Celebrating 19 Years on the Web
TODAY IN SCIENCE HISTORY ®
Find science on or your birthday

Today in Science History - Quickie Quiz
Who said: “The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult. But America cannot resist this transition, we must lead it... That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God. That’s what will lend meaning to the creed our fathers once declared.”
more quiz questions >>
Home > Category Index for Science Quotations > Category Index E > Category: Electric

Electric Quotes (76 quotes)

“Advance, ye mates! Cross your lances full before me. Well done! Let me touch the axis.” So saying, with extended arm, he grasped the three level, radiating lances at their crossed centre; while so doing, suddenly and nervously twitched them; meanwhile, glancing intently from Starbuck to Stubb; from Stubb to Flask. It seemed as though, by some nameless, interior volition, he would fain have shocked into them the same fiery emotion accumulated within the Leyden jar of his own magnetic life. The three mates quailed before his strong, sustained, and mystic aspect. Stubb and Flask looked sideways from him; the honest eye of Starbuck fell downright.
“In vain!&rsdquo; cried Ahab; “but, maybe, 'tis well. For did ye three but once take the full-forced shock, then mine own electric thing, that had perhaps expired from out me. Perchance, too, it would have dropped ye dead. ...”
[Commentary by Henry Schlesinger: Electricity—mysterious and powerful as it seemed at the time—served as a perfect metaphor for Captain Ahab's primal obsession and madness, which he transmits through the crew as if through an electrical circuit in Moby-Dick.]
Extract from Herman Melville, Moby-Dick and comment by Henry Schlesinger in The Battery: How Portable Power Sparked a Technological Revolution (2010), 64.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Accumulation (50)  |  Advance (280)  |  Arm (81)  |  Aspect (124)  |  Captain (14)  |  Circuit (29)  |  Death (388)  |  Doing (280)  |  Dropped (17)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Emotion (100)  |  Extend (128)  |  Eye (419)  |  Honest (50)  |  Interior (32)  |  Leyden Jar (2)  |  Life (1795)  |  Look (582)  |  Madness (33)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Metaphor (33)  |  Mine (76)  |  Mysterious (79)  |  Mystic (20)  |  Obsession (13)  |  Perfect (216)  |  Powerful (139)  |  Quail (2)  |  Shock (37)  |  Strong (174)  |  Suddenly (88)  |  Sustain (46)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Through (849)  |  Time (1877)  |  Touch (141)  |  Vain (83)  |  Volition (3)

...each metal has a certain power, which is different from metal to metal, of setting the electric fluid in motion...
Le Opere, Vol. 1, 149. In Giuliano Pancaldi, Volta: Science and Culture in the Age of Enlightenment (2005), 190.
Science quotes on:  |  Certain (550)  |  Current (118)  |  Difference (337)  |  Different (577)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Fluid (51)  |  Metal (84)  |  Motion (310)  |  Power (746)  |  Setting (44)  |  Voltage (3)

A hundred years ago, the electric telegraph made possible—indeed, inevitable—the United States of America. The communications satellite will make equally inevitable a United Nations of Earth; let us hope that the transition period will not be equally bloody.
Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin, Edwin E. Aldrin et al., First on the Moon (1970), 389.
Science quotes on:  |  America (127)  |  Communication (94)  |  Earth (996)  |  Equally (130)  |  Hope (299)  |  Hundred (229)  |  Indeed (324)  |  Inevitable (49)  |  Nation (193)  |  Period (198)  |  Possible (552)  |  Satellite (28)  |  State (491)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Transition (26)  |  United Nations (3)  |  United States (31)  |  Will (2355)  |  Year (933)

And genius hath electric power,
Which earth can never tame;
Bright suns may scorch, and dark clouds lower,
Its flash is still the same.
Louis Klopsch, Many Thoughts of Many Minds (1896), 106.
Science quotes on:  |  Bright (79)  |  Cloud (104)  |  Dark (140)  |  Earth (996)  |  Flash (49)  |  Genius (284)  |  Low (80)  |  Never (1087)  |  Power (746)  |  Same (157)  |  Scorch (2)  |  Still (613)  |  Sun (385)  |  Tame (4)

As every circumstance relating to so capital a discovery as this (the greatest, perhaps, that has been made in the whole compass of philosophy, since the time of Sir Isaac Newton) cannot but give pleasure to all my readers, I shall endeavour to gratify them with the communication of a few particulars which I have from the best authority. The Doctor [Benjamin Franklin], after having published his method of verifying his hypothesis concerning the sameness of electricity with the matter lightning, was waiting for the erection of a spire in Philadelphia to carry his views into execution; not imagining that a pointed rod, of a moderate height, could answer the purpose; when it occurred to him, that, by means of a common kite, he could have a readier and better access to the regions of thunder than by any spire whatever. Preparing, therefore, a large silk handkerchief, and two cross sticks, of a proper length, on which to extend it, he took the opportunity of the first approaching thunder storm to take a walk into a field, in which there was a shed convenient for his purpose. But dreading the ridicule which too commonly attends unsuccessful attempts in science, he communicated his intended experiment to no body but his son, who assisted him in raising the kite.
The kite being raised, a considerable time elapsed before there was any appearance of its being electrified. One very promising cloud passed over it without any effect; when, at length, just as he was beginning to despair of his contrivance, he observed some loose threads of the hempen string to stand erect, and to avoid one another, just as if they had been suspended on a common conductor. Struck with this promising appearance, he inmmediately presented his knuckle to the key, and (let the reader judge of the exquisite pleasure he must have felt at that moment) the discovery was complete. He perceived a very evident electric spark. Others succeeded, even before the string was wet, so as to put the matter past all dispute, and when the rain had wetted the string, he collected electric fire very copiously. This happened in June 1752, a month after the electricians in France had verified the same theory, but before he had heard of any thing that they had done.
The History and Present State of Electricity, with Original Experiments (1767, 3rd ed. 1775), Vol. 1, 216-7.
Science quotes on:  |  Access (20)  |  All (4108)  |  Answer (366)  |  Appearance (140)  |  Attempt (251)  |  Attend (65)  |  Authority (95)  |  Avoid (116)  |  Beginning (305)  |  Being (1278)  |  Best (459)  |  Better (486)  |  Body (537)  |  Carry (127)  |  Circumstance (136)  |  Cloud (104)  |  Common (436)  |  Communication (94)  |  Compass (34)  |  Complete (204)  |  Conductor (16)  |  Considerable (75)  |  Despair (40)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Dispute (32)  |  Doctor (187)  |  Effect (393)  |  Electrician (6)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Endeavour (63)  |  Evident (91)  |  Execution (25)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Exquisite (25)  |  Extend (128)  |  Field (364)  |  Fire (189)  |  First (1283)  |  France (27)  |  Benjamin Franklin (91)  |  Greatest (328)  |  Happen (274)  |  Happened (88)  |  Hypothesis (296)  |  Judge (108)  |  Key (50)  |  Kite (4)  |  Large (394)  |  Lightning (45)  |  Matter (798)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  Method (505)  |  Moment (253)  |  Month (88)  |  Must (1526)  |  Observed (149)  |  Opportunity (87)  |  Other (2236)  |  Pass (238)  |  Past (337)  |  Philadelphia (3)  |  Philosophy (380)  |  Pleasure (178)  |  Point (580)  |  Preparing (21)  |  Present (619)  |  Proper (144)  |  Purpose (317)  |  Rain (62)  |  Ridicule (23)  |  Sameness (3)  |  Science (3879)  |  Silk (13)  |  Spark (31)  |  Spire (5)  |  Stand (274)  |  Storm (51)  |  String (21)  |  Succeed (109)  |  Theory (970)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Thread (32)  |  Thunder (20)  |  Time (1877)  |  Two (937)  |  Verification (31)  |  View (488)  |  Waiting (43)  |  Walk (124)  |  Whatever (234)  |  Whole (738)

As physicists have arranged an extensive series of effects under the general term of Heat, so they have named another series Light, and a third they have called Electricity. We find ... that all these principles are capable of being produced through the medium of living bodies, for nearly all animals have the power of evolving heat; many insects, moreover, can voluntarily emit light; and the property of producing electricity is well evinced in the terrible shock of the electric eel, as well as in that of some other creatures. We are indeed in the habit of talking of the Electric fluid, or the Galvanic fluid, but this in reality is nothing but a licence of expression suitable to our finite and material notions.
In the Third Edition of Elements of Electro-Metallurgy: or The Art of Working in Metals by the Galvanic Fluid (1851), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Animal (617)  |  Being (1278)  |  Call (769)  |  Capable (168)  |  Creature (233)  |  Effect (393)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Emit (15)  |  Expression (175)  |  Extensive (33)  |  Find (998)  |  Finding (30)  |  Finite (59)  |  Fluid (51)  |  General (511)  |  Habit (168)  |  Heat (174)  |  Indeed (324)  |  Insect (77)  |  Light (607)  |  Living (491)  |  Living Body (3)  |  Material (353)  |  Nearly (137)  |  Nothing (966)  |  Notion (113)  |  Other (2236)  |  Physicist (259)  |  Power (746)  |  Principle (507)  |  Produced (187)  |  Production (183)  |  Property (168)  |  Reality (261)  |  Series (149)  |  Shock (37)  |  Talking (76)  |  Term (349)  |  Terrible (38)  |  Through (849)

Dear Mr. Bell: … Sir Wm. Thomson … speaks with much enthusiasm of your achievement. What yesterday he would have declared impossible he has today seen realized, and he declares it the most wonderful thing he has seen in America. You speak of it as an embryo invention, but to him it seems already complete, and he declares that, before long, friends will whisper their secrets over the electric wire. Your undulating current he declares a great and happy conception.
Letter to Alexander Graham Bell (25 Jun 1876). Quoted in Alexander Graham Bell, The Bell Telephone: The Deposition of Alexander Graham Bell, in the Suit Brought by the United States to Annul the Bell Patents (1908), 101. Note: William Thomson is better known as Lord Kelvin.
Science quotes on:  |  Achievement (179)  |  Already (222)  |  America (127)  |  Bell (35)  |  Alexander Graham Bell (37)  |  Complete (204)  |  Conception (154)  |  Current (118)  |  Declare (45)  |  Declared (24)  |  Embryo (28)  |  Enthusiasm (52)  |  Friend (168)  |  Great (1574)  |  Happy (105)  |  Impossible (251)  |  Invention (369)  |  Baron William Thomson Kelvin (71)  |  Long (790)  |  Most (1731)  |  Realize (147)  |  Secret (194)  |  Speak (232)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Today (314)  |  Whisper (11)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wire (35)  |  Wonderful (149)  |  Yesterday (36)

Do not electric bodies by friction emit a subtile exhalation or spirit by which they perform their attractions?
As quoted in Roderick W. Home, Electricity and Experimental Physics in Eighteenth-Century Europe (1992), 103.
Science quotes on:  |  Attraction (56)  |  Do (1908)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Emit (15)  |  Friction (14)  |  Perform (121)  |  Spirit (265)

Electric and magnetic forces. May they live for ever, and never be forgot, if only to remind us that the science of electromagnetics, in spite of the abstract nature of its theory, involving quantities whose nature is entirely unknown at the present, is really and truly founded on the observations of real Newtonian forces, electric and magnetic respectively.
From 'Electromagnetic Theory, CXII', The Electrician (23 Feb 1900), Vol. 44, 615.
Science quotes on:  |  Abstract (124)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Electromagnetism (18)  |  Force (487)  |  Forgetting (13)  |  Life (1795)  |  Live (628)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Magnetism (41)  |  Nature (1926)  |  Never (1087)  |  Observation (555)  |  Present (619)  |  Quantity (132)  |  Reminder (13)  |  Respectively (13)  |  Science (3879)  |  Spite (55)  |  Theory (970)  |  Truly (116)  |  Unknown (182)

