Knowledge and information - Quotes from Science Fiction
21.02.2012, 20:11

Knowledge and information - Quotes from Science Fiction


A lot of quotations carefully collected from a very big amount of books and divided by categories.

Have fun reading it, this is really interesting and breathtaking!



He who increaseth knowledge, increaseth sorrow.

- H. Rider Haggard, Allan Quatermain (1887)


People who knew too little and people who knew too much were equally a bore.

- Edgar Rice Burroughs, The Chessmen of Mars (1922)


We walk in darkness with phantoms and specters we know not of, and our little world plunges blindly through abysses toward a goal of which we have no conception. That thought itself is a blow at our beliefs and comprehension. We used to content ourselves by thinking we knew all about our world, at least; but now it is different, and we wonder if we really know anything, or if there can be safety and peace anywhere in the wide universe.

- Donald A.Wandrei, ''Something from Above'' (1930)


There is no knowledge, other than knowledge of oneself, and that should be free to every man who has the wit to learn.

- Robert A. Heinlein, ''Lost Legacy'' (1941)


Knowledge and understanding aren't props for one another. Knowledge is a pile of bricks, and understanding is a way of building.

- Theodore Sturgeon, ''The Sex Opposite'' (1952)


Do not despise the lore that has come down from distant years; for oft it may chance that old wives keep in memory word of things that once were needful for the wise to know.

- J. R. R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring (1954)


There's a price to be paid for everything you learn about what's in the universe. It has to hurt, or it isn't a real price.

- Algis Budrys, ''Lower Than Angels'' (1956)


It shocked Kingsbury how small man and man's knowledge were in the illimitable universe.

- Poul Anderson, ''Life Cycle'' (1957)


Almost all knowledge, after all, fell into that category. It was either perfectly simple once you understood it, or else it fell apart into fiction.

- James Blish, A Case of Conscience (1958)


One can lead a child to knowledge but one cannot make him think.

- Robert A. Heinlein, Starship Troopers (1959)


During the last age of reason, certain proud thinkers had claimed that valid knowledge was indestructible - that ideas were deathless and truth immortal.

- Walter M. Miller, Jr., A Canticle for Leibowitz (1959)


Words and numbers are of equal value, for, in the cloak of knowledge, one is warp and the other woof. It is no more important to count the sands than it is to name the stars.

- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth (1961)


Whenever you learn something new, the whole world becomes that much richer.

- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth (1961)


The more complex a civilization, the more vital to its existence is the maintenance of the flow of information; hence the more vulnerable it becomes to any disturbance in that flow.

- Stanislaw Lem,Memoirs Found in a Bathtub (1961), translated by Michael Kandel and Christine Rose (1973)


Our knowledge of our own limitations is one of our most powerful weapons against the universe.

- John Brunner, ''Puzzle for Spacemen,'' revised (1962)


Knowledge creates a craving for further knowledge.Where is the harm in knowledge?

- Jack Vance, ''Green Magic'' (1963)


A process cannot be understood by stopping it. Understanding must move with the flow of the process, must join it and flow with it.

- Frank Herbert, Dune (1965)


These dwarfs amass knowledge as others do treasure; for this reason they are called Hoarders of the Absolute. Their wisdom lies in the fact that they collect knowledge but never use it.

- Stanislaw Lem, ''How Erg the Self-Inducing Slew a Paleface'' (1965), translated by Michael Kandel (1977)


The left hand knows not what the right hand is doing. As a matter of fact, the right hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing.

- Philip Josй Farmer, ''Riders of the PurpleWage'' (1967)


Man's knowing had no completeness - no limits - because Man did not even know himself. Breathing hard in the thin mountain air, the butterfly marveled at the boundless wonder of Man.

- Howard L. Myers, ''The Creatures of Man'' (1968)


Information is only meaningful when it is shared.

- Samuel R. Delany, ''Time Considered as a Helix of Semi-Precious Stones'' (1969)


''No creature knows itself,'' Glimmung said. ''You don't know yourself; you don't have any knowledge, none at all, of your most basic potentials.''

