A collection of quotes I like

Bret Victor : A few words on Doug Engelbart

The least important question you can ask about Engelbart is, "What did he build?" By asking that question, you put yourself in a position to admire him, to stand in awe of his achievements, to worship him as a hero. But worship isn't useful to anyone. Not you, not him. The most important question you can ask about Engelbart is, "What world was he trying to create?" By asking that question, you put yourself in a position to create that world yourself.

Steve Jobs : Tweet by May-Li-Khoe

You can get a good idea on the corner for $4 with your latte. What matters is how well you execute.

Paul Graham : Hackers & Painters

Don’t get complacent if your competitors’ software is lame; the standard to compare your software to is what it could be, not what your current competitors happen to have. Use your software yourself, all the time.

Sahil Lavingia : Tweet

Early in your career, you should solve your own problems.

The super-quick customer feedback loop (with yourself) will make you really good, really fast.

After you get really good, solve other people's problems.

Old Chinese Proverb : ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Good intentions don't satisfy users

Paul Graham : Hackers & Painters

When we interviewed programmers, the main thing we cared about was what kind of software they wrote in their spare time. You can’t do anything really well unless you love it, and if you love to hack you’ll inevitably be working on projects of your own.

Jeff Bezos : Blitzscaling

“If this is a decision based on opinions, then my opinion wins,” said Jeff. “However, data beats opinion. So bring data.”

Ben Horowitz : The Hard Thing About Hard Things

In good organizations, people can focus on their work and have confidence that if they get their work done, good things will happen for both the company and them personally.

Ben Horowitz : The Hard Thing About Hard Things

There’s no silver bullet that’s going to fix that. No, we are going to have to use a lot of lead bullets.

Jack Clark : Tweet

...Sometimes you trip and the world catches you

Paul Graham : Hackers & Painters

When people care enough about something to do it well, those who do it best tend to be far better than everyone else. There’s a huge gap between Leonardo and second- rate contemporaries like Borgognone. You see the same gap between Raymond Chandler and the average writer of detective novels. A topranked professional chess player could play ten thousand games against an ordinary club player without losing once.

Sam Altman : Tweet

Learning to identify super talented people before everyone else does is one of the most valuable skills to develop.

Sam Altman : Tweet

If you notice something at your company below standards and don't fix it or make sure someone else does, you have set a new standard.

Complaining about it does not count as fixing it.

If someone gets upset/tells you to stay in your lane, they've set an even worse new standard.

Patrick Collison : Tweet

The extreme human temptation to compromise on hiring (and to fail to confront mistakes) is one of the main entropic forces conspiring to ensure that great companies rarely stay that way.

Patrick Collison : Tweet

Always trust your gut when it's right. Otherwise, go with your head.

Patrick Collison : Tweet

While long hours can't be a goal, I worry that it's easy to mislead. As a descriptive matter, creating Stripe required obsessive intensity. Maybe better founders could have worked "smarter", but I do know that long hours were needed for us to build something great.

Sahil Lavingia : Tweet

If you want to think more like someone:

Read their favorite books.
Read the same articles.
Listen to the same podcasts.
Follow the people they follow.

Sahil Lavingia : Tweet

Everyone should write. Everyone should draw. Everyone should paint. Everyone should make music and movies. Everyone should dance, run, lift. Everyone should design, code, build. Everyone should create.

Until then, millions of people will die unaware of the gifts they possessed.

Sahil Lavingia : Tweet

Don't focus on how great or terrible the things you're making today are, but on how much better they will be if you keep going.

The best thing you could write, paint, or build today will pale in comparison to the worst thing you could write, paint, or build in ten years.

Bret Victor : Tweet

start a project that you need to work on until age 110

Julie Zhuo : Medium Article

Write. Write about the lessons now so familiar they can be recited in your sleep. Write about the insights not yet sighted, their silhouettes blurry like the edges of a distant shore. Write about the job, the joy and chaos of designing and building. Write at least once a week. Write to learn how to write, and write to understand, the process itself like a looking glass through which you may yet discover a strange new world. Write so something meaningful can be said to others. Write to be accountable, write with honesty. Above all, write to preserve the scrap of an age, a voice; write so you won’t forget.

Sar Harbhakti: Tweet

I often get asked by people how to get great opps when you don't have the traditional networks & resources. I always say know a fuck ton more than your peers. Have encyclopedic knowledge of whatever you want to get into. That does wonders!

Lee Alvin DuBridge: The Idea Factory

Radar won the war, the atom bombs ended it.

The Idea Factory: p125

The completion of the crypotgraphy paper coincided with the end of the war. But Shannon's personal project - the one he had been laboring on at home in the evenings - was largely worked out a year or two before that.

The Idea Factory: p127

Shannon wasn't interested in helping with the complex implementation of PCM - that was a job for the development engineers at Bell Labs and would end up taking them more than a decade. "I am very seldom interested in applications," he later said. "I am more interested in the elegance of a problem. Is it a good problem, an interesting problem?"

John Lilly: p127

Figure out the people around you that you want to work with for the rest of your life. Figure out the people who are smart & awesome, who share your values, who get things done — and maybe most important, who you like to be with and who you want to help win. And treat them right, always. Look for ways to help, to work together, to learn. Because in 20 years you’ll all be in amazing places doing amazing things.

Dec 2019. Built with Tailwind and Jekyll.