Jamie Zawinski

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You never enjoy the world aright, till the sea itself floweth in your veins, till you are clothed with the heavens and crowned with the stars.
Thomas Traherne
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Jamie Zawinski (JWZ; born c. 1968 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), hacker.


  • Some people, when confronted with a problem, think "I know, I'll use regular expressions." Now they have two problems. [1][2]
  • You can't take a dying project, sprinkle it with the magic pixie dust of "open source," and have everything magically work out. [3]
  • Using these toolkits is like trying to make a bookshelf out of mashed potatoes. [4]
  • I'd just like to take this moment to point out that C has all the expressive power of two dixie cups and a string. ([5] commands.c:501)
  • Linux is only free if your time has no value. [6] - in an interview in June 1998; he later claimed that "Bits and pieces of this article have been quoted out of context in lots of places"
  • Today, I use Linux as my primary OS (on an x86 PC, and on a Thinkpad), and I also use Irix (on an SGI O2.) Linux has improved a great deal since I wrote this, specifically with respect to its ease of installation. [7] in a comment on his site in 2000
  • Your "use case" should be, there's a 22 year old college student living in the dorms. How will this software get him laid?[8]
  • My one purpose in life is to serve as a warning to others. [9]
  • If you're using Windows, go fuck yourself. [10]
  • I've noticed that when I get quoted in .sig files, it's never any of the actual *clever* things I say all the time. Usually it's something dumb. [11]
  • Don't do drugs, kids. Stay in school. [12]
  • Browser compatibility problems are nature's way of saying "stop trying to be so fuckin' clever". [13]
Wikipedia has an article about:
  • C (it's not just a language, it's a grade) [14]
  • Professionalism has no place in art, and hacking is art. Software Engineering might be science; but that's not what I do. I'm a hacker, not an engineer. [15]