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Edsger W. Dijkstra Quotes

Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Computer science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Programming in Basic causes brain damage.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “If debugging is the process of removing software bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Simplicity is a great virtue but it requires hard work to achieve it and education to appreciate it. And to make matters worse: complexity sells better.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Testing shows the presence, not the absence of bugs.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The art of programming is the art of organizing complexity.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The computing scientist’s main challenge is not to get confused by the complexities of his own making.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Computer science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes, biology is about microscopes or chemistry is about beakers and test tubes. Science is not about tools. It is about how we use them, and what we find out when we do.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Object-oriented programming is an exceptionally bad idea which could only have originated in California.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The question of whether computers can think is like the question of whether submarines can swim.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Simplicity and elegance are unpopular because they require hard work and discipline to achieve and education to be appreciated.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Programming is one of the most difficult branches of applied mathematics; the poorer mathematicians had better remain pure mathematicians.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The use of COBOL cripples the mind; its teaching should, therefore, be regarded as a criminal offense.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “I don’t need to waste my time with a computer just because I am a computer scientist.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “If you want more effective programmers, you will discover that they should not waste their time debugging, they should not introduce the bugs to start with.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “A programming language is a tool that has profound influence on our thinking habits.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Aim for brevity while avoiding jargon.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Program testing can be used to show the presence of bugs, but never to show their absence!”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “How do we convince people that in programming simplicity and clarity – in short: what mathematicians call elegance – are not a dispensable luxury, but a crucial matter that decides between success and failure?”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Elegance is not a dispensable luxury but a factor that decides between success and failure.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Thanks to the greatly improved possibility of communication, we overrate its importance. Even stronger, we underrate the importance of isolation.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Several people have told me that my inability to suffer fools gladly is one of my main weaknesses.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Probably I am very naive, but I also think I prefer to remain so, at least for the time being and perhaps for the rest of my life.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “I would therefore like to posit that computing’s central challenge, how not to make a mess of it, has not yet been met.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Beauty is our business.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The competent programmer is fully aware of the limited size of his own skull. He therefore approaches his task with full humility, and avoids clever tricks like the plague.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Progress is possible only if we train ourselves to think about programs without thinking of them as pieces of executable code.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Besides a mathematical inclination, an exceptionally good mastery of one’s native tongue is the most vital asset of a competent programmer.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “When we had no computers, we had no programming problem either. When we had a few computers, we had a mild programming problem. Confronted with machines a million times as powerful, we are faced with a gigantic programming problem.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The lurking suspicion that something could be simplified is the world’s richest source of rewarding challenges.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The tools we use have a profound and devious influence on our thinking habits, and therefore on our thinking abilities.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “If there is one ‘scientific’ discovery I am proud of, it is the discovery of the habit of writing without publication in mind.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The purpose of abstraction is not to be vague, but to create a new semantic level in which one can be absolutely precise.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “There should be no such thing as boring mathematics.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Brainpower is by far our scarcest resource.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Perfecting oneself is as much unlearning as it is learning.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Much of the excitement we get out of our work is that we don’t really know what we are doing.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The effort of using machines to mimic the human mind has always struck me as rather silly. I would rather use them to mimic something better.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “The effective exploitation of his powers of abstraction must be regarded as one of the most vital activities of a competent programmer.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “FORTRAN, the infantile disorder, by now nearly 20 years old, is hopelessly inadequate for whatever computer application you have in mind today: it is now too clumsy, too risky, and too expensive to use.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Thank goodness we don’t have only serious problems, but ridiculous ones as well.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Experience does by no means automatically leads to wisdom and understanding.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “In the good old days physicists repeated each other’s experiments, just to be sure. Today they stick to FORTRAN, so that they can share each other’s programs, bugs included.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Write a paper promising salvation, make it a structured something or a virtual something, or abstract, distributed or higher-order or applicative and you can almost be certain of having started a new cult.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Lisp has jokingly been called “the most intelligent way to misuse a computer”. I think that description is a great compliment because it transmits the full flavor of liberation: it has assisted a number of our most gifted fellow humans in thinking previously impossible thoughts.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “APL is a mistake, carried through to perfection.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “It is a mistake to think that programmers wares are programs. Programmers have to produce trustworthy solutions and present it in the form of cogent arguments. Programs source code is just the accompanying material to which these arguments are to be applied to.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Raise your quality standards as high as you can live with, avoid wasting your time on routine problems, and always try to work as closely as possible at the boundary of your abilities. Do this, because it is the only way of discovering how that boundary should be moved forward.”
Edsger W. Dijkstra Quote: “Don’t blame me for the fact that competent programming, as I view it as an intellectual possibility, will be too difficult for the average programmer, you must not fall into the trap of rejecting a surgical technique because it is beyond the capabilities of the barber in his shop around the corner.”
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