It is all the same whether one has good ideas oneself or is prepared to listen to someone else who is offering good advice.


Ideas come to us out of order.

Simon Flexner

Only a fool learns from their own mistakes. The wise learn from the mistakes of others.

Otto van Bismark

When the enemy is making a false movement we must take good care not to interrupt.



All efforts against the prevailing trend of history - which is not always obvious - are doomed to failure.

Fernand Braudel

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

Mark Twain

Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.

Mike Tyson

The future is already here. It's just not evenly distributed.

William Gibson

The eye seldom sees what the mind does not anticipate.

Robertson Davies

Everyday we get a front seat to history.

John H. White

Journalism is the first rough draft of history.

Philip Graham

A lag stretches between the happenings of a historical process and it's recognition.

Barbara Tuchman

Wisdom lies not in regretting the inevitable but in adapting oneself to the altered condition of things.

Saddlery and Harness magazine, 1895

The best way to predict the future is to invent it.

Alan Kay

What the smartest people do on the weekend is what everyone else will do during the week in ten years.

Chris Dixon

Dreams are maps.

Carl Sagan

Grief for something lost and fear of losing it amount to the same thing.


Happiness leaves little trace in history.

Fernand Braudel

The Namche Barwa will one day fall into the Tsangpo gorge and block the river, which will then turn aside and flow over the Doshong La

Kongbo Tibetan Prophecy

The world is moving to the left.

Lyndon B. Johnson


Wilderness is the raw material out of which man has hammered the artifact called civilization. Wilderness was never a homogeneous raw material. It was very diverse, and the resulting artifacts are very diverse. These differences in the end-product are known as cultures. The rich diversity of the world’s cultures reflect a corresponding diversity in the wilds that gave them birth.

Aldo Leopold

The steepest places have been at all times the asylum of liberty.

Baron de Tott

Italy is cultivated right up to the mountain tops.


India lives in its villages.


With time, England will be only London.

King James 1st

A great city, whose image dwells in the memory of man, is the type of some great idea.

Benjamin Disraeli

These regions, which yet form only an immense wilderness, will become one of the richest and most powerful countries in the world. Nothing is missing except civilized man, and he is at the door.

Alexis de Tocqueville 1831

The United States is a nation of compromises.

Shelby Foote

The government of the United States is a government of laws, and not of men.

John Adams

Families are always rising and falling in America.

Nathaniel Hawthorne

The same logic that causes big rivers always to flow past big cities causes cheap farms sometimes to be marooned by spring floods.

Aldo Leopold


Given enough time, hydrogen starts to wonder where it came from.

Edward Robert Harrison

It is only slightly overstating the case to say that physics is the study of symmetry.

PW Anderson

Physics is simple only when analyzed locally.

Charles Misner

The universe is not only queerer than we suppose, but queerer than we can suppose.

JBS Haldane

The imagination of nature is far, far greater than the imagination of man.

Richard Feynman

We should look for what is, and not for what we think should be.

Albert Einstein

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

Sherlock Holmes

An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made in a very narrow field.

Niels Bohr


The Stone Age did not end for lack of stone.

Sheikh Zaki Yamani

The fundamental rule of technological progress: if something can be done, it probably will be done, and possibly already has been.

Edward Snowden

Journalists do a better job of covering revolution than evolution.

James Reston

In a way everything is technology. Not only the rapid changes we are quick to label revolutions, but also the long slow improvements in processes and tools.

Fernand Braudel

Napoleon moved no faster than Julius Caesar.

Paul Valéry

All the vibrations of economic life can be grasped through the special case of the metallurgical industry: it sums up everything and paved the way for all that follows.

Stefan Kurowski

When iron succeeded in becoming the most important production material, it was the event of events in the evolution of humanities.

Lewis Morgan

We must catch up morally and internationally with the machine age. We must catch up with it... in such a way as to create peace in the world, or it will destroy us and everyone else. And that we don’t dare contemplate.

Harry Truman

The internet has been the most fundamental change during my lifetime, and for hundreds of years.

Rupert Murdoch

Where labor is dear, it must be supplemented by machines; this is the only way to compete with those countries where it is cheap.

Marc Bloch

Of all the watchdogs, the FCC seems the most eager to sit up and beg or roll over and play dead at the command of Congress.

Drew Pearson


Simplicity is the outcome of technical subtlety; it is the goal, not starting point.

Frederick W. Maitland

Organizations which design systems are restricted to producing designs which are copies of their own communication structures.

Melvin Conway

Software often grows to use the hardware you give it.

Drew Devault

Premature optimization is the root of all evil (or at least most of it) in programming.

Donald Knuth

That language is an instrument of human reason, and not merely a medium for the expression of thought, is a truth generally admitted.

George Boole

Short words are best and the old words when short are best of all.

Winston Churchill

Focusing is about saying no.

Steve Jobs


Val più avere amici in piazza che denari nella cassa.

Italian proverb

Institutions are the shadows of men.


Your margin is my opportunity.

Jeff Bezos

Markets can influence events they can anticipate.

George Soros

Money, said the Seven Sages of Greece, is the blood and soul of men and he who has none wanders dead among the living.

Scipion de Gramont

An estate is a pond, a trade is a spring.

Daniel Defoe

Don’t try to market your way out of a math problem.

Jack Welch


In order to maintain a tolerant society, the society must be intolerant of intolerance.

Karl Popper

There is such an intimate connection between the different parts of Society, that one cannot strike one part without its having repercussions on the others.

Jean François Melon

The freedom of a country can only be measured by its respect for the rights of its citizens.

Edward Snowden

In a crisis the middle class mind tries to assume a lofty detachment from the deep issues of the day.

Max Lerner

The laws are spider webs, they catch the little, but are brushed aside by the big.

Saying in the Spanish Indies

All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.

Leo Tolstoy

Politics is the moat, the walls, beyond which lie the barbarians. Fail to keep them at bay, and everything burns.

Charles Krauthammer

What a convenient thing is a mask. Under the mask every man is equal and the principal magistrates can daily discover for themselves all the little things that concern the people. Behind the mask the doge himself may often be taking a walk.


Understanding political power in a democracy requires understanding elections.

Robert Caro

Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the later.

Thomas Jefferson


The path is made in the walking of it.


En toute chose il faut considérer la fin.

Jean de La Fontaine

You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.

Bob Dylan

The one who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.


Such as thou art, so once was I. As I am now, so shalt thou be.

Edward the Black Prince

A rising tide lifts all boats.

John F. Kennedy

To teach is to learn twice.

Joseph Joubert

If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Harry Truman

The harder you work, the luckier you get.

Gary Player

The fattest fish are caught in the biggest lakes.


The squeaking wheel gets the grease.

Ladybird Johnson

You cannot step in the same river twice.

Greek proverb

When the well is dry, we know the worth of water.

Ben Franklin