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. Essentially complete. Half done. We predict... 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 insurmountables, 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.