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Grace Murray Hopper

  • [Her analogy on systems clustering:] When a farmer needs more ox power to plow his field, he doesn't get a bigger ox, he gets another one. Then he puts the oxen in parallel.

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Computerworld ()
  • Developing a compiler was a logical move; but in matters like this, you don't run against logic — you run against people who can't change their minds.

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Ethlie Ann Vare and Greg Ptacek, Mothers of Invention ()
  • If you do something once, people will call it an accident. If you do it twice, they call it a coincidence. But do it a third time and you've just proven a natural law!

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Ethlie Ann Vare and Greg Ptacek, Mothers of Invention ()
  • [On first use in 1945 of the term "bugs":] From then on, when anything went wrong with a computer, we said it had bugs in it.

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Time ()
  • If it's a good idea ... go ahead and do it. It's much easier to apologize than to get permission.

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • 1986, in Computerworld ()
  • The most damning phrase in the language is 'We've always done it this way.'

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Kristen Golden and Barbara Findlen, Remarkable Women of the Twentieth Century ()
  • You don't manage people; you manage things. You lead people. We went overboard on management and forgot about leadership. It might help if we ran the MBAs out of Washington.

    • Grace Murray Hopper
  • We're flooding people with information. We need to feed it through a processor. A human must turn information into intelligence or knowledge. We've tended to forget that no computer will ever ask a new question.

    • Grace Murray Hopper
  • I had a running compiler and nobody would touch it. ... They carefully told me, computers could only do arithmetic; they could not do programs.

    • Grace Murray Hopper,
    • in Charlene W. Billings, Grace Hopper: Navy Admiral and Computer Pioneer ()

Grace Murray Hopper, U.S. mathematician, rear admiral, computer pioneer

(1906 - 1991)

Full name: Grace Brewster Murray Hopper.