Unanswered Questions

Feynman (1918–1988) was a theoretical physicist known for his work in quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics (for which he received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1965), and physics. He pioneered the field of quantum computing, and introducing the concept of nanotechnology (in 1959!) He taught at the California Institute of Technology from … See the Meme

A Diller of a Time

She ought to know: she had six children (and outlived three of them). Born Phyllis Ada Driver (Diller was her first husband’s surname) Diller was the first female American stand-up comic to become a household name. She was best known for her eccentric stage persona, her self-deprecating humor, her wild hair and clothes, and her … See the Meme

I’m Afraid They’re Both Right

Publius Cornelius Tacitus (c.56–c.120 AD) was a senator and historian of the Roman Empire. He is considered to be one of the greatest Roman historians, and is known for the brevity and compactness of his Latin prose. Howard Phillips Lovecraft (1890–1937) was an American writer who achieved posthumous fame through his influential works of horror … See the Meme

The Ultimate Weapon

Col. Thomas Edward Lawrence (1888–1935) was a British archaeologist, military officer, diplomat, and writer renowned for his liaison role in the Arab Revolt during WWI.

NASA’s Job

The full context of this quote, from my eulogy of Jerry in 1999: Jerry was a brilliant and uncompromising engineer. One of his strengths was keeping humans in the loop: It’s relatively easy to design a machine. It’s a lot harder to design it well so that it helps people, rather than get in their … See the Meme

Get a Read on This

Addison (1672–1719) was an English essayist, poet, playwright, and politician, and the co-founder of The Spectator magazine in 1711. Yep: they had magazines in 1711.

Plato Speaks

Think before you speak. Plato (c425–c350 BC) was a Greek philosopher and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. He is widely considered the most pivotal figure in the development of philosophy, especially the Western tradition. Unlike nearly all of his philosophical contemporaries, Plato’s entire … See the Meme

Orwell on Thinking

It’s Orwell Week (#3 of 3) George Orwell was a pen name for Eric Arthur Blair (1903–1950), an English novelist, essayist, journalist, and critic best known for the novella Animal Farm (1945), and Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949). Obviously, the term “Orwellian” – descriptive of totalitarian or authoritarian social practices – refers to his writing. He himself … See the Meme