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Herbert Simon quotes

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American mathematical social scientist 1916-2001

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“Engineering, medicine, business, architecture and painting are concerned not with the necessary but with the contingent - not with how things are but with how they might be - in short, with design.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“Human beings, viewed as behaving systems, are quite simple. The apparent complexity of our behavior over time is largely a reflection of the complexity of the environment in which we find ourselves.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“[By 1985], machines will be capable of doing any work Man can do.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“I started off thinking that maybe the social sciences ought to have the kinds of mathematics that the natural sciences had. That works a little bit in economics because they talk about costs, prices and quantities of goods. But it doesn't work a darn for the other social sciences; you lose most of the content when you translate them to numbers.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“The engineer, and more generally the designer, is concerned with how things ought to be - how they ought to be in order to attain goals, and to function.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“One finds limits by pushing them.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“What a person cannot do he will not do, no matter how much he wants to do it. Normative economics has shown that exact solutions to the larger optimization problems of the real world are simply not within reach or sight. ... the behavior of an artificial system may be strongly influenced by the limits of its adaptive capacities.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“The social sciences, I thought, needed the same kind of rigor and the same mathematical underpinnings that had made the "hard" sciences so brilliantly successful.”

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    I Like this quote I dislike this quote“What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence, a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it.”

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