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List of quotes

Some of my favorite quotes that stuck with me forever.


  • Ethics is informal politics.
  • Everything before the word “but” is bullshit.
  • I don’t believe in zero-sum games. (Scott Alexander)
  • People only exist when you need them.


  • Measured simply by numbers of users, the current leaders [in almost any field] will be mostly mediocre. Look at Windows. (Paul Graham)
  • It is better to be technically elegant with a higher learning curve, than to be easy to use, and technically crap. (Aaron Griffin)
  • Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.
  • If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out. (George Orwell)
  • Perfect is the enemy of good.


  • The most competent people, with weak processes, will screw up. (Chris Peterson?)
  • Plans are useless, but planning is indispensable. (recounted by Dwight Eisenhower)
  • Nobody should start to undertake a large project. You start with a small trivial project, and you should never expect it to get large. (Linus Torvalds)
  • Practice energy management, not time management.


  • I told him that he cannot see the future because there’s nothing there to see; it hasn’t been built, yet. (Chris Peterson)
  • If I could give my younger self one piece of advice, I wouldn’t say anything. (Eric Lander, paraphrased1)
  • Find what you love and let it kill you.
  • Talk is cheap. Show me the code. (Linus Torvalds)

I suppose if we couldn't laugh at things that don't make sense,
we couldn't react to a lot of life.

  1. From the USAMO 2021 awards ceremony. 

Updated Sun 28 Nov 2021, 12:13:14 UTC by 8155d871d3a1