Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

Blog Photos Links Archives About

All entries tagged quotes.

You can subscribe to an RSS feed of this list.

Aug 2019

Three Hearts


Shogun There’s a quote I like from James Clavell’s novel Shogun: “It’s a saying they have, that a man has a false heart in his mouth for the world to see, another in his breast to show to his special friends and his family, and the real one, the true one, the secret one, which is never known to anyone except to himself alone, hidden only God knows where.

read more (570 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes tech life / Syndicated: / 0 / 570 words

May 2019

In Search of Knowledge


“We are, finally, all wanderers in search of knowledge. Most of us hold the dream of becoming something better than we are, something larger, richer, in some way more important to the world and ourselves. Too often, the way taken is the wrong way, with too much emphasis on what we want to have, rather than what we wish to become.” — Louis L’Amour via swissmiss
Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 66 words

Apr 2019

Churchill on Giving In


“Never give in, never, never, never–never, in nothing, great or small, large or petty. Never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.” - Churchill Persistence is a virtue, except when it isn’t - there is some amount of good sense necessary to discern when one should just give in. As in most things, a balance is required. Unfortunately, good sense is not always in abundance in today’s world.

read more (71 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 71 words

Learning from failure


Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. – Winston Churchill I already typed the above quote into the post, then realized I had already used it before. Whatever, just goes to show, I’m no stranger to failure. I was reminded of this quote because recently I prepared a demo for a project that didn’t push through. At first I was annoyed at the wasted effort, but I realized that I had wisely taken the demo project as an opportunity to learn/sharpen some skills.

read more (155 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes self-improvement software development / Syndicated: / 0 / 155 words

The Ship of Theseus


I found myself poring over the Wikipedia entry for the Ship of Theseus the other day. If you’re not familiar, it’s basically a thought experiment along the lines of “if a given ship’s parts are replaced at every port it visits, and eventually none of the parts are from the original ship, is it still the same ship?” The thought experiment questions the meaning of identity of a whole composed of many individual parts, such as a ship, or even a human.

read more (250 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes self-improvement / Syndicated: / 0 / 250 words

It is necessary to be lost


“It is necessary to be lost. There is a simple logic to this. You cannot find yourself without first being lost. You cannot catch what you do not drop. You have to open your fist and let what you are clenching fall.” — Cary Tennis @ Salon via karigee
Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 49 words

Mar 2019

Find the others


“Admit it. You aren’t like them. You’re not even close. You may occasionally dress yourself up as one of them, watch the same mindless television shows as they do, maybe even eat the same fast food sometimes. But it seems that the more you try to fit in, the more you feel like an outsider, watching the “normal people” as they go about their automatic existences. For every time you say club passwords like “Have a nice day” and “Weather’s awful today, eh?

read more (188 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 188 words

The Eternal Struggle


“If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.” - E.B. White I am fortunate that with my flexible working schedule I get to choose whether to derp around or to be productive every day.

read more (85 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 85 words
Image source: r/GetMotivated It’s fun to think about what might have been, but often regret is tinged with optimism - the optimism that given another chance, we might have made different decisions and obtained better outcomes. But different doesn’t always mean better, so such visualizations are often pointless speculation.
Posted by under post at / quotes regret / Syndicated: / 0 / 49 words

Whatever doesn't kill you


“Whatever doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.” Nietzche I liked this quote a lot when I was younger and more gung-ho, especially about things like work. In fact, I may have considered it as a bit of a defining quote back then. I guess the idea was ‘ok, we’ll rush in and try anything, at worst we learn a lesson and be better for next time’.

read more (149 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 149 words

Feb 2019

It might have been


“Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been.” ― John Greenleaf Whittier, Maud Muller - Pamphlet It is human nature perhaps, to think about those alternate realities that might have come from different decisions or different dispositions. If only I was braver. If only I was more decisive. If only I didn’t have something holding me back. If only I knew what I knew now.

read more (133 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes regret / Syndicated: / 0 / 133 words
“None of us are getting out of here alive, so please stop treating yourself like an after-thought. Eat the delicious food. Walk in the sunshine. Jump in the ocean. Say the truth that you’re carrying in your heart like hidden treasure. Be silly. Be kind. Be weird. There’s no time for anything else.” — Keanu Reeves via swissmiss
Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 58 words

Debt


For my first few years in elementary school, I didn’t get any pocket money. Instead I’d have a couple of sandwiches and a thermos of water. So I wasn’t used to handling money. One time while waiting for the school bus, I was a bit thirsty but my thermos was already out. For some reason, I decided to borrow five pesos from a classmate to buy a coke from the canteen.

read more (416 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 416 words

This too shall pass


It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence, to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: And this, too, shall pass away. How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride!how consoling in the depth of affliction! - Abraham Lincoln More quotes! I like ones that have a level of ambiguity, a meaning that changes depending on situation.

read more (179 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes / Syndicated: / 0 / 179 words
The quote is from the 1980s cult classic Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure. I didn’t include this movie in my top 10 movies post, but it and the sequel Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey are still among my childhood faves. These wise words are give by the Wyld Stallyns band composed of the epnoymous Bill and Ted, and form the philosophical basis of the future utopian civilization inspired by their music.

read more (161 words)

Posted by under post at / movies quotes Pop Culture / Syndicated: / 1 / 161 words

Nov 2018

The Price for Being the Best


“The price for being the best is always… having to be the best.” Terry Pratchet, Lords and Ladies This is one of my favorite quotes. For context: in the story, one of the characters has a special talent that he can shoe anything anyone gives him (like when you put horseshoes on a horse). And Granny Weatherwax tells him that the price he pays for that talent is that when someone brings him something to shoe, no matter how wild or ridiculous the request, he has to do it.

read more (338 words)

Posted by under post at / quotes Self-Improvement / Syndicated: / 0 / 338 words

Sep 2018

Aug 2018

May 2018

Dec 2017

Nov 2017

“I’m bored’ is a useless thing to say. You live in a great, big, vast world that you’ve seen none percent of. Even the inside of your own mind is endless. It goes on forever, inwardly - you understand? The fact the you’re alive is amazing. So you don’t get to be bored.” - LOUIS C.K.

