(Some of) my favorite quotes


A growing collection of some quotes I like.

Math, philosophy and physics

there’s a sense that the payoff in a mathematics paper is supposed to be a theorem rather than a construction. I think people often write papers where the “real” goal is to highlight some interesting construction, but the “stated” goal is some propositional consequence of the existence of that construction. It may be that we could communicate certain ideas more effectively if we weren’t encouraged to “bend the narrative” in this way.

Jacob Lurie (2015)

My dream was that the cobordism hypothesis, tangle hypothesis and generalized tangle hypothesis would let us see how spacetime and strings/loops/membranes in spacetime arise from pure $n$-category theory, without having to put in $\mathbb{R}^n$ “by hand”.

John Baez (2018, now deleted)

To be is to belong to a type.

David Corfield, 2021 (and Ulrich Buchholtz, 2018)

Life and the universe

Everything in moderation, even moderation.

Oscar Wilde (unconfirmed, told to me by Mahmoud Zeinalian)

Only entropy comes easy.

Anton Chekhov (c. 1900)

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