The Dictionary: what engineers say and what they mean by it
Major Technological Breakthrough
Back to the drawing board.
Developed after years of intensive research
It was discovered by accident.
The designs are well within allowable limits
We just made it, stretching a point or two.
Test results were extremely gratifying
It works, and are we surprised!
Customer satisfaction is believed assured
We are so far behind schedule that the customer was happy to get anything at all.
Close project coordination
We should have asked someone else; or, let's spread the responsibility for this.
Project slightly behind original schedule due to unforeseen difficulties
We are working on something else.
The design will be finalized in the next reporting period
We haven't started this job yet, but we've got to say something.
A number of different approaches are being tried
We don't know where we're going, but we're moving.
Extensive effort is being applied on a fresh approach to the problem
We just hired three new guys; we'll let them kick it around for a while.
Preliminary operational tests are inconclusive
The darn thing blew up when we threw the switch.
The entire concept will have to be abandoned
The only guy who understood the thing quit.
Modifications are underway to correct certain minor difficulties
We threw the whole thing out and are starting from scratch.
We hope to God!
Drawing release is lagging.
Not a single drawing exists.
Risk is high, but acceptable.
100 to 1 odds, or with 10 times the budget and 10 times the manpower, we may have a 50/50 chance.
Serious, but not insurmountable, problems.
It will take a miracle. God should be the program manager.
Not well defined.
Nobody has thought about it.
Requires further analysis and management attention.
Totally out of control.
The project is designed for high availability.
Malfunctions will be blamed on the operators mistakes.
This project has low maintenance requirements.
We wouldn't let the technicians change a light bulb, much less fool around with our baby.
The software is being developed without excessive process overhead.
The documentation will be written in clear and lucid Chinese.
The delivery is scheduled for the last quater of next year.
This leaves us plenty of time to decide who to blame for it being late.