[QUESTION]About a quote where ideas flying around constantly

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[QUESTION]About a quote where ideas flying around constantly

Postby LieroLarryfier » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:38 am

Hi!

I've read a Discworld Novel, a time ago, in which there is a quote about "ideas flying constantly in the universe, and only when it hits the brain of a human it can be expressed and can be used. Because when it would hit a stone, the stone couldn't do anything with it."

Does anybody know which novel it is in, and the does anybody know the correct phrase.

Thanks in advance.
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:41 am

Hi JaMes and welcome. :D

I think it's mention in more than one book. Leonard of Quirm gets more than his fair share of these ideas. But offhand I can't remember a specific reference. :?
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Postby deldaisy » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:42 am

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Postby Penfold » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:52 am

I think they might be called "Inspiration Particles".

Terry Pratchett in Wyrd Sisters wrote:Particles of raw inspiration sleet through the universe all the time. Every once in a while one of them hits a receptive mind, which then invents DNA or the flute sonata form or a way of making light bulbs wear out in half the time. But most of them miss. Most people go though their lives without being hit by even one.

Some people are even more unfortunate. They get them all.

Oh hellooo and welcome to the forum, by the way. :D
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Postby ChristianBecker » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:58 am

I think it is first mentioned in Sourcery. Haven't got my copy here (of course, I'm at WORK and I'm not supposed to be reading Pratchett :mrgreen:).
It's afair when Rincewind comes to that Klatchian city (Al Khali?). But I'm not 100% sure.
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Postby LieroLarryfier » Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:10 pm

Penfold wrote:I think they might be called "Inspiration Particles".

Terry Pratchett in Wyrd Sisters wrote:Particles of raw inspiration sleet through the universe all the time. Every once in a while one of them hits a receptive mind, which then invents DNA or the flute sonata form or a way of making light bulbs wear out in half the time. But most of them miss. Most people go though their lives without being hit by even one.

Some people are even more unfortunate. They get them all.

Oh hellooo and welcome to the forum, by the way. :D


thank you very much, this was exactly what i was looking for!

and thanks for the warm welcome in the forum :)
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Postby LieroLarryfier » Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:12 pm

ChristianBecker wrote:I think it is first mentioned in Sourcery. Haven't got my copy here (of course, I'm at WORK and I'm not supposed to be reading Pratchett :mrgreen:).
It's afair when Rincewind comes to that Klatchian city (Al Khali?). But I'm not 100% sure.


thank you too, i will read it when i have my copy at hand!
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Postby The Mad Collector » Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:46 pm

Terry Pratchett in Sourcery wrote:It is a well-known established fact throughout the many-dimensional worlds of the multiverse that most really great discoveries are owed to one brief moment of inspiration. There’s a lot of spadework first, of course, but what clinches the whole thing is the sight of, say, a falling apple or a boiling kettle or the water slopping over the edge of the bath. Something goes click inside the observer’s head and then everything falls into place. The shape of DNA, it is popularly said, owes its discovery to the chance sight of a spiral staircase when the scientist’s mind was just at the right receptive temperature. Had he used the lift, the whole science of genetics might have been a good deal different.

This is thought of as somehow wonderful. It isn’t. It is tragic. Little particles of inspiration sleet through the universe all the time travelling through the densest matter in the same way that a neutrino passes through a candyfloss haystack, and most of them miss. Even worse, most of the ones that hit the exact cerebral target hit the wrong one. For example, the weird dream about a lead doughnut on a mile-high gantry, which in the right mind would have been the catalyst for the invention of repressed-gravitational electricity generation (a cheap and inexhaustible and totally non-polluting form of power which the world in question had been seeking for centuries, and for the lack of which it was plunged into a terrible and pointless war) was in fact had by a small and bewildered duck.

By another stroke of bad luck, the sight of a herd of white horses galloping through a field of wild hyacinths would have led a struggling composer to write the famous Flying God Suite, bringing succour and balm to the souls of millions, had he not been at home in bed with shingles. The inspiration therefore fell to a nearby frog, who was not in much of a position to make a startling contribution to the field of tone poetry.

Many civilisations have recognised this shocking waste and tried various methods to prevent it, most of them involving enjoyable but illegal attempts to tune the mind into the right wavelength by the use of exotic herbage or yeast products. It never works properly.

And so Creosote, who had dreamt the inspiration for a rather fine poem about life and philosophy and how they both look much better through the bottom of a wine glass, was totally unable to do anything about it because he had as much poetic ability as a hyena.

Why the gods allow this sort of thing to continue is a mystery.

Actually, the flash of inspiration needed to explain it clearly and precisely has taken place, but the creature who received it -a small female bluetit - has never been able to make the position clear, even after some really strenuous coded messages on the tops of milk bottles. By a strange coincidence, a philosopher who had been devoting some sleepless nights to the same mystery woke up that morning with a wonderful new idea for getting peanuts out of bird tables.


Hello from me as well :D
One of those? Oh I'm sure I have one somewhere..

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Postby ChristianBecker » Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:26 pm

Thanks TMC, that's what I meant.
On with their heads! I'm the clown prince of fools
if you don't get the joke it's your loss
Love and laughter you see are the new currency
'cause greed's coinage is not worth a toss

Exile yourself to the unforgiving continent of Wraeclast!
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