"By all means break the rules, and break them beautifully, deliberately, and well."
This is a line from The Elements of Typographic Style. It talks about learning the rules of typography before breaking them, and then breaking them well. Beautiful quote. permalink
"Don't ignore your dreams; don't work too much; say what you think; cultivate friendships; be happy. "
These are the five largest regrets which people have. permalink
"A hacker to me is someone creative who does wonderful things."
This is a quote from Davos 2013, and is easily my favourite definition of a hacker. permalink
"Still round the corner there may wait,
A new road or a secret gate,
And though we pass them by today,
Tomorrow we may come this way,
And take the hidden paths that run,
Towards the Moon or to the Sun."
This is a great quote from the Lord of the Rings - one of many. permalink
"It’s like a sausage factory, I mean, you really don’t want to know how this stuff happens."
Jim Reeke worked at Apple, and created the Mac power up sound. permalink
"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
These words were part of Roosevelt's inauguration speech, during the Great Depression where people were afraid to spend and invest. permalink
"The future is already here — it's just not very evenly distributed."
William Gibson is a prolific and influential speculative fiction writer. permalink
"There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs."
Adams wrote some of the most influential books on photography, yet openly admits there are no rules. Question everything. permalink
"You can observe a lot just by watching."
Yogi Berra was one of the most successful baseball catchers of all time. Even though it's out of context, this phrase sums up user centered design brilliantly. permalink
"If you want to have good ideas you must have many ideas. Most of them will be wrong, and what you have to learn is which ones to throw away."
Linus Pauling was an American scientist and author, who was awarded two Nobel Prizes. permalink
"We nearly axed the iPhone, it wasn't enough to be good...we knew it had to be great."
Inspiring high standards. permalink
"By now, we have learnt that game-changing ideas do not come from experts, they come from people who haven't got a clue and ask stupid questions."
"If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original."
"Instead of trying to be less bad, it's about being good."
To design sustainable products incremental improvements aren't sufficient - we have to design things to be environmentally good, not less bad. permalink
"The only person who can put you out of business, in the early days, is yourself."
"If you can't ride two horses at once, you shouldn't be in the circus."
James Maxton was a British politician and celebrated orator. permalink
"Be the change you want to see."
This is probably one of the best known quotes in the world - and who can argue with such advice! permalink
"Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge."
I like this quote because it suggests scientific thinking can be applied to more than just science problems. permalink
"All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better."
I like this quote on so many levels, but especially as a designer. permalink
"Find a job you love and you'll never work a day in your life."
Confucius (551–479 BC) was a Chinese philosopher. permalink
"Not all those who wander are lost."
J.R.R. Tolkien wrote this in The Fellowship of the Ring. permalink
"Creativity is the residue of time wasted."
People can't be creative all the time. Creativity is a cycle of soaking up new inspirations, relaxation, and work. permalink
"All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once you grow up."
The answer to this, to quote Steve Jobs, is to 'stay foolish, stay hungry'. permalink
"No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible."
Climate change anyone? permalink
"Intelligence and capability are not enough. There must be the joy of doing something beautiful. "
Venkataswamy created an innovative system for providing eye care to thousands of low-income Indians, a feat which has inspired entrepreneurs and medical professionals across the globe. permalink
"Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win."
Jonathan Kozol, on being a teacher. permalink
"Here’s to the crazy ones. The rebels. The troublemakers. The ones who see things differently. While some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do."
Steve Jobs inspired a generation with this beautiful prose. This is a shortened version of the original, which was used for the Think Different ads which launched in 1997. The ads were a tremendous success and won the 1998 Emmy Award for Best Commercial. permalink
"This problem, once solved, will be simple."
This quote sums up invention brilliantly - the deceptively simple is often the hardest to arrive at. permalink
"You only find out who is swimming naked when the tide goes out."
Another great nugget from the legendary investor in his annual letter to shareholders. permalink
"Whenever we propose a solution to a problem, we ought to try as hard as we can to overthrow our solution, rather than defend it."
Karl Popper was a philosopher of science, but his thoughts are equally applicable to design or any creative endeavour. permalink
"Here’s how Apple does marketing in a nutshell: Make a great product, then let people know about it. That’s it. Neither aspect of that is easy, but the important thing is it has to happen in that order. It all starts with a great product."
John Gruber is perhaps the most widely read devotee of Apple. Here he sums up their approach to product perfectly. I think the exact same quote could be used to describe Dyson. permalink
"When I finished [writing it], I was crying. I knew at long last, after ten years of trying, I had written something good."
It takes people around 10 years to master a craft, and the road to mastery is hard. This quote by Ray Bradbury makes you realise that the effort is worth it. permalink
"It's not how good you are it's how good you want to be."
Paul Arden - marketer, author, maverick. His books contain more great quotes than a book of scripture. permalink
"It is not the size of the dog in the fight. It is the size of the fight in the dog."
Anyone who has had a terrier for a pet knows this is true. Great inspiration for entrepreneurs. permalink
"Do not undertake the program unless the goal is manifestly important and its achievement nearly impossible. Do not do anything that anyone else can do readily."
Edwin Land was a brilliant marketer and technologist, famous for developing the Polaroid instant camera. permalink
"Gee, Brain, what do you want to do tonight?" The Brain: "The same thing we do every night, Pinky—try to take over the world!"
Brain would make a great entrepreneur... permalink
"The easiest way to get what you want is to deserve what you want."
Charlie Munger is Warren Buffett's right-hand man at Berkshire Hathaway. A thoughtful businessman, he combines integrity with great intellect. permalink
"If you don't have a competitive advantage, don't compete."
Competitive strategy lies at the heart of many business successes and failures - Jack Welch, former CEO of GE, asserts this in characteristically candid style. permalink
"It was not the miners that profited the most from the Gold Rush. It was the companies that sold them the shovels."
Prospectors are opportunists, while the shovel makers are the business builders. permalink
"Having a good idea is one thing, but persuading other people to buy it is quite another. Good inventors are polymaths: they think with their hands and their brains. They're experts in design, engineering and business."
I plucked this quote from an issue of Wired magazine. It isn't very catchy, but the sentiment is bang on. Design + technology + business are all required to be a successful product developer. permalink
"Rough consensus, running code. "
This was one of the reasons the internet moved forward at such a breakneck speed. permalink
"There’s nothing more dangerous than a man with one idea. You’re not going to let go or fairly evaluate it because it’s your only idea. "
Narrow mindedness for an innovator is a dangerous thing. permalink
"Community is more important than code."
Building a great community is much harder than writing great code. permalink
"People don't want choices, they want exactly what they want."
This is one of the main arguments for digital manufacturing. permalink