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fudge factor

any variable component added to an experiment, plan, or the like that can be manipulated to allow leeway for error. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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fudge factor

noun phrase

An arbitrary percentage added to a proposed contract or estimate to allow for adverse contingencies: How many will die? Current projections are pure darts at a board, an enormous extrapolation coupled with a fudge factor (1962+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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