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Geek Wisdom

"All serious daring starts from within."

Eudora Welty, American Writer


"If you play it safe in life you've decided that you don't want to grow anymore."
Shirley Hufstedler, First U.S. Secretary of Education



"Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up."

Thomas Edison, American Inventor, Industrialist


"Truth is always exciting. Speak it, then. Life is boring without it."
Pearl Buck, American Writer, Civil Rights Activist


"The main dangers in this life are the people who want to change everything — or nothing."
Nancy Astor, English Stateswoman


"To move freely you must be deeply rooted."
Bella Lewitzky, American Dancer/Choreographer


"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."
Eleanor Roosevelt, American First Lady, Civil Rights Activist


"There is no point at which you can say, 'Well, I'm successful now. I might as well take a nap.'"
Carrie Fisher, American Actor, Writer


"We all live in suspense, from day to day, from hour to hour; in other words, we are the hero of our own story."
Mary McCarthy, American Writer


"As great scientists have said and as all children know, it is above all by the imagination that we achieve perception, and compassion, and hope."
Ursula K. LeGuin, American Science Fiction Writer


"I try to avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward."
Charlotte Brontë, British Novelist


"It takes a deep commitment to change and an even deeper commitment to grow."
Ralph Ellison, American Author


"I do not think that I will ever reach a stage when I will say, 'This is what I believe. Finished.' What I believe is alive...and open to growth."
Madeleine L'Engle, American Author


"You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don't try."
Beverly Sills, American Opera Singer, Arts Administrator

"The joy that isn't shared dies young."
Anne Sexton, American Poet


"Regret is an appalling waste of energy; you can't build on it; it's only for wallowing in."
Katherine Mansfield, New Zealander Writer


"To fly we have to have resistance."
Maya Lin, American Artist and Architect

"I was brought up to believe that the only thing worth doing was to add to the sum of accurate information in the world."
Margaret Mead, American Anthropologist


"You must learn to be still in the midst of activity and to be vibrantly alive in repose."
Indira Gandhi, Indian Prime Minister


"What I regret, on behalf of myself of long ago, is not the overweeningness, but the playing it safe."
Elizabeth Bowen, Irish Writer


"If you want to be listened to, you should put in time listening."
Marge Piercy, American Writer


"That is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you've understood all your life, but in a new way."
Doris Lessing, British/South African Novelist


"Imagination is more important than knowledge."
Albert Einstein, German/American Physicist


"You can't be brave if you've only had wonderful things happen to you."
Mary Tyler Moore, American Actor


"Besides learning to see, there is another art to be learned — not to see what is not."
Maria Mitchell, American Astronomer


"If you obey all the rules you miss all the fun."
Katharine Hepburn, American Actor


"The events in our lives happen in a sequence in time but in their significance to ourselves they find their own order...the continuous thread of revelation."
Eudora Welty, American Writer


"The cloud never comes in the quarter of the horizon from which we watch for it."
Elizabeth Gaskell, English Writer


"Adventure is worthwhile in itself."
Amelia Earhart, American Aviator

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all. Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature."

Helen Keller, American Author, Public Speaker


"If you have made mistakes...there is always another chance for you...you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down."
Mary Pickford, American Actor


"From what we get, we can make a living; what we give, however, makes a life."
Arthur Ashe, American Athlete


"Look for a long time at what pleases you, and for a longer time at what pains you."
Colette, French Author


"The dedicated life is the life worth living. You must give with your whole heart."
Annie Dillard, American Author


"If you really want something, and really work hard, and take advantage of opportunities, and never give up, you will find a way. Follow your Dreams."
Jane Goodall, Anthropologist


"You have to leave room in life to dream."
Buffy St. Marie, Cree Songwriter, Artist


"Life shrinks and expands in proportion to one's courage."
Anais Nin, French-born American Writer, Diarist


"I was taught that the way of progress is neither swift nor easy."
Marie Curie, Scientist, Nobel Prize Winner


"Champions take responsibility. When the ball is coming over the net, you can be sure I want the ball."
Billie Jean King, American Athlete


"We still think of a powerful man as a born leader and a powerful woman as an anomaly."
Margaret Atwood, Canadian Author


"It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it."
Charlotte Brontë, English Author


"If you try to measure the future you will never risk the present. Playing it safe: a ghastly game."
Catherine Deneuve, French Actor


"Begin somewhere. You cannot build a reputation on what you intend to do."
Liz Smith, American Journalist


