The Greatest Science Fiction Quotes Of All Time

Monday, 14 April 2014 - 10:56AM
Monday, 14 April 2014 - 10:56AM

Science Fiction writers have the ability to transport us to other worlds, alternate realities and disturbing versions of our planet in the future. It's no surprise then, that science fiction writers are the owners of some of the greatest sound bites the field of literature has to offer. Some of them are witty, others are political, but almost all of them are painfully astute, even the ones about cats... These are some of the greatest quotes that science fiction, or at least written science fiction, has ever given us:


Douglas Adams


-"A learning experience is one of those things that say, 'You know that thing you just did? Don't do that'." (The Salmon of Doubt)


- "Let us think the unthinkable, let us do the undoable, let us prepare to grapple with the ineffable itself, and see if we may not eff it after all." (DirkGently's Holistic Detective Agency)


- "I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be." (The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul)


- "I love deadlines. I love the whooshing noise they make as they go by." (The Salmon of Doubt)


- "Driving a Porsche in London is like bringing a Ming vase to a football game." (Don't Panic: The Official Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy


- "The ships hung in the sky, much the way that bricks don't" (The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy)


- "He attacked everything in life with a mix of extraordinary genius and naive incompetence, and it was often difficult to tell which was which." 


- Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so." (The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy)



Isaac Asimov


- "Individual science fiction stories may seem as trivial as ever to the blinder critics and philosophers of today - but the core of science fiction, its essence, the concept around which it revolves, has become crucial to our salvation if we are to be saved at all." ("My Own View," The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction)


- "But suppose we were to teach creationism. What would be the content of the teaching? Merely that a creator formed the universe and all species of life ready-made? Nothing more? No details? (The Dangerous Myth of Creationism, Penthouse Jan 1982)


- "I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them."


- "Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do."


- "The saddest aspect of life right now is that science fiction gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom."


- Barbara Walters: "But what would you do if the doctor gave you only six months to live?"

Asimov: "Type faster"


- "Any planet is 'Earth' to those that live on it." (Pebble in the Sky)


- "Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right." (Foundation)


- "Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent." (Foundation)



Ray Bradbury


- "We are an impossibility in an impossible universe." 


- "Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage."


- "You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading."


- "We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?" (Fahrenheit 451)


- "Every morning I jump out of bed and step on a landmine. The landmine is me. After the explosion, I spent the rest of the day putting pieces together." (Zen in the Art of Writing)


- "So few want to be rebels anymore. And out of those few, most, like myself, scare easily."


- "Science is no more than an investigation of a miracle we can never explain, and art is an interpretation of that miracle." (The Martian Chronicles)




Arthur C. Clarke


- "Two possibilities exist: either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. Both are equally terrifying."


- "How inappropriate to call this planet 'Earth', when it is clearly 'Ocean'."


- "I don't believe in astrology; I'm a Sagittarius and we're skeptical."


- " fiction is something that could happen - but usually you wouldn't want it to. Fantasy is something that couldn't happen - though often you only wish that it could."


- "Reading computer manuals without the hardware is as frustrating as reading sex manuals without the software."



Philip K. Dick


- "If you think this Universe is bad, you should see some of the others."


- "It really seems to me that in the midst of great tragedy, there is always the possibility that something terribly funny will happen."


- "No single thing abides; and all things are fucked up." (The Transmigration of Timothy Archer)


- "It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane." (VALIS)


- "I like her; I could watch her the rest of my life. She has breasts that smile." (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?)


- "Certainly it constitutes bad news when the people who agree with you are buggier than batshit."


- "I, for one, bet on science as helping us. I have yet to see how it fundamentally endangers us, even with the H-bomb lurking about. Science has given us more lives than it has taken; we must remember that. (The Shifting Realities of Philip K. Dick: Selected Literary and Philosophical Writings)



William Gibson


- "The 'Net' is a waste of time, and that's exactly what's right about it."


- "The future is not google-able"



Robert A. Heinlein


- "Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own." (Stranger in a Strange Land)


- "Once a month, some women act like men act all the time."


- "Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea."


- "There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men." (Starship Troopers)


- "Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something."


- "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects."


- "You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity." (The Green Hills of Earth)


- "Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor." (Starship Troopers)



Frank Herbert


- "Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic." (Dune)


- "If you ask 'Should we be in space?' you ask a nonsense question. We are in space. We will be in space."


- "I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration." (Dune)


- "Show me a completely smooth operation and I'll show you someone who's covering mistakes. Real boats rock." (Chapterhouse: Dune)


- "You see, gentlemen, they have something to die for. They've discovered they're a people. They're awakening." (Dune)


- "Emotions are the curse of logic." (The Green Brain)


- "Absolute power does not corrupt absolutely, absolute power attracts the corruptible."



Larry Niven


- "The dinosaurs became extinct because they didn't have a space program. And if we become extinct because we don't have a space program, it'll serve us right!"


- "Never fire a laser at a mirror."


- "That's the thing about people who think they hate computers...What they really hate are lousy programmers."



John Scalzi


- "Here's a quick rule of thumb" Don't annoy science fiction writers. These are people who destroy entire planets before lunch. Think of what they'll do to you."


- "I didn't mind getting old when I was young. It's the being old now that's getting to me."


- "I'm not insane sir. I have a finely calibrated sense of acceptable risk." (Old Man's War)


- "If you want me to treat your ideas with more respect, get some better ideas."



Jules Verne


- "Science, my lad, is made up of mistakes, but they are mistakes which it is useful to make, because they lead little by little to the truth." (A Journey to the Center of the Earth)


- "The moon, by her comparative proximity, and the constantly varying appearances produced by her several phases, has always occupied a considerable share of the attention of the inhabitants of the Earth." (From the Earth to the Moon)


- "I believe cats to be spirits come to Earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through."



Kurt Vonnegut


- "Those who believe in telekinetics, raise my hand."


- "Any reviewer who expresses rage and loathing for a novel is preposterous. He or she is like a person who has put on full battle armor and attacked a hot fudge sundae."


- "Everything was beautiful and nothing hurt." (Slaughterhouse-Five)


- "Dear future generations: Please accept our apologies. We were rolling drunk on petroleum."


- "Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you've been to college."


- "I do feel that evolution is being controlled by some sort of divine engineer. I can't help thinking that. And this engineer knows exactly what he or she is doing and why, and where evolution is headed. That's why we've got giraffes and hippopotami and the clap."


- "Science is magic that works." (Cat's Cradle)


- "If your brains were dynamite there wouldn't be enough to blow your hat off." (Timequake)


- "Poo-tee-weet" (Slaughterhouse-Five)


- "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be."



H.G. Wells


- "Advertising is legalized lying."


- "Looking at these stars suddenly dwarfed my own troubles and all the gravities of terrestrial life." (The Time Machine)


- "Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race."


- "The path of least resistance is the path of the loser."



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