexual affectation to wear a gold watch. There's your real reason.
-- Golias (2004-02-04)

Really, I'm not out to destroy Microsoft. That will just be a completely unintentional side effect.
-- Linus Torvalds (2003-09-28)

There's a traditional definition of a shyster: a lawyer who, when the law is against him, pounds on the facts; when the facts are against him, pounds on the law; and when both the facts and the law are against him, pounds on the table.
-- Eben Moglen (2003-11-24)

Thanks, Gartner. That's the kind of hard-hitting, insightful business advice we need in this management-by-Ziff-Davis world. Maybe next month they can do a helpful piece on not paying a parking ticket until you've been issued one, and then only if it was issued by a real Dept. of Traffic officer, and not some homeless guy who wrote the citation on a napkin.
-- BigRedFish (2003-11-20) Gartner says that maybe you should avoid being defrauded by SCO.

As for not representing the millions of people out protesting -- the whims of the masses are easily swayed, and we elect leaders to do the right thing, even if it's unpopular. If the people ultimately decide that the leader was wrong, then they are replaced next elections. Thus, the long term interests of the people are protected, but the short-term mass foolishness is neutered.
-- dfenstrate (2003-02-27)

Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. The ability to Slashdot a web site is insignificant next to the power of the Google Cache.
-- unknown

But it is not necessarily wise to write off the skinny kid with the sling quite yet.
-- Michael Y. Park (2003-10-01), commenting on OpenOffice vs. Microsoft Office

CCITT: Crazy Committee Interested in Travel & Talk

One of the items that often gets ignored in Microsoft's thinking is this: They were a small company with many competitors and Operating Systems were many and varied and had their niche; MS has changed the world by the proliferation of its operating system(s) and made it part of the INFRASTRUCTURE on which society relies. Once you control the infrastructure, you can't behave like MS currently is behaving - or the people and Governments will look for alternatives. They changed the world, but unfortunately, they can't change themselves and herein lies the biggest of their problems.
-- Anonymous Coward (2003-09-13)

Pet Peeve #843287: SUV drivers that whine about the price of gas. You bought that overpriced penis extension--learn to live with the consequences.
-- grub (11606)

I never realised before... GARTNER backwards is RENTRAG. Couldn't have put it better myself.
-- Ulysses Poubelle (2003-09-11)

Both, TLS/1.0 is based on X.509 certificates which are painfully obscure and badly designed. ASN.1 is not for the faint-of-heart, and the whole 'ou', 'cn', 'dn' thing makes no sense to people who work in organizations of less than 500 people, doesn't fit the rest of the Internet, and was obviously designed by committee of technical bureaucrats.
-- Eric M. Hopper

A triumph of bloated theory over clean implementation.
-- Huw Rogers describing the Basic Encoding Rules of ASN.1

The UN gains its legitimacy from the legitimacy of its constituent states; they do not gain their legitimacy from the UN.
-- Bernard Jones (2003-08-15)

I just saw the first political spin on this mess. Bill Richardson, the Former Energy Secretary, was on CNN saying we have a "third world power grid". What he didn't say and the CNN sycophant wouldn't bring up is that while he was in office the Clinton administration turned down every request to build new or upgrade existing power stations. The theory of the grid is that when one part of the grid needs power it can be shunted from areas with excess capacity. Just as in California (who also refused to build new capacity) THERE IS NO EXCESS CAPACITY! When one part is at capacity, they all are. Quite frankly, we're a living in a tech world now. We need the power. Until we stop politically cowtowing to "eco-nuts", "consumer advocates", and other neo-luddites this is going to keep happening.
-- digrieze (2003-08-14)

Do not try to think outside the box. That's impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There is no box.
-- unknown

Complaining that [Linux] doesn't work well with Windows is like ... oh, say, evaluating an early automobile and complaining that there's no place to hitch up a horse.
-- Daniel Dvorkin (2003-07-28)

I think it is very fair to say that the Internet would not be where it is in the United States without the strong support given it and related research areas by the vice president [Al Gore] in his current role and in his earlier role as senator.
--Vinton Cerf (Internet pioneer, TCP/IP co-designer), quoted by John Schwartz, The Washington Post, 1999-03-21
[The Republican party invented the lie that Gore claimed to have invented the Internet and the media were overjoyed to fan the flames. Gore appears to have coined the term "Information Superhighway" to emphasize not its technical architecture but the way that government should approach funding and developing it.]

Now I will tell you the answer to my question. It is this. The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from all the oligarchies of the past, in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just round the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?
-- Orwell's 1984, also Dept. of Homeland Security's mission statement

Where I work, there are several developers that are worried about their VB, Visual C++ Knowledge not being able to transfer well to GNU/Linux. They fail to see the fact that Microsoft is the one that made it to where their knowledge was Microsoft centric. They have each come to the conclusion that it is Linux developers fault for not having programming IDE's that meet the needs of "Today's IT Staff".
-- Scott Carr

You still don't get it. It's not about right. Not about wrong. It's about power.
-- BTVS

"The good news is that the world economy is not in recession. The bad news is that no one realises it."
-- Stephane Garelli, International Institute for Management Development

The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the guy who can't run fast.
-- Francis, _Malcolm In The Middle_

When all else fails, there's always delusion.
-- Conan O'Brien

The industry looks and sounds more like a police force than a cultural force.
-- Peter Goddard, The Toronto Star (2003-04-19) [describing the music industry]

How soon we forget! There can be no doubt that the USA saved the free world in WW2 and preserved it by winning the cold war thereafter - both at great cost to itself. We are bound to make mistakes in preserving our way of life, but pandering to a creed that will always implacably hate us should not include allowing them to acquire deadly weapons that they would use against us without a moment's thought.
-- Andrew Day, London, UK (2003-04-02)

I am completely exasperated. Our comfortable democracies in the West have bred a nation of naive, idealistic fools.
-- Wayne Mitchinson (2003-04-02)

Protectionism only serves to kill those it seeks to protect.
-- ShadowMind (2003-03-28)

Code first, then specify. Anticipatory specs for problems people haven't tried to solve yet are just wild, random shots in the dark; at best, they waste everyone's time, and at worst, they cause confusion and hostility.
-- PaulT (2003-03-08)

I know that Gnu's Not Unix. Now I guess that Linux Is Not UniX, too.
-- catclub (2003-03-07)

It's a fairly end-of-life move for the stockholders and managers of that company. Really what beat SCO is not any problem with what IBM did; it's what the market decided. This is a way of salvaging value out of the SCO franchise they can't get by winning in the marketplace.
-- Jonathan Eunice, an Illuminata analyst

Question: How many activists does it take to change a lightbulb?
Answer: None. Activists don't change anything.
-- unknown

Remember - if you're sitting at a poker table and you don't know who the sucker is, it's you.
-- unknown

Hubris is so cute.
-- Joss Whedon (2001)

This is the last chance for the U.N. to comply with its own resolutions.
-- unknown (circa Jan. 2003)

Obviously the UN is utterly useless against Saddam. Even when the Iraqis admitted not complying with UN resolutions, nothing was done except the passage of another meaningless resolution. Such hypocrisy by the UN over enforcing their own resolutions is a travesty and proves they have no credibility whatsoever in dealing with a ruthless and conniving dictator like Saddam Hussein. The UN is a mere tool that Saddam uses to keep himself in power, and has been exploited yet again. The UN is nothing but a diplomatic obstacle to the one body willing to uphold the UN's own ideals -- the United States of America.
-- Jeff Cullers (2002-11-25)

No democracy has ever declared war on another.
-- Proteus (2003-01-26) [well, the War of 1812 comes to mind]

A hero is a coward who has been cornered.
-- unknown

If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a man and a dog.
-- Mark Twain

99 percent of lawyers give the rest a bad name.
-- unknown

Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
-- unknown

The hardness of the butter is directly proportional to the softness of the bread.
-- unknown

To succeed in politics, it is often necessary to rise above your principles.
-- unknown

A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
-- unknown

The Free Market is why American flags are made in China instead of Singapore.
-- unknown

In Socialist Europe, government owns companies. In Capitalist America, COMPANIES own GOVERNMENT!
-- Rolo Tomasi (2002-12-12) [Pick your poison...]