"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved."
Helen Keller, American Author, Public Speaker


"It's never too late — in fiction or in life — to revise."
Nancy Thayer, American Writer


"The best prophet is common sense, our native wit."
Euripidies, Greek Playwright


"Happiness is not a goal, it is a by-product."
Eleanor Roosevelt, American First Lady, Civil Rights Activist


"Challenges make you discover things about yourself that you never really knew. They're what make the instrument stretch — what make you go beyond the norm."
Cicely Tyson, American Actor


"That's the way things come clear. All of a sudden. And then you realize how obvious they've been all along."
Madeline L'Engle, American Author


"We have a hunger of the mind which asks for knowledge of all around us; and the more we gain, the more is our desire. The more we see, the more we are capable of seeing."

Maria Mitchell, American Astronome

"The secret of joy in work is contained in one word–excellence. To know how to do something well is to enjoy it."
Pearl S. Buck, American Writer/Civil Rights Activist


"You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end, each of us must work for our own improvement and, at the same time, share a general responsibility for all humanity."
Marie Curie, Polish/French Scientist, Nobel Prize Winner


"You have to love always learning. I think when you quit learning, you're dead."
Hilary Mine, Executive Vice President, Probe Research


"Security is not the meaning of my life. Great opportunities are worth the risks."
Shirley Hufstedler, first U.S. Secretary of Education


"No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made. Destiny is made known silently."
Agnes De Mille, American Dancer, Choreographer


"We must not, in trying to think about how we can make a big difference, ignore the small daily differences we can make which, over time, add up to big differences that we often cannot foresee."
Marian Wright Edelman, Founder, President, Children's Defense Fund


"Don't settle. This is the best job market we've ever seen, you don't have to settle. Be open and passionate about learning new things."
Beth VanStory, Former President, iMotors


"Don't be afraid of the space between your dreams and reality. If you can dream it, you can make it so."
Belva Davis, American Journalist, Community Activist


"Courage is very important. Like a muscle, it is strengthened by use."
Ruth Gordon, American Actor, Screenwriter


"I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life, as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed."
Booker T. Washington, American Educator


"Learning is not attained by chance, it must be sought for with ardor and attended to with diligence."
Abigail Adams, American First Lady


"The main thing we want to do is encourage people to be curious so we have to meet their needs instead of make them adapt to ours."
Annie Valva, Director of Technology, WGBH Interactive


"If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome."
Anne Bradstreet, English-born American Poet


"Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose - a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye."
Mary Shelley, British Author


"Motivation will almost always beat mere talent."
Norman R. Augustine, Chairman, U. S. Antarctic Program External Panel


"Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence."
Helen Keller, American Author, Public Speaker


"Life leaps like a geyser for those who drill through the rock of inertia."
Alexis Carrel, French Biologist


"We especially need imagination in science. It is not all mathematics, nor all logic, but is somewhat beauty and poetry."
Maria Mitchell, American Astronomer, 1818-1889


"Do I dare disturb the universe?"
T.S. Eliot, American-born English Poet

"It never occurred to any of us there were things we couldn't do."
Linda Sanford, General Manager, Global Industries, IBM


"The important thing technology will do is it will bring us all together so we really can exchange information and help each other."
Lynne Franks, Author "The SEED Handbook-The Feminine Way to Create Business"


"Be true to yourself, have confidence, not arrogance, strive to learn all the time, and if you think tech is only for the 'nerds' and 'geeks', you are dead wrong. Technology needs more folks who can lend the human view and perspective to make it come to life for all of us."

Mei-Lin Cheng, CTO and VP of Engineering, WineryExchange


"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do."
Eleanor Roosevelt, American First Lady, Humanitarian


"Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood."
Marie Curie, Polish/French Scientist, Nobel Prize Winner


"Sail out to sea and do new things."
Admiral Grace Hopper, Computer Programming Pioneer


"Our struggle today is not to have a female Einstein get appointed as an assistant professor. It is for a woman schlemiel to get as quickly promoted as a male schlemiel."
Bella Abzug, American Civil Rights Attorney, Politician, Activist


"What did it for me? It wasn't my education or experience. It's my passion."
Andrea Jung, President and CEO, Avon Products, Inc.


