RIP Stephen Hawking

כִּֽי־אֶרְאֶ֣ה שָׁ֭מֶיךָ מַעֲשֵׂ֣י אֶצְבְּעֹתֶ֑יךָ יָרֵ֥חַ וְ֝כֹוכָבִ֗ים אֲשֶׁ֣ר כֹּונָֽנְתָּה׃ מָֽה־אֱנֹ֥ושׁ כִּֽי־תִזְכְּרֶ֑נּוּ וּבֶן־אָ֝דָ֗ם כִּ֣י תִפְקְדֶֽנּוּ׃

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established: What is a human, that you remember him? And what are the sons of Adam, that you pay them mind?

— Psalm 8:4 – 5

RIP Ursula K. Le Guin

“We know that there is no help for us but from one another, that no hand will save us if we do not reach out our hand. And the hand that you reach out is empty, as mine is. You have nothing. You possess nothing. You own nothing. You are free. All you have is what you are, and what you give.”

RIP Marvin Minsky

“When intelligent machines are constructed, we should not be surprised to find them as confused and as stubborn as men in their convictions about mind-matter, consciousness, free will, and the like. For all such questions are pointed at explaining the complicated interactions between parts of the self-model. A man’s or a machine’s strength of conviction about such things tells us nothing about the man or about the machine except what it tells us about his model of himself.”

(Matter, Mind, and Models, Proceedings of the International Federation of Information Processing Congress 1965)

RIP Terry Pratchett

“She heard him mutter, ‘Can you take away this grief?’

‘I’m sorry,’ she replied. ‘Everyone asks me. And I would not do so even if I knew how. It belongs to you. Only time and tears take away grief; that is what they are for.”

(I Shall Wear Midnight)

RIP Pete Seeger

“Some may find them merely diverting melodies. Others may find them incitements to Red revolution. And who will say if either or both is wrong? Not I.”

RIP Gore Vidal

“I am at heart a propagandist, a tremendous hater, a tiresome nag, complacently positive that there is no human problem which could not be solved if people would simply do as I advise.”