That Joan of Arc is one *tasty piece of bitch*.
-- Joan of Arc as "John Dark", _Clone High_

The only thing that Australia has gained from Microsoft is an enlarged sphincter.
-- Tony O'Bryan (2002-11-20)

This isn't even a slap on the wrist; it's a wink and a nod.
-- David (2002-11-01), commenting on the MS-DOJ settlement

Monopolies are to capitalism as cancer is to an organism.
-- Evil Pete (2002-11-01)

Dot Com companies think 'Oh yeah, Dot Com, New Business Model, We're Invincible!'. No No No, ladies and gentlemen. Warning warning, danger danger! There is NO New Business Model.
-- Larry Smith, ECON101, 2000

Every big computing disaster has come from taking too many ideas and putting them in one place.
-- Gordon Bell

Solaris: It may be slow, but it's hard to use.
-- adapted from a Unix fortune(?)

Their intent is to cause terror, to intimidate others into not exercising their rights, and to fundementally alter (or destroy) the way of life of others.
-- jedidiah, describing the MPAA, not al Queda (2002-08-20)

History is littered with cases of inaction that led to have grave consequences for the world.
-- US National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice (2002-08-15)

"Micros**t"
-- Ranjan SenGupta

Program testing can at best show the presence of errors, but never their absence.
-- Edsger W. Dijkstra

The price of reliability is the pursuit of simplicity. It is a price which the very rich find very hard to pay.
-- Sir Anthony Hoare (1980)

Computer science is as much about computers as astronomy is about telescopes.
-- Edsger W. Dijkstra

What's going to win out in the long run is either no DRM at all or devices that anybody can author to; there won't be any need to imitate Microsoft's or anybody else's signatures. That, or people will just go back to small, live performances. In any case, the big media companies pushing for this are going to lose out. They had a golden era with vinyl and CDs, where they could mass-produce cheaply but consumers couldn't replicate, and there was no alternative or competition. That's over now.
-- g4dget (2002-07-29)

In the world of "everything is possible", nothing gets done!
-- Edric Keighan (2002-07-17)

I don't think we should focus on refactoring the Internet this month...
-- Jerome Sonnet (2002-07-09)

"Software sucks because users demand it to."
-- Nathan Myhrvold (former CTO of Microsoft) [I think he's right]

If you wish strongly enough for something to be true, eventually your logic will warp itself enough to make it true.
-- ac (2002-05-31)

When I hear of a long time smoker dying of lung cancer I think "That's too bad, but they made their choices". When I hear about companies gettings screwed by Microsoft, I think the same thing.
-- GNUTroll (2002-05-01)

"copying is piracy."
So 18th century pirates just boarded your ship, copied everything, and left?
-- Anonymous Coward on Slashdot.org (2002-04-29)

The BSA is nothing more than a legalized protection racket.
-- chill (2002-04-29)

There has grown up in the minds of certain groups in this country the notion that because a man or corporation has made a profit out of the public for a number of years, the government and the courts are charged with the duty of guaranteeing such profit in the future, even in the face of changing circumstances and contrary to public interest. This strange doctrine is not supported by statute or common law. Neither individuals nor corporations have any right to come into court and ask that the clock of history be stopped, or turned back.
-- Robert Heinlein

All you have to do is read the testimony coming from Dell, Gateway and others before you understand that Microsoft will continue to use all of the illegal means it can to preclude any technology it does not own. When Microsoft is required to comply with the law, the market will change.
-- Lewis A. Mettler (2002-03-30)

NT is a weak form of unix like a donut is a weak form of a particle accelerator.
-- MBCook (2002-03-23)

Yet the fact that they can leverage their monoplolistic stronghold in their own antitrust trial is amazing!
-- OctaneZ (2002-03-05)

Microsoft, you sure are making it easy to break up with you...
-- scoove (2002-03-04)


At this point last year, with Napster in full swing, record sales were up 8 percent from the previous year. This year, sales of new albums -- not including established catalog titles -- are down 8 percent. That's quite a pendulum swing.

Sure, other file-trading software has taken Napster's place, but at this point it's fun just to watch the industry limp around after shooting itself in the foot.
-- SF Gate & jamie@Slashdot.org (2002-02-27)


In the long run, a distinct society is likely to be more viable in an economically vibrant Quebec, one unburdened by odd linguistic laws and severe taxation, than in a Quebec that is dying a slow death, as its citizens vote one at a time with their feet and their wallets. ... While the diaspora [out-migration] may have begun with anglophones leaving in the wake of separatist gains, their loss has so hurt the province that francophones now leave in order to find better economic conditions, both in the US and in other parts of Canada.
-- Matthew Stevenson (2000-10)

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time to pause and reflect.
-- Mark Twain (1835-1910)

In an Internet without doors or walls, who needs Windows or Gates?
-- unknown

The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.
-- Bertrand Russell

'Independence' is just an euphemism for having no friends.
-- Ben (Zurich [Switzerland])

A few months ago a friend of mine, a staunch Microsoft supporter, converted his entire collection of MP3's (about 150 CDs; he'd ripped his whole library) to WMA format. The quality was fine, the files were smaller, and off he toddled. A few weeks later he upgraded his operating system, and WMA's Rights Management kicked in and told him he couldn't play any of those files anymore. Ouch! Weeks later, he'd re-ripped his collection to MP3 and ripped a friend's as well. Needless to say, he's not as staunch a supporter as he once was.
-- Tsar

Halting problem, Schmalting problem!
-- Glenn Stowe & Craig Bruce (refering to the general web-services fantasy that syntax == semantics; wake up, people -- WSDL is worthless)

The XBOX represents the only true way you can DIRECTLY damage microsoft through buying things.. Every unit they sell is sold at a loss.. Buy one.. Hack the hardware.. Make it do stuff its not supposed to do.. And don't buy any software for it :)
-- Lord_Pall

It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.
-- Voltaire

Anything that is too stupid to be spoken is sung.
-- Voltaire

Poor, poor OJ. He's only been able to convince 12 people in the whole world that he's not a murderer.
-- Wil Wheaton

An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.
-- Heinlein

In other words, the only way to prevent corporate exploitation is to get a consensus that such a thing exists. There is no such consensus because it doesn't seem to bother those who are exploited, and the exploitation is purely voluntary in nature. The people that seem to be really bothered are the whiny protestors who go around destroying public and private property and then don't seem to understand why they are more hated than the corporations they are protesting against.
-- Fnkmaster (2001-11-01)

"No one will thank us for creating another syntax to learn."
-- Ron Lake (2001-10-25)

GPL Business Model --
Step 1) Release Free Software
Step 2) ???
Step 3) PROFIT!!
-- unknown (after Dilbert cartoon)

"The Misinformation Superhighway."
-- Greta Van Susteren, CNN (2001-10-19)

When AOL moves 20 million clueless idiots from MSIE to Gecko, Web designers will fix the problems very quickly, making the Web a better place for all of us.
-- Phroggy (2001-10-19) [Sadly, never to be.]

Thus continueth the cycle:
1. A few people pirate software/music.
2. Corporations get pissed at piracy.
3. Corporation spends millions on development of an anti-piracy scheme.
4. Corporation has to raise prices to compensate.
5. Scheme gets cracked within DAYS of release.
6. More people pirate because prices are higher.
7. Goto 1.
-- Desco (2001-10-19)

Free beer tends to lead to free speech.
-- unknown

Let's face it. They weren't baking cookies in those caves.
-- U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld (2001-10-18)


The second was a lesson I received in group dynamics from my high school theater group's director, a guy named Lou. About a hundred of us kids had gathered together in the gym, doing warmup exercises. Lou got up and introduced a new exercise. We were going to count up from one to ten, slowly adjusting our attitude and appearance from utter dejection to triumphant at ten. One... we were slumped over and suicidal. Two... we straighted a little... Three... perhaps I shall not hang myself today. And so on to a hearty, confident, triumphant roar of TEN! "TEN!" shouted Lou. "TEN!!" we yelled back. "SEIG HEIL!" shouted Lou. "SEIG HEIL!!" we roared. "SEIG HEIL!!! SEIG HEIL!!! SEIG..."