Fourier’s Theorem … is not only one of the most beautiful results of modern analysis, but it may be said to furnish an indispensable instrument in the treatment of nearly every recondite question in modern physics. To mention only sonorous vibrations, the propagation of electric signals along a telegraph wire, and the conduction of heat by the earth’s crust, as subjects in their generality intractable without it, is to give but a feeble idea of its importance.
In William Thomson and Peter Guthrie Tait, Treatise on Natural Philosophy (1867), Vol. 1, 28.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Analysis (233)  |  Beautiful (258)  |  Conduction (8)  |  Crust (38)  |  Earth (996)  |  Feeble (27)  |  Baron Jean-Baptiste-Joseph Fourier (17)  |  Furnish (96)  |  Generality (45)  |  Heat (174)  |  Idea (843)  |  Importance (286)  |  Indispensable (28)  |  Instrument (144)  |  Intractable (2)  |  Mention (82)  |  Modern (385)  |  Modern Physics (23)  |  Most (1731)  |  Nearly (137)  |  Physic (517)  |  Physics (533)  |  Propagation (14)  |  Question (621)  |  Recondite (8)  |  Result (677)  |  Signal (27)  |  Sound (183)  |  Subject (521)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Theorem (112)  |  Treatment (130)  |  Vibration (20)  |  Wire (35)

Heat energy of uniform temperature [is] the ultimate fate of all energy. The power of sunlight and coal, electric power, water power, winds and tides do the work of the world, and in the end all unite to hasten the merry molecular dance.
Matter and Energy (1911), 140.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Coal (57)  |  Dance (32)  |  Do (1908)  |  Electricity (159)  |  End (590)  |  Energy (344)  |  Entropy (44)  |  Fate (72)  |  Haste (6)  |  Hasten (13)  |  Heat (174)  |  Merry (3)  |  Molecule (174)  |  Power (746)  |  Solar Power (9)  |  Sunlight (23)  |  Temperature (79)  |  Thermodynamics (40)  |  Tidal Power (3)  |  Tide (34)  |  Ultimate (144)  |  Uniform (18)  |  Unite (42)  |  Water (481)  |  Water Power (6)  |  Wind (128)  |  Wind Power (9)  |  Work (1351)  |  World (1774)

I did not expect to find the electric cable in its primitive state, such as it was on leaving the manufactory. The long serpent, covered with the remains of shells, bristling with foraminiferae, was encrusted with a strong coating which served as a protection against all boring mollusks. It lay quietly sheltered from the motions of the sea, and under a favorable pressure for the transmission of the electric spark which passes from Europe to America in .32 of a second. Doubtless this cable will last for a great length of time, for they find that the gutta-percha covering is improved by the sea water.
[Referring to the Transatlantic telegraph cable laid in 1866, as viewed from the fictional submarine Nautilus.]
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Seas, (1874), 285. Translated from the original French edition, Vingt Mille Lieues Sous Les Mers (1870).
Science quotes on:  |  Against (332)  |  All (4108)  |  America (127)  |  Boring (7)  |  Cable (11)  |  Covering (14)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Europe (43)  |  Expect (200)  |  Favorable (24)  |  Find (998)  |  Great (1574)  |  Gutta-Percha (2)  |  Last (426)  |  Long (790)  |  Marine Biology (24)  |  Mollusk (6)  |  Motion (310)  |  Nautilus (2)  |  Pressure (63)  |  Primitive (75)  |  Protection (36)  |  Remain (349)  |  Sea (308)  |  Shell (63)  |  Shelter (22)  |  Spark (31)  |  State (491)  |  Strong (174)  |  Submarine (12)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Time (1877)  |  Transatlantic (4)  |  Transmission (34)  |  View (488)  |  Water (481)  |  Will (2355)

I have always consistently opposed high-tension and alternating systems of electric lighting, not only on account of danger, but because of their general unreliability and unsuitability for any general system of distribution.
In 'The Dangers of Electric Lighting', North American Review (Nov 1889), 149, No. 396, 633.
Science quotes on:  |  Account (192)  |  Alternating Current (6)  |  Consistently (8)  |  Danger (115)  |  Distribution (50)  |  General (511)  |  High (362)  |  High-Tension (2)  |  Lighting (5)  |  Oppose (24)  |  System (537)  |  Tension (24)  |  Unreliable (3)

I have done a terrible thing: I have postulated a particle that cannot be detected.
After postulating the existence of the neutrino, a particle with no mass and no electric charge, in order to balance an equation. In an article in Mercury, 29, 29, it is stated, without citation, that “the day after making the proposal Pauli told his colleague Walter Baade.” Webmaster has looked, but not yet found a primary source. Can you help?
Science quotes on:  |  Balance (77)  |  Charge (59)  |  Detect (44)  |  Equation (132)  |  Existence (456)  |  Mass (157)  |  Neutrino (11)  |  Order (632)  |  Particle (194)  |  Postulate (38)  |  Terrible (38)  |  Thing (1915)

I have found that a measurable period of time elapses before the stimulus applied to the iliac plexus of the frog is transmitted to the insertion of the crural nerve into the gastrocnemius muscle by a brief electric current. In large frogs, in which the nerves were from 50-60 mm. in length, and which were preserved at a temperature of 2-6° C, although the temperature of the observation chanber was between 11° and 150° C, the elapsed time was 0.0014 to 0.0020 of a second.
'Vorläufiger Bericht über die Fortpflanzungsgeschwindigkeit der Nervenreizung' (1850). Trans. Edwin Clarke and C. D. O'Malley, The Human Brain and Spinal Cord (1968), 207.
Science quotes on:  |  Applied (177)  |  Brief (36)  |  Current (118)  |  Frog (38)  |  Large (394)  |  Muscle (45)  |  Nerve (79)  |  Observation (555)  |  Period (198)  |  Stimulus (26)  |  Temperature (79)  |  Time (1877)

I think the facts leave no doubt that the very mightiest among the chemical forces are of electric origin. The atoms cling to their electric charges, and opposite electric charges cling to each other.
'On the Modern Development of Faraday's Conception of Electricity', Journal of the Chemical Society 1881, 39, 302.
Science quotes on:  |  Atom (355)  |  Charge (59)  |  Chemical (292)  |  Doubt (304)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Facts (553)  |  Force (487)  |  Opposite (104)  |  Origin (239)  |  Other (2236)  |  Think (1086)

I wanted some new names to express my facts in Electrical science without involving more theory than I could help & applied to a friend Dr Nicholl [his doctor], who has given me some that I intend to adopt for instance, a body decomposable by the passage of the Electric current, I call an ‘electrolyte’ and instead of saying that water is electro chemically decomposed I say it is ‘electrolyzed’. The intensity above which a body is decomposed beneath which it conducts without decomposition I call the ‘Electrolyte intensity’ &c &c. What have been called: the poles of the battery I call the electrodes they are not merely surfaces of metal, but even of water & air, to which the term poles could hardly apply without receiving a new sense. Electrolytes must consist of two parts which during the electrolization, are determined the one in the one direction, and the other towards the poles where they are evolved; these evolved substances I call zetodes, which are therefore the direct constituents of electrolites.
Letter to William Whewell (24 Apr 1834). In Frank A. J. L. James (ed.), The Correspondence of Michael Faraday: Volume 2, 1832-1840 (1993), 176.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (347)  |  Applied (177)  |  Apply (160)  |  Battery (12)  |  Beneath (64)  |  Body (537)  |  Call (769)  |  Conduct (69)  |  Consist (223)  |  Constituent (45)  |  Current (118)  |  Decomposition (18)  |  Direct (225)  |  Direction (175)  |  Doctor (187)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Electrolysis (7)  |  Electrolyte (4)  |  Express (186)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Facts (553)  |  Friend (168)  |  Intensity (34)  |  Merely (316)  |  Metal (84)  |  More (2559)  |  Must (1526)  |  Name (333)  |  New (1216)  |  Nomenclature (146)  |  Other (2236)  |  Passage (50)  |  Pole (46)  |  Say (984)  |  Science (3879)  |  Sense (770)  |  Substance (248)  |  Surface (209)  |  Term (349)  |  Theory (970)  |  Two (937)  |  Want (497)  |  Water (481)

I was working with a Crookes tube covered by a shield of black cardboard. A piece of barium platino-cyanide paper lay on the bench there. I had been passing a current through the tube, and I noticed a peculiar black line across the paper. …
The effect was one which could only be produced in ordinary parlance by the passage of light. No light could come from the tube because the shield which covered it was impervious to any light known even that of the electric arc. …
I did not think; I investigated. …
I assumed that the effect must have come from the tube since its character indicated that it could come from nowhere else. … It seemed at first a new kind of invisible light. It was clearly something new something unrecorded. …
There is much to do, and I am busy, very busy. [Describing to a journalist the discovery of X-rays that he had made on 8 Nov 1895.]
In H.J.W. Dam in 'The New Marvel in Photography", McClure's Magazine (Apr 1896), 4:5, 413.
Science quotes on:  |  Arc (12)  |  Barium (4)  |  Bench (8)  |  Busy (28)  |  Character (243)  |  Current (118)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Do (1908)  |  Effect (393)  |  Experiment (695)  |  First (1283)  |  Impervious (5)  |  Investigate (103)  |  Invisible (63)  |  Kind (557)  |  Known (454)  |  Light (607)  |  Must (1526)  |  New (1216)  |  Ordinary (160)  |  Paper (182)  |  Passage (50)  |  Passing (76)  |  Peculiar (113)  |  Photograph (19)  |  Produced (187)  |  Ray (114)  |  Shield (6)  |  Something (719)  |  Test (211)  |  Think (1086)  |  Thinking (414)  |  Through (849)  |  X-ray (37)

I wasn’t aware of Chargaff’s rules when he said them, but the effect on me was quite electric because I realized immediately that if you had this sort of scheme that John Griffith was proposing, of adenine being paired with thymine, and guanine being paired with cytosine, then you should get Chargaff’s rules.
I was very excited, but I didn’t actually tell Chargaff because it was something I was doing with John Griffith. There was a sort of musical comedy effect where I forgot what the bases were and I had to go to the library to check, and I went back to John Griffith to find out which places he said. Low and behold, it turned out that John Griffith’s ideas fitted in with Chargaff’s rules!
This was very exciting, and we thought “ah ha!” and we realized—I mean what anyone who is familiar with the history of science ought to realize—that when you have one-to-one ratios, it means things go to together. And how on Earth no one pointed out this simple fact in those years, I don’t know.
From Transcript of documentary by VSM Productions, The DNA Story (1973). As excerpted on web page 'Chargaff’s Rules', Linus Pauling and the Race for DNA on website scarc.library.oregonstate.edu
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Adenine (5)  |  Back (390)  |  Base (117)  |  Being (1278)  |  Comedy (4)  |  Cytosine (5)  |  Doing (280)  |  Earth (996)  |  Effect (393)  |  Exciting (47)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Find (998)  |  Guanine (4)  |  History (673)  |  History Of Science (63)  |  Idea (843)  |  Immediately (114)  |  Know (1518)  |  Library (48)  |  Low (80)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  Pair (9)  |  Point (580)  |  Propose (23)  |  Ratio (39)  |  Realize (147)  |  Rule (294)  |  Scheme (57)  |  Science (3879)  |  Simple (406)  |  Something (719)  |  Tell (340)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Thought (953)  |  Thymine (5)  |  Together (387)  |  Turn (447)  |  Year (933)

