# Algebraic Quotes

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“Cryptography has generated number theory, algebraic geometry over finite fields, algebra, combinatorics and computers.”

— Vladimir Arnold —

“Algebraic to the limit!”

— Ryan North

“In her misery she read a great deal, and discovered that she had lost something she had previously not really know she had: a soul.

What's that? It is easy to define negatively: it is simply that which sneaks off at the mention of algebraic series.”

— Robert Musil

“I made an appointment to see him and then ordered another beer. While I was drinking it I did some doodling on a piece of paper, the algebraic kind that you hope will help you think more clearly. When I finished doing that, I was more confused than ever. Algebra was never my strong subject.”

— Philip Kerr

“Work/Loaf Ratio" ... I have spent fourteen years perfecting ... I won't bore you with a long-winded explanation of the "W/LR" save to say that it is an algebraic formula of such complex numeric subtlety that it can be understood only by mathematicians and hobos.”

— Gary Reilly

“All he really knew was that if he stayed here he would soon be the property of things that buzzed and snorted and hissed, that gave off fumes or stenches. In six months, he would be the owner of a large pink, trained ulcer, a blood pressure of algebraic dimensions, a myopia this side of blindness, and nightmares as deep as oceans and infested with improbable lengths of dream intestines through which he must violently force his way each night.”

— Ray Bradbury

“The semanticists maintained that everything depends on how you interpret the words "potato," "is" and "moving." Since the key here is the operational copula "is," one must examine "is" rigorously. Whereupon they set to work on an Encyclopedia of Cosmic Semasiology, devoting the first four volumes to a discussion of the operational referents of "is." The neopositivists maintained that it is not clusters of potatoes one directly perceives, but clusters of sensory impressions. Then, employing symbolic logic, they created terms for "cluster of impressions" and "cluster of potatoes," devised a special calculus of propositions all in algebraic signs and after using up several seas of ink reached the mathematically precise and absolutely undeniable conclusion that 0=0.”

— StanisÅ‚aw Lem

“I regard it in fact as the great advantage of the mathematical technique that it allows us to describe, by means of algebraic equations, the general character of a pattern even where we are ignorant of the numerical values which will determine its particular manifestation.”

— Friedrich August Von Hayek

“Grandad taught me that the alien signs and symbols of algebraic equations were not just marks on paper. They were not flat. They were three-dimensional, and you could approach them from different directions, look at them from different ways, stand them on their heads. You could take them apart and put them back together in a variety of shapes, like Legos. I stopped being scared of them.”

— Mal Peet

“If there are four equations and only three variables, and no one of the equations is derivable from the others by algebraic manipulation then there is another variable missing.”

— Talcott Parsons

“Empowerment is the algebraic outcome of curiosity and humility.”

— Anonymous.

“If one divided all of human science into two parts - the one common to all men, the other particular to the learned - the latter would be quite small in comparison with the former. But we are hardly aware of what is generally attained, because it is attained without thought and even before the age of reason; because, moreover, learning is noticed only by its differences, and as in algebraic equations, common quantities count for nothing.”

— Jean-Jacques Rousseau

— Eric Temple Bell

“As the sun eclipses the stars by its brilliancy, so the man of knowledge will eclipse the fame of others in assemblies of the people if he proposes algebraic problems, and still more if he solves them.”

— Brahmagupta

“Poetry and code - and mathematics - make us read differently from other forms of writing. Written poetry makes the silent reader read three kinds of pattern at once; code moves the reader from a static to an active, interactive and looped domain; while algebraic topology allows us to read qualitative forms and their transformations.”

— Stephanie Strickland

“The mathematicians have been very much absorbed with finding the general solution of algebraic equations, and several of them have tried to prove the impossibility of it. However, if I am not mistaken, they have not as yet succeeded. I therefore dare hope that the mathematicians will receive this memoir with good will, for its purpose is to fill this gap in the theory of algebraic equations.”

— Niels Henrik Abel

“Is it a spiral of water in the tragic gleam of a revolver, an egg, a glistening arc or the floodgate of reason, a keen ear attuned to a mineral hiss, or a turbine of algebraic formulas? (On Man Ray's first photograms, 1921.)”

— Tristan Tzara

— Vladimir Arnold

“I don't see how it's doing society any good to have so many members walking around with vague memories of algebraic formulas and geometric diagrams and clear memories of hating them.”

— Paul Lockhart

“This is a collaboration between a complex analyst, a dynamical system expert, and an arithmetical algebraic geometer. It sounds like a joke, a complex analyst, a dynamical system expert, and an arithmetical algebraic geometer walk into a bar ...”

— Jordan Ellenberg

— Claude Simon

“I'm a young guy called 'commutative ring', but I was originally 'the ring of continuous functions on a compact Hausdorff space'. Now I am an algebraic object, so I must say goodbye to my home village, the space, but I will always keep it in my heart as a set of maximal ideals.”

— Kato

“The present author confesses that, to him, geometry is nothing at all, if not a branch of art ...

A Treatise on Algebraic Plane Curves”

— Julian Coolidge

“Algebra reverses the relative importance of the factors in ordinary language. It is essentially a written language, and it endeavors to exemplify in its written structures the patterns which it is its purpose to convey. The pattern of the marks on paper is a particular instance of the pattern to be conveyed to thought. The algebraic method is our best approach to the expression of necessity, by reason of its reduction of accident to the ghostlike character of the real variable.”

— Alfred North Whitehead

“We must evaluate the political sympathies of other states and the effect war may have on them. To assess these things in all their ramifications and diversity is plainly a colossal task. Rapid and correct appraisal of them clearly calls for the intuition of a genius; to master all this complex mass by sheer methodical examination is obviously impossible. Bonaparte was quite right when he said that Newton himself would quail before the algebraic problems it could pose.”

— Carl Von Clausewitz

“The whole machinery of our intelligence, our general ideas and laws, fixed and external objects, principles, persons, and gods, are so many symbolic, algebraic expressions. They stand for experience; experience which we are incapable of retaining and surveying in its multitudinous immediacy. We should flounder hopelessly, like the animals, did we not keep ourselves afloat and direct our course by these intellectual devices. Theory helps us to bear our ignorance of fact.”

— George Santayana

“Love and you shall be loved. All love is mathematically just, as much as two sides of an algebraic equation.”

— Ralph Waldo Emerson

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