Lou clapped his hands sharply for attention. He looked at us for a long moment. "Never forget," he said softly, "how easy it was for one man to make you do that."

I never will.
-- bill.sheehan


Audiophiles are people who listen to the audio equipment, not the music.
-- unknown

WAP is the OSI of this decade.
-- dublin

All those in favor of losing their rights, please do nothing.
-- merlin_jim

Bad People Use the Internet for Stuff.
-- someone on keepersoflists.org

The death of one man is a tragedy; the death of a million is a statistic.
-- Joseph Stalin

In 2006 or so, someone is going to submit to Slashdot about the 10th anniversary of Microsoft inventing the browser.
-- geophile (2001-09-05)

Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth but supreme beauty, a beauty cold and austere like that of sculpture.
-- Alan Turing

Without Turing, I'd either be out of a job, or working for the Nazis.
-- an IT Technician

Meanwhile, there's a study circulating saying that people don't and won't purchase heavily restricted music online at higher prices for a less useful item. This is apparently a revelation to the music industry.
-- Michael, Slashdot.org (2001-08-31)

I pledge allegance to the window icon of the United States of America. And to the corporation for which it stands, one nation under Microsoft indivisible thru FUD and litigation for all.
-- Larry(?)

How do you power-off this machine?
-- Linus Torvalds, when upgrading linux.cs.helsinki.fi, and after using the machine for several months.

Any sufficiently advanced Operating System is indistinguishable from Linux.
-- Jim Dennis

What luck for the rulers that men don't think.
-- Adolf Hitler

All complex systems that work began as simple systems that worked.
-- unknown (2001-08-07)

The dead hand of Asimov's mass psychology wins every time.
-- unknown (2001-08-07)

"You can count on the Americans to do the right thing, once they've exhausted every other possible course of action."
-- Winston Churchill

This message was encrypted with rot-26 cryptography. Attempting to circumvent this encoding is illegal under the DMCA.
-- ajuda (2001-08-02)

I'm willing to bet that Mircrosoft will appeal this to the Supreme Court, if only to slow down the process. Microsoft won the browser with the tactics no being declared illegal and is looking to win instant messanging, multimedia delivery and a few other items this way as well. WinXP is the key to this, and it has to ship soon, and with all the 'features' in place. Microsoft is just playing the game to prevent the gov. from stopping the release of XP. Once XP is out there, it can't be taken back. If Mircrosoft is forced to play fairly only after XP is released, it's more bad news for the rest of us.
-- Derkec (2001-08-02)

The four horsemen of the infocalypse ride again. Every time a new restriction to our rights is planned they drag out: Porn, Terrorism, Crackers, Drugs. This time, it has to be porn. The real target is people sharing files, period. But rather than get into a discussion about what (used to) constitute fair use they need a demon. If it plays on one of the four fears above they have a good excuse for doing whatever they want. It didn't work so well with encryption (even though they invoked all four). Saying "It would hurt Sony's business model" isn't quite sexy enough. So it has to be one of the Four. Look for more restrictions on file sharing period sometime soon.
-- Walter Wart (2001-07-27)

It's an impressive feat to put the last nail in your own coffin while you're on the inside!
-- warpath (2001-07-17, commenting on Napster's decision to introduce its own .NAP music format)

You know what I never understood: Why did it become expected that technical support people should be able to fix any software problem through the phone? I can't call up Toyota and ask them to walk me through replacing the starter on the car, especially if I don't know what a wrench is. They'll tell me to bring it to the repair shop. I can't demand that Maytag explain to me how to repair a washing machine through the phone, even if it is under warranty!
-- Stan Seibert (2001-07-11)

"Here to discuss how the AOL merger will affect consumers is the CEO of AOL."
-- Wolf Blitzer (CNN), 2001-01-12

"It is an elegant weapon from a more civilized time ..."
-- Obi-Wan Kenobi, referring to the slide-rule calculator

Software of the living dead... This is why Microsoft hates GPL software. The company goes bust and a month later there is a new release of the competing software. Nothing, but customer disinterest has ever killed a GPL project. And Microsoft _still_ can't beg, buy, borrow, or steal the software. It is just too funny.
-- Jimmy the Geek (2001-07-05, discussing the Nautilus 1.0.4 release)


Probably legal: The monopoly introduces new software that's genuinely innovative or more efficient or faster, even if it's incompatible or bundles previous products in a way that puts a competitor out of business.

Probably illegal: The monopoly uses technical "dirty tricks", exclusionary licensing provisions, industry alliances or threats of retaliation that are clearly anticompetitive and have no conceivable or defensible rationale other than squashing a competitor.

The Mobile Internet Kit's EULA appears to fall into the latter category. If so, it's yet another instance of a more general pattern of anticompetitive, deceptive actions that has been undertaken by Microsoft--a pattern that led a strongly pro-business appeals court to rule unanimously that the company has systematically violated the Sherman Act.
-- Bryan Pfaffenberger (2001-07-03)


What greedy king were we (in the UK) troubling you all with in 1766? My knowlege of history isn't that good.

That would be George [III]. Actually, the "stamp tax" bit was a businessmen who tricked the working class into dying (as is always done) "for their country". Fortunately, when the actual structure of government was formed, it was all a Masonic plot, so we ended up with some pretty idealistic stuff. The die for the "Great Seal" of the United states was never fully cut because by then the government was taken over by Christians who were trying to stamp out the Masonic stuff.

The reason John Handcock signed his name so large on the Declaration of Independence was so George V would know he had a bad debt on his hands "without his spectacles". Handcock owed the king a bundle.

Another businessman fished the tea out of the harbor, and I understand you can still buy a cup'o (at a goodly price). Much of this info is courtesy of the Smithsonian Institute which published it in their magazine just before the "Bicentinial" to the distress of good patriots everywhere.
-- Andrew Grygus (2001-07-02)


"And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name."
-- Revelations 13:17, referring to Microsoft® Passport®

There once was a taylor who moved to the South and opened a store. The Klu Klux Klan got wind of this and sent some children to yell nasty names and curses outside his store. The taylor saw that these children would drive away his business so he quickly dashed outside and said to the children "I will give each of you a quarter to keep swearing at my store." The children happily agreed, took the money, and continued swearing. The next day they came back and the taylor said "oh, I'm afraid the quarters were just for yesterday, today I will only give you a dime each." The children were a little upset but they took the money and kept swearing. The next day the taylor only offered them a nickle each, half the children left but the other half were happy to swear at his store for a nickle. The next day even more children gave up because the taylor would only pay them a penny each and on the last day none of the children would swear at his store because the taylor refused to pay them at all.
-- Classic Jewish Tale

Remember: behind every sleazy lawyer there's a sleazy client.
-- rgmoore

Clearly, the issue between Microsoft vs Linux isn't about one product vs another anymore (which really is where the argument truly belongs, in a more normal world) - it's about unbridled greed vs meaningful freedom and social justice. This is a bigger battle than most people realize. This is turning into a war over power - who will have it (Microsoft), and who won't (you and me). Linux as a form of social protest. Who could have imagined.
-- Bakody (2001-06-21)

When the USA does it, it's progress. When Canada does it, it's just another tax grab by socialists.
-- Anonymous Coward (2001-06-20)


All of them are chasing a goal set tantalizingly out of reach: to reproduce the texture and majesty of live music, right in a living room. The catch: It can't be done. A machine can almost capture the fullness and feel of a violin, but it will always come up short. So audiophiles re-tweak and re-upgrade, improving the sound in ever smaller increments that cost ever greater sums.

