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Nathan Myhrvold Quotes
Suppose that every prospective parent in the world stopped having children naturally, and instead produced clones of themselves. What would the world be like in another 20 or 30 years? The answer is: much like today. Cloning would only copy the genetic aspects of people who are already here.
One of the things that I love to do is travel around the world and look at archaeological sites. Because archaeology gives us an opportunity to study past civilizations, and see where they succeeded and where they failed. Use science to, you know, work backwards and say, 'Well, really, what were they thinking?'
One of the problems with posing a 'bold new plan' is that you can't just extrapolate from previous plans.
There is a one-in-300 chance that Earth will be struck on March 16, 2880, by an asteroid large enough to destroy civilization and possibly cause the extinction of the human race. But, on the bright side, Prince could re-release his hit song with the new refrain 'We're gonna party like its twenty-eight seventy-nine.'
It is better to predict dramatic things that don't happen than boring things that do.
Nuclear energy is a baseload - meaning it's power that you can run any time you want, day or night - and carbon-free.
Software-industry battles are fought by highly paid and out-of-shape nerds furiously pounding computer keyboards while they guzzle diet Coke. The stakes aren't very dramatic. Life? Liberty? The pursuit of happiness? Nope, it's about stock options.
Words can hurt you. In the larger world, it frames how people think about you, and it can hurt you in lots of little, subtle ways.
We have the only cookbook in the world that has partial differential equations in it.
We're more familiar with what economists call an English auction - prices start low and rise as people bid. However, there is also the Dutch auction, where prices start high and go lower until somebody bites. Movies are sold to the audience via a very slow Dutch auction, where each phase between price drops can last weeks or months.
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Three things about water affect almost all of cooking. First are the hydrogen bonds, which is why it has an incredibly high boiling point. Another is that it's a polar molecule, so that it dissolves a lot of things, and there are things that won't mix with it. And then there's how much energy it takes to heat water.
Making money from enforcing patents is no more wrong than investing in preferred stock.
Anybody who can afford a box of business cards can afford a Web site. Any company with an 800 number can move its services to the Web for peanuts by comparison. The extreme case of corporate promotion is to strip away all other aspects of your business and sell goods or services via the Net alone, as amazon.com has done with books.
Microsoft, Apple, Facebook all bought huge patent portfolios to further their strategic game. They're doing what I'm doing!
We collectively have a special place in our heart for the manned space flight program - Apollo nostalgia is one element, but that is only part of it. American culture worships explorers - look at the fame of Lewis and Clark, for example. The American people want to think of themselves as supporting exploration.
Age can be wonderful for red wine, but not for spacecraft.
Suppose that 'Unsolved Mysteries' called you with news of a long-lost identical twin. Would that suddenly make you less of a person, less of an individual? It is hard to see how. So, why would a clone be different? Your clone would be raised in a different era by different people - like the lost identical twin, only younger than you.
It's impossible that we're alone in the universe. Every time we think we're more special than others, we're proven wrong.
The prize for ultimate inefficiency goes to America. We have built in so many checks and balances that our 'leaders' are the most thoroughly hogtied of any on Earth.
Mankind is not special by virtue of our address in the universe, or what spins around us, or because life originated here. Slowly, but surely, we've been compelled to renounce the comfort of these beliefs.
Cooking is for chefs. Science informs us and lets us cook while knowing what we are doing, but it is not a replacement for the skills of a chef.
Now, to find dinosaurs, you hike around in horrible conditions looking for a dinosaur. It sounds really dumb, but that's what it is. It's horrible conditions, because wherever you have nice weather, plants grow, and you don't get any erosion, and you don't see any dinosaurs.
Nobody wants a prediction that the future will be more or less like the present, even if that is, statistically speaking, an excellent prediction.
Why pay a fee for Internet content when a million free sites are just a click away? There's no incentive until people are too addicted to the Net to turn off their computers, yet are bored with what's available.
If we could create invention capitalism, that would be a helluva legacy, that would be a helluva thing to do... We could actually turbocharge the rate at which the world invents things.
The cloning procedure is similar to IVF. The only difference is that the DNA of sperm and egg would be replaced by DNA from an adult cell. What law or principle - secular, humanist, or religious - says that one combination of genetic material in a flask is OK, but another is not?
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