I ran across a famous quote today. I have used it myself, occasionally.
It is often attributed to Einstein, and goes like this: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”
I’ve had observers apply that quote to my golf swing. I’ll think I’m changing a key aspect (grip, stance, angle, etc.) but they tell me they can’t see any change, and sure enough the ball keeps curving sideways. Time after time after time.
But today I had a different take on the saying. I saw it in a work-related article about the new health care bill, but the context isn’t germane. I just chuckled at it and went on.
Not long afterward I overheard co-workers complaining about a software application which seemed to display images differently each time they were opened.
That’s when it occurred to me – Einstein died in 1955 and never had the opportunity to deal with a Windows computer! He would have realized that there are some cases in which doing the same thing time after time DOES produce different results!
Thus he would have changed his definition of insanity. Something like this: “Insanity lies in expecting ANY two Windows computers to produce identical results after identical input.”
(All you Mac users know what I’m talking about.)