... Until you've spent $140,000. For that money, a local company called the Gene Donati Orchestras will send a string quartet to your home and play on your patio once a week for more than a year. Which is why audiophiles spend a lot of time defending their sanity.
-- David Segal, Washington Post Staff Writer (2001-06-13)


if(strstr($HTTP_USER_AGENT, "MSIE 6.0")) {
    echo "This page will not display properly in your browser; get a real one."
}

-- Skweetis (2001-06-12)

Anyone who lets someone else keep their data is nuts. Anyone who lets someone who runs a free website keep their data deserves to lose it. Anyone who cries when a free website is changed and they are not notified is an idiot.
-- stoolpigeon (2001-06-12)

Mary had a crypto key, she kept it in escrow, and everything that Mary said, the Feds were sure to know.
-- unknown

Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.
-- Diderot

"There is nothing more pathetic than a slave who thinks he is free."
Wrong. There is nothing more pathetic than a free person who thinks he is a slave.
-- LS (2001-06-05)

Prime movers in keeping drugs illegal are ... the countries producing illegal drugs, since the black market allows them to create a bindle of powder for $0.25 and sell it to the end user for $100, but only if it's kept illegal.
-- small_dick (2001-06-04)

Those pushing for more democracy should consider replacing medical accreditation with a thumbs up/thumbs down vote at the local pub.
-- alexhmit01 (2001-06-04)

War! What is it good for?! Funding scientific research.
-- Mr. Hell

innovate, vb.: 1. To appropriate third-party technology through purchase, immitation, or theft and to integrate it into a de-facto, monopoly-position product. 2. To increase in size or complexity but not in utility; to reduce compatibility or interoperability. 3. To lock out competitors or to lock in users. 4. To charge more money; to increase prices or costs. 5. To acquire profits from investments in other companies but not from direct product or service sales. 6. To stifle or manipulate a free market; to extend monopoly powers into new markets. 7. To evade liability for wrong doings; to get off. 8. To purchase legislation, legistators, legislatures, or chiefs of state. 9. To mediate all transactions in a global economy; to embezzle; to co-opt power (coup d'état). Cf. innovate, English usage (antonym).
-- Craig Bruce (2001-06-01) #707

When those insecure and maliciously potent Windows XP machines are mated to high-bandwidth Internet connections, we are going to experience an escalation of Internet terrorism the likes of which has never been seen before.
-- Steve Gibson (2001-05-31)

Lie of the 70's = The check is in the mail
Lie of the 80's = Trickle down economics
Lie of the 90's = I have not had sex with that woman/man/computer/etc.
Lie of the 00's = Monopoly promotes innovation
-- ackthpt (2001-05-30)

Nobody wants to admit this. It is the Internet's dirty little secret that when a company complains to an ISP about its shitty latency and packet loss rates, it is NOT because Mr. PHB can't check his stock portfolio (after all, he can do this over a modem with 20%+ packet loss and a ping of 500 ms). It is because somebody in the IT staff just got fragged by an LPB.
-- nyet (2001-05-24)


Making a unix-like OS is not much harder than making a compiler for a c-like language (I dunno about you, but I could do the latter in a couple of days). But then supplying every library routine and going and checking that you comply with the POSIX standard on every point would take forever (alone, that is).

The win32 thing is a hundred times harder than that, because it's a huge, poorly designed, inaccurately specified, buggy interface. It's painful enough to even use that the vast majority of windows programmers hide it behind some other tool. Recreating it perfectly, without access to the source, is an exercise in futility, far harder than making it in the first place.
-- Flying Headless Goku (2001-05-23)


Japanese culture is very different from ours, one of the main differences being their insistence on thinking about things before acting. They think long-term, give everybody a say, and make sure that everybody is in agreement before acting. Here [in the US], we just cower to whomever has the most legal representation and cave in. And our patent office, as well as most branches of government, is no exception.
-- Bitterman (2001-05-15)

As for Office XP subscriptions, I don't think we've seen the last of this. I just think MS realized they would have too hard a sell with that. I think they'd much rather sell Office XP and put it on all Windows desktops, and THEN go over to subscriptions if people want to keep accessing their documents. Gotcha.
-- Kasreyn (2001-05-06)

Every truth has a context.
-- Ray(?)

Well, you see, in the beginning oh, about 15 years ago, there was SGML and DTDs. But the powers that be decided that this was far too complicated. So they decided that they would replace it with a much simpler framework. This new system currently consists of XML, DTDs, XML Schema, CSS, DOM, SAX, SOAP, UDDI, WDDS, WSDL, RDF, RSS, URIs, URLs, URNs, XForms, XHTML, XLink, XML Signature, XPath, XPointer, XSL, XSLT, JAXP, JAXM, TrAX and a few hundred other acronyms and abbreviations which I shall omit for brevity. As you can clearly see, the old system was just far too unwieldy and complex. I am glad that they have made things so much simpler.
-- Anonymous Coward on Slashdot.org (2001-05-04)

XAS: XML Alphabet Soup.
-- Craig Bruce (2001-05-05)

This really is a pivotal moment, isn't it? MS can't buy open source, can't co-opt open source, can't undersell open source. But it can buy legistlators and legislation. That's what's coming. Take a look at mundie's bio on MS's website - major-league contact with They In Washington.
-- Paul Revere (2001-05-03)

When encryption is outlawed, ?o'AZ-,++o+i++##4AoA+-/-C++bI+/.+~
-- unknown

The Internet is not about technology. It's been around since the sixties, and the Web could have been invented in the seventies. The Web is about community; the technology only gives us an opportunity to meet, and that's where the magic starts. Strict control over a portion of the Internet immediately renders that portion useless.
-- iamklerck (2001-04-30)


Morris: You guys are the Lone Gunmen aren't you? You guys are my heroes. I mean look at the crap you print.

Byers: We uncover the truth.

Morris: The truth? That's what's so great about you monkeys. Not only do you believe the horse pucky we create, you broadcast it as well. I mean look at this! [Headline reads: "Saddam testing mandroid army in Iraqi desert."] There is no Saddam Hussein. This guy's name is John Gillnitz, we found him doing dinner theatre in Tulsa. Did a mean "King and I." Plays good ethnics.

Langly: Are you trying to say that Saddam Hussein is a goverment plant?

Morris: I'm saying I invented the guy. We set him up in '79. He rattles his saber whenever we need a good distraction. Ah... if you boys only knew how many of your stories I dreamed up while on the pot.
-- The X Files


You can kill a man but you can't kill what he stands for. Not unless you first break his spirit. That's a beautiful thing to see.
-- The Cigarette Smoking Man (Cancer Man), The X Files

Aha! This is quite clearly, at least to me, a stab in the dark at getting money. See, their current business model isn't working, and they aren't getting any money. So they figure, "If I can't get money legitimately, I'll sue people!" So they go around claiming that everyone owes them money. This is the last gasp of a dying company, I think.
-- ywwg (2001-04-26)

There is interesting information in that article: according to IDC, in 2000, 44% installed base of Windows was Win98, 33% Win95 (still quite high, hmm?), 22% Win NT Workstation or Win 2000 Pro (they did not detail it, I wonder how much was really Win2000 Pro) and 1% Win ME. It seems that there is quite a window of opportunity (oops...) for Linux... By the end of 2000, 78% of MS desktop users had NOT upgraded to Win2000 yet... (or more, since those 22% are a mix with Win NT WS) and with Win XP coming soon, who would do it now?
-- Spectra (2001-04-25) [I would suspect W2K is ~2%]

Samba 2.2 also can act as an "authentication source" for Windows 2000 computers, meaning Windows 2000 machines can be fooled into thinking the server is a Windows server. Writing this authentication feature was a "nightmare" requiring months of work, Allison said. "The main problem is getting something that works without crashing the (Windows) NT/2000 client."
-- Stephen Shankland on C|Net (2001-04-21)

ZDNET, although they parroted the standard Linux bashing lines, actually said some good stuff in the context of using Linux as a desktop system. 2 years ago, Linux would never be a server replacement. 1 year ago, we would never be a heavy duty server replacement. 6 months ago, we were a great server, but would never be on the desktop. Now, we are an "OK" desktop.
-- NotBillGates (2001-04-21)

It's the great urban legend of our time: Windows is easy to configure - everything's pure plug and play (Guess it has something to do with the fact that the computer comes configured when you buy it.). Anyone who has ever tried to upgrade or repair a Windows box knows better!
-- George Mitchell (2001-04-21)

