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a bird's eye view

1. A view looking down at an object or area from a high elevation (as if from the perspective of a bird in flight). From up here you can get a bird's eye view of the entire campus.
2. A consideration of a problem or situation from a comprehensive perspective. In order to determine why the company was headed towards a fiscal disaster, the CFO had to take a step back and get a bird's eye view of the situation so he could locate the cause of the problem.
See also: eye, view
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

bird's-eye view

 
1. Lit. a view seen from high above. We got a bird's-eye view of Cleveland as the plane began its descent. From the top of the church tower you get a splendid bird's-eye view of the village.
2. Fig. a brief survey of something; a hasty look at something. The course provides a bird's-eye view of the works of Mozart, but it doesn't deal with them in enough detail for your purpose. All you need is a bird's-eye view of the events of World War II to pass the test.
See also: view
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

bird's eye view

An overview, as in This balcony gives us a bird's eye view of the town, or This course gives you a bird's eye view of history-from Eolithic man to the Gulf War in one semester . This expression can be used literally, for a panoramic view such as a bird might see, as well as figuratively. [c. 1600]
See also: eye, view
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

a bird's-eye view

1. If you have a bird's-eye view of a place, you are looking down on it from a high position and can see all of it. His pilot's licence enabled us to have a bird's-eye view of the beautiful countryside.
2. If you have a bird's-eye view of a situation, you know what is happening in all the parts of it. I was a parliamentary journalist, so I had a bird's eye view of the way politicians encourage people to believe in dreams. Note: People often change bird to a word that is relevant to what they are talking about. He seems to have a soldier's eye view. He has a child's eye view of the war based on his own experiences. Compare with a worm's eye view.
See also: view
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

a bird's-eye view

a general view from above.
See also: view

—'s-eye view

a view from the position or standpoint of the person or thing specified.
The most common versions of this phrase are bird's-eye view (see bird) and worm's-eye view (see worm).
1982 Ian Hamilton Robert Lowell There is a kind of double vision: the child's eye view judged and interpreted by the ironical narrator.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

a ˌbird’s-eye ˈview (of something)

a good view of something from high above: From the church tower you get a bird’s-eye view of the town.
See also: view
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
There are several camera angles that one may experiment with to boost your artistry such as the eye-level, worm's-eye view, and the bird's eye view. The Eye-Level Angle is the most standard way to take a photo, as it is the way we view most subjects every day.
Summary: Washington [United States], May 12 (ANI): When NASA launched its next rover to Mars, it will have a small helicopter onboard to give a bird's eye view of the planet's atmosphere.
NATURE lovers can again enjoy a bird's eye view of peