Tag Archives: quotes

“There’s an old story about the person who wished his computer were as easy to use as his telephone. That wish has come true, since I no longer know how to use my telephone.”



That’s quite a statement, coming as it does from Bjarne Soustrup, the man who invented the C++ programming language (whatever that is!) I sympathise. Two weeks ago I received my longed for and much coveted iPhone. I ordered it on a Thursday. It arrived on the Saturday. I couldn’t believe my luck. Sadly my luck soon ran out. For the past two weeks I’ve spent great clumps of time tearing my hair out, swearing loudly, banging things and startling the cat, which stomped off to its own home, next door.

A visit to the Apple Store in Covent Garden identified the problem, apparently caused by an incompatibility between Apple and my very ancient email (now operated by Virgin – why isn’t that a surprise!)  Getting it sorted was a long and horribly frustrating experience, only made bearable by the helpfulness, cheerfulness and patience of the chaps at Apple.

I sighed a sigh of relief and prepared to use my shiny new phone. But when I called 02 I thought their call centre had been submerged in water. Then the phone kept cutting out (water in the wires?) All my family and friends appeared to be living underwater too.  Another call to O2. It appears that the phone is probably faulty. So I’m off to Apple again.

This seemed a good time to find some quotes about computers, technology, phones and frustration. These all come from DevTopics – and there are many more than I can fit on here.  Worth a visit.



Robert X. Cringely “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.”

Steve Wozniak “Never trust a computer you can’t throw out of a window.”

Jeff Pesis “Hardware: The parts of a computer system that can be kicked.”

Dave Barry “Microsoft has a new version out, Windows XP, which according to everybody is the ‘most reliable Windows ever.‘  To me, this is like saying that asparagus is ‘the most articulate vegetable ever.‘ “

Bumper stickerWe are Microsoft.  Resistance Is Futile.  You Will Be Assimilated.”

Rich Cook “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.”

Linus TorvaldsSoftware is like sex: It’s better when it’s free.”

Mark MinasiIf 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.’ “

Paul Ehrlich “To err is human, but to really foul things up you need a computer.”

Mitch RadcliffeA computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history–with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.”

Dennie van Tassel “I’ve finally learned what ‘upward compatible’ means.  It means we get to keep all our old mistakes.”

Bill Gates “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.”

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“Into each life some rain must fall.”

From the quotation above, one might surmise that Henry Wadsworth Longfellow had a philosophical attitude towards rain. It’s an attitude he shares with my cat, Eric, along with his surname. I should perhaps say ‘shared’ since both Henry and Eric Longfellow are no longer with us.

Eric never actually told me that he liked rain but he didn’t seem to dislike it either. Judging by his propensity to go outside in a downpour, sit in the biggest puddle he could find, then stroll back in, jump on my desk and park his bum. Right on top of the papers I was working on. Making them all nice and smeary. And illegible.

As to Henry Wadsworth. He said ‘some rain’, didn’t he? All very well for him. He wasn’t enduring the wettest April since records began. Oh no. Nor a deluge in a time of drought –  ‘Step away from the hosepipe, Ma’am or there’ll be trouble. “ Of course, now I’ve decided to write about this wretched rain, it’s stopped. Sod’s Law.

The forecasters say there’s more to come, lots more. But we know all about them and their promises, don’t we. I’m not getting at that nice Mr. Fish, I hasten to add. Poor man, he got so much stick, and quite wrongly. When he said ‘no hurricanes’ he was answering a question from a woman in the USA. But then, no one ever listens in this blame culture of ours. ‘Oooooh!’ he said there would be no hurricanes.’ ‘Ooooh, it’s all his fault!’ No it isn’t.

Be that as it may, it’s been raining. And whether it stops or whether it continues for forty days (when Is St Swithin’s Day?) I’ve looked up some quotations that fit the bill, in more ways than one. Robert Frost, for instance, could have been talking about our current economic woes.

So here are some rain related quotes – in celebration, commiseration and in the hope that one day soon the sun will shine again. The first two perfectly reflect the situation we are in today. The penultimate one is a lyric from a song that I’ll take to my desert island and finally an extract from one of my favourite poems of all time

Robert Frost –  A bank is a place where they lend you an umbrella in fair weather and ask for it back when it begins to rain.”

Dwight Morrow – “Any party, which takes credit for the rain, must not be surprised if its opponents blame it for the drought.”

Douglas William Jerrold - He was so benevolent, so merciful a man that, in his mistaken passion, he would have held an umbrella over a duck in a shower of rain.”

Katherine Mansfield – “I love the rain. I want the feeling of it on my face. “

Bill Nighy – “I wanted to be a journalist, I thought it was glamorous and that I’d meet beautiful women in the rain.”

Dave Barry – “It always rains on tents. Rainstorms will travel thousands of miles, against prevailing winds for the opportunity to rain on a tent.”

Pablo Neruda - “I grew up in this town, my poetry was born between the hill and the river, it took its voice from the rain, and like the timber, it steeped itself in the forests.”

David Copperfield – “I’m just waiting for people to start asking me to make the rain disappear.”

Jack Dee – “The rain forest has Sting. Now Siberia has Jack Dee. Someone had to draw the short straw. In this case it was the rain forest.”

Johnny Nash – “I can see clearly now, the rain is gone. I can see all obstacles in my way.”

e.e.cummings -

(i do not know what it is about you that closes

and opens; only something in me understands

the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)

nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands



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