Freebsd Fortunes 2
Fortune: 247 - 256 of 1371 from Freebsd Fortunes 2
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One night the captain of a tanker saw a light dead ahead. He
directed his signalman to flash a signal to the light which went...
"Change course 10 degrees South."
The reply was quickly flashed back...
"You change course 10 degrees North."
The captain was a little annoyed at this reply and sent a further
"I am a captain. Change course 10 degrees South."
Back came the reply...
"I am an able-seaman. Change course 10 degrees North."
The captain was outraged at this reply and send a message....
"I am a 240,000 tonne tanker. CHANGE course 10 degrees South!"
Back came the reply...
"I am a LIGHTHOUSE. Change course 10 degrees North!!!!"
-- Cruising Helmsman, "On The Right Course"
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One of the questions that comes up all the time is: How enthusiastic
is our support for UNIX?
Unix was written on our machines and for our machines many years ago.
Today, much of UNIX being done is done on our machines. Ten percent of our
VAXs are going for UNIX use. UNIX is a simple language, easy to understand,
easy to get started with. It's great for students, great for somewhat casual
users, and it's great for interchanging programs between different machines.
And so, because of its popularity in these markets, we support it. We have
good UNIX on VAX and good UNIX on PDP-11s.
It is our belief, however, that serious professional users will run
out of things they can do with UNIX. They'll want a real system and will end
up doing VMS when they get to be serious about programming.
With UNIX, if you're looking for something, you can easily and quickly
check that small manual and find out that it's not there. With VMS, no matter
what you look for -- it's literally a five-foot shelf of documentation -- if
you look long enough it's there. That's the difference -- the beauty of UNIX
is it's simple; and the beauty of VMS is that it's all there.
-- Ken Olsen, president of DEC, DECWORLD Vol. 8 No. 5, 1984
[It's been argued that the beauty of UNIX is the same as the beauty of Ken
Olsen's brain. Ed.]
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...a report citing a study by Dr. Thomas C. Chalmers, of the Mount Sinai
Medical Center in New York, which compared two groups that were being used
to test the theory that ascorbic acid is a cold preventative. "The group
on placebo who thought they were on ascorbic acid," says Dr. Chalmers,
"had fewer colds than the group on ascorbic acid who thought they were
The placebo is proof that there is no real separation between mind and body.
Illness is always an interaction between both. It can begin in the mind and
affect the body, or it can begin in the body and affect the mind, both of
which are served by the same bloodstream. Attempts to treat most mental
diseases as though they were completely free of physical causes and attempts
to treat most bodily diseases as though the mind were in no way involved must
be considered archaic in the light of new evidence about the way the human
-- Norman Cousins,
"Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient"
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Penn's aunts made great apple pies at low prices. No one else in
town could compete with the pie rates of Penn's aunts.
During the American Revolution, a Britisher tried to raid a farm. He
stumbled across a rock on the ground and fell, whereupon an aggressive Rhode
Island Red hopped on top. Seeing this, the farmer commented, "Chicken catch
A wife started serving chopped meat, Monday hamburger, Tuesday meat
loaf, Wednesday tartar steak, and Thursday meatballs. On Friday morning her
husband snarled, "How now, ground cow?"
A journalist, thrilled over his dinner, asked the chef for the recipe.
Retorted the chef, "Sorry, we have the same policy as you journalists, we
never reveal our sauce."
A new chef from India was fired a week after starting the job. He
kept favoring curry.
A couple of kids tried using pickles instead of paddles for a Ping-Pong
game. They had the volley of the Dills.
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People of all sorts of genders are reporting great difficulty,
these days, in selecting the proper words to refer to those of the female
"Lady," "woman," and "girl" are all perfectly good words, but
misapplying them can earn one anything from the charge of vulgarity to a good
swift smack. We are messing here with matters of deference, condescension,
respect, bigotry, and two vague concepts, age and rank. It is troubling
enough to get straight who is really what. Those who deliberately misuse
the terms in a misbegotten attempt at flattery are asking for it.
A woman is any grown-up female person. A girl is the un-grown-up
version. If you call a wee thing with chubby cheeks and pink hair ribbons a
"woman," you will probably not get into trouble, and if you do, you will be
able to handle it because she will be under three feet tall. However, if you
call a grown-up by a child's name for the sake of implying that she has a
youthful body, you are also implying that she has a brain to match.
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"Perhaps he is not honest," Mr. Frostee said inside Cobb's head,
sounding a bit worried.
"Of course he isn't," Cobb answered. "What we have to look out for
is him calling the cops anyway, or trying to blackmail us for more money."
"I think you should kill him and eat his brain," Mr. Frostee
"That's not the answer to *every* problem in interpersonal relations,"
Cobb said, hopping out.
-- Rudy Rucker, "Software"
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Phases of a Project:
(4) Search for the Guilty.
(5) Punishment for the Innocent.
(6) Distinction for the Uninvolved.
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Price Wang's programmer was coding software. His fingers danced upon
the keyboard. The program compiled without an error message, and the program
ran like a gentle wind.
Excellent!" the Price exclaimed, "Your technique is faultless!"
"Technique?" said the programmer, turning from his terminal, "What I
follow is the Tao -- beyond all technique. When I first began to program I
would see before me the whole program in one mass. After three years I no
longer saw this mass. Instead, I used subroutines. But now I see nothing.
My whole being exists in a formless void. My senses are idle. My spirit,
free to work without a plan, follows its own instinct. In short, my program
writes itself. True, sometimes there are difficult problems. I see them
coming, I slow down, I watch silently. Then I change a single line of code
and the difficulties vanish like puffs of idle smoke. I then compile the
program. I sit still and let the joy of the work fill my being. I close my
eyes for a moment and then log off."
Price Wang said, "Would that all of my programmers were as wise!"
-- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
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"Reintegration complete," ZORAC advised. "We're back in the
universe again..." An unusually long pause followed, "...but I don't
know which part. We seem to have changed our position in space." A
spherical display in the middle of the floor illuminated to show the
starfield surrounding the ship.
"Several large, artificial constructions are approaching us,"
ZORAC announced after a short pause. "The designs are not familiar, but
they are obviously the products of intelligence. Implications: we have
been intercepted deliberately by a means unknown, for a purpose unknown,
and transferred to a place unknown by a form of intelligence unknown.
Apart from the unknowns, everything is obvious."
-- James P. Hogan, "Giants Star"
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Reporters like Bill Greider from the Washington Post and Him
Naughton of the New York Times, for instance, had to file long, detailed,
and relatively complex stories every day -- while my own deadline fell
every two weeks -- but neither of them ever seemed in a hurry about
getting their work done, and from time to time they would try to console
me about the terrible pressure I always seemed to be laboring under.
Any $100-an-hour psychiatrist could probably explain this problem
to me, in thirteen or fourteen sessions, but I don't have time for that.
No doubt it has something to do with a deep-seated personality defect, or
maybe a kink in whatever blood vessel leads into the pineal gland... On
the other hand, it might be something as simple & basically perverse as
whatever instinct it is that causes a jackrabbit to wait until the last
possible second to dart across the road in front of a speeding car.
-- Hunter S. Thompson, "Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail"