In this section, I have included some geek quotes which abstracts the
slice of geek culture. If you have some Geek Thoughts, send it to me at
firstname.lastname@example.org, It will be published
Laws of Computer Programming:
Any given program, when running, is obsolete.
Any given program costs more and takes longer.
If a program is useful, it will have to be changed.
If a program is useless, it will have to be documented.
Any given program will expand to fill all available memory.
The value of a program is proportional to the weight of its output.
Program complexity grows until it exceeds the capability of the programmer
who must maintain it.
Make it possible for programmers to write programs in English, and you
will find that programmers cannot write in English.
SIGPLAN Notices, Vol 2 No 2
The computer programmer ... is a creator of universe for which he alone
is the lawgiver ... No playwright, no stage director, no emperor, however
powerful, has ever exercised such absolute authority to arrange a stage
or a field of battle and to command such unswervingly dutiful actors or
"A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking."
"A slower system is better than an incorrect one."
Mark Diekhans (email@example.com)
"The most effective debugging tool is still careful thought, coupled
with judiciously placed print statements."
Morphous from Matrix
All programmers are optimists. Perhaps this modern sorcery especially
attracts those who believe in happy endings and fairy godmothers. Perhaps
the hundreds of nitty frustrations drive away all but those who habitually
focus on the end goal. Perhaps it is merely that computers are young,
programmers are younger, and the young are always optimists. But however
the selection process works, the result is indisputable:
"This time it will surely run," or "I just found the last
Frederick Brooks, Jr., The Mythical Man Month
Any type of System, whether its human system or computer system may fail.
The reliability of a system is not the absence of failure, but the ability
to recover soon from it. So we must be ready for the failure and the system
must be ready to recover.
balakumar .m [yeah it's mine]
That's the thing about people who think they hate computers. What they
really hate is lousy programmers.
Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle in "Oath of Fealty"
The last thing one knows in constructing a work is what to put first.
The only way to learn a new programming language is by writing programs
"A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved
from a simple system that worked."
John Gall, Systemantics
"Beware of programmers carrying screwdrivers."
"And remember, rebooting your brain can be tricky."
Eric Townsend (erict@flatline)
"As a rule software systems do not work well until they have been
used, and have failed repeatedly, in real applications."
Dave Parnas, Communications of the ACM
"...one of the main causes of the fall of the Roman Empire was that,
lacking zero, they had no way to indicate successful termination of their
Computers are the most fun you can have with anything that isn't breathing.
Bruce Walker, CACM Forum
"Computers are like Old Testament gods; lots of rules and no mercy."
Information Passing: <BON>
Programmer to Team Leader
"We can't do this proposed project. **CANNOT**. It will involve
a major design change and no one in our team knows the design of this
legacy system. And above that, nobody in our company knows the language
in which this application has been written. So even if somebody wants
to work on it, they can't. If you ask my personal opinion, the company
should never take these type of projects."
Team Leader to Project Manager
"This project will involve a design change. Currently, we don't
have any staff with experience in this type of work. Also, the language
is unfamiliar to us, so we will have to arrange for some training if we
take this project. In my personal opinion, we are not ready to take on
a project of this nature."
Project Manager to 1st Level Manager
"This project involves a design change in the system and we don't
have much experience in that area. Also, not many people in our company
are appropriately trained for it. In my personal opinion, we might be
able to do the project but we would need more time than usual to complete
1st Level Manager to Senior Level Manager
"This project involves design re-engineering. We have some people
who have worked in this area and others who know the implementation language.
So they can train other people. In my personal opinion we should take
this project, but with caution."
Senior Level Manager to CEO
"This project will demonstrate to the industry our capabilities
in remodeling the design of a complete legacy system. We have all the
necessary skills and people to execute this project successfully. Some
people have already given in-house training in this area to other staff
members. In my personal opinion, we should not let this project slip by
us under any circumstances."
CEO to Client
"This is the type of project in which our company specializes. We
have executed many projects of the same nature for many large clients.
Trust me when I say that we are the most competent firm in the industry
for doing this kind of work. It is my personal opinion that we can execute
this project successfully and well within the given time frame."
For every problem there is one solution which is simple, neat, and wrong.
H. L. Mencken
"Debugging is anticipated with distaste, performed with reluctance,
and bragged about forever."