If a mixture of different kinds of electrified atoms is moving along in one stream, then when electric and magnetic forces are applied to the stream simultaneously, the different kinds of atoms are sorted out, and the original stream is divided up into a number of smaller streams separated from each other. The particles in any one of the smaller streams are all of the same kind.
From the Romanes Lecture (10 Jun 1914) delivered in the Sheldonian Theatre, published as The Atomic Theory (1914), 9.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Applied (177)  |  Apply (160)  |  Atom (355)  |  Different (577)  |  Divided (50)  |  Electrified (2)  |  Force (487)  |  Ion (21)  |  Kind (557)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Mass Spectrometer (2)  |  Mixture (41)  |  Move (216)  |  Number (699)  |  Other (2236)  |  Particle (194)  |  Simultaneous (22)  |  Sort (49)  |  Stream (81)

In 1891, during the Presidency of William Henry Harrison [Benjamin Harrison], electric lights were first installed in the White House, the residence of the leaders of our country. At that time, commercial electricity was not economically feasible, but President Harrison wanted to affirm his confidence in the technological capability of our country.
Speech, at dedication of solar panels on the White House roof, 'Solar Energy Remarks Announcing Administration Proposals' (20 Jun 1979).
Science quotes on:  |  Affirmation (7)  |  Capability (41)  |  Commercial (26)  |  Confidence (69)  |  Country (251)  |  Economy (55)  |  Electric Light (2)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Feasible (3)  |  First (1283)  |  House (140)  |  Leader (43)  |  Light (607)  |  President (31)  |  Residence (2)  |  Technological (61)  |  Technology (257)  |  Time (1877)  |  Want (497)  |  White (127)  |  White House (4)

In that memorable year, 1822: Oersted, a Danish physicist, held in his hands a piece of copper wire, joined by its extremities to the two poles of a Volta pile. On his table was a magnetized needle on its pivot, and he suddenly saw (by chance you will say, but chance only favours the mind which is prepared) the needle move and take up a position quite different from the one assigned to it by terrestrial magnetism. A wire carrying an electric current deviates a magnetized needle from its position. That, gentlemen, was the birth of the modern telegraph.
Le hasard favorise l’esprit preparé
Inaugural Address as newly appointed Professor and Dean (Sep 1854) at the opening of the new Faculté des Sciences at Lille (7 Dec 1854). In René Vallery-Radot, The Life of Pasteur, translated by Mrs. R. L. Devonshire (1919), 76.
Science quotes on:  |  Battery (12)  |  Birth (147)  |  Chance (239)  |  Compass (34)  |  Copper (25)  |  Current (118)  |  Different (577)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Electromagnetism (18)  |  Magnet (20)  |  Magnetism (41)  |  Mind (1338)  |  Modern (385)  |  Move (216)  |  Movement (155)  |  Needle (5)  |  Hans Christian Oersted (5)  |  Physicist (259)  |  Pole (46)  |  Saw (160)  |  Say (984)  |  Suddenly (88)  |  Table (104)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Terrestrial (61)  |  Two (937)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wire (35)  |  Year (933)

Invention breeds invention. No sooner is the electric telegraph devised than gutta-percha, the very material it requires, is found. The aeronaut is provided with gun-cotton, the very fuel he wants for his balloon.
In Ralph Waldo Emerson and J.E. Cabot (ed.), Emerson's Complete Works (1884), Vol. 7, 161.
Science quotes on:  |  Balloon (15)  |  Breed (24)  |  Found (11)  |  Fuel (32)  |  Gutta-Percha (2)  |  Invention (369)  |  Material (353)  |  Provide (69)  |  Require (219)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Want (497)

It appears, according to the reported facts, that the electric conflict is not restricted to the conducting wire, but that it has a rather extended sphere of activity around it … the nature of the circular action is such that movements that it produces take place in directions precisely contrary to the two extremities of a given diameter. Furthermore, it seems that the circular movement, combined with the progressive movement in the direction of the length of the conjunctive wire, should form a mode of action which is exerted as a helix around this wire as an axis.
Recherches sur l’identité des forces chimiques et électriques (1813), 248. In James R. Hofmann, André-Marie Ampère (1996), 231.
Science quotes on:  |  According (237)  |  Action (327)  |  Activity (210)  |  Circular (19)  |  Conflict (73)  |  Contrary (141)  |  Current (118)  |  Diameter (28)  |  Direction (175)  |  Electromagnetism (18)  |  Exert (39)  |  Extend (128)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Facts (553)  |  Field (364)  |  Form (959)  |  Helix (10)  |  Movement (155)  |  Nature (1926)  |  Precisely (92)  |  Sphere (116)  |  Two (937)  |  Wire (35)

It is impossible not to feel stirred at the thought of the emotions of man at certain historic moments of adventure and discovery—Columbus when he first saw the Western shore, Pizarro when he stared at the Pacific Ocean, Franklin when the electric spark came from the string of his kite, Galileo when he first turned his telescope to the heavens. Such moments are also granted to students in the abstract regions of thought, and high among them must be placed the morning when Descartes lay in bed and invented the method of co-ordinate geometry.
Quoted in James Roy Newman, The World of Mathematics (2000), Vol. 1, 239.
Science quotes on:  |  Abstract (124)  |  Adventure (56)  |  Certain (550)  |  Christopher Columbus (15)  |  Coordinate Geometry (2)  |  René Descartes (81)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Emotion (100)  |  Feel (367)  |  First (1283)  |  Benjamin Franklin (91)  |  Galileo Galilei (122)  |  Geometry (255)  |  Grant (73)  |  Heaven (258)  |  Heavens (125)  |  High (362)  |  Impossible (251)  |  Invention (369)  |  Kite (4)  |  Man (2251)  |  Method (505)  |  Moment (253)  |  Morning (94)  |  Must (1526)  |  Ocean (202)  |  Pacific Ocean (5)  |  Saw (160)  |  Shore (24)  |  Spark (31)  |  Star (427)  |  String (21)  |  Student (300)  |  Telescope (98)  |  Thought (953)  |  Turn (447)  |  Western (45)

It is just as foolish to complain that people are selfish and treacherous as it is to complain that the magnetic field does not increase unless the electric field has a curl. Both are laws of nature.
As quoted, without source by Eugene Wigner in 'John von Neumann (1903-1957)', Year Book of the American Philosophical Society: Biographical Memoirs (1958), 153. Collected in Eugene P. Wigner, The Collected Works of Eugene Paul Wigner: Historical, Philosophical, and Socio-Political Papers. Historical and Biographical Reflections and Syntheses (2013), 130.
Science quotes on:  |  Both (493)  |  Complain (8)  |  Electric Field (3)  |  Field (364)  |  Foolish (40)  |  Increase (210)  |  Law (894)  |  Law Of Nature (72)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Magnetic Field (7)  |  Nature (1926)  |  People (1005)  |  Selfish (11)

It is notorious that the same discovery is frequently made simultaneously and quite independently, by different persons. Thus, to speak of only a few cases in late years, the discoveries of photography, of electric telegraphy, and of the planet Neptune through theoretical calculations, have all their rival claimants. It would seem, that discoveries are usually made when the time is ripe for them—that is to say, when the ideas from which they naturally flow are fermenting in the minds of many men.
Hereditary Genius (1869), 192.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Calculation (127)  |  Different (577)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Flow (83)  |  Idea (843)  |  Independently (24)  |  Late (118)  |  Mind (1338)  |  Neptune (13)  |  Person (363)  |  Photography (8)  |  Planet (356)  |  Rival (19)  |  Say (984)  |  Speak (232)  |  Through (849)  |  Time (1877)  |  Usually (176)  |  Year (933)

It was shortly after midday on December 12, 1901, [in a hut on the cliffs at St. John's, Newfoundland] that I placed a single earphone to my ear and started listening. The receiver on the table before me was very crude—a few coils and condensers and a coherer—no valves [vacuum tubes], no amplifiers, not even a crystal. I was at last on the point of putting the correctness of all my beliefs to test. ... [The] answer came at 12:30. ... Suddenly, about half past twelve there sounded the sharp click of the “tapper” ... Unmistakably, the three sharp clicks corresponding to three dots sounded in my ear. “Can you hear anything, Mr. Kemp?” I asked, handing the telephone to my assistant. Kemp heard the same thing as I. ... I knew then that I had been absolutely right in my calculations. The electric waves which were being sent out from Poldhu [Cornwall, England] had travelled the Atlantic, serenely ignoring the curvature of the earth which so many doubters considered a fatal obstacle. ... I knew that the day on which I should be able to send full messages without wires or cables across the Atlantic was not far distant.
Quoted in Degna Marconi, My Father, Marconi (2000), 93.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  All (4108)  |  Amplifier (3)  |  Answer (366)  |  Ask (411)  |  Atlantic Ocean (7)  |  Being (1278)  |  Belief (578)  |  Cable (11)  |  Calculation (127)  |  Click (4)  |  Cliff (19)  |  Coil (3)  |  Condenser (4)  |  Consider (416)  |  Correctness (12)  |  Crude (31)  |  Crystal (68)  |  Curvature (8)  |  Dot (16)  |  Ear (68)  |  Earth (996)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Hear (139)  |  Ignoring (11)  |  Last (426)  |  Listening (25)  |  Message (49)  |  Midday (4)  |  Obstacle (42)  |  Past (337)  |  Point (580)  |  Radio (50)  |  Receiver (5)  |  Right (452)  |  Single (353)  |  Sound (183)  |  Start (221)  |  Success (302)  |  Suddenly (88)  |  Table (104)  |  Telephone (27)  |  Test (211)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Transmission (34)  |  Vacuum (39)  |  Vacuum Tube (2)  |  Valve (2)  |  Wave (107)  |  Wire (35)

Looking at the thunder machine which had been set up, I saw not the slightest indication of the presence of electricity. However, while they were putting the food on the table, I obtained extraordinary electric sparks from the wire. My wife and others approached from it, for the reason that I wished to have witnesses see the various colors of fire about which the departed Professor Richmann used to argue with me. Suddenly it thundered most violently at the exact time that I was holding my hand to the metal, and sparks crackled. All fled away from me, and my wife implored that I go away. Curiosity kept me there two or three minutes more, until they told me that the soup was getting cold. By that time the force of electricity greatly subsided. I had sat at table only a few minutes when the man servant of the departed Richmann suddenly opened the door, all in tears and out of breath from fear. I thought that some one had beaten him as he was on his way to me, but he said, with difficulty, that the professor had been injured by thunder… . Nonetheless, Mr. Richmann died a splendid death, fulfilling a duty of his profession.
As quoted in Boris Menshutkin, 'Lomonosov: Excerpts', collected in Thomas Riha (ed.), Readings for Introduction to Russian Civilization (1963), Vol. 2, 30.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Approach (108)  |  Argue (23)  |  Breath (59)  |  Cold (112)  |  Color (137)  |  Curiosity (128)  |  Death (388)  |  Difficulty (196)  |  Door (93)  |  Duty (68)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Extraordinary (79)  |  Fear (197)  |  Fire (189)  |  Flee (8)  |  Food (199)  |  Force (487)  |  Fulfill (19)  |  Hand (143)  |  Indication (33)  |  Injure (3)  |  Looking (189)  |  Machine (257)  |  Man (2251)  |  Metal (84)  |  Minute (125)  |  More (2559)  |  Most (1731)  |  Obtain (163)  |  Open (274)  |  Other (2236)  |  Presence (63)  |  Profession (99)  |  Professor (128)  |  Reason (744)  |  Saw (160)  |  See (1081)  |  Servant (39)  |  Set (394)  |  Soup (9)  |  Spark (31)  |  Splendid (23)  |  Suddenly (88)  |  Table (104)  |  Tear (42)  |  Thought (953)  |  Thunder (20)  |  Time (1877)  |  Two (937)  |  Various (200)  |  Way (1217)  |  Wife (41)  |  Wire (35)  |  Wish (212)

