"When he found that his long cherished beliefs
did not agree with the most precise observations, he accepted the uncomfortable facts,
he preferred the hard truth to his dearest illusions. That is the heart of science."
- Astronomer Carl Sagan referring to
The Harmony of the Worlds [Episode 3].
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then,
is not an act but a habit" - Aristotle quoting from his writing in Nicomachean Ethics,
II, 4; Book I, 7.
"It's an incredible success, and we physicists
can boast about it." -
Hitoshi Murayama, theoretical physicist at the University of California, Berkeley,
in the October 2015 issue of Discover magazine, regarding "Pretty much everything
is explained by the Standard Model" of quantum physics. The
Collider (LHC) is considered to be the complex machine ever built. It's prime motivation
for being built was to find the Higgs boson, which is responsible for the Higgs field
that is thought to give mass to particles by virtue of how they interact with it. Photons,
for instance have no mass because they do not interact. Photons, conversely, do have
mass because of interaction. Interestingly - but not surprisingly - there is rigorous
debate over whether or not the photon is massless.
"I would have been sorry for the Dear Lord because
the theory is correct." - Albert Einstein, in response to a student's question regarding
what he would have thought if the observations of astronomers did not agree with general
relativity's prediction. This was part of a story in the October 2015 issue of
Smithsonian magazine. 2015 marked the 100-year anniversary
of Einstein's public presentation of his theory of general relativity.
"Burt and I were issued flight plans instead of birth
certificates." - Dick Rutan, record-setting test pilot and brother of equally accomplished flyer
and aircraft designer Burt Rutan. This comment is the opening sentence in an article in
the October 2015 issue of
Science magazine. Scaled Composites
is responsible for many aerospace and aviation 'first,' with a concentration on composite
"There's more than one way to look at a problem,
and they all may be right." -- General Norman Schwarzkopf, U.S. Army, leader of all
forces in the Persian Gulf War.
"If it's jobs you want, take away their shovels
and give them spoons." - Anon. This part of a quotation is ascribed to various economists
(most often Milton
Friedman) and commentators in regard to people and systems which buck modern mechanization
while touting the virtues of manual labor. The story's setting is usually a canal project,
ore mine, or other venue requiring massive digging and a proprietor's boast of greater
concern for the rapid replacement of human workers with machines. An amazingly thorough
investigation into the matter is presented by
Quote Investigator. See also
Techno-Skeptics' Objection Growing Louder
"There needs to be something to connect the shield
of the transmission line to, otherwise it is a bit like one hand clapping." - Joel Hallas
(W1ZR), January 2016 QST
column: "The Doctor Is In"
"Personally, I liked the University. They gave
us money and facilities, we didn't have to produce anything. You've never been out of
college, you don't know what it's like out there. I've worked in the private sector.
They expect results." Dr. Raymond Stantz (Dan Aykroyd), in
funny, it must be recognized that a lot of valuable research and applications adaptable
to industry comes from universities and a lot of crap comes from "out there."
"Technology made large populations possible; large
populations now make technology indispensable." –
Joseph W. Krutch, writer and naturalist. Having passed on in 1970,
he wrote this without even imagining how nearly half a century later entire populations
would be walking around with their gazed inexorably fixed on a small, thin communications
box, while being largely unaware of what was happening around them.
"We have heard that some cats have seven and others
nine lives, but darned if we don't believe radio bugs have cats outclassed." - Hiram
Percy Maxim, in the April 1919 edition of QST magazine, commenting in
"QST" Again (this is the actual document), on the surge of requests
for the publication to resume printing after the amateur radio broadcasting ban was lifted
once World War I ended. Further, "As we think over the dreary two years of amateur
deadness, it's a real hard job to believe that any of us are still in existence
"For most of us, the times when we go astray are
happily forgettable. In Einstein's case, even the mistakes are noteworthy." - Lawrence
M. Krauss, in
What Einstein Got Wrong, appearing in the September 2015 issue of
"Sometimes someone would stand behind the airplane
and start whistling through the tailpipe like the engine was starting and you'd scramble
out of there real quick!" -
John Borry, a plane captain and jet mechanic with VF-13 aboard Shangri
La, who didn't like crawling down the Vought F-8 Crusader engine intake (October 2015
Air & Space magazine).
"The postmodernists are right about science, just
up to the point that they are terribly wrong. Let me offer a piece of advice. Never get
on an airplane designed by a postmodernist! Scientific knowledge deserves special status
for an obvious reason: Science works. When you need real answers, nothing else even comes
Jeff Hester, columnist, November 2015 Astronomy magazine.
"Anything that's always connected, always sending
data—that's something a nearby attacker can latch on to," says
Craig Young, senior security researcher at the risk management firm
Tripwire, as quoted in October 2015 issue of This Old House magazine column "How
to Hack-Proof e."
"Still have my 'RF Engineers' mug. To this day,
I still ain't got a clue what all the charts and graphs on it mean, but I sure feel smart
when I'm drinking coffee from it." -
Mr. Kim Stricker. Kim is a fellow model airplane builder and flyer
who lives and thrives in the Midwest. He is a huge aficionado of / cum lay expert on
the vintage Cox engines. He and I both owned
Shark 15 control line airplanes as kids; that is the model in the picture.
Kim is also
a licensed pilot and owns a homebuilt
Pietenpol. Big motorcycles and 2nd Amendment hardware are also among
his many interests. Many of his
aviation photos have been featured in the local newspaper. Kim has
my vote for the "Man Most Living Life to the Fullest" award (if, of course, there was
"Sometime in the past 30 years, electronics got
so complex and automated that product manufacturers took control away from us, and radio
stations became a number. But a radio station is not a number. It is a place, and it
has 'width.' How wide it is depends on how far away you are from the station, how powerful
it is, and how your radio was designed." -
Heathkit Explorer Jr.™ webpage note.
"I would rather be a great scientific investigator
than a great engineer; but would rather be a second-rate engineer than a second-rate
Heinrich Hertz in a letter to his parents in October, 1877
"We are continually faced with a series of great
opportunities brilliantly disguised as insoluble problems." - John W. Gardner,
Stanford University alum and former Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare.
"Nothing is impossible for the man that doesn't
have to do the work." This is universally attributed to someone named Cohn; i.e., Cohn's