The computer industry has been one of the most important developments of our lifetime. Over the years, computers have come a long way, have provided lots of jobs, and have even become considered a necessary part of modern life, both at home and at work. Through the years, all this computer work has generated some pretty interesting quotes. Some of them are profound, some are funny and some are just, well, true. There are quotes here from computer greats like Steve Wozniak and Bill Gates, along with some from some great artists and historical figures. But, there are also quotes from the people who know computers best; those who work with them and use them. Here are 19 quotes about computers that all you computer nerds will love. And, even if you’re not a computer nerd; you’ll love them if you’ve ever used a computer.
- “Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.” (Pablo Picasso, artist)
- “Computers are like bikinis. They save people a lot of guesswork.” (Sam Ewing, baseball player)
- “They have computers, and they may have other weapons of mass destruction.” (Janet Reno, former attorney general of the US)
- “That’s what’s cool about working with computers. They don’t argue, they remember everything, and they don’t drink all your beer.” (Paul Leary, musician)
- “If the automobile had followed the same development cycle as the computer, a Rolls-Royce would today cost $100, get a million miles per gallon, and explode once a year, killing everyone inside.” (Robert X. Cringely, technology writer)
- Never trust a computer you can’t throw out a window.” (Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple)
- “Hardware: The parts of a computer system that can be kicked.” (Jeff Pesis, author and humorist)
- I’ve finally learned what ‘upward compatible’ means. It means we get to keep all our old mistakes.” (Dennie van Tassel, computer science professor and authorl)
- “We are Microsoft. Resistance Is Futile. You Will Be Assimilated.” (Bumper sticker)
- “Any fool can use a computer. Many do.” (Ted Nelson, sociologist, philosopher and computer pioneer)
- “There are only two industries that refer to their customers as ‘users’.” (Edward Tufte, Yale professor of political and computer science)
- “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.” (Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft)
- “Programmers are in a race with the Universe to create bigger and better idiot-proof programs, while the Universe is trying to create bigger and better idiots. So far the Universe is winning.” (Rich Cook, author)
- “The trouble with programmers is that you can never tell what a programmer is doing until it’s too late.” (Seymour Cray, famous super computer architect)
- “That’s the thing about people who think they hate computers. What they really hate is lousy programmers.” (Larry Niven, science fiction author)
- If McDonalds were run like a software company, one out of every hundred Big Macs would give you food poisoning, and the response would be, ‘We’re sorry, here’s a coupon for two more.’ “(Mark Minasi, technology writer)
- “Always code as if the guy who ends up maintaining your code will be a violent psychopath who knows where you live.” (Martin Golding)
- “To err is human, but to really foul things up you need a computer.” (Paul Ehrlich, scientist)
- “A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history–with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.” (Mitch Radcliffe, technology journalist)
There are, no doubt, many more great quotes about computers and the people that work on them. But, these are some of our favorites of today.
Of course, tomorrow, and the years that come will only serve to create more and more great quotes about those computers that we love to hate.