Joshua Lederberg

Joshua Lederberg
Joshua Lederberg
  • Born: May 23, 1925
  • Died: February 2, 2008
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Scientist









Quote Topics Cited
It's hard to mobilize various interest groups ... when its for the benefit of everyone. Lobbying & Special Interests
A Swedish newspaper reporter called and said, You've been awarded the Prize. I was quite sure it was a practical joke.
All of civility depends on being able to contain the rage of individuals.
Although I am a public figure, I'm still a little shy. I don't think my own personality is important. I prefer to keep some small dosage of privacy.
As soon as you go into any biological process in any real detail, you discover it's open-ended in terms of what needs to be found out about it.
Being successful at a very young age gave me the confidence and the capability to try out other things.
By the time I was 12 or 13, I was studying biochemistry textbooks. Time
Everybody has to learn for the first time. Time
I believe I am a person with unusual talents. I think I'd be a liar or stupid if I were to deny that.
I certainly saw science as a kind of calling, and one with as much legitimacy as a religious calling. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
I did get a very fine education, and not just in science. It took some pressure on the part of my elders to convince me that I really should take an interest in humanities. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training ;Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
I don't believe anybody can really grasp everything that's even in one textbook.
I get curious about new things. My real strength is going into a field that has not been investigated before, and finding new approaches to it.
I got my Nobel Prize for my lab work. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I have many shortcomings. I feel very lucky to have been able to have what I've had.
I hope I've lived a life of science whose style will encourage younger people. Life ;Hope ;Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
I started on the use of the Internet for scientific communication. Our research group was one of the very first to make really systematic use of it as a way of managing research projects.
I think we have to believe we are here for some purpose, and I know there are many cynics who will deny it, but they don't live as if they deny it.
I was making a lot of momentous personal decisions. I was still very very young: when the prize was awarded, I was 33; the work I had done when I was 21. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I was reading five or six years ahead of my grade during public school. I was pretty bored. I made a contract with some of my teachers that if I didn't ask too many questions, I could work in the back of the room. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I wish I had a talent for dropping things as well as taking on new ones. It gets to be quite a clutter after a while.
I'd like to put in a vote for the intrinsic fascination of science. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
If it takes you 20 or 25 years to establish yourself in one field, you really ought to be careful not to stray too far.
If lifespan jumps by 30 or 40 years, that has enormous implications.
If we have isolated individuals able to inflict enormous harm, imagine what a single lunatic can do with a nuclear weapon. I think the whole base of civil society is at risk. Society
If you want to solve very complex problems, you will have to end up letting machines work out a lot of the details for themselves, and in ways that we don't understand what they are doing. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
If you wanted to dissect the structure of living cells, genetic analysis was an extremely powerful method, so my interest turned to that.
I'm chairing a UNESCO committee on how to improve global Internet communications for science; help third-world people get onto the Net so they can be part of the process. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
I'm not easily inhibited by the fact that I don't know something about a subject. It doesn't stop me from dabbling in it.
Life's a hobby. Life
My ambitions were already very clearly fixed by the time I was 6 or 7. Time
So many of the things I've predicted were technologies that were just sitting right in front of us.
To have the recognition of your colleagues is great. The public attention is a mixed blessing.
Try hard to find out what you're good at and what your passions are, and where the two converge, and build your life around that. Life
We are all very individual. You have to find out what you can do best, and be self-conscious about that.
When I was in high school, I became interested in cytochemistry: chemical analysis under the microscope, and trying to understand the composition of cells.

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