As for "integration" and "management features", Samba has the added benefit that it's *nix and most of my customers don't know enough *nix to go in and screw up the server itself. That's a BIG plus. No phone calls saying "David, we're sorry, but Susie was fiddling around on the server and now it won't boot". That alone is enough to blow NT/2000 out of the water as far as I'm concerned.
-- davidd (2001-04-21)

Its as trendy today to rip on dot coms as it was 1.5 years ago to write about Linux, of course I'm biased ;)
-- CmdrTaco of Slashdot (2001-04-17)

I'm sorry buddy, but that's just crap. If we canadians felt like building some great nationilstic ventures, we would, cost doesn't even venture into it. How many nations of 30 million people have G7 status eh? Us and Australia that's who - and there are scads of countries with way more people who can't claim that. We have definitely got the money to burn on meaningless nationalism if we wanted. The reason we don't do it is two-fold: firstly canadians just don't have any nationalist sentiments, or very little. Hell most of us don't even know what it is we identify with as a country. Secondly the business and political culture of our country is so tight-assed and conservative that they refuse to invest in anything canadian for fear that it will flop, despite the overwhelming evidence that as such a small nation we have an insane overabundance of intelligent, talented and creative people.
-- corvi42 (2001-04-16) [Well, Australia isn't a G7 country.]


Microsoft is working on the business end of the problem. They have to find ways to force businesses to upgrade to Windows 2000 and the new revenue model, and businesses are resisting strongly. Refusing to put USB into NT 4 is a key part of the strategy.

The .NET thing has potential as a time sink. Implementing RPC via XML will be hideously inefficient. And interpreters are involved, which typically means a 10x performance loss.

Not that Java is much better. Swing seems to need upwards of 1GHz just to display menus as fast as a 20MHz Mac of a decade ago.
-- Animats, on increasing PC sales (2001-04-15)


E-business, however, is not the same as what we call the "dot com" model. The dot com model is content for advertising. E-business is a more robust form of catalogue and phone business, which has survived for years and years before computers could count to 257.
-- dasmegabyte (2001-04-12)

Kicking any bad habit weather it's heroin, or windows is hard but it can be done and you'll have more freedom afterwards.
-- Malcontent

It would be a great tragedy were we to stop the wheels of progress because of an incapacity to assist the victims of progress.
-- Alan Greenspan

I was very lucky to go to school at a time when excellent teachers were the norm, not the exception.
-- Ben Stein

Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything.
-- Joseph Stalin

Forgive me if you've heard me say this before, but Microsoft isn't in the software business, and maybe not even in the money-making business. They're in the stock market business. The cash flow is just a necessity of keeping the stock bubble fully inflated, and the software is just a way of generating that cash flow.
-- Bobby D. Bryant (2001-03-29)

X has problems, UNIX has problems, computers themselves have problems. Nothing stops us from fixing those problems except the limits of our own paradigms.
-- be-fan (2001-03-20)

People who bite the hand that feeds them usually lick the boot that kicks them.
-- Eric Hoffer

Hundreds of dot-coms have turned into dot-gones.
-- Gareth Barnard (2001-03-16)

Then, in 2000, one company after another was thrown onto the dot-compost heap. The revenue stream dried up and there was no money for new hardware. So now, when you need a new web server, you go to the boneyard. Every company has one. You pull out an old machine with a 200-MHz Pentium and 64 Mb of RAM. You load Linux and you're good to go. That's one less Pentium sold and one less copy of Windows 2000.
-- Gareth Barnard (2001-03-16)

Whatever... so long as they go down in a flaming heap.
-- kwashiorkor, commenting on the RAMBUS patent trial (2001-03-15)

Personally, I think a school's job is to teach not just the three R's, but also participation as a citizen in our Republic. That may be more important. For a school to teach freedom as a dry document while crushing student dissent is a waste.
-- jamie (Slashdot) (2001-03-14)

The sooner we finish the initial implementation, the sooner we can start fixing it.
-- Craig Bruce (2001-03-14)

My point is that industry types, whether they are applying nueral networks to read handwriting or creating thinner flat panel displays, solve the same complicated types of problems that the more 'scientific' community solves. The scientific community discredits their work because "Theoretically it can be done, so why bother doing it." It's as though the companies that want to enhance their products by funding research shouldn't fund the research that is most likely to enhance their products!
-- grammar nazi (2001-03-14)

No one should be able to patent something that could be designed by a marketing department.
-- some co-worker of Badgerman

I hate microsoft........and I am an MCSE. Just watch the disinterest from recruiters at job fairs when you hand them your resume and announce that you have the MCSE. Soooo much time and money wasted on an ever-expiring certification..... I am currently learning Oracle and Unix instead.
-- Hindenburg


Actually, Microsoft at the time was caught flat-footed by the Internet and Netscape and had no browser project in the works at all. So they went shopping, found Spyglass and their browser based on NCSA Mosaic. Spyglass was selling their browser in competition with Netscape and a bunch of others, so of course they didn't want to sell Microsoft their code, especially since they knew enough about MS to avoid deals with them like the plague.

After much negotiating and haggling, with Spyglass still refusing to give away their baby for what was sure to be a paltry one-time licensing fee, MS came back with an offer they couldn't refuse. The MS team came back and said "Spyglass, we like you and we like your product and we are going to make you an unprecedented offer, something that no MS partner has never had. Instead of a one-time licensing fee, we will give you a PERCENTAGE of all revenue generated by the sales of any browser based on your source code." Spyglass's eyes glazed over at the thought of getting a permanent piece of MS's action. And so Spyglass's fate was sealed.

Microsoft has never charged anyone a dime for IE. And the dollar value of Spyglass's percentage: $0.00. Forever. Browser market destroyed. Corporate jewels in MS hands. End of Spyglass.
-- Mark S


Also, eventually the public backlash against the complete loss of fair use provisions ("You have the right to fair use, but it's illegal to exercise that right!") would end up dismantling parts of the DMCA. As the Tobacco Industry has shown, eventually public outrage can overcome the most powerful lobbies in the world.
-- Noer

But I'm rapidly losing interest in giving a single fucking dime to publishers and recording companies which are trying to eradicate people's fair use rights while paying their artists less than 35c on an $18 CD. If their business model requires that kind of markup, they deserve to die a revenue-hemorraghing death.
-- RandomPeon

If you want to tell the difference between a principle and a platitude, invert a statement and see if the result sounds absurd. If no one could possibly support the opposing sentiment, the original statement is merely a platitude that adds no value to a discussion.
-- ZDNet

The article [on code being stolen for the GPS system] clearly says "Source Code" not "access codes". All this means is the military (and Exigent) will getting their first lesson in Systems Security 101: Obscurity != Security.
-- coolgeek

MBA's: Can't live with 'em. Can't legally torture them to death.
-- Bonker(?)

Re-Elect Gore In 2004.
-- cje(?)

If the military decided they needed a much larger presence in space (for missile defense for instance,) chances are a cheap launch vehicle would be developed in a hurry. A few years later, the military technology would trickle down to the civilian market and we would have cheap spaceliners. This almost makes me want a good Cold War style arms race between the U.S. and China, if it weren't for the risk of nuclear Armageddon.
-- meldroc

Microsoft's use of the word "innovation" should be read as "appropriation".
-- Craig Bruce

Most legislation is passed by people who aren't even paying attention to what they're doing.
-- Bonker

Remember, at Redmond "innovate" means "buy or steal, and then put our brand name on it". With that definition, yes, the GPL *is* a threat to "innovation".
-- Bobby D. Bryant

With GPL the only thing Microsoft gets for free is nightmares.
-- Jean Francois Martinez

Binaries may die but source code lives forever.
-- ESR(?)


IT personel have to answer to management that don't understand nor want to understand technology. Thus the MS "brand" is much better when something goes wrong, then "open source." With MS you can blame them. With open source its your fault. That's why even smart technical managers who know that MS products are poor, keep buying them over and over.