Button at the Boston Computer Museum
Don't hit the keys so hard, it hurts.
First learn computer science and all the theory. Next develop a programming
style. Then forget all that and just hack.
"How's YOUR Endless Project coming?"
"...and it's finished! It only has to be written."
How does a project get to be a year late? ... One day at a time.
Frederick Brooks, Jr., The Mythical Man Month
How many programmers does it take to change a light bulb?
One, but you can never change it back again.
I really hate this damn machine,
I wish that they would sell it.
It never does just what I want,
But only what I tell it.
"I do not fear computers... I fear the lack of them."
"... I will be back! "
"I think there's a world market for about 5 computers."
Thomas J. Watson, Chairman of the Board, IBM
"If a machine can be made so that an idiot can use it, then only
an idiot will use it."
"If the code and the comments disagree, then both are probably wrong."
"If you don't make money off of it, it had better be either a religious
experience or a hobby."
"If you want to eat hippopatomus, you've got to pay the freight."
attributed to an IBM guy, about why IBM software uses so much memory
Dakota tribal wisdom says that when you discover you are riding a dead
horse, the best strategy is to dismount.
However, software companies, often try other strategies with dead horses,
including the following:
1. Buying a stronger whip.
2. Changing riders.
3. Saying things like "This is the way we always have ridden this
4. Appointing an inter-departmental committee to study the horse.
5. Arranging to visit other countries to see how they ride dead horses.
6. Increasing the standards to ride dead horses.
7. Appointing a tiger team to revive the dead horse.
8. Creating another inter-departmental committee to increase our riding
9. Comparing the state of dead horses in today's environment.
10. Changing the requirements to declare that "This horse is not
11. Hiring contractors to ride the dead horse.
12. Harnessing several dead horses together for increased speed.
13. Declaring that "No horse is too dead to beat."
14. Providing additional funding to increase the horse's performance.
15. Hiring a consultant to see if contractors can ride it cheaper.
16. Purchasing a product that makes dead horses run faster.
17. Declaring the horse is "better, faster and cheaper" dead
18. Forming yet another inter-departmental committee to find alternative
uses for dead horses.
19. Revisiting performance requirements for horses.
20. Saying this horse was procured with cost as an independent variable.
21. Promoting the dead horse to a supervisory position.
"Little else matters than to write good code."
"Never put off until run time what you can do at compile time."
David Gries, in "Compiler Construction for Digital Computers".
"Oh boy, virtual memory! Now I'm gonna make myself a REALLY BIG ram
"Reliable software must kill people reliably."
"Software suppliers are trying to make their software packages more
'user-friendly' .... Their best approach, so far, has been to take all
the old brochures, and stamp the words, 'user-friendly' on the cover."
Attributed to Bill Gates (Microsoft, Inc. - like you don't know!)
How many of you said this to mr. clipit ?
"That's not a bug, that's merely an idiosyncracy."
mattb (formerly of sco)
"The biggest growth industry in UNIX is promoting standards."
Rikki Kirzner, Dataquest.
Real Programmers always confuse Christmas and Halloween because OCT 31
== DEC 25 !
Andrew Rutherford (firstname.lastname@example.org)
"The most important question when any new computer architecture is
introduced is 'So what?'"
someone in comp.arch
"The three most dangerous things in the world are a programmer with
a soldering iron, a hardware type with a program patch and a user with
The Wizardry Compiled by Rick Cook
"Though a program be but three lines long, someday it will have to
The Tao of Programming
"To program is to understand."
Unix: it's a nice place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there.
"Using an IBM PC is like juggling straight razors.
Using a Mac is like shaving with a bowling pin." Ted Nelson, Computer
The rule on staying alive as a program manager is to give 'em a number
or give 'em a date, but never give 'em both at once.
There are bugs and then there are bugs. And then there are bugs.
There are no bugs, only unrecognized features.
UNIX was never designed to keep people from doing stupid things, because
that policy would also keep them from doing clever things.
Weekends were made for programming.
Programming is challenging, fun, not too good for your social life. The
same could be said of a few bottles of Vodka, however programming is certainly
likely to make your electronic life easier afterwards. That cannot be
said of Vodka.
© 04 - 05 balakumar .m, i5bala.