An Engineer Says What?

Amanda sent me this list of Engineering Speak. Having used most of these phrases at one point or another, I can vouch for their accuracy1.


Engineer says: A number of different approaches are being tried
Engineer means: We are still grasping at straws

Engineer says: Major technological breakthrough
Engineer means: It works OK, but looks very hi-tech

Engineer says: Preliminary operational tests were inconclusive
Engineer means: The darn thing blew up when we threw the switch

Engineer says: Test results were extremely gratifying
Engineer means: We are so surprised that the stupid thing works

Engineer says: The entire concept will have to be abandoned
Engineer means: The only person who understood the thing quit

Engineer says: It is in process
Engineer means: It is so wrapped up in red tape that the
situation is hopeless

Engineer says: We’ll look into it
Engineer means: Forget it! We have enough problems for now

Engineer says: Please read and initial
Engineer means: Let’s spread the responsibility for the mistake

Engineer says: Years of development
Engineer means: One finally worked

Read the rest at

Found via Amanda Walton(@AmandaWalton /

  1. more or less