So we can expect a huge rise in successful attacks. Managers will have their "plausible deniability", intruders will be demonized and Microsoft will count the money.
-- Trimtab


No, the Microsoft Firewall will be marketed towards pointy-headed bosses, who will be blinded and wooed by the blinking lights and the shiny Windows (TM) Interface (TM). The pointy-headed bosses are the ones who legislate this stupidity on a corporate-wide basis, regardless of merit or technical quality. THIS is Microsoft's target market. It has worked for them for over a decade now...why change what works?
-- g

Many of these people will continue to use bad security inside their walls because "Hey, we have a firewall, what do we need SSH for?"
-- Mike Rasmusson

It seems like "innovation" is a lame code word for "anything that makes life more difficult for the customer while guaranteeing a butt-load of cash for Microsoft."
-- David Wollmann

An org that treats its programmers as morons will soon have programmers that are willing & able to act like morons only.
-- ksheff

RDRAM only looks good on paper and a few carefully constructed (ie, outright lies) benchmarks. All the claims of Rambus are outright lies. And you can quote me on this. They're thieves, cheats, and liars. They produce no product and exist merely to patent technology invented by other people. If there's a list of people most deserving of prison, these guys and all their shareholders belong on it.
-- WNight

And it will be good for the whole tech industry for RAMBUS to fall in a spectacular and final fashion. The RAMBUS business model (dishonestly patent shady IP then sue everyone) needs to be demonstrated to be a failure.
-- mikethegeek

FTC v. Dell, 1996. While Dell was a member of VESA, it failed to disclose a patent relevant to the VESA Local Bus standard which it participated in developing. When Dell tried to enforce the patent some years later, the FTC stepped in, and Dell ended up signing a consent decree preventing enforcement of that patent. One month later, Rambus bowed out of JEDEC.
-- Anonymous Coward on Slashdot

Innovation is usually the result of the work of a few people rather than the output of the million monkeys of the Internet.
-- dglo

Are prostitutes allowed to write off the depreciation of their capital equipment?
-- Craig Bruce

Sorry, but until it's not all about money anymore (yeah, right) either General Motors - in terms of revenues - or General Electric - in terms of market capitalization - is the most powerful, influential company in the United States. Microsoft is number 84 on the Fortune 500. In deference to our international friends, Microsoft is only number 216 on Fortune's Global 5000. Hell, Microsoft didn't even know what a lobbyist was until the anti-trust case was filed.
-- markt4


Sorry again, but this is a common mistake. Very few organizations use Microsoft to "run their business". They use Microsoft for file servers where they store their mountains of Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents. But, despite what the paper-pushers and PHB's of the world might want you to believe, Word and Excel documents, and most especially PowerPoint presentations do not run the business. And they could just as easily be ported over to Word Perfect, WordPro, StarOffice, 1-2-3, or any of thousands of other business document formats. (We did it before from WordStar to Word Perfect and then from Word Perfect to Microsoft Word.) And for e-mail and other group-ware, Lotus Notes is still more popular with corporate America - although I can't for the life of me figure out why companies think this brain-dead software with its piss-poor user interface is worth $450 per user.

Most serious software for "running the business" runs on high-speed servers from Sun, IBM, HP, DG and others. The critical business software is giant Oracle databases. And even there Oracle is not all that crucial since a database is a database. The data could just as easily be put onto a Sybase, Informix, DB/2 or other database system.
-- markt4


There are two kinds of researchers: those that have implemented something and those that have not. The latter will tell you that there are 142 ways of doing things and that there isn't consensus on which is best. The former will simply tell you that 141 of them don't work.
-- David Cheriton

The history of software shows that availability wins out over technical quality every time.
-- Charles Hedrick

strcmp("ahead of its time", "failure") == 0
-- Craig Bruce


If you want to read some rather sad stories, poke around career/job message boards online, soon enough you'll come across them...guys who have maxed out credit cards to go to an MCSE mill, and are surprised that the offers didn't come flowing in. The sad part is often they'll add gleefully "but I'm studying up for my Windows 2000 exam, and after I get that one, I'm going to start shopping around for a Ferrari!" Any reminder, however indirect, that they may have gone down the wrong path immediately hits a nerve, and is fiercely denied.

I apologize for the rambling nature of this post, it's just that I have seen so many folks get sucked into the MCSE treadmill, and it's like seeing someone you know get destroyed by a gambling addiction. We'll be hearing more and more from these modern day versions of Willy Loman ("Death of a Salesman") as they sense the world of Microsoft eroded by forces they can neither control nor understand. Let us not be too smug, for their pain is real.
-- Cole Thompson, on Linux Today


If at first you don't secede, try, try again.
-- Win Ben Stein's Money (actually not referring to Quebec)


But things have changed. Media outlets have noticed that ad revenue decreases when competition dries up. Note that the worst of MS's anti-Linux stuff these days is in paid ads or right on MS's website. There are fewer than ever analysts and reporters willing to swallow/parrot the party line. Much of the genuine anti-Linux sentiment out there comes more from inertia than anything else.

This is not to deny that MS brown-nosers and cheerleaders still exist in large numbers. But their claims are no longer being taken at face value.
-- Evan Leibovitch


No-one really believes that Microsoft is going to be selling its own OS in ten years, do they?
-- Jimmy the Geek

Kids (and adults) WILL generally fill in the blanks in their knowledge with the scariest possibilities. Often far scarier than reality could possibly produce. (That's why conspiracy cults and doomsday cults are as popular as they are. They claim to be able to fill those blanks in.)
-- jd [include Religion and I agree -csb]

If Java on the desktop was useful it would be a threat to MS. Unfortunately Java on the desktop has been mostly hype (please note I qualified that with mostly, YOUR spinning cube is amazing).
-- glrotate

I'm sure Pillsbury's lawyers know very well that the claim is absurd at best and are relying on intimidation to do what the law won't. Personally, I think lawyers who participate in that sort of intimidation should be disciplined by the Bar or the courts. It's not much better than robbing a bank w/ a toy gun.
-- sjames

IBM cannot "hijack" Linux. Once again, columnists confuse money with important things like freedom and good software.
-- David F. Skoll

The more you tighten your grip, the more systems will slip through your fingers.
-- Princess Leia, discussing Microsoft's Whistler licensing mechanism

Higher prices coming at a time of shrinking sales? Sounds like Micro$oft is not-so-quietly moving into endgame / exit strategy on its software sales.
-- cr

Naw, this isn't your father's NASA. Today those guys would have probably died while they were fscking around rebooting their NT boxes on the ground at mission control to verify that it wasn't an anomaly in their telemetry. I'm probably just dealing with the wrong people, but these are definitely NOT the types that could improvise anything. Even suggesting some non-COTS solution is like hitting them in the head with a clue stick. They just stare at you like you're speaking Martian.
-- drsoran

Lets face it, no matter how good a chip is, most people just assume that clock speed is what is important. The marketing people want higher clock speeds, that's what they are going to get.
-- enterfornone, discussing the disappointing Intel Pentium-4

Reboot, reinstall, upgrade.
-- The Microsoft Treadmill

*grin* If I'd known then that it would be my most famous accomplishment in life, I might have worked on it another day or two and added some more options.
-- Mike Muuss (1958-2000), author of "ping"


RAMBUS has a seemingly endless supply of vague patents to sue technology companies over. Every time they win a case because of stupid US patent law, they gain the confidence and precedent to continue to come up with bolder schemes to suck even more money from technology companies.

This is exactly what happens when the staff of a technology company is 50% lawyers. I suspect that this is only the beginning of a era of corporations who produce nothing, design nothing, contribute nothing, but profit from continuous litigiousness, all because of stupid US law and legal practice.
-- Alcoholist


"Where do I say that guys don't suck? Everyone sucks. Guys suck less than chicks though, because we're simple. We want sex. Most chicks don't know what they want."
-- chickssuck.shutdown.com

If he calls 40 times, and you talk to him the 41st, you've just told him that the price for talking to you is 41 phone calls.
-- John Douglas


Money is an issue that distorts justice far more than the recent patent nonsense, and I bet that nobody sees any light at the end of that tunnel. The legal profession has very effectively perverted the course of justice in that regard, and the perversion is so endemic that we consider it quite normal and the status quo.