Mechanical action may be derived from heat, and heat may be generated by mechanical action, by means of forces either acting between contiguous parts of bodies, or due to electric excitation; but in no other way known, or even conceivable, in the present state of science. Hence thermo-dynamics falls naturally into two divisions, of which the subjects are respectively, the relation of heat to the forces acting between contiguous parts of bodies, and the relation of heat to electrical agency.
In 'On the Dynamical Theory of Heat, with Numerical Results Deduced from Mr Joule's Equivalent of a Thermal Unit, and M. Regnault's Observations on Steam' (1851). Part VI, 'Thermo Electric Currents' (1854). In Mathematical and Physical Papers (1882), Vol. 1, 232.
Science quotes on:  |  Action (327)  |  Conceivable (28)  |  Division (65)  |  Due (141)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Excitation (9)  |  Fall (230)  |  Force (487)  |  Heat (174)  |  Known (454)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  Mechanical (140)  |  Other (2236)  |  Present (619)  |  Respectively (13)  |  Science (3879)  |  State (491)  |  Subject (521)  |  Two (937)  |  Way (1217)

My theory of electrical forces is that they are called into play in insulating media by slight electric displacements, which put certain small portions of the medium into a state of distortion which, being resisted by the elasticity of the medium, produces an electromotive force ... I suppose the elasticity of the sphere to react on the electrical matter surrounding it, and press it downwards.
From the determination by Kohlrausch and Weber of the numerical relation between the statical and magnetic effects of electricity, I have determined the elasticity of the medium in air, and assuming that it is the same with the luminiferous ether I have determined the velocity of propagation of transverse vibrations.
The result is
193088 miles per second
(deduced from electrical & magnetic experiments).
Fizeau has determined the velocity of light
= 193118 miles per second
by direct experiment.
This coincidence is not merely numerical. I worked out the formulae in the country, before seeing Webers [sic] number, which is in millimetres, and I think we have now strong reason to believe, whether my theory is a fact or not, that the luminiferous and the electromagnetic medium are one.
Letter to Michael Faraday (19 Oct 1861). In P. M. Harman (ed.), The Scientific Letters and Papers of James Clerk Maxwell (1990), Vol. 1, 1846-1862, 684-6.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (347)  |  Being (1278)  |  Calculation (127)  |  Call (769)  |  Certain (550)  |  Coincidence (19)  |  Country (251)  |  Determination (78)  |  Direct (225)  |  Displacement (9)  |  Distortion (13)  |  Effect (393)  |  Elasticity (8)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Electromagnetism (18)  |  Ether (35)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Force (487)  |  Formula (98)  |  Insulating (3)  |  Friedrich Wilhelm Georg Kohlrausch (2)  |  Light (607)  |  Light Wave (2)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Matter (798)  |  Media (13)  |  Merely (316)  |  Number (699)  |  Numerical (39)  |  Portion (84)  |  Propagation (14)  |  Reason (744)  |  Result (677)  |  Seeing (142)  |  Small (477)  |  Speed Of Light (17)  |  Sphere (116)  |  State (491)  |  Strong (174)  |  Suppose (156)  |  Theory (970)  |  Think (1086)  |  Velocity (48)  |  Vibration (20)  |  Work (1351)

Oersted would never have made his great discovery of the action of galvanic currents on magnets had he stopped in his researches to consider in what manner they could possibly be turned to practical account; and so we would not now be able to boast of the wonders done by the electric telegraphs. Indeed, no great law in Natural Philosophy has ever been discovered for its practical implications, but the instances are innumerable of investigations apparently quite useless in this narrow sense of the word which have led to the most valuable results.
From Silvanus Phillips Thompson, 'Introductory Lecture to the Course on Natural Philosophy', The Life of Lord Kelvin (1910), Vol. 1, Appendix to Chap. 5, 249.
Science quotes on:  |  Account (192)  |  Action (327)  |  Apparently (20)  |  Boast (22)  |  Consider (416)  |  Current (118)  |  Discover (553)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Great (1574)  |  Implication (23)  |  Indeed (324)  |  Innumerable (55)  |  Instance (33)  |  Investigation (230)  |  Law (894)  |  Lead (384)  |  Magnet (20)  |  Manner (58)  |  Most (1731)  |  Narrow (84)  |  Natural (796)  |  Natural Philosophy (52)  |  Never (1087)  |  Hans Christian Oersted (5)  |  Philosophy (380)  |  Possible (552)  |  Possibly (111)  |  Practical (200)  |  Research (664)  |  Result (677)  |  Sense (770)  |  Sense Of The Word (5)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Turn (447)  |  Useless (33)  |  Value (365)  |  Wonder (236)  |  Word (619)

Ohm (a distinguished mathematician, be it noted) brought into order a host of puzzling facts connecting electromotive force and electric current in conductors, which all previous electricians had only succeeded in loosely binding together qualitatively under some rather vague statements. Even as late as 20 years ago, “quantity” and “tension” were much used by men who did not fully appreciate Ohm's law. (Is it not rather remarkable that some of Germany's best men of genius should have been, perhaps, unfairly treated? Ohm; Mayer; Reis; even von Helmholtz has mentioned the difficulty he had in getting recognised. But perhaps it is the same all the world over.)
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  All (4108)  |  Appreciate (63)  |  Best (459)  |  Conductor (16)  |  Current (118)  |  Difficulty (196)  |  Distinguish (160)  |  Distinguished (83)  |  Electrician (6)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Facts (553)  |  Force (487)  |  Genius (284)  |  Germany (13)  |  Hermann von Helmholtz (28)  |  Late (118)  |  Law (894)  |  Mathematician (387)  |  Robert Mayer (9)  |  Men Of Science (143)  |  Mention (82)  |  Ohm (5)  |  Georg Simon Ohm (3)  |  Order (632)  |  Puzzle (44)  |  Puzzling (8)  |  Quantity (132)  |  Recognition (88)  |  Johann Philipp Reis (2)  |  Statement (142)  |  Succeed (109)  |  Tension (24)  |  Together (387)  |  Treatment (130)  |  Unfair (8)  |  Vague (47)  |  World (1774)  |  Year (933)

One night we were hauling long lines on the Faroe slope, working with an electric lamp hanging over the side in order to see the line, when like lightning flashes one squid after another shot towards the light; … In October 1902 we were one night steaming outside the slopes of the coast banks of Norway, and for many miles we could see the squids moving in the surface waters like luminous bubbles, resembling large milky white electric lamps being constantly lit and extinguished.
From Sir John Murray and Johan Hyort, The Depths of the Ocean (1912), 649.
Science quotes on:  |  Bank (31)  |  Being (1278)  |  Bubble (22)  |  Extinguish (8)  |  Lamp (36)  |  Large (394)  |  Light (607)  |  Lightning (45)  |  Long (790)  |  Luminous (18)  |  Order (632)  |  Outside (141)  |  Resemble (63)  |  See (1081)  |  Side (233)  |  Slope (9)  |  Squid (3)  |  Surface (209)  |  Water (481)  |  White (127)

One word characterises the most strenuous of the efforts for the advancement of science that I have made perseveringly during fifty-five years; that word is failure. I know no more of electric and magnetic force, or of the relation between ether, electricity and ponderable matter, or of chemical affinity, than I knew and tried to teach to my students of natural philosophy fifty years ago in my first session as Professor.
Address (16 Jun 1896), at Celebration for his Jubilee as Professor, at Glasgow University. Printed in The Electrician (19 Jun 1896), 37, 247.
Science quotes on:  |  Advancement (62)  |  Affinity (27)  |  Chemical (292)  |  Chemical Affinity (2)  |  Effort (227)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Ether (35)  |  Failure (161)  |  First (1283)  |  Force (487)  |  Know (1518)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Matter (798)  |  More (2559)  |  Most (1731)  |  Natural (796)  |  Natural Philosophy (52)  |  Persevere (5)  |  Philosophy (380)  |  Ponderable (4)  |  Professor (128)  |  Relation (157)  |  Science (3879)  |  Strenuous (5)  |  Student (300)  |  Teach (277)  |  Word (619)  |  Year (933)

Science appears to us with a very different aspect after we have found out that it is not in lecture rooms only, and by means of the electric light projected on a screen, that we may witness physical phenomena, but that we may find illustrations of the highest doctrines of science in games and gymnastics, in travelling by land and by water, in storms of the air and of the sea, and wherever there is matter in motion.
'Introductory Lecture on Experimental Physics' (1871). In W. D. Niven (ed.), The Scientific Papers of James Clerk Maxwell (1890), Vol. 2, 243.
Science quotes on:  |  Air (347)  |  Aspect (124)  |  Different (577)  |  Find (998)  |  Game (101)  |  Illustration (48)  |  Lecture (105)  |  Light (607)  |  Matter (798)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  Motion (310)  |  Physical (508)  |  Project (73)  |  Projector (3)  |  Science (3879)  |  Sea (308)  |  Storm (51)  |  Storms (18)  |  Travel (114)  |  Travelling (17)  |  Water (481)  |  Wherever (51)  |  Witness (54)

Scientific training gives its votaries freedom from the impositions of modern quackery. Those who know nothing of the laws and processes of Nature fall an easy prey to quacks and impostors. Perfectionism in the realm of religion; a score of frauds in the realm of medicine, as electric shoe soles, hair brushes and belts, electropises, oxydonors, insulating bed casters, and the like; Christian science. In the presence of whose unspeakable stillness and self-stultifying idealism a wise man knows not whether to laugh or cry; Prof. Weltmer's magnetic treatment of disease; divine healing and miracle working by long-haired peripatetics—these and a score of other contagious fads and rank impostures find their followers among those who have no scientific training. Among their deluded victims are thousands of men and women of high character, undoubted piety, good intentions, charitable impulses and literary culture, but none trained to scientific research. Vaccinate the general public with scientific training and these epidemics will become a thing of the past.
As quoted by S.D. Van Meter, Chairman, closing remarks for 'Report of Committee on Public Policy and Legislation', to the Colorado State Medical Society in Denver, printed in Colorado Medicine (Oct 1904), 1, No. 12, 363. Van Meter used the quote following his statement, “In conclusion, allow me to urge once more the necessity of education of the public as well as the profession if we ever expect to correct the evils we are striving to reach by State and Society legislation. Much can be accomplished toward this end by the publication of well edited articles in the secular press upon medical subjects the public is eager to know about.” Prof. Weitmer is presumably Sidney A. Weltmer, founder of The Weltmer Institute of Suggestive Therapeutics, who offered a Course in Magnetic Healing by mail order correspondance (1899).
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Become (815)  |  Bed (23)  |  Belt (3)  |  Brush (5)  |  Character (243)  |  Charity (11)  |  Christian (43)  |  Christian Science (3)  |  Contagious (4)  |  Cry (29)  |  Culture (143)  |  Deluded (7)  |  Disease (328)  |  Divine (112)  |  Eager (15)  |  Easy (204)  |  Education (378)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Epidemic (7)  |  Fad (10)  |  Fall (230)  |  Find (998)  |  Follower (11)  |  Fraud (15)  |  Freedom (129)  |  General (511)  |  General Public (7)  |  Good (889)  |  Good Intention (2)  |  Hair (25)  |  Healing (25)  |  High (362)  |  Idealism (4)  |  Ignorance (240)  |  Imposition (5)  |  Impostor (3)  |  Imposture (6)  |  Impulse (48)  |  Insulating (3)  |  Intelligent Design (5)  |  Intention (46)  |  Know (1518)  |  Laugh (47)  |  Law (894)  |  Literary (13)  |  Long (790)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Man (2251)  |  Medicine (378)  |  Miracle (83)  |  Modern (385)  |  Nature (1926)  |  Nothing (966)  |  Other (2236)  |  Past (337)  |  Perfectionism (2)  |  Peripatetic (3)  |  Piety (4)  |  Presence (63)  |  Prey (13)  |  Process (423)  |  Quack (18)  |  Quackery (4)  |  Rank (67)  |  Realm (85)  |  Religion (361)  |  Research (664)  |  Science (3879)  |  Scientific (941)  |  Scientific Method (175)  |  Self (267)  |  Shoe (11)  |  Sole (49)  |  Stillness (5)  |  Stultify (5)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Thousand (331)  |  Train (114)  |  Trained (5)  |  Training (80)  |  Treatment (130)  |  Victim (35)  |  Votary (3)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wise (131)  |  Wise Man (15)  |  Woman (151)  |  Work (1351)

