Programming Quotes

Y2K Bug

Much as I would have wanted to pick one from the list of quotes found somewhere in Jeff Atwood’s blog entry a month ago, (or somewhere else among the pages in the links there,) I just can’t. I encountered the said blog from Jake‘s blogroll and is definitely worth a longer look.

What can I say, all the persons there prominent or unfamiliar were all astute. I guess the least I can do is to mention a few:

  • On Ethics: It should be noted that no ethically-trained software engineer would ever consent to write a DestroyBaghdad procedure. Basic professional ethics would instead require him to write a DestroyCity procedure, to which Baghdad could be given as a parameter. (Nathaniel Borenstein)
  • On Whining: There are only two kinds of programming languages: those people always bitch about and those nobody uses. (Bjarne Stroustrup)
  • On Leisure: Computer language design is just like a stroll in the park. Jurassic Park, that is. (Larry Wall)
  • On Sex: Software is like sex: It’s better when it’s free. (Linus Torvalds)
  • On Natural Language: Projects promoting programming in natural language are intrinsically doomed to fail. (Edsger Dijkstra)
  • On Hacking: First learn computer science and all the theory. Next develop a programming style. Then forget all that and just hack. (George Carrette)
  • On Compromise: You can either have software quality or you can have pointer arithmetic, but you cannot have both at the same time. (Bertrand Meyer)
  • On Class Struggle: Classes struggle, some classes triumph, others are eliminated. (Mao Zedong) – Note: yup, this one qualifies folks!
  • On Hell: There is not a fiercer hell than the failure in a great object. (John Keats) – Note: refer to the previous note…
  • On Orgasm: Memory is like an orgasm. It’s a lot better if you don’t have to fake it. (Seymour Cray)
  • On Buildings: If builders built buildings the way programmers wrote programs, then the first woodpecker that came along would destroy civilisation. (Gerald Weinberg)
  • On Telepathy: Computers are good at following instructions, but not at reading your mind. (Donald Knuth)
  • On Passing The Blame: Any inaccuracies in this index may be explained by the fact that it has been sorted with the help of a computer. (Donald Knuth)
  • On Happiness: You’re bound to be unhappy if you optimize everything. (Donald Knuth)
  • On Measurement: Measuring programming progress by lines of code is like measuring aircraft building progress by weight. (Bill Gates)
  • On The Rat Race: Programmers are in a race with the Universe to create bigger and better idiot-proof programs, while the Universe is trying to create bigger and better idiots. So far the Universe is winning. (Rich Cook)
  • On Gun Shooting: I did say something along the lines of “C makes it easy to shoot yourself in the foot; C++ makes it harder, but when you do, it blows your whole leg off.” (Bjarne Stroustrup)
  • On Simplicity: I have always wished that my computer would be as easy to use as my telephone. My wish has come true. I no longer know how to use my telephone. (Bjarne Stroustrup)
  • On Virtue: Most of you are familiar with the virtues of a programmer. There are three, of course: laziness, impatience, and hubris. (Larry Wall)
  • On Response: When someone says, “I want a programming language in which I need only say what I want done,” give him a lollipop. (Alan Perlis)

The image’s from here btw.

Quote of the Day: On Judgment

I encountered the quote on my mini the other day

“Good judgment comes from experience, and often experience comes from bad judgment.” – Rita Mae Brown

No wonder Dilbert never made it big. :))