“Be of good hope. Try to think in terms of ‘the long run’ and store up your honey like the bees.”more info
source: July 18, 1954 letter to Madeleine L’Engle, in May Sarton: Selected Letters 1916–1954, ed. by Susan Sherman (New York: W. W. Norton, 1997), 349.
“My first impulse, when presented with any spanking-new piece of computer hardware, is to imagine how it will look in 10 years’ time, gathering dust under a card table in a thrift shop.”more info
source: “My Obsession,” in Distrust that Particular Flavor (New York: Penguin, 2012).
buy on Amazon
medium: Essayvia: Dwight Garner's book review
“When I was a child, people used to talk about what would happen by the year 02000. For the next thirty years they kept talking about what would happen by the year 02000, and now no one mentions a future date at all. The future has been shrinking by one year per year for my entire life. I think it is time for us to start a long-term project that gets people thinking past the mental barrier of an ever-shortening future. I would like to propose a large (think Stonehenge) mechanical clock, powered by seasonal temperature changes. It ticks once a year, bongs once a century, and the cuckoo comes out every millennium.”more info
source: quoted on the Long Now Foundation’s website, a cultural institution focused on promoting “slower/better” thinking and providing a counterpoint to our current “faster/cheaper” mind-set.
“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language / And next year’s words await another voice.”more info
source: “Little Gidding,” in The Waste Land and Other Poems (New York: Penguin, 2003), xxi.
view on Google Books
“Just last year, while researching a book on America’s digital illiteracy, I met with the Air Force General then in charge of America’s cybercommand. He said he had plenty of new recruits ready and able to operate drones or other virtual fighting machines—but no one capable of programming them, or even interested in learning how. He wasn’t even getting recruits who were ready to begin basic programming classes. Meanwhile, he explained to me, colleges in Russia, China, and even Iran were churning out an order of magnitude more programmers than universities in the US. It is only a matter of time, he said—a generation at most—until our military loses its digital superiority.”more info
source: “Why Johnny Can’t Program,” The Huffington Post, September 30, 2010.
medium: online newspaper
“What I’m really interested in is not what I’ve written but what I haven’t written, the next poem, if there is one.”more info
source: “A Conversation with W. S. Merwin,” Artful Dodge, 1982.
“America is now on the unlit, unpaved road to nowhere.”more info
source: “America Goes Dark,” The New York Times, August 8, 2010.
“A little more patience, a little more charity for all, a little more devotion, a little more love; with less bowing down to the past, and a silent ignoring of pretended authority; brave looking forward to the future with more faith in our fellows, and the race will be ripe for a great burst of light and life.”more info
source: The Motto Book (East Aurora, NY: The Roycrofters, 1920), 7.
view on Google Books
“The future…seems to me no unified dream but a mince pie, long in the baking, never quite done.”more info
source: “The Wave of the Future,” in One Man’s Meat (New York: Harper & Row, 1944), 205.
notes: White wrote this essay in December 1940.via: Louise Buckley
“The way to know the shape of things in advance is to listen to seers and mystics instead of to economists and tacticians. The world had ample warning of every event which it has greeted with such gasps of surprise in the past twelve months. Part of the preparation for the perfect world society will be the recognition of seers. It will be required for the President of the United States that he read one poem and one parable or fable a day, in addition to the editorials in the Times.”more info
source: “Compost,” in One Man’s Meat (New York: Harper & Row, 1944), 164.
notes: White wrote this essay in June 1940.
“In the age of Google, when everything you say is forever searchable, the future belongs to those who leave no footprints.”more info
source: “Can We Talk?,” The New York Times, July 16, 2010.
“It amazes me that most people spend more time planning next summer’s vacation than they do planning the rest of their lives.”more info
source: Get What You Want! (Executive Books, 1998).
“If you want to make the right decision for the future, fear is not a very good consultant.”more info