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reinvent the wheel

Slang definitions & phrases for reinvent the wheel

reinvent the wheel

verb phrase

To go laboriously and unnecessarily through elementary stages in some process or enterprise; waste time on tediously obvious fundamentals (1980s+)


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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reinvent the wheel in Technology

jargon
To design or implement a tool equivalent to an existing one or part of one, with the implication that doing so is silly or a waste of time. This is often a valid criticism. On the other hand, automobiles don't use wooden rollers, and some kinds of wheel have to be reinvented many times before you get them right. On the third hand, people reinventing the wheel do tend to come up with the moral equivalent of a trapezoid with an offset axle.
[Jargon File]
(1997-04-12)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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Idioms and Phrases with reinvent the wheel

reinvent the wheel

Do something again, from the beginning, especially in a needless or inefficient effort, as in School committees need not reinvent the wheel every time they try to improve the curriculum. This expression alludes to the invention of a simple but very important device that requires no improvement. [ Second half of 1900s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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