The discovery of the telephone has made us acquainted with many strange phenomena. It has enabled us, amongst other things, to establish beyond a doubt the fact that electric currents actually traverse the earth's crust. The theory that the earth acts as a great reservoir for electricity may be placed in the physicist's waste-paper basket, with phlogiston, the materiality of light, and other old-time hypotheses.
From Recent Progress in Telephony: British Association Report (1882). Excerpted in John Joseph Fahie, A History of Wireless Telegraphy (1902), 136.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Act (272)  |  Basket (7)  |  Beyond (308)  |  Crust (38)  |  Current (118)  |  Discovery (780)  |  Doubt (304)  |  Earth (996)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Enabling (7)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Great (1574)  |  Hypothesis (296)  |  Light (607)  |  Materiality (2)  |  Old (481)  |  Other (2236)  |  Paper (182)  |  Phenomenon (318)  |  Phlogiston (9)  |  Physicist (259)  |  Reservoir (7)  |  Strange (157)  |  Telephone (27)  |  Theory (970)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Time (1877)  |  Traverse (5)  |  Waste (101)

The electric age ... established a global network that has much the character of our central nervous system.
Understanding Media: the Extensions of Man? (2nd Ed.,1964), 302.
Science quotes on:  |  Age (499)  |  Central (80)  |  Character (243)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Global (35)  |  Nerve (79)  |  Nervous System (34)  |  Network (21)  |  System (537)

The electric light invades the dunnest deep of Hades.
Cries Pluto, ‘twixt his snores: “O temporal O mores!”
Science quotes on:  |  Deep (233)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Hades (3)  |  Light (607)  |  More (2559)  |  Pluto (6)

The experimental investigation by which Ampere established the law of the mechanical action between electric currents is one of the most brilliant achievements in science. The whole theory and experiment, seems as if it had leaped, full grown and full armed, from the brain of the 'Newton of Electricity'. It is perfect in form, and unassailable in accuracy, and it is summed up in a formula from which all the phenomena may be deduced, and which must always remain the cardinal formula of electro-dynamics.
A Treatise on Electricity and Magnetism (1873), Vol. 2, 162.
Science quotes on:  |  Accuracy (78)  |  Achievement (179)  |  Action (327)  |  All (4108)  |  André-Marie Ampère (11)  |  Arm (81)  |  Brain (270)  |  Brilliant (53)  |  Cardinal (9)  |  Current (118)  |  Deduction (82)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Electrodynamics (10)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Experimental (192)  |  Form (959)  |  Formula (98)  |  Investigation (230)  |  Law (894)  |  Leap (53)  |  Mechanical (140)  |  Mechanics (131)  |  Most (1731)  |  Must (1526)  |  Perfect (216)  |  Perfection (129)  |  Phenomenon (318)  |  Remain (349)  |  Science (3879)  |  Summary (11)  |  Theory (970)  |  Whole (738)

The experimental investigation by which Ampère established the law of the mechanical action between electric currents is one of the most brilliant achievements in science. The whole, theory and experiment, seems as if it had leaped, full grown and full armed, from the brain of the “Newton of Electricity”. It is perfect in form, and unassailable in accuracy, and it is summed up in a formula from which all the phenomena may be deduced, and which must always remain the cardinal formula of electro-dynamics.
In James Clerk Maxwell, Electricity and Magnetism (1881), Vol. 2, 163
Science quotes on:  |  Accuracy (78)  |  Achievement (179)  |  Action (327)  |  All (4108)  |  André-Marie Ampère (11)  |  Arm (81)  |  Brain (270)  |  Brilliant (53)  |  Cardinal (9)  |  Current (118)  |  Deduce (25)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Establish (57)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Experimental (192)  |  Form (959)  |  Formula (98)  |  Investigation (230)  |  Law (894)  |  Leap (53)  |  Mechanical (140)  |  Most (1731)  |  Must (1526)  |  Sir Isaac Newton (333)  |  Perfect (216)  |  Phenomenon (318)  |  Remain (349)  |  Science (3879)  |  Theory (970)  |  Unassailable (3)  |  Whole (738)

The hype, skepticism and bewilderment associated with the Internet—concerns about new forms of crime, adjustments in social mores, and redefinition of business practices— mirror the hopes, fears, and misunderstandings inspired by the telegraph. Indeed, they are only to be expected. They are the direct consequences of human nature, rather than technology.
Given a new invention, there will always be some people who see only its potential to do good, while others see new opportunities to commit crime or make money. We can expect the same reactions to whatever new inventions appear in the twenty-first century.
Such reactions are amplified by what might be termed chronocentricity—the egotism that one’s own generation is poised on the very cusp of history. Today, we are repeatedly told that we are in the midst of a communications revolution. But the electric telegraph was, in many ways, far more disconcerting for the inhabitants of the time than today’s advances are for us. If any generation has the right to claim that it bore the full bewildering, world-shrinking brunt of such a revolution, it is not us—it is our nineteenth- century forebears.
In The Victorian Internet (1998).
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Adjustment (20)  |  Advance (280)  |  Amplified (6)  |  Bewilderment (8)  |  Business (149)  |  Century (310)  |  Claim (146)  |  Commit (41)  |  Communication (94)  |  Concern (228)  |  Consequence (203)  |  Crime (38)  |  Direct (225)  |  Do (1908)  |  Expect (200)  |  Fear (197)  |  First (1283)  |  Form (959)  |  Generation (242)  |  Good (889)  |  History (673)  |  Hope (299)  |  Human (1468)  |  Human Nature (64)  |  Indeed (324)  |  Inhabitant (49)  |  Internet (17)  |  Invention (369)  |  Mirror (41)  |  Misunderstanding (12)  |  Money (170)  |  More (2559)  |  Nature (1926)  |  New (1216)  |  Other (2236)  |  People (1005)  |  Potential (69)  |  Practice (204)  |  Reaction (104)  |  Revolution (129)  |  Right (452)  |  See (1081)  |  Skepticism (28)  |  Social (252)  |  Technology (257)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Term (349)  |  Time (1877)  |  Today (314)  |  Way (1217)  |  Whatever (234)  |  Will (2355)  |  World (1774)

The images evoked by words being independent of their sense, they vary from age to age and from people to people, the formulas remaining identical. Certain transitory images are attached to certain words: the word is merely as it were the button of an electric bell that calls them up.
From Psychologie des Foules (1895), 91. English text in The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind (1897), Book 2, Chap. 2, 97. The original French text is, “Les images évoquées par les mots étant indépendantes de leur sens, varient d’âge en âge, de peuple à peuple, sous l’identité des formules. A certains mots s’attachent transitoirement certaines images: le mot n’est que le bouton d’appel qui les fait apparaître.” Notice the original French, “le bouton d’appel” translates more directly as “call button” and “of an electric bell” is added in translation for clarity, but is not in the French text. The ending could also be translated as “that makes them appear.”
Science quotes on:  |  Age (499)  |  Attach (56)  |  Attached (36)  |  Being (1278)  |  Bell (35)  |  Button (4)  |  Call (769)  |  Certain (550)  |  Evoke (12)  |  Formula (98)  |  Identical (53)  |  Image (96)  |  Independent (67)  |  Mere (84)  |  Merely (316)  |  People (1005)  |  Remaining (45)  |  Sense (770)  |  Transitory (4)  |  Vary (27)  |  Word (619)

The lessons of science should be experimental also. The sight of a planet through a telescope is worth all the course on astronomy; the shock of the electric spark in the elbow outvalues all theories; the taste of the nitrous oxide, the firing of an artificial volcano, are better than volumes of chemistry.
The Prose Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson (1870), 552.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Astronomy (229)  |  Better (486)  |  Chemistry (353)  |  Course (409)  |  Elbow (3)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Experimental (192)  |  Lesson (57)  |  Nitrous Oxide (4)  |  Planet (356)  |  Science (3879)  |  Shock (37)  |  Sight (132)  |  Spark (31)  |  Taste (90)  |  Telescope (98)  |  Theory (970)  |  Through (849)  |  Volcano (39)  |  Worth (169)

The nervous system is the most complex and delicate instrument on our planet, by means of which relations, connections are established between the numerous parts of the organism, as well as between the organism, as a highly complex system, and the innumerable, external influences. If the closing and opening of electric current is now regarded as an ordinary technical device, why should there be any objection to the idea that the same principle acts in this wonderful instrument? On this basis the constant connection between the external agent and the response of the organism, which it evokes, can be rightly called an unconditioned reflex, and the temporary connection—a conditioned reflex.
The Conditioned Reflex (1935), 249.
Science quotes on:  |  Act (272)  |  Agent (70)  |  Basis (173)  |  Call (769)  |  Called (9)  |  Complex (188)  |  Complexity (111)  |  Condition (356)  |  Conditioning (3)  |  Connection (162)  |  Constancy (12)  |  Constant (144)  |  Current (118)  |  Delicacy (8)  |  Delicate (43)  |  Device (70)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Establishment (47)  |  Evoke (12)  |  External (57)  |  Idea (843)  |  Influence (222)  |  Innumerable (55)  |  Instrument (144)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  Most (1731)  |  Nerve (79)  |  Nervous System (34)  |  Numerous (68)  |  Objection (32)  |  Opening (15)  |  Ordinary (160)  |  Organism (220)  |  Part (222)  |  Planet (356)  |  Principle (507)  |  Reflex (14)  |  Regard (305)  |  Relation (157)  |  Response (53)  |  System (537)  |  Technology (257)  |  Temporary (23)  |  Why (491)  |  Wonder (236)  |  Wonderful (149)

The next difficulty is in the economical production of small lights by electricity. This is what is commonly meant by the phrase, ‘dividing the electric light.’ Up to the present time, and including Mr. Edison’s latest experiments, it appears that this involves an immense loss of efficiency. Next comes the difficulty of distributing on any large scale the immense electric currents which would be needed.
In 'A Scientific View of It: Prof. Henry Morton Not Sanguine About Edison’s Success', New York Times (28 Dec 1879), 1.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Appear (118)  |  Current (118)  |  Difficulty (196)  |  Distribute (15)  |  Divide (75)  |  Economical (9)  |  Thomas Edison (84)  |  Efficiency (44)  |  Electric Light (2)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Immense (86)  |  Involve (90)  |  Large (394)  |  Light (607)  |  Loss (110)  |  Need (290)  |  Next (236)  |  Phrase (61)  |  Present (619)  |  Production (183)  |  Scale (121)  |  Small (477)  |  Time (1877)

