back to the drawing board


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back to the drawing board

Revising something (such as a plan) from the beginning, typically after it has failed. That ad campaign was not as successful as we had hoped. Back to the drawing board. We need to go back to the drawing board on this project. I think it had some fundamental flaws from the start.
See also: back, board, drawing

back to the drawing board

Fig. time to start from the start; it is time to plan something over again. (Plans or schematics are drawn on a drawing board. Note the variations shown in the examples.) It didn't work. Back to the drawing board. I flunked English this semester. Well, back to the old drawing board.
See also: back, board, drawing

back to the drawing board

Also, back to square one. Back to the beginning because the current attempt was unsuccessful, as in When the town refused to fund our music program, we had to go back to the drawing board , or I've assembled this wrong side up, so it's back to square one. The first term originated during World War II, most likely from the caption of a cartoon by Peter Arno in The New Yorker magazine. It pictured a man who held a set of blueprints and was watching an airplane explode. The variant is thought to come from a board game or street game where an unlucky throw of dice or a marker sends the player back to the beginning of the course. It was popularized by British sports-casters in the 1930s, when the printed radio program included a grid with numbered squares to help listeners follow the description of a soccer game.
See also: back, board, drawing

back to the drawing board

COMMON If you have to go back to the drawing board, something which you have done has not been successful and you will have to try another idea. His government should go back to the drawing board to rethink their programme in time to return it to the Parliament by September. Failing to win means going back to the drawing board, identifying shortcomings and attempting to improve on them. Note: Drawing boards are large flat boards, on which designers or architects place their paper when drawing plans or designs.
See also: back, board, drawing

back to the drawing board

used to indicate that an idea or scheme has been unsuccessful and a new one must be devised.
An architectural or engineering project is at its earliest phase when it exists only as a plan on a drawing board .
1991 Discover Even as Humphries fine-tunes his system, however, he realizes that NASA could send him back to the drawing board.
See also: back, board, drawing

(it’s) back to the ˈdrawing board

a new plan must be prepared because an earlier one has failed: She’s refused to consider our offer, so it’s back to the drawing board, I’m afraid.
See also: back, board, drawing

back to the drawing board

Back to the beginning or the planning stage after an approach has proved unsuccessful.
See also: back, board, drawing
References in periodicals archive ?
"But that's gone out of the window and we're back to the drawing board."
South Belfast councillor Bob Stoker admitted: "It is disappointing to go back to the drawing board again.
A $170 million computer overhaul intended to give Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents and analysts an instantaneous, paperless way to exchange information about criminal cases and terrorism threats is going back to the drawing board and may cost U.S.
So, the city and the company went back to the drawing board to look for another building.
"Because that financial calculation also happens in real time, if we were to quote a policy and then have a broker come back a day or so later saying he needed to have a different structure quoted, our people can go into the system and requote another structure that we are economically indifferent to in a matter of a minute as opposed to having to go back to the drawing board, back to an actuarial department or whatever to come up with revised pricing on revised structures," he said.
BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD: AFRICAN-CANADIAN FEMINISMS
He informed me the bomb cost $4,000 Back to the drawing board, I thought, until I saw a dummy soldier on my way out holding a 100-percent-to-scale M16 rifle.
Back to the Drawing Board is augmented by an appendix with a topical survey, created by the authors, of CEOs responding to questions about the running of their own boards, plus a detailed set of chapter notes.
"It's appropriate for us to say if it doesn't and won't work we'll be back to the drawing board about something else," he said.
Senior executives with an impact on PR spending agree that objectives must be measurable, meaningful and reasonable, or it's back to the drawing board in order to help PR pros align their programs with their company's.
"And they didn't count the fact that they're in a boggy area and the lake rises and falls." Last September, judges in the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, Colorado agreed that a more complete NEPA analysis of the environmental impacts of the road was necessary, sending the planners back to the drawing board.
"This is the kind of result that scientists groan about but love to see because it sends everyone back to the drawing board," says Craig DeForest of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colo.
The decision will send lawmakers back to the drawing board to create a new way to promote the Commandments on government property.
William: The new estate-tax laws have sent a lot of my colleagues back to the drawing board to redo their estate plans, and for me, it's even more complicated with my business involved.
A simple flaw, like an incorrectly weighed ball, can botch the entire experiment--and send a researcher crawling back to the drawing board. "In science you have to be very meticulous if you want a thorough answer to your question," says Janda.