These two things are actually related. After all, the people that chase down patents are not productive contributors to society's building of a better world. They create nothing, but merely leech off the creativity of others. They are the fine upstanding members of the legal profession, for whom logic and commonsense can be freely disregarded when sophistry and technicalities are judged to yield a better paycheck.
-- Morgaine


Microsoft does not control their own platform anymore. Their installed base is spread across 5+ Win32 implementations, including 95/95OSR2/98/98SE/NT351/NT4/2000. Office *has to* run on every single one of those, because many home and business customers don't upgrade their OS much if ever. This plays right into Wine's hands, since Office cannot use any new whizbang features on new MS OSes. They are being slowly strangled to death by their very own market share - it's a beautiful thing, and it goes along with ESR's arguments about DOJ being fun but unnecessary.
-- Ian Schmidt

"My bubble sort is too slow! I need an Athlon!"
-- Junks Jerzey

Patents are not about protecting the people who invent; rather, they protect the people who can afford the process of filing a patent.
-- SigmoidCurve

The rushed, sometimes panicky entry of large corporations into a culture which is at heart architecturally open and markedly individualistic seems at times like a cultural civil war. Legal conflicts now seem to outstrip technological experimentation, advances and breakthroughs, lawyers getting as rich off the Net as they do in product liability or malpractice suits.
-- JonKatz, describing life on the internet


Method and Apparatus for Business Model to Acquire Revenue with no Innovation or Societal Contribution of Any Kind

Step 1: Generate a bogus business-model patent, like this one.
Step 2: Sue everyone else who uses it.


"[Jumping into Windows 2000 is] like giving yourself a self-inflicted gunshot wound."
-- Dustin Sauter, enterprise systems engineer at Wells Fargo

The DMCA was created for things like this. You're not buying books, you're buying licenses to read books. It's like a library where you pay. And someone will come up with a way to break the woefully inadequate protection system they have there so people can read the books when they like, and they will be sued, even if they live in some other country. And we will be better off because with rights and freedom, chaos would immediately ensue.
-- icqqm

My Intro to EE professor told us a story about the preliminary discussions at Sony concerning VCPs (video cassette players). Some VIP at Sony asked "Why would someone want to see movies at home when they could go out and see them?". One of the designers turned and said "Porn", and that was that.
-- Mandomania

When Radio first came out, it was everybody talking to everybody else. It was going to liberate everyone, and free the information for the tech nerds. But we all know what happened, air filled with the meaningless chatter of a few, franchise radio stations owned by Disney. I would like it if that didn't happen to the Internet.
-- delmoi

We don't know how bad things are in North Korea, but here are some pictures of hungry children. -- CNN
-- delmoi

We live in an age of apologies. Apologies, False or true, are expected from the descendants of Empire builders, slave owners and persecutors of heretics, and from men who, in our eyes, just got it all wrong. So, with the age of 85 coming up shortly, I want to make an apology. It appears I must apologze for being male, white, and European.
-- Sir Alec Guinness


Operating Systems In Terms Of Cows: -- istartedi

"Gnutella can withstand a band of hungry lawyers. How many realtime search technologies can claim that? Not Napster, that's for sure. Just to emphasize how revolutionary this is: hungry lawyers are probably more destructive than nuclear weapons."
-- Gnutella FAQ

"For a list of the ways in which technology has failed to improve our quality of life, press 3."
-- unknown

The only people left who are surprised by the public's distrust of the media, are media people themselves.
-- sansbury

Americans are like Canadians with twangy accents, too many guns, and a big problem with crime.
-- Exhibit A (Discovery Channel program)

OOG KNOW NO WORTHWHILE GIRL COULD STAND OBNOXIOUS PSEUDO INTELLECTUALISM OF MANY POSTERS HERE!!! SO MANY SLASHDOT PEOPLE KNOW-IT-ALLS, KARMA WHORES, ELITISTS, ETC!!! IF YOU LIKE THIS IN REAL LIFE, NO WONDER PEOPLE NO LIKE GEEKS!!!
-- OOG_THE_CAVEMAN, on Slashdot

PS: I am very tired of self righteous people who want to mold the world in their own image. Women don't like technical fields, so what? Men don't flock towards positions in elder care, nursing or child care yet I don't see articles bemoaning this.
-- Carnage4Life

Corel's interest in Linux predates Wall Street's. Wall Street is always the last one to the party, drinks the most, then has a huge hangover.
-- peter penguin

GNUTella: Because the client is the server.
-- unknown


You can safely ignore MS research.

Unlike Bell Labs or IBM, MS research is not famous for its Nobel prizes, but only for hiring some of the best brains in the world and turning them into guacamole dip.

The major reason why Microsoft never comes out with any real innovation is that Bill Gates vetoes any idea that is incompatible with the only program he ever worked on -- the original MS basic. As Windows grew bigger, he extended his veto to any idea that was incompatible with the Windows GUI. Then he extended it to protect MS Office.

As time goes on, Bill G. extends his veto umbrella to shelter an ever larger number of current products. The result is a stifling atmosphere that kills any possibility of true innovation.
-- John Sowa


Left. Left. Left stop. Stop! Right. Stop. Now down. Stop. Click-click. ... Click-click. ... Click-click-click-click-dammit! Up. Up-up-up. Stooooopppp!!! Left. Stop. Click-click. ...
-- JJS, describing how voice recognition would integrate with a GUI environment

Voice input and control is much over-hyped. But voice control for Windows makes about as much sense as a command-line-only drawing program.
-- AJWM

Godwin's Law, prov. [Usenet] "As a Usenet discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one." There is a tradition in many groups that, once this occurs, that thread is over, and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever argument was in progress. Godwin's Law thus practically guarantees the existence of an upper bound on thread length in those groups.

It might be the year 2000, but 1984 is getting closer and closer....
-- geekflavor (snowphoton@mindspring.comNOSPAM)

"We're called rebels because we're easily manipulated into doing stupid things."
-- randomly pierced guy in Dilbert comic

Today's Agenda: Redesign core processes to enable enterprise integration of knowledge resources and tools.
-- after Scott Adams

"Of course IP issues would kill JPEG2000."
-- Sir_Winston on Slashdot (looking forward to another GIF fiasco)

"The end of the internet economic boom is ... offtopic and uninteresting."
-- CmdrTaco (Rob Malda), Slashdot.org

This is how copyright should work. Like patents it's intent is to encourage creativity by rewarding the author with limited exclusivity for a time, then improving society by making the creation free for all to use and build upon. Copyright was once 20 years (like patents), then 50 years, then author's life plus 50 years, then author's life plus 80 years, and now dead congressman Sonny Bony sponsored the last extension to author's life plus 100 years. A fscking century! You see no problem here? And *just* *by* *coincidence* ****ALL**** of these extensions happened just shortly before the earliest Mickey Mouse cartoons were about to have their copyrights expire. Are Disney's interests == the public interests?
-- Cmdr Taco (note the space, not "CmdrTaco")


Actually, the passage of the "Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act" was even more insidious - it was passed by voice vote during the Monica Lewinsky nonsense. The Congress-critters who were bought off didn't even have to put their names on it!