The night spread out of the east in a great flood, quenching the red sunlight in a single minute. We wriggled by breathless degrees deep into our sleeping bags. Our sole thought was of comfort; we were not alive to the beauty or the grandeur of our position; we did not reflect on the splendor of our elevation. A regret I shall always have is that I did not muster up the energy to spend a minute or two stargazing. One peep I did make between the tent flaps into the night, and I remember dimly an appalling wealth of stars, not pale and remote as they appear when viewed through the moisture-laden air of lower levels, but brilliant points of electric blue fire standing out almost stereoscopically. It was a sight an astronomer would have given much to see, and here were we lying dully in our sleeping bags concerned only with the importance of keeping warm and comfortable.
…...
Science quotes on:  |  Air (347)  |  Alive (90)  |  Appalling (10)  |  Appear (118)  |  Astronomer (93)  |  Bag (3)  |  Beauty (299)  |  Blue (56)  |  Brilliant (53)  |  Comfort (59)  |  Comfortable (10)  |  Concern (228)  |  Deep (233)  |  Degree (276)  |  Dimly (6)  |  East (18)  |  Elevation (13)  |  Energy (344)  |  Fire (189)  |  Flap (2)  |  Flood (50)  |  Give (202)  |  Grandeur (31)  |  Great (1574)  |  Importance (286)  |  Keep (101)  |  Level (67)  |  Lie (364)  |  Low (80)  |  Lying (55)  |  Minute (125)  |  Moisture (20)  |  Muster (2)  |  Night (120)  |  Pale (9)  |  Peep (3)  |  Point (580)  |  Position (77)  |  Red (35)  |  Reflect (32)  |  Regret (30)  |  Remember (179)  |  Remote (83)  |  See (1081)  |  Sight (132)  |  Single (353)  |  Sleep (76)  |  Sole (49)  |  Spend (95)  |  Splendor (17)  |  Spread (83)  |  Stand (274)  |  Star (427)  |  Stars (304)  |  Sunlight (23)  |  Tent (11)  |  Thought (953)  |  Through (849)  |  Two (937)  |  View (488)  |  Warm (69)  |  Wealth (94)  |  Wriggle (2)

The plain message physical science has for the world at large is this, that were our political and social and moral devices only as well contrived to their ends as a linotype machine, an antiseptic operating plant, or an electric tram-car, there need now at the present moment be no appreciable toil in the world.
A Modern Utopia (1904, 2006), 49.
Science quotes on:  |  Antiseptic (8)  |  Car (71)  |  Device (70)  |  Electricity (159)  |  End (590)  |  Large (394)  |  Machine (257)  |  Message (49)  |  Moment (253)  |  Moral (195)  |  Morality (52)  |  Physical (508)  |  Physical Science (101)  |  Plant (294)  |  Political (121)  |  Politics (112)  |  Present (619)  |  Science (3879)  |  Social (252)  |  Society (326)  |  Toil (25)  |  Tram (3)  |  Utopia (5)  |  Work (1351)  |  World (1774)

The steam-engine in its manifold applications, the crime-decreasing gas-lamp, the lightning conductor, the electric telegraph, the law of storms and rules for the mariner's guidance in them, the power of rendering surgical operations painless, the measures for preserving public health, and for preventing or mitigating epidemics,—such are among the more important practical results of pure scientific research, with which mankind have been blessed and States enriched.
President's Address to the British Association, Leeds (1858). In Charles W. Vincent and James Mason (eds.), The Year-book of Facts in Science and Art (1859), title page.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Anesthetic (3)  |  Application (242)  |  Bless (25)  |  Blessed (20)  |  Conductor (16)  |  Crime (38)  |  Engine (98)  |  Enrich (24)  |  Epidemic (7)  |  Gas (83)  |  Gas Lamp (2)  |  Guidance (28)  |  Health (193)  |  Lamp (36)  |  Law (894)  |  Lightning (45)  |  Manifold (22)  |  Mankind (339)  |  Mariner (11)  |  Measure (232)  |  More (2559)  |  Operation (213)  |  Operations (107)  |  Pain (136)  |  Power (746)  |  Practical (200)  |  Preserving (18)  |  Public Health (10)  |  Pure (291)  |  Research (664)  |  Result (677)  |  Rule (294)  |  Scientific (941)  |  State (491)  |  Steam (80)  |  Steam Engine (45)  |  Storm (51)  |  Storms (18)  |  Surgery (51)  |  Telegraph (38)

The sun's rays are the ultimate source of almost every motion which takes place on the surface of the earth. By their heat are produced all winds, and those disturbances in the electric equilibrium of the atmosphere which give rise to the phenomena of terrestrial magnetism. By their vivifying action vegetables are elaborated from inorganic matter, and become in their turn the support of animals and of man, and the sources of those great deposits of dynamical efficiency which are laid up for human use in our coal strata. By them the waters of the sea are made to circulate in vapor through the air, and irrigate the land, producing springs and rivers. By them are produced all disturbances of the chemical equilibrium of the elements of nature which, by a series of compositions and decompositions, give rise to new products, and originate a transfer of materials. Even the slow degradation of the solid constituents of the surface, in which its chief geological changes consist, and their diffusion among the waters of the ocean, are entirely due to the abrasion of the wind, rain, and tides, which latter, however, are only in part the effect of solar influence and the alternate action of the seasons.
from Outlines of Astronomy (1849), 237.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Action (327)  |  Air (347)  |  All (4108)  |  Animal (617)  |  Atmosphere (103)  |  Become (815)  |  Change (593)  |  Chemical (292)  |  Chief (97)  |  Coal (57)  |  Composition (84)  |  Consist (223)  |  Constituent (45)  |  Decomposition (18)  |  Degradation (17)  |  Diffusion (13)  |  Disturbance (31)  |  Due (141)  |  Dynamical (15)  |  Earth (996)  |  Effect (393)  |  Efficiency (44)  |  Elaborated (7)  |  Element (310)  |  Equilibrium (33)  |  Great (1574)  |  Heat (174)  |  Human (1468)  |  Influence (222)  |  Magnetism (41)  |  Man (2251)  |  Material (353)  |  Matter (798)  |  Motion (310)  |  Nature (1926)  |  New (1216)  |  Ocean (202)  |  Originate (36)  |  Photosynthesis (19)  |  Produced (187)  |  Product (160)  |  Rain (62)  |  Ray (114)  |  Rise (166)  |  River (119)  |  Sea (308)  |  Season (47)  |  Series (149)  |  Slow (101)  |  Solar Energy (20)  |  Solid (116)  |  Spring (133)  |  Strata (35)  |  Sun (385)  |  Support (147)  |  Surface (209)  |  Surface Of The Earth (36)  |  Terrestrial (61)  |  Through (849)  |  Tide (34)  |  Transfer (20)  |  Turn (447)  |  Ultimate (144)  |  Use (766)  |  Vapor (12)  |  Vegetable (46)  |  Water (481)  |  Weather (44)  |  Wind (128)

The terror of the thunderstorm led primitive man to the conception of a Supreme Being whose attribute was the thunderbolt. But when Franklin brought the lightning from the clouds and showed it to he a mere electric spark, when we learned to make the lightning harmless by the lightning-rod, and when finally we harnessed electricity to do our work, naturally our reverence for the thrower of the thunderbolt decayed. So the gods of experience vanished.
In 'Religion and Modern Science', The Christian Register (16 Nov 1922), 101, 1089. The article is introduced as “the substance of an address to the Laymen’s League in All Soul’s Church (5 Nov 1922).
Science quotes on:  |  Attribute (61)  |  Being (1278)  |  Bring (90)  |  Cloud (104)  |  Conception (154)  |  Decay (53)  |  Do (1908)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Experience (467)  |  Benjamin Franklin (91)  |  God (757)  |  Harmless (8)  |  Harness (23)  |  Learn (629)  |  Learned (235)  |  Lightning (45)  |  Lightning-Rod (2)  |  Man (2251)  |  Primitive (75)  |  Primitive Man (5)  |  Science And Religion (307)  |  Show (346)  |  Spark (31)  |  Supreme (71)  |  Supreme Being (8)  |  Terror (30)  |  Thunderbolt (7)  |  Thunderstorm (5)  |  Vanish (18)  |  Work (1351)

The theory I propose may therefore be called a theory of the Electromagnetic Field because it has to do with the space in the neighbourhood of the electric or magnetic bodies, and it may be called a Dynamical Theory, because it assumes that in the space there is matter in motion, by which the observed electromagnetic phenomena are produced.
'A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field' (1865). In W. D. Niven (ed.), The Scientific Papers of James Clerk Maxwell(1890), Vol. 2, 527.
Science quotes on:  |  Call (769)  |  Do (1908)  |  Dynamical (15)  |  Electromagnetic Theory (5)  |  Field (364)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Matter (798)  |  Motion (310)  |  Observed (149)  |  Produced (187)  |  Space (500)  |  Theory (970)

The whole question of imagination in science is often misunderstood by people in other disciplines. They try to test our imagination in the following way. They say, “Here is a picture of some people in a situation. What do you imagine will happen next?” When we say, “I can’t imagine,” they may think we have a weak imagination. They overlook the fact that whatever we are allowed to imagine in science must be consistent with everything else we know; that the electric fields and the waves we talk about are not just some happy thoughts which we are free to make as we wish, but ideas which must be consistent with all the laws of physics we know. We can’t allow ourselves to seriously imagine things which are obviously in contradiction to the laws of nature. And so our kind of imagination is quite a difficult game. One has to have the imagination to think of something that has never been seen before, never been heard of before. At the same time the thoughts are restricted in a strait jacket, so to speak, limited by the conditions that come from our knowledge of the way nature really is. The problem of creating something which is new, but which is consistent with everything which has been seen before, is one of extreme difficulty
In The Feynman Lectures in Physics (1964), Vol. 2, Lecture 20, p.20-10 to p.20-11.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Allow (45)  |  Condition (356)  |  Consistent (48)  |  Contradiction (68)  |  Create (235)  |  Difficult (246)  |  Difficulty (196)  |  Discipline (77)  |  Do (1908)  |  Electric Field (3)  |  Everything (476)  |  Extreme (75)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Field (364)  |  Free (232)  |  Game (101)  |  Happen (274)  |  Happy (105)  |  Idea (843)  |  Imagination (328)  |  Imagine (164)  |  Kind (557)  |  Know (1518)  |  Knowledge (1529)  |  Law (894)  |  Law Of Physics (3)  |  Limit (280)  |  Limited (101)  |  Misunderstand (4)  |  Must (1526)  |  Nature (1926)  |  Never (1087)  |  New (1216)  |  Next (236)  |  Other (2236)  |  Ourselves (245)  |  Overlook (31)  |  People (1005)  |  Physic (517)  |  Physics (533)  |  Picture (143)  |  Problem (676)  |  Question (621)  |  Say (984)  |  Science (3879)  |  Situation (113)  |  Something (719)  |  Speak (232)  |  Test (211)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Think (1086)  |  Thought (953)  |  Time (1877)  |  Try (283)  |  Wave (107)  |  Way (1217)  |  Weak (71)  |  Whatever (234)  |  Whole (738)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wish (212)