- Philip K. Dick, Galactic Pot-Healer (1969)


When action grows unprofitable, gather information; when information grows unprofitable, sleep.

- Ursula K. Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness (1969)


What is man but a mote of dust to the universe? Why, he is the universe! All we ever can know is ourselves.

- Susanna Jacobson, ''Notes from Magdalen More'' (1973)


There were times, he said, when human effort appeared to generate nothing but suffering, error, confusion - but maybe even these times add a little to the sum of human understanding.

- Edgar Pangborn, ''TheWorld Is a Sphere'' (1973)


You don't have to be able to swim to know a fish, you don't have to shine to recognize a star.

- Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed: An Ambiguous Utopia (1974)


He sure wished he knew what people were talking about, at least some of the time.

- Tom Reamy, ''San Diego Lightfoot Sue'' (1975)


Isn't it strange how much we know if only we ask ourselves instead of somebody else?

- Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah (1977)


The chances of finding out what really is going on are so absurdly remote that the only thing to do is to say hang the sense of it and just keep yourself occupied.

- Douglas Adams, ''Fit the Fourth,'' episode of The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy (radio series, 1978)


The main reason he had had such a wild and successful life was that he never really understood the significance of anything he did.

- Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to Galaxy (1979)


Like a man carrying a balloon filled with acid, Fallon carried his knowledge tenderly.

- John Kessel, ''Another Orphan'' (1982)


We Investors deal in energy, and precious metals. To prize and pursue mere knowledge is an immature racial trait.

- Bruce Sterling, ''Swarm'' (1982)


What you know, you cannot hate.

- Greg Bear, ''Hardfought'' (1983)


I am sick to death of peoplewho know. I want people who aren't sure.

- Mary Gentle, ''The Harvest of Wolves'' (1984)


In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him. I think it's impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves.

- Orson Scott Card, Ender's Game (1985)


''But why do we wish to exchange information?'' ''Because we feed on information. Information is necessary for our survival.Without information we die.''

- Carl Sagan, Contact (1985)


Knowledge lit him like an arcade game.

- William Gibson, Count Zero (1986)


They both savoured the strange warm glow of being much more ignorant than ordinary people, who were only ignorant of ordinary things.

- Terry Pratchett, Equal Rites (1987)


How harmful overspecialization is. It cuts knowledge at a million points and leaves it bleeding.

- Isaac Asimov, Prelude to Foundation (1988)


''Knowledge is camouflage,'' he was told. ''It merely disguises what lies beneath.''

- Alan Dean Foster, CyberWay (1990)


You can't see the universe clearly until you know who you are.

- Alexander Jablokov, ''The Place of No Shadows'' (1990)


The bosses, the big'uns, they can take all manner of things away from us. With their bloody laws and factories and courts and banks . . . They can make the world to their pleasure, they can take away your home and kin and even the work you do. [. . .] But they can't ever take what you know.

- William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, The Difference Engine (1991)


The more time he spent away out in the Galaxy the more it seemed that the number of things he didn't know anything about actually increased.

- Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless (1992)


All information looks like noise until you break the code.

- Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash (1992)


Any information system of sufficient complexity will inevitably become infected with viruses - viruses generated from within itself.

- Neal Stephenson, Snow Crash (1992)


Knowledge is just opinion that you trust enough to act upon.

- Orson Scott Card, Children of the Mind (1996)


Why must the existence of something inexplicable and ineffably different make people want to claim they know what it is?

- L. Timmel Duchamp, ''Dance at the Edge'' (1998)


So high, so low, so many things to know.

- Vernor Vinge, A Deepness in the Sky (1999)


There is a difference between knowing the path and walking the path.

- AndyWachowski and LarryWachowski, The Matrix (film, 1999)


Most people will never know anything beyond what they see with their own two eyes.

- Michael Dougherty, Dan Harris, and David Hayter, X2: X-Men United (film, 2003)

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