Friday, February 28, 2014

Rules Of Classroom Engagement

To the chief counsel of the Idaho State Legislature:

In light of the bill permitting guns on our state's college and university campuses, which is likely to be approved by the state House of Representatives in the coming days, I have a matter of practical concern that I hope you can help with: When may I shoot a student?

I am a biology professor, not a lawyer, and I had never considered bringing a gun to work until now.  But since many of my students are likely to be armed, I thought it would be a good idea to even the playing field.

I have had encounters with disgruntled students over the years, some of whom seemed quite upset, but I always assumed that when they reached into their backpacks they were going for a pencil. ...  But now that we'll all be packing heat, I would like legal instruction in the rules of classroom engagement. ...

-- Greg Hampikian, a professor of biology and criminal justice at Boise State University, New York Times Op Ed, 27 February 2014

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Everything Else Is Secondary

Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.  Don't be trapped by dogma -- which is living with the results of other people's thinking.  Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice.  And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.  They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

-- Steve Jobs (24 February 1955 - 5 October 2011), Founder of Apple Inc., Stanford University commencement address, 12 June 2005

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

I Don't Plan

I don't plan to leave the country.  I don't plan to resign.  I am a legitimately elected president.  What is happening today, mostly, it is vandalism, banditism and a coup d'etat.

-- Viktor F. Yanukovych, Ukraine's president, on television, 22 February 2014

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

RIP Harold Ramis

My characters aren't losers.  They're rebels.  They win by their refusal to play by everyone else's rules.

-- Harold Ramis (21 November 1944 - 24 February 2014), American writer, director, and actor

Back in the day, I liked Bill Murray's movies.  Then I realized that his movies were only good when Harold Ramis was also in them.  Then I realized that Harold Ramis was writing all these great movies.  His writing credits include: 
  • Animal House
  • Caddyshack (& directed)
  • Stripes
  • Ghostbusters
  • Groundhog Day (& directed)
  • Analyze This (& directed)
  • Year One (& directed)
... plus over two dozen more

Monday, February 24, 2014

Everything Goes Smoothly

This is not like Russia.  Everything goes smoothly.

-- Norwegian tourist Ivar Bogeberg on the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia

Friday, February 21, 2014

Light Seeping In

When you notice light seeping into your coffin, it's hard to go on pretending that you're still dead.

-- John Burdett (1951-), British crime novelist, Bangkok Haunts (2007)

Thursday, February 20, 2014


We will come out of Maidan either free or slaves.  But we don't want to be slaves.

-- Serhiy Sobolev, a member of Ukraine's Parliament, describing the protest standoff in Kiev's Independence Square, known as Maidan, New York Times, 19 February 2014

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


It is becoming increasingly clear to judges that if they rule against same-sex marriage their grandchildren will regard them as bigots.

-- Andrew M. Koppelman, a law professor at Northwestern, on why courts are backing away from bans on gay marriage, New York Times, 15 February 2014

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Naked Ape

We're just a conceited naked ape, but in our minds we're some "divine legend" and we see ourselves as some sort of god, seeing we can decide what will live and what will die, what will be saved and what will be destroyed, but honestly we're just a bunch of primates out of control.

-- Paul Watson (1950-), founder of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, envionmental activist, "Sharkwater" documentary

Monday, February 17, 2014

Worth More Than Money

An individual cannot live after you extract the blood from his veins.  The strongest bank in the United States will last only so long as the people will have sufficient confidence in it to keep their money there.  In fact, the confidence of the people is worth more than money.

-- Carter Godwin Woodson (1875-1950), African American historian, author, and founder of Black History Month, The Mis-Education of the Negro (1933)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Conformity Of Knowledge

If we value independence, if we are disturbed by the growing conformity of knowledge, of values, of attitudes, which our present system induces, then we may wish to set up conditions of learning which make for uniqueness, for self-direction, and for self-initiated learning.

-- Carl Ransom Rogers (1902-1987), American psychologist, "On Becoming A Person" (1961)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

A Year

I give them a year.

-- Ray Bloch, musical director for "The Ed Sullivan Show," on the Beatles, when they made their first live appearance on American television 50 years ago, 9 February 1964

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Tell My Story

I just want to make sure I could tell my story the way I want to tell it. I just want to own my truth.

-- Michael Sam, who is expected to be a top draft pick in the NFL, announcing that he is gay, New York Times, 10 February 2014

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

RIP Shirley Temple

Good luck needs no explanation.

-- Shirley Temple Black (23 April 1928 - 10 February 2014), American film and television actress, singer, dancer, and Ambassador to Ghana and Czechoslovakia

Monday, February 10, 2014

Becoming A Sensor

By having these devices in our pockets and using them more and more, you're somehow becoming a sensor for the world intelligence community.

-- Philippe Langlois, founder of the Paris-based company Priority One Security, on agencies' ability to harvest personal data from users of smartphones, New York Times, 28 January 2014

Friday, February 07, 2014

Hard Core

Nothing says "hard-core" like being cast out by Al Qaeda.

-- William McCants of the Brookings Institution, after Al Qaeda's leadership cut ties with a militant group, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, New York Times, 4 February 2014

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Spring Framework

Goal of the Spring framework is to take statically-typed, verifiable code and turn it into unsafe strings validated poorly at runtime.

-- John A. De Goes, @jdegoes via Twitter, 19 December 2013

Wednesday, February 05, 2014


The climate of Barrow is Arctic.  Temperatures range from cold as shit to fucking freezing.

-- Steve Niles, 30 Days of Night

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

What Good Is The Warmth

What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.

-- John Steinbeck (1902-1968), American writer, 1962 Nobel Laureate in Literature, Travels with Charley: In Search of America (1962)

Monday, February 03, 2014

If There Must Be Trouble

If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.

-- Thomas Paine (1737-1809), English-American political activist, author, political theorist, and revolutionary, The American Crisis (1776 - 1783), The Crisis No. I