„To say that the invention "was in the air" or "the times were ripe for it" are just other ways of stating that the inventors did not do the inventing, but that the cultures did.“

—  Peter Farb

Man's Rise to Civilization (1968)

Posledná aktualizácia 22. máj 2020. Histórie
Peter Farb fotka
Peter Farb92
American academic and writer 1929 - 1980

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James Burke (science historian) fotka

„I hope to show you that you or I could have done just what they did, or come close to it, because at no time did an invention come out of thin air into somebody's head,“

—  James Burke (science historian) British broadcaster, science historian, author, and television producer 1936

Connections (1979), 1 - The Trigger Effect
Kontext: An invention acts rather like a trigger, because, once it's there, it changes the way things are, and that change stimulates the production of another invention, which in turn, causes change, and so on. Why those inventions happened, between 6,000 years ago and now, where they happened and when they happened, is a fascinating blend of accident, genius, craftsmanship, geography, religion, war, money, ambition... Above all, at some point, everybody is involved in the business of change, not just the so-called "great men." Given what they knew at the time, and a moderate amount of what's up here [pointing to head], I hope to show you that you or I could have done just what they did, or come close to it, because at no time did an invention come out of thin air into somebody's head, [snaps fingers] like that. You just had to put a number of bits and pieces, that were already there, together in the right way.

Lawrence Durrell fotka
David Lloyd George fotka

„Diplomats were invented simply to waste time.“

—  David Lloyd George Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom 1863 - 1945

On preparation for the Paris Peace Conference (November 1918)
Prime Minister

Orson Scott Card fotka
Isaac D'Israeli fotka
Paul Virilio fotka
Richard Stallman fotka
Richard Stallman fotka
Bill Watterson fotka
Alan Kay fotka

„The best way to predict the future is to invent it.“

—  Alan Kay computer scientist 1940

Alan Kay (1971) at a 1971 meeting of PARC http://quoteinvestigator.com/2012/09/27/invent-the-future/
Similar remarks are attributed to Peter Drucker and Dandridge M. Cole.
Cf. Dennis Gabor, Inventing the Future (1963): "The future cannot be predicted, but futures can be invented."
Nigel Calder reviewed Gabor's book and wrote, "we cannot predict the future, but we can invent it..."
1970s

Raymond Chandler fotka
Ela Bhatt fotka
Robert Sheckley fotka

„Charlie Gleister had invented a time machine, but he hadn’t invented it right because it didn’t work.“

—  Robert Sheckley American writer 1928 - 2005

Slaves of Time (p. 11)
Short fiction, The Robot Who Looked Like Me (1978)

Walter Isaacson fotka
Henrik Ibsen fotka

„The State has its root in time, and will ripe and rot in time.“

—  Henrik Ibsen Norwegian playwright, theatre director, and poet 1828 - 1906

Letter to Georg Brandes (17 February 1871), as translated in Henrik Ibsen : Björnstjerne Björnson. Critical Studies (1899) by Georg Morris Cohen Brandes
Variant translation: The quality of liberty is that, as long as it is being striven after, it goes on expanding. Therefore, the man who stands still in the midst of the struggle and says: "I have it," merely shows by so doing that he has lost it. Now this very contentedness in the possession of a dead liberty is a characteristic of the so-called state; and it is worthless.
As translated in Ibsen : The Man, His Art & His Significance (1907) by Haldane Macfall, p. 238
Variant translation: Neither moral concepts nor art forms can expect to live forever. How much are we obliged to hold on to? Who can guarantee that 2 plus 2 don't add up to 5 on Jupiter?
Kontext: He who possesses liberty otherwise than as an aspiration possesses it soulless, dead. One of the qualities of liberty is that, as long as it is being striven after, it goes on expanding. Therefore, the man who stands still in the midst of the struggle and says, "I have it," merely shows by so doing that he has just lost it. Now this very contentedness in the possession of a dead liberty is characteristic of the so-called State, and, as I have said, it is not a good characteristic. No doubt the franchise, self-taxation, etc., are benefits — but to whom? To the citizen, not to the individual. Now, reason does not imperatively demand that the individual should be a citizen. Far from it. The State is the curse of the individual. With what is Prussia's political strength bought? With the absorption of the individual in the political and geographical idea. The waiter is the best soldier. And on the other hand, take the Jewish people, the aristocracy of the human race — how is it they have kept their place apart, their poetical halo, amid surroundings of coarse cruelty? By having no State to burden them. Had they remained in Palestine, they would long ago have lost their individuality in the process of their State's construction, like all other nations. Away with the State! I will take part in that revolution. Undermine the whole conception of a State, declare free choice and spiritual kinship to be the only all-important conditions of any union, and you will have the commencement of a liberty that is worth something. Changes in forms of government are pettifogging affairs — a degree less or a degree more, mere foolishness. The State has its root in time, and will ripe and rot in time. Greater things than it will fall — religion, for example. Neither moral conceptions nor art-forms have an eternity before them. How much are we really in duty bound to pin our faith to? Who will guarantee me that on Jupiter two and two do not make five?

Piero Scaruffi fotka
Halldór Laxness fotka

„Human beings are constantly inventing new ways of maltreating one other. C'est la vie.
- Úa“

—  Halldór Laxness, kniha Kristnihald undir Jökli (bók)

Kristnihald undir Jökli (Under the Glacier/Christianity at Glacier) (1968)

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