Quotes for Entrepreneurs – September 2009

Written by Sean Murphy. Posted in Quotes, skmurphy

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Merlin Mann ProcrastinateQuotes for Entrepreneurs
September 2009

“We procrastinate when we have forgotten who we are.”
Merlin Mann in “Inbox Zero Notes” (see also InboxZero)

I used this in “Eleven Tips from Lynnea Hagen on Getting Unstuck

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“Any activity becomes creative when the doer cares about doing it right, or better.”
John Updike

More context from Updike’s “On Creativity” in December 1968 Playboy

“For one thing, creativity is merely a plus name for regular activity; the ditchdigger, dentist, and artist go about their tasks in much the same way, and any activity becomes creative when the doer cares about doing it right or better.”

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When people say something is “not marketing,” it’s pretty much always “marketing.”
Merlin Mann

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“Driving a car at night you never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”
E L Doctorow

This appears to be based on a 1986 Paris Review interview of E. L. Doctorow by George Plimpton: E. L. Doctorow, The Art of Fiction No. 94

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“You can’t waste time and you can’t save time; you can only choose what you do at any given moment.”
James Gleick

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“Before the beginning of great brilliance, there must be chaos.
Before a brilliant man begins something great, he must look foolish in the crowd.”
I Ching

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“Remember.
But move forward, too.
Light a candle, yes.
But also drive a rivet.”
James Lileks looking back on 9/11 in 2004 (See also “Take a Minute to Remember 8 Years Ago, Part 2“)

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“I can look at a problem, figure out approximately what is wrong, and do rapid research for usable information.”
Justin James in “Why It’s Impossible to Become a Programming Expert

Here is a longer excerpt

All too often, an expert programmer is the person who is adept at using a variety of reference tools and documentation to find out how to achieve their goals. This is my secret sauce. I am really good at looking at a problem, figuring out approximately what is wrong, and being able to quickly find the solution. […] My real talent is knowing how to rapidly research and turn my findings into usable information. […]

For now, the “sampler platter approach” has been working well for me at the professional level, although I find it quite frustrating at the personal level. I miss learning things in depth. I miss the sense of satisfaction from attaining a level of expertise. I miss getting to explore obtuse and obscure areas of knowledge. But it simply does not match the reality of my work or that of most other programmers.

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“The young man knows the rules, but the old man knows the exceptions.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.

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“We’re now on the verge of a Sesame Street recovery: economists aren’t sure if it will be brought to us by the letter V, U, or W.”
Bob Lewis in “An Ounce of Metrics Can’t Be Weighed

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“I don’t need time. What I need is a deadline.”
Duke Ellington

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