Think about it, and about how you define ”knowledge”. I think it’s important to realize that a definition of knowledge is tricky, and that the vast majority of people don’t have one and have never considered having one.
— Fritz in Facebook post*
Even the hairs of your head are all numbered.
— Jesus, Matthew 10:29-30 via Stephen Greenblatt, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern
Lucretius acknowledged, but “what has been created gives rise to its own function.” That is, he explained, “Sight did not exist before the birth of the eyes, nor speech before the creation of the tongue." These organs were not created in order to fulfill a purposed end.
— Stephen Greenblatt, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern
Are you famliar with the term horror vacui?
— David
An engaged reader, Poggio knew, was prone to alter his text in order to get it to make sense, but such alterations, over centuries, inevitably led to wholesale corruptions. It was better that monastic scribes had been forced to copy everything exactly at it appeared before their eyes, even those things that made no sense at all.
— Stephen Greenblatt, The Swerve: How the World Became Modern
Gould argues that during this period just after the Cambrian explosion there was a greater disparity of anatomical body plans (phyla) than exist today. However most of these phyla left no modern descendants. All of the Burgess animals, Gould argues, were exquisitely adapted to their environment, and there exists little evidence that the survivors were any better adapted than their extinct contemporaries.... Gould stressed that his argument was not based on randomness but rather contingency; a process by which historical outcomes arise from an unpredictable sequence of antecedent states, where any change in the sequence alters the final result. Because fitness for existing conditions does not guarantee long-term survival — particularly when conditions change catastrophically — the survival of many species depends more on luck than conventional features of anatomical superiority. Gould maintains that, "traits that enhance survival during an extinction do so in ways that are incidental and unrelated to the causes of their evolution in the first place." Gould earlier coined the term exaptation to describe fortuitously beneficial traits, which are adaptive but arise for reasons other than incremental natural selection.
— "Wonderful Life (book)," Wikipedia
But it was an anonymous law review article that offered the most poignant and prescient warning: “The fabric of human social relationships, dependent upon each person's having only limited knowledge about other people"
— Jill Lepore, If Then: How the Simulmatics Corporation Invented the Future
By 1960, anyone who wanted to find out what had happened over the course of the day could watch the evening news on television. It was easy to perceive this as a race, in which case, the best strategy is: speed up. But the best newspapers realized that it really wasn't a race, and that the newspapers' best strategy would be: go deeper... No longer merely chronicling events but instead investigating and analyzing them
— Jill Lepore, If Then: How the Simulmatics Corporation Invented the Future
The Schlesingers' backyard bordered the Galbraiths' backyard.
— Jill Lepore, If Then: How the Simulmatics Corporation Invented the Future
Rabbit book
— Google suggested search term "based on your recent activity" after I typed "Rabbit"
The question begs an inescapably poignant truth of the kind that dims so many other pioneering achievements in fields that extend beyond and are quite unrelated to this one. The reality, as seen from today's perspective, is simply: However distinguished... and however masterfuly... their achievements seem nowadays to have been only stepping-stones, and their magnificent volumes of work very little more than curios, to be traded, hoarded, and forgotten.
— Simon Winchester, The Professor and the Madman
I found myself all of a sudden saying to him: "It's just a computer. It's really a small thing in the world you know."
— Tracy Kidder, The Soul of a New Machine
Rasala once remarked, “Yeah, the further you get from doing it yourself, the more demons you see.
— Tracy Kidder, The Soul of a New Machine
With tiny changes made to the domain names — like instead of, an “rn” in place of an “m.”
— Elizabeth A. Harris and Nicole Perlroth, "Why on Earth Is Someone Stealing Unpublished Book Manuscripts?," The New York Times
Don't forget I'm a poet and my nose shows it. It's a Longfellow.
— Sid
I use a mechanical pencil and I clicked it and it went out two inches on me.
— Spectrum customer service person over the phone explaining why they said "oh!"
Bad writing.
— Lily
That's gonna be traumatic. She's never going to forget that. But i'm going to forget about it tomorrow.
— Lily after we helped a woman in a minor accident on the highway.
Scholarship by walking around.
— Timothy Egan, Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis
He has to assume that communications about this matter are being read by Russia, and assume that any government data or email could be falsified.
— Thomas P. Bossert, "I Was the Homeland Security Adviser to Trump. We’re Being Hacked," The New York Times