We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Some philosophy ...by great people


Math is no more about equations than poetry is about spelling. Equations and spelling exist to convey an idea. Understand that idea.
A few other quotes that capture my attitude on learning:

On what we truly know

  • “I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance.” – Socrates
  • “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants.” – Isaac Newton

On understanding

  • “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough” – Albert Einstein
  • “Most of the fundamental ideas of science are essentially simple, and may, as a rule, be expressed in language comprehensible to everyone.” – Albert Einstein
  • “The only real valuable thing is intuition.” – Albert Einstein
  • “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” – Albert Einstein
  • “You can know the name of a bird in all the languages of the world, but when you’re finished, you’ll know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird… So let’s look at the bird and see what it’s doing — that’s what counts. I learned very early the difference between knowing the name of something and knowing something.” – Richard Feynman

On problem solving

  • “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” – Albert Einstein
  • “Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought.” – Matsuo Basho
  • “If I’d listened to customers, I’d have given them a faster horse.” – Henry Ford
  • “Debugging is twice as hard as writing the code in the first place. Therefore, if you write the code as cleverly as possible, you are, by definition, not smart enough to debug it.” – Brian Kernighan

Monday, May 21, 2012

A virtual world...

Experiences of different types are important to appreciate the value of things that one gets in ones life. What is the difference between an intelligent man and a wise man?

Is maturity a symbol of a wise man? Does a person become mature, only because he has lots of experiences? Is that the reason some old people who have gathered lots of experiences of varied type considered wise and their opinion is sought after in deciding important things?

Can experiences be created virtually? Can a person be made to understand the things that are beyond ones imagination through virtual reality? What role do films play? What role does photo essays by photo journalists play? What role do museums play in displaying history and creating context of the past?

Could a virtual world be created where experiences of different sort be recreated? Imagination is the key. People spend their life times without witnessing beauty and sufferings of the many parts of the world, which might teach them important lessons. Can these people be made to undergo these experiences which they will never go in their life time? Would they at all be interested in such an activity, which might be curious to go through but not very much comforting?

There are many such questions, which one might ponder upon, when faced with different contexts, different cultures, and different situations.