The word “electromagnetic” which is used to characterize the phenomena produced by the conducting wires of the voltaic pile, … were those which M. Oersted discovered, exhibited by an electric current and a magnet. I have determined to use the word electrodynamic in order to unite under a common name all these phenomena, and particularly to designate those which I have observed between two voltaic conductors. It expresses their true character, that of being produced by electricity in motion: while the electric attractions and repulsions, which have been known for a long time, are electrostatic phenomena produced by the unequal distribution of electricity at rest in the bodies in which they are observed.
New terminology introduced in 'Experiments on the New Electrodynamical Phenomena', Annales de Chemie et de Physique (1822), Series 2, Vol. 20, 60. As translated in Dagobert David Runes (ed.), A Treasury of World Science (1962), 5.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4108)  |  Attraction (56)  |  Being (1278)  |  Character (243)  |  Common (436)  |  Conductor (16)  |  Current (118)  |  Discover (553)  |  Distribution (50)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Electrodynamics (10)  |  Electromagnetic (2)  |  Electrostatic (7)  |  Known (454)  |  Long (790)  |  Magnet (20)  |  Motion (310)  |  Name (333)  |  Nomenclature (146)  |  Observed (149)  |  Hans Christian Oersted (5)  |  Order (632)  |  Produced (187)  |  Repulsion (7)  |  Rest (280)  |  Time (1877)  |  Two (937)  |  Unequal (12)  |  Unite (42)  |  Use (766)  |  Voltaic (9)  |  Voltaic Pile (2)  |  Wire (35)  |  Word (619)

This maze of symbols, electric and magnetic potential, vector potential, electric force, current, displacement, magnetic force, and induction, have been practically reduced to two, electric and magnetic force.
Describing Heaviside’s refinement of the original Maxwell Equations. In Joseph Larmore (ed.), The Scientific Writings of the Late George Francis Fitzgerald (1902) 294.
Science quotes on:  |  Current (118)  |  Displacement (9)  |  Force (487)  |  Induction (77)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Maze (10)  |  Potential (69)  |  Practical (200)  |  Reduce (94)  |  Symbol (93)  |  Two (937)  |  Vector (6)

Those who admire modern civilization usually identify it with the steam engine and the electric telegraph.
In 'Maxims for Revolutionists: Civilization', in Man and Superman (1903), 241.
Science quotes on:  |  Civilization (204)  |  Engine (98)  |  Modern (385)  |  Steam (80)  |  Steam Engine (45)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Usually (176)

Those who understand the steam engine and the electric telegraph spend their lives in trying to replace them with something better.
In 'Maxims for Revolutionists: Civilization', in Man and Superman (1903), 241.
Science quotes on:  |  Better (486)  |  Engine (98)  |  Invention (369)  |  Live (628)  |  Something (719)  |  Spend (95)  |  Steam (80)  |  Steam Engine (45)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Trying (144)  |  Understand (606)

Tiny ferryboats they were, each laden with its little electric charge, unloading their etheric cargo at the opposite electrode and retracing their journeyings, or caught by a cohesive force, building up little bridges, or trees with quaint and beautiful patterns.
Describing the flow of electrons between electrodes in a vacuum tube.
Father of Radio: the Autobiography of Lee De Forest (1950), 119. In Rodney P. Carlisle, Scientific American Inventions and Discoveries (2004), 391.
Science quotes on:  |  Beautiful (258)  |  Bridge (47)  |  Building (156)  |  Charge (59)  |  Cohesive (4)  |  Electron (93)  |  Flow (83)  |  Force (487)  |  Little (707)  |  Opposite (104)  |  Pattern (110)  |  Quaint (7)  |  Tiny (72)  |  Tree (246)  |  Vacuum (39)  |  Vacuum Tube (2)

Today we no longer ask what really goes on in an atom; we ask what is likely to be observed—and with what likelihood—when we subject atoms to any specified influences such as light or heat, magnetic fields or electric currents.
What Little I Remember (1979), 20.
Science quotes on:  |  Ask (411)  |  Atom (355)  |  Current (118)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Field (364)  |  Heat (174)  |  Influence (222)  |  Light (607)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Magnetic Field (7)  |  Observation (555)  |  Observed (149)  |  Subject (521)  |  Today (314)

We can scarcely avoid the inference that light consists in the transverse undulations of the same medium which is the cause of electric and magnetic phenomena.
'On Physical Lines of Force' (1862). In W. D. Niven (ed.), The Scientific Papers of James Clerk Maxwell (1890), Vol. 1, 500.
Science quotes on:  |  Avoid (116)  |  Cause (541)  |  Consist (223)  |  Electromagnetism (18)  |  Inference (45)  |  Light (607)  |  Light Wave (2)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Phenomenon (318)  |  Scarcely (74)

We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We'll restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do.
From First Inaugural Address (20 Jan 2009)
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Age (499)  |  All (4108)  |  Bind (25)  |  Bridge (47)  |  Build (204)  |  Car (71)  |  Care (186)  |  College (66)  |  Commerce (21)  |  Cost (86)  |  Demand (123)  |  Digital (10)  |  Do (1908)  |  Factory (20)  |  Feed (27)  |  Fuel (32)  |  Harness (23)  |  Health (193)  |  Health Care (9)  |  Internet (17)  |  Line (91)  |  Lower (11)  |  New (1216)  |  New Age (6)  |  Place (177)  |  Quality (135)  |  Raise (35)  |  Restore (8)  |  Rightful (3)  |  Road (64)  |  Run (174)  |  School (219)  |  Science (3879)  |  Soil (86)  |  Sun (385)  |  Technology (257)  |  Together (387)  |  Transform (73)  |  University (121)  |  Wield (10)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wind (128)  |  Wonder (236)

What agencies of electricity, gravity, light, affinity combine to make every plant what it is, and in a manner so quiet that the presence of these tremendous powers is not ordinarily suspected. Faraday said, “ A grain of water is known to have electric relations equivalent to a very powerful flash of lightning.”
In 'Perpetual Forces', North American Review (1877), No. 125. Collected in Ralph Waldo Emerson and James Elliot Cabot (ed.), Lectures and Biographical Sketches (1883), 60.
Science quotes on:  |  Affinity (27)  |  Combine (57)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Equivalent (45)  |  Michael Faraday (85)  |  Flash (49)  |  Grain (50)  |  Gravity (132)  |  Known (454)  |  Light (607)  |  Lightning (45)  |  Plant (294)  |  Power (746)  |  Powerful (139)  |  Presence (63)  |  Quiet (36)  |  Tremendous (26)  |  Water (481)

What, then, is light according to the electromagnetic theory? It consists of alternate and opposite rapidly recurring transverse magnetic disturbances, accompanied with electric displacements, the direction of the electric displacement being at the right angles to the magnetic disturbance, and both at right angles to the direction of the ray.
'A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field' (1864). In W. D. Niven (ed.), The Scientific Letters and Papers of James Clerk Maxwell(1890), Vol. 2, 1862-1973, 195.
Science quotes on:  |  According (237)  |  Being (1278)  |  Both (493)  |  Consist (223)  |  Direction (175)  |  Displacement (9)  |  Disturbance (31)  |  Electromagnetic Theory (5)  |  Light (607)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  Opposite (104)  |  Rapidly (66)  |  Ray (114)  |  Recurring (12)  |  Right (452)  |  Theory (970)

When I entered the field of space physics in 1956, I recall that I fell in with the crowd believing, for example, that electric fields could not exist in the highly conducting plasma of space. It was three years later that I was shamed by S. Chandrasekhar into investigating Alfvén's work objectively. My degree of shock and surprise in finding Alfvén right and his critics wrong can hardly be described. I learned that a cosmic ray acceleration mechanism basically identical to the famous mechanism suggested by Fermi in 1949 had [previously] been put forth by Alfvén.
Quoted in Anthony L. Peratt, 'Dean of the Plasma Dissidents', Washington Times, supplement: The World and I (May 1988), 195.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Acceleration (12)  |  Belief (578)  |  Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar (7)  |  Confirm (57)  |  Cosmic (72)  |  Cosmic Ray (7)  |  Critic (20)  |  Crowd (24)  |  Degree (276)  |  Description (84)  |  Electric Field (3)  |  Electromagnetic Field (2)  |  Enter (141)  |  Exist (443)  |  Enrico Fermi (19)  |  Field (364)  |  Identical (53)  |  Investigate (103)  |  Learn (629)  |  Learned (235)  |  Mechanism (96)  |  Objectively (5)  |  Physic (517)  |  Physics (533)  |  Plasma (8)  |  Ray (114)  |  Recall (10)  |  Right (452)  |  Shame (14)  |  Shock (37)  |  Space (500)  |  Surprise (86)  |  Work (1351)  |  Wrong (234)  |  Year (933)

When I examine the conclusion [on experiments with the electric light bulb experiments published in the Herald] which everyone acquainted with the subject will recognize as a conspicuous failure, trumpeted as a wonderful success, I [conclude]... that the writer ... must either be very ignorant, and the victim of deceit, or a conscious accomplice in what is nothing less than a fraud upon the public.
Letter to the Sanitary Engineer (22 Dec 1880). Quoted in Charles Bazermanl, The Languages of Edison's Light (2002), 186.
Science quotes on:  |  Bulb (10)  |  Conclude (65)  |  Conclusion (254)  |  Conspicuous (12)  |  Deceit (7)  |  Thomas Edison (84)  |  Examine (78)  |  Experiment (695)  |  Failure (161)  |  Fraud (15)  |  Ignorant (90)  |  Light (607)  |  Light Bulb (6)  |  Must (1526)  |  Nothing (966)  |  Recognize (125)  |  Subject (521)  |  Success (302)  |  Sucess (2)  |  Victim (35)  |  Will (2355)  |  Wonderful (149)  |  Writer (86)

When the great truth accidentally revealed and experimentally confirmed is fully recognized, that this planet, with all its appalling immensity, is to electric currents virtually no more than a small metal ball and that by this fact many possibilities, ea
http://web.archive.org/web/20070109161311/http://www.knowprose.com/node/12961
Science quotes on:  |  Accidentally (2)  |  All (4108)  |  Appalling (10)  |  Ball (62)  |  Confirm (57)  |  Current (118)  |  Fact (1210)  |  Fully (21)  |  Great (1574)  |  Immensity (30)  |  Metal (84)  |  More (2559)  |  Planet (356)  |  Possibility (164)  |  Recognize (125)  |  Reveal (148)  |  Revealed (60)  |  Small (477)  |  Truth (1057)  |  Virtually (6)

When Thomas Edison worked late into the night on the electric light, he had to do it by gas lamp or candle. I’m sure it made the work seem that much more urgent.
In Napalm and Silly Putty (2002), 128.
Science quotes on:  |  Candle (30)  |  Do (1908)  |  Thomas Edison (84)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Gas (83)  |  Gas Lamp (2)  |  Invention (369)  |  Lamp (36)  |  Late (118)  |  Light (607)  |  More (2559)  |  Night (120)  |  Urgent (13)  |  Work (1351)

While electric railroading is perhaps the most important branch of electrical engineering, at least as regards commercial importance, considering the amount capital invested therein, nevertheless it is a remarkable fact that while most other branches of electrical engineering had been developed to a very high degree of perfection, even a few years ago theoretical investigation of electric railroading was still conspicuous by its almost entire absence.
All the work was done by some kind of empirical experimenting, that is, some kind of motor was fitted up with some gearing or some sort of railway car, and then run, and if the motor burned out frequently it was replaced with a larger motor, and if it did not burn out, a trailer was put on the car, and perhaps a second trailer, until the increase of the expense account in burn-outs of the motors balanced the increased carrying capacity of the train.
'The Electric Railway', Transactions of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers (1902), 125.
Science quotes on:  |  Account (192)  |  All (4108)  |  Amount (151)  |  Branch (150)  |  Burn (87)  |  Capacity (100)  |  Car (71)  |  Carrying capacity (3)  |  Conspicuous (12)  |  Degree (276)  |  Develop (268)  |  Electrical (57)  |  Electrical Engineering (11)  |  Empirical (54)  |  Empirical Science (9)  |  Engineering (175)  |  Fact (1210)  |  High (362)  |  Importance (286)  |  Increase (210)  |  Invest (18)  |  Investigation (230)  |  Kind (557)  |  Money (170)  |  Most (1731)  |  Motor (23)  |  Nevertheless (90)  |  Other (2236)  |  Perfection (129)  |  Railroad (32)  |  Railway (18)  |  Regard (305)  |  Run (174)  |  Still (613)  |  Train (114)  |  Work (1351)  |  Year (933)