"Build your life the right way, brick by brick, piece by piece, lesson by lesson and you will have the strength to withstand adversity."
Janet Reno, U.S. Attorney General


"Besides learning to see, there is another art to be learned—not to see what is not."
Maria Mitchell, (1818-1889), American Astronomer


"Enthusiasm is contagious. Be a carrier."
Susan Rabin, Communications Consultant


"Be driven and focused on your idea, product, or vision, but do reality checks all the time and modify your plan along the way."
Mia Di Giovanni, Founder, President and CEO, SmoothSale


"Try to work at a place where others know more than you and when you feel intimidated remind yourself how lucky you are to be around people you can learn from. And then turn to the next girl or woman you see and help her learn something you know or were recently taught. What goes around comes around!"
Annie Valva, Director of Technology for WGBH Interactive


"Being surrounded by mediocrity may make you look good briefly but will not provide the environment that will bring out your best."
Barbara Babcock, Corporate Vice President, e-Business Services Unisys


"We were born to succeed, not to fail."
Henry David Thoreau, American Essayist, Poet, Naturalist


"Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don't think you can go wrong."
Ella Fitzgerald, American Musician


"To leap is not only to leap, it is to hit the ground somewhere."
Elizabeth Bowen, 20th Century British Author


"Always figure out what's important to you in life, and then go after it. Don't get swayed by what's important to other people. Then, proceed with the best job you can do -- maintain your integrity, treat people fairly and keep asking questions."
Elizabeth Kalodner, CEO, SocialNet.co.


"You never find yourself until you face the truth."
Pearl Bailey, American Actress


"The racism, the sexism, I never let it be my problem, it's their problem. If I see a door comin' my way, I'm knockin' it down. And if I can't knock down the door, I'm sliding through the window. I'll never let it stop me from what I want to do."
Rosie Perez, American Actress, Dancer, and Choreographer


"Learn, learn, learn. Speak out loud about what you know. Read, attend conferences, study online what the top internet analyst are saying from the top investment banks. Never believe that you can't do it."
Mary Furlong, Founder and Chairman, ThirdAge Media
"When nothing is sure, everything is possible."
Margaret Drabble, British Author


"Convincing yourself that the worst that can happen is not that bad, is what you use to get to the next step."
Jeanette Symons, CTO and VP of Engineering, Zhone


"We must leave our mark on life while we have it in our power, lest it should close up, when we leave it, without a trace."
Isak Dinesen, Danish Author


"It is vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquility: they must have action; and they will make it if the cannot find it."
George Eliot, (Marian Evans) English Author


"I am living proof that if you want something bad enough, and are willing to sacrifice and work hard, you can get it."
Nora Denzel, VP and General Manager of Storage Organization, Hewlett Packard


"The minute you settle for less than you deserve, you get even less than you settled for."
Maureen Dowd, American Journalist


"You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist."
Indira Gandhi, Indian Prime Minister


"Knowledge rests not upon truth alone, but upon error also."
Carl Jung, Swiss Psychologist


"Courage is the price that life exacts for granting peace. The soul that knows it not, knows no release from little things; knows not the livid loneliness of fear."
Amelia Earhart, American Aviator


"Life begets life. Energy creates energy. It is by spending oneself that one becomes rich."
Sarah Bernhardt, French Actress


"It is good to have an end to journey towards; but it is the journey that matters in the end."
Ursula Le Guin, American Science Fiction Writer


"Imagination is the highest kite one can fly."
Lauren Bacall, American Actor


"Life appears to me to be too short to be spent in nursing animosity or registering wrong."
Charlotte Brontë, British Novelist


"Figure out what your most magnificent qualities are and make them indispensable to the people you want to work with. Notice that I didn't say 'work for.'"
Linda Bloodworth-Thomason, American Television Producer, Writer


"Be on the alert to recognize your prime at whatever time of life it may occur."
Muriel Spark, Scottish Novelist


"You've got to take the initiative and play your game. In a decisive set, confidence is the difference."
Chris Evert, American Athlete


"Study as if you were going to live forever; live as if you were going to die tomorrow."
Maria Mitchell, American Astronmer


"One must fight for a life of action, not reaction."
Rita Mae Brown, American Author


"Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish."
Publius Ovidius Naso (Ovid), Roman Poet


"No other field can offer, to such an extent as mathematics, the joy of discovery, which is perhaps the greatest human joy."
Rózsa Péter, Hungarian Mathmetician, Founder of Recursive Function Theory


"I think the one lesson I have learned is that there is no substitute for paying attention."
Diane Sawyer, American Journalist


"My favorite thing is to go where I've never been."
Diane Arbus, American Photographer

 
 
 


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