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definitions quotes

Related Tags mark ardis, elbert hubbard, seventh chromosome, being told, oliver herford, cerebus, bitty machines, j mccabe, michael jackson, thomas k connellan, see also computer, goodstein, marcel marceau, jim warner, joan of arc

sushi, n.:
When that-which-may-still-be-alive is put on top of rice and
strapped on with electrical tape.

Everyone says that having power is a great responsibility. This is
a lot of bunk. Responsibility is when someone can blame you if something
goes wrong. When you have power you are surrounded by people whose job it
is to take the blame for your mistakes. If they're smart, that is.
-- Cerebus, "On Governing"

The Sixth Commandment of Frisbee:
The greatest single aid to distance is for the disc to be going in a
direction you did not want. (Goes the wrong way = Goes a long way.)
-- Dan Roddick

Ludwig Boltzmann, who spend much of his life studying statistical
mechanics died in 1906 by his own hand. Paul Ehrenfest, carrying
on the work, died similarly in 1933. Now it is our turn.
-- Goodstein, States of Matter

The Official MBA Handbook on doing company business on an airplane:
Do not work openly on top-secret company cost documents unless
you have previously ascertained that the passenger next to you
is blind, a rock musician on mood-ameliorating drugs, or the
unfortunate possessor of a forty-seventh chromosome.

The Second Law of Thermodynamics:
If you think things are in a mess now, just wait!
-- Jim Warner

"Do you smell something burning or is it me?"
-- Joan of Arc

Unintelligible answers to insoluble problems.

One Page Principle:
A specification that will not fit on one page of 8.5x11 inch
paper cannot be understood.
-- Mark Ardis

On-line, adj.:
The idea that a human being should always be accessible to a computer.

aquadextrous, adj.:
Possessing the ability to turn the bathtub faucet on and off
with your toes.
-- Rich Hall, "Sniglets"

life, n.:
Learning about people the hard way -- by being one.

Laws of Serendipity:
(1) In order to discover anything, you must be looking for something.
(2) If you wish to make an improved product, you must already
be engaged in making an inferior one.

Kludge, n.:
An ill-assorted collection of poorly-matching parts, forming a
distressing whole.
-- Jackson Granholm, "Datamation"

politics, n.:
A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.
The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.
-- Ambrose Bierce

Karlson's Theorem of Snack Food Packages:
For all P, where P is a package of snack food, P is a SINGLE-SERVING
package of snack food.

Gibson the Cat's Corrolary:
For all L, where L is a package of lunch meat, L is Gibson's package
of lunch meat.

Admiration, n.:
Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to ourselves.
-- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"

Kime's Law for the Reward of Meekness:
Turning the other cheek merely ensures two bruised cheeks.

[International Business Machines Corp.] Also known as Itty Bitty
Machines or The Lawyer's Friend. The dominant force in computer
marketing, having supplied worldwide some 75% of all known hardware
and 10% of all software. To protect itself from the litigious envy
of less successful organizations, such as the US government, IBM
employs 68% of all known ex-Attorneys' General.

strategy, n.:
A comprehensive plan of inaction.

Flash! Flash! I love you! ...but we only have fourteen hours to
save the earth!

Kafka's Law:
In the fight between you and the world, back the world.
-- Franz Kafka, "RS's 1974 Expectation of Days"

gossip, n.:
Hearing something you like about someone you don't.
-- Earl Wilson

jogger, n.:
An odd sort of person with a thing for pain.

Rocky's Lemma of Innovation Prevention:
Unless the results are known in advance, funding agencies will
reject the proposal.

curtation, n.:
The enforced compression of a string in the fixed-length field
The problem of fitting extremely variable-length strings such as names,
addresses, and item descriptions into fixed-length records is no trivial
matter. Neglect of the subtle art of curtation has probably alienated more
people than any other aspect of data processing. You order Mozart's "Don
Giovanni" from your record club, and they invoice you $24.95 for MOZ DONG.
The witless mapping of the sublime onto the ridiculous! Equally puzzling is
the curtation that produces the same eight characters, THE BEST, whether you
order "The Best of Wagner", "The Best of Schubert", or "The Best of the Turds".
Similarly, wine lovers buying from computerized wineries twirl their glasses,
check their delivery notes, and inform their friends, "A rather innocent,
possibly overtruncated CAB SAUV 69 TAL." The squeezing of fruit into 10
columns has yielded such memorable obscenities as COX OR PIP. The examples
cited are real, and the curtational methodology which produced them is still
with us.

Curtation of Don Giovanni by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Lorenzo da
Ponte, as performed by the computerized billing ensemble of the Internat'l
Preview Society, Great Neck (sic), N.Y.
-- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"

Barach's Rule:
An alcoholic is a person who drinks more than his own physician.

Expense Accounts, n.:
Corporate food stamps.

Commoner's three laws of ecology:
(1) No action is without side-effects.
(2) Nothing ever goes away.
(3) There is no free lunch.

cursor address, n:
"Hello, cursor!"
-- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"