How were they bought off? Well, one of the most important bits for re-election is the endorsement of the local paper and TV stations. Guess who owns a large chain of newspapers and TV stations? Why, the Mouse of course! You either support this bill Senator, or we endorse your opponent. In the corporate world they call this "synergy".
-- K8Fan


63,000 bugs in the code, 63,000 bugs,
ya get 1 whacked with a service pack,
now there's 63,005 bugs in the code!!
-- unknown

I've been doing some work under Windows with threads, and I tried to start by designing a generalized class-based thread model before dropping in my first thread. It didn't work - I had no idea what I needed or how to bring it about. So I dove in and wrote something more Cish. Five threads later, I know what should go into a class - it's the code that I keep cutting and ******* pasting. I now know how to encapsulate the functionality I need, smoothly, because I know exactly what it needs to do and a functional way to go about doing it.
-- shren

"The [stock] market is a chaotic system and no matter how many charts and formulas the 'experts' produce, they still can't tell you what will really happen tomorrow until after it happens. Then they offer ad hoc explanations with an 'I told you so' tag. Just like Jean Dixon. Just like weather forecasters. If these experts know so much how come they are still working for a living? They should be richer than Bill Gates."
-- Jerry Kreps

"That's odd. The LA Times acts as though this is a bad thing. I guess it never occured to them that copyright was intended to foster the creation of of works that weren't likely to be created otherwise, so that the works would universally accessible, not provide a means to document your ownership for the reason of denying access. It would seem the internet has made copyright an obsolete concept in almost any context. I'd rather have someone deny me their knowledge than copyright it. I can afford to wait five minutes for someone to come up with the same idea and disseminate, that copyright would deny. Copyright denies your right to exchange information without first asking if you want to pay the cost in losing that right to create the trivia that qualifies for such protection. My tax dollars pay for enforcing laws which allow denying me the right to information that was often created via more tax dollars."
-- unknown

"How ironic that the patent system was designed to help industry move forward and is now the biggest threat to forward progress there is."
-- Artie FM

"Lawsuits like this make me wish I wasn't an American."
-- Dr. Sp0ng (about a lawsuit against id Software for a shooting)

"I wish that politics weren't so much about getting elected and more about doing something important once in office."
-- Dr. Sp0ng

"We feel that we need to 'do something' about Columbine, however in typical American style that 'action' is punative rather than rehabilitative."
-- PsiPsiStar

"What I find interesting is that my English teacher last year hated violent video games, thinking they corrupt kids. She also knew I loved them and spent much time at them. Yet, she still preferred me as the quiet genius type to the immature jocks, who wouldn't know Quake from Shogo. She never seemed to notice the discrepancy between her preconcieved notions and reality, but that just goes to show you."
-- Datafage

"When the line between fantasy and reality is blurred in the mind of a child, you can often times look directly at that kid's parents and point out very, very severe problems in how they handled the task of raising their child. Dylan Klebold left his house every morning wearing a black trenchcoat with a swastika armband on, leaving a sawed-off shotgun ontop of the dresser in his bedroom. His parents did nothing about it, unfortunately. And by the time they understood the gravity of their own neglect of their child, a dozen or more kids lay dead in a school."
-- Bowie J. Poag

It's a lot easier to fake good management than to fake good code.
-- unknown

Oh come on -- you've got [foreign-exchange] traders destabilizing a country's currency for quick and dirty profit; entire economies in free-fall because some asshole doesn't like the colour of his Range Rover. This is the real Nintendo war. Distance people from the realities of their decisions enough times, they forget that real people are being affected.
-- Traders (Canadian TV show)

Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow.
-- catchphrase for open-source software

Sometimes, the best applause lies in knowing you have offended a fool.
-- Anonymous

If it doesn't cause a traffic jam, most people won't care.
-- Dan Rather(?)

"Jackbooted government thugs will do anything now in the name of 'safety,' and the average person will support such actions, because the average person is a coward. ... I think we need to get back to trying to preserve our Liberty, instead of trying to deny our humanity."
-- Brian Knotts


No, the ISP gets the lawsuit - they give in faster

The "poor little website owners" are often up for a fight anyway - they're angry, they're determined, they know they're in the right and they don't want to see justice taken for a ride. The most extreme example would be the McLibel defendents, who faced personal bankrupcy to defend themselves in court.

So don't threaten them - threaten someone upstream from them, like the ISP. The ISP doesn't care about the rights and wrongs of the issue - they're looking at the money. And the money says that you have very little to gain by standing by your customer and everything to lose - the best commercial proposition is simply to drop customers as soon as anyone who can spell "lawsuit" writes to you, regardless of whether they'd have a case, and regardless of who the Good Guys might be.

This simple inequality is probably a bigger risk to free speech online than any CDA style legislation...
-- Paul Crowley


Brien's First Law
At some time in the life cycle of virtually every organization, its ability to succeed in spite of itself runs out.

Klipstein's Second Law of General Engineering
Firmness of delivery dates in inversely proportional to the tightness of the schedule.

Shropenhauer's Law of Entropy
If you put a spoonful of wine in a barrel full of sewage, you get sewage. If you put a spoonful of sewage in a barrel full of wine, you get sewage.

Evan's and Bjorn's Law
No matter what goes wrong, there is always someone who knew it would.

Fox on Problematics
When a problem goes away, the people working to solve it do not.

It is an institution the business and political leadership of Quebec has every reason to value highly. Political uncertainty has imposed economic hardships on the average Quebecker. But for the elite, the threat of separation, accompanied by unending demands for concessions to avert it, has become a fabulous tool for getting and holding power. Quebeckers instinctively understand that they have nothing to gain by separating--or by abandoning the threat to separate.
-- Reed Scowen

NT is a desktop operating system trying to be a server; Linux is a server trying to be a desktop OS.
-- Codifex Maximus

"I've decided that I want to be an Industry Pundit for a day. It looks to be far too much fun in comparison to actual work."
-- Paul Ferris

"It might perhaps broaden your horizons to read a book that doesn't march in lockstep with your personal dogmas of hatred."
-- scrytch, on a book about Bill Gates to the Slashdot crowd

"XML opens the door to interoperable information. My dream: In a decade or so, 'proprietary, noninteroperable information' sounds as silly as 'proprietary, noninteroperable network' does today."
-- Tim Bray (one of the co-authors of XML)

"The big computer industry battle of the future will be waged between Linux and Windows NT."
-- (*The*) Rob Pike, researcher at Lucent Technologies Inc.'s Bell Labs unit, 1999-03-18

Youth haven't got expectations about how things "ought" to work, so they're very easy to exploit. It's not hard to imagine the Spice Girls adding a line or two about how much they love Coke or Pepsi.
-- pjones at slashdot.com, talking about new models for the music industry in the MP3 Age

"They are just six guys, six software workers out of thousands in the Triangle. But what they do in this sparse, two-room office in a musty building a few miles from corporate headquarters could affect how the rest of us work and live in the 21st century."
-- Joel B. Obermayer, describing the developers at Red Hat Software

Children - the universal scapegoats for any political agenda.


This is our world now... the world of the electron and the switch, the beauty of the baud. We make use of a service already existing without paying for what could be dirt-cheap if it wasn't run by profiteering gluttons, and you call us criminals. We explore... and you call us criminals. We seek after knowledge... and you call us criminals. We exist without skin colour, without nationality, without religious bias... and you call us criminals. You build atomic bombs, you wage wars, you murder, cheat, and lie to us and try to make us believe it's for our own good, yet we're the criminals.

Yes, I am a criminal. My crime is that of curiosity. My crime is that of judging people by what they say and think, not what they look like.

My crime is that of outsmarting you, something that you will never forgive me for. I am a hacker, and this is my manifesto. You may stop this individual, but you can't stop us all... after all, we're all alike.

-- The Mentor, "The Conscience of a Hacker"

[a note to the government agents currently viewing this web page, accidentally I am sure: I am not a hacker, but I think that the above quotation is thought-provoking.]


The big companies have no future. By and large, there are no more advantages to big business. There are only disadvantages.
-- Peter Drucker, "The Relentless Contrarian", Wired magazine interview

They're worried about becoming obsolete. They [the music industry association] position themselves as middlemen, but -- guess what -- the Internet gets rid of middlemen.
-- Robert Schroeder, chairman of Diamond Multimedia (Oct. 1998)

"So... I'm good enough to pay INTO all this shit. Good enough to pay for other people to go to the doctor or dentist. Oh, that's fair. I worked at a convenience store in high school. I watched families of 6 come in and give each kid one food stamp. Each one of the kids would buy one piece of penny candy. Each would get back 99 cents in cash. Then their parents would come in 2 minutes later and buy 2 pack of cigarettes. All with change. Good to know government dollars are being spent on better things than my teeth, huh?"
-- Michelle, complaining about dental coverage

Politics is a pendulum whose swings between anarchy and tyranny are fueled by perpetually rejuvenated illusions.
-- Albert Einstein

1935 will go down in History! For the first time, a civilized nation has full gun registration! Our streets will be safer, our police more efficient and the world will follow our lead to the future!
-- Adolf Hitler


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