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Aug 2017

“There has to be a balance, Vin,” he said. “Somehow, we’ll find it. The balance between whom we wish to be and whom we need to be.” He sighed. “But for now,” he said, nodding to the side, “we simply have to be satisfied with who we are.”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

“Life is short and the world is at least half terrible and for every kind stranger, there is one who would break you, though I keep this from my children. I am trying to sell them the world. Any decent realtor, walking you through a real shithole, chirps on about good bones: This place could be beautiful, right? You could make this place beautiful.”

– Good Bones by Maggie Smith

Posted by under notes at / quotes poetry / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Rick: “To live is to risk it all; otherwise you’re just an inert chunk of randomly assembled molecules drifting wherever the universe blows you.”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

May 2017

“Frodo: I can’t do this, Sam. Sam: I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something. Frodo: What are we holding onto, Sam? Sam: That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Mar 2017

Sometimes you have to wonder if we’re living in a Douglas Adams novel

“On its world, the people are people. The leaders are lizards. The people hate the lizards and the lizards rule the people.”

“Odd,” said Arthur, “I thought you said it was a democracy.”

“I did,” said Ford. “It is.”

“So,” said Arthur, hoping he wasn’t sounding ridiculously obtuse, “why don’t the people get rid of the lizards?”

“It honestly doesn’t occur to them,” said Ford. “They’ve all got the vote, so they all pretty much assume that the government they’ve voted in more or less approximates to the government they want.”

“You mean they actually vote for the lizards?”

“Oh yes,” said Ford with a shrug, “of course.”

“But,” said Arthur, going for the big one again, “why?”

“Because if they didn’t vote for a lizard,” said Ford, “the wrong lizard might get in.”


(Source: HHG2G)

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Feb 2017

“The meaning of life is just to be alive. It is so plain and so obvious and so simple. And yet, everybody rushes around in a great panic as if it were necessary to achieve something beyond themselves. To have faith is to trust yourself to the water.”

  • Alan Watts
Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Jan 2017

“Fear is a strange soil. Mainly it grows obedience like corn, which grows in rows and makes weeding easy. But sometimes it grows the potatoes of defiance, which flourish underground.”

  • Small Gods
Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Dec 2016

“Anyway, George comes up to me the first day of filming and he takes one look at the dress and says, ‘You can’t wear a bra under that dress.’ So, I say, ‘Okay, I’ll bite. Why?’ And he says, ‘Because… there’s no underwear in space.’ I promise you this is true, and he says it with such conviction too! Like he had been to space and looked around and he didn’t see any bras or panties or briefs anywhere. Now, George came to my show when it was in Berkeley. He came backstage and explained why you can’t wear your brassiere in other galaxies, and I have a sense you will be going to outer space very soon, so here’s why you cannot wear your brassiere, per George. So, what happens is you go to space and you become weightless. So far so good, right? But then your body expands??? But your bra doesn’t- so you get strangled by your own bra. Now I think that this would make a fantastic obit- so I tell my younger friends that no matter how I go, I want it reported that I drowned in moonlight, strangled by my own bra.”

― Carrie Fisher, Wishful Drinking

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Nov 2016

It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence, to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: “And this, too, shall pass away.” How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the depths of affliction!

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

‘There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that “my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.”’

– Isaac Asimov, Column in Newsweek (21 January 1980) (not really just a US thing)

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Oct 2016

“Every life is in many days, day after day. We walk through ourselves, meeting robbers, ghosts, giants, old men, young men, wives, widows, brothers-in-love, but always meeting ourselves.” - James Joyce, “Ulysses”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

“Debugging is twice as hard as writing the code in the first place. Therefore, if you write the code as cleverly as possible, you are, by definition, not smart enough to debug it.”

— Brian W. Kernighan and P. J. Plauger in The Elements of Programming Style.

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Sep 2016

“I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tanhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears…in…rain. Time to die.”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Aug 2016

“I believe that life is a game, that life is a cruel joke, and that life is what happens when you’re alive and that you might as well lie back and enjoy it.” ― Neil Gaiman, American Gods

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

I met a traveller from an antique land Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand, Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown, And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command, Tell that its sculptor well those passions read Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed: And on the pedestal these words appear: ‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’ Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away – Percy Bysshe Shelly, “Ozymandias”

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

“If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.” - E.B. White

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

Jul 2016

“By taking the risk of trying hard means you are going to make mistakes, and then the most important thing is hopefully realizing that and doing something about it. Being a good dad is not a static thing. Having a good marriage isn’t a static thing. Neither is a democracy. Neither is a friendship. Tomorrow morning you have to start over, continue the process and make adjustments. And if you don’t… it’s a game that moves as you play, and if you don’t move you can’t play” Viggo Mortensen, on Here’s The Thing podcast

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.” - Desmond Tutu

Posted by under notes at / quotes / via facebook / Syndicated: / 0

May 2016

Roy Tang is a:

roytang.net is a personal site, an E/N site, and kind of a commonplace book; I post about a random assortment of topics that interest me including software development, Magic the Gathering, pop culture, gaming, and tech life. This site is perpetually under renovation.