Yet is it possible in terms of the motion of atoms to explain how men can invent an electric motor, or design and build a great cathedral? If such achievements represent anything more than the requirements of physical law, it means that science must investigate the additional controlling factors, whatever they may be, in order that the world of nature may be adequately understood. For a science which describes only the motions of inanimate things but fails to include the actions of living organisms cannot claim universality.
The Human Meaning of Science (1940), 31.
Science quotes on:  |  Achievement (179)  |  Action (327)  |  Atom (355)  |  Build (204)  |  Cathedral (27)  |  Claim (146)  |  Describe (128)  |  Design (195)  |  Enquiry (87)  |  Explain (322)  |  Fail (185)  |  Great (1574)  |  Include (90)  |  Investigate (103)  |  Law (894)  |  Living (491)  |  Mean (809)  |  Means (579)  |  More (2559)  |  Motion (310)  |  Motor (23)  |  Must (1526)  |  Nature (1926)  |  Order (632)  |  Organism (220)  |  Physical (508)  |  Physical Law (14)  |  Possible (552)  |  Represent (155)  |  Requirement (63)  |  Science (3879)  |  Term (349)  |  Terms (184)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Understood (156)  |  Universality (22)  |  Whatever (234)  |  World (1774)

[At the end of the story, its main character, Tom] is now a great man of science, and can plan railroads, and steam-engines, and electric telegraphs, and rifled guns, and so forth; and knows everything about everything, except why a hen's egg don't turn into a crocodile, and two or three other little things that no one will know till the coming of the Cocqcigrues.
The Water-babies (1886), 368-9.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Character (243)  |  Coming (114)  |  Crocodile (14)  |  Egg (69)  |  End (590)  |  Engine (98)  |  Everything (476)  |  Great (1574)  |  Know (1518)  |  Knowledge (1529)  |  Little (707)  |  Man (2251)  |  Other (2236)  |  Plan (117)  |  Railroad (32)  |  Science (3879)  |  Steam (80)  |  Story (118)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Turn (447)  |  Two (937)  |  Why (491)  |  Will (2355)

[I predict] the electricity generated by water power is the only thing that is going to keep future generations from freezing. Now we use coal whenever we produce electric power by steam engine, but there will be a time when there’ll be no more coal to use. That time is not in the very distant future. … Oil is too insignificant in its available supply to come into much consideration.
As quoted in 'Electricity Will Keep The World From Freezing Up', New York Times (12 Nov 1911), SM4.
Science quotes on:  |  Available (78)  |  Coal (57)  |  Consideration (139)  |  Distant (33)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Engine (98)  |  Freezing (16)  |  Future (429)  |  Generation (242)  |  Generator (2)  |  Hydroelectricity (2)  |  Insignificant (32)  |  More (2559)  |  Oil (59)  |  Power (746)  |  Predict (79)  |  Prediction (82)  |  Produce (104)  |  Steam (80)  |  Steam Engine (45)  |  Supply (93)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Time (1877)  |  Use (766)  |  Water (481)  |  Water Power (6)  |  Whenever (81)  |  Will (2355)

[Pavel Yablochkov’s electric lamp is] the starting point for the creation of a new branch of industry.
In 'Opasnosti elektricheskogo osveshcheniia', Elektrichestvo 4 (1890): 68. 2. As quoted in Loren Graham, Lonely Ideas: Can Russia Compete? (2013), 176.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Branch (150)  |  Creation (327)  |  Industry (137)  |  Lamp (36)  |  New (1216)  |  Point (580)  |  Starting Point (14)

[S]uppose you make a hole in an ordinary evacuated electric light bulb and allow the air molecules to pass in at the rate of 1,000,000 a second, the bulb will become full of air in approximately 100,000,000 years.
In Lecture (1936) on 'Forty Years of Atomic Theory', collected in Needham and Pagel (eds.) in Background to Modern Science: Ten Lectures at Cambridge Arranged by the History of Science Committee, (1938), 99.
Science quotes on:  |   (2863)  |  Air (347)  |  Approximate (25)  |  Atomic Size (2)  |  Become (815)  |  Bulb (10)  |  Full (66)  |  Hole (16)  |  Light (607)  |  Light Bulb (6)  |  Million (114)  |  Molecule (174)  |  Ordinary (160)  |  Pass (238)  |  Rate (29)  |  Second (62)  |  Suppose (156)  |  Will (2355)  |  Year (933)

[The compass needle] as the guide of Vasco de Gama to the East Indies, and of Columbus to the West Indies and the New World, it was pre-eminently the precursor and pioneer of the telegraph. Silently, and as with finger on its lips, it led them across the waste of waters to the new homes of the world; but when these were largely filled, and houses divided between the old and new hemispheres longed to exchange affectionate greetings, it removed its finger and broke silence. The quivering magnetic needle which lies in the coil of the galvanometer is the tongue of the electric telegraph, and already engineers talk of it as speaking.
'Progress of the Telegraph.' In Jesse Aitken Wilson, Memoirs of George Wilson. Quoted in Natural History Society of Montreal, 'Reviews and Notices of Books,' The Canadian Naturalist and Geologist (1861) Vol. 6, 392.
Science quotes on:  |  Already (222)  |  Compass (34)  |  Divided (50)  |  Engineer (121)  |  Exchange (37)  |  Galvanometer (4)  |  Greeting (9)  |  Guide (97)  |  Home (170)  |  House (140)  |  Lie (364)  |  Long (790)  |  Magnetic (44)  |  New (1216)  |  Old (481)  |  Pioneer (33)  |  Precursor (5)  |  Silence (56)  |  Speaking (119)  |  Telegraph (38)  |  Tongue (43)  |  Waste (101)  |  Water (481)  |  World (1774)

[When I was a child] I grew up in Brooklyn, New York, and I was a street kid. … [T]here was one aspect of that environment that, for some reason, struck me as different, and that was the stars. … I could tell they were lights in the sky, but that wasn’t an explanation. I mean, what were they? Little electric bulbs on long black wires, so you couldn’t see what they were held up by? What were they? … My mother said to me, "Look, we’ve just got you a library card … get out a book and find the answer.” … It was in there. It was stunning. The answer was that the Sun was a star, except very far away. … The dazzling idea of a universe vast beyond imagining swept over me. … I sensed awe.
In 'Wonder and Skepticism', Skeptical Enquirer (Jan-Feb 1995), 19, No. 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Answer (366)  |  Aspect (124)  |  Awe (43)  |  Beyond (308)  |  Biography (240)  |  Book (392)  |  Brooklyn (3)  |  Bulb (10)  |  Child (307)  |  Dazzling (13)  |  Different (577)  |  Electricity (159)  |  Environment (216)  |  Explanation (234)  |  Far (154)  |  Find (998)  |  Idea (843)  |  Imagination (328)  |  Kid (15)  |  Library (48)  |  Light (607)  |  Little (707)  |  Long (790)  |  Look (582)  |  Mean (809)  |  Mother (114)  |  New (1216)  |  New York (15)  |  Reason (744)  |  See (1081)  |  Sense (770)  |  Sky (161)  |  Star (427)  |  Stars (304)  |  Street (23)  |  Stunning (4)  |  Sun (385)  |  Tell (340)  |  Universe (857)  |  Vast (177)  |  Vastness (15)  |  Wire (35)


Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
Quotations by:Albert EinsteinIsaac NewtonLord KelvinCharles DarwinSrinivasa RamanujanCarl SaganFlorence NightingaleThomas EdisonAristotleMarie CurieBenjamin FranklinWinston ChurchillGalileo GalileiSigmund FreudRobert BunsenLouis PasteurTheodore RooseveltAbraham LincolnRonald ReaganLeonardo DaVinciMichio KakuKarl PopperJohann GoetheRobert OppenheimerCharles Kettering  ... (more people)

Quotations about:Atomic  BombBiologyChemistryDeforestationEngineeringAnatomyAstronomyBacteriaBiochemistryBotanyConservationDinosaurEnvironmentFractalGeneticsGeologyHistory of ScienceInventionJupiterKnowledgeLoveMathematicsMeasurementMedicineNatural ResourceOrganic ChemistryPhysicsPhysicianQuantum TheoryResearchScience and ArtTeacherTechnologyUniverseVolcanoVirusWind PowerWomen ScientistsX-RaysYouthZoology  ... (more topics)
Sitewide search within all Today In Science History pages:
Visit our Science and Scientist Quotations index for more Science Quotes from archaeologists, biologists, chemists, geologists, inventors and inventions, mathematicians, physicists, pioneers in medicine, science events and technology.

Names index: | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

Categories index: | 1 | 2 | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |

- 100 -
Sophie Germain
Gertrude Elion
Ernest Rutherford
James Chadwick
Marcel Proust
William Harvey
Johann Goethe
John Keynes
Carl Gauss
Paul Feyerabend
- 90 -
Antoine Lavoisier
Lise Meitner
Charles Babbage
Ibn Khaldun
Euclid
Ralph Emerson
Robert Bunsen
Frederick Banting
Andre Ampere
Winston Churchill
- 80 -
John Locke
Bronislaw Malinowski
Bible
Thomas Huxley
Alessandro Volta
Erwin Schrodinger
Wilhelm Roentgen
Louis Pasteur
Bertrand Russell
Jean Lamarck
- 70 -
Samuel Morse
John Wheeler
Nicolaus Copernicus
Robert Fulton
Pierre Laplace
Humphry Davy
Thomas Edison
Lord Kelvin
Theodore Roosevelt
Carolus Linnaeus
- 60 -
Francis Galton
Linus Pauling
Immanuel Kant
Martin Fischer
Robert Boyle
Karl Popper
Paul Dirac
Avicenna
James Watson
William Shakespeare
- 50 -
Stephen Hawking
Niels Bohr
Nikola Tesla
Rachel Carson
Max Planck
Henry Adams
Richard Dawkins
Werner Heisenberg
Alfred Wegener
John Dalton
- 40 -
Pierre Fermat
Edward Wilson
Johannes Kepler
Gustave Eiffel
Giordano Bruno
JJ Thomson
Thomas Kuhn
Leonardo DaVinci
Archimedes
David Hume
- 30 -
Andreas Vesalius
Rudolf Virchow
Richard Feynman
James Hutton
Alexander Fleming
Emile Durkheim
Benjamin Franklin
Robert Oppenheimer
Robert Hooke
Charles Kettering
- 20 -
Carl Sagan
James Maxwell
Marie Curie
Rene Descartes
Francis Crick
Hippocrates
Michael Faraday
Srinivasa Ramanujan
Francis Bacon
Galileo Galilei
- 10 -
Aristotle
John Watson
Rosalind Franklin
Michio Kaku
Isaac Asimov
Charles Darwin
Sigmund Freud
Albert Einstein
Florence Nightingale
Isaac Newton



who invites your feedback
Thank you for sharing.
Today in Science History
Sign up for Newsletter
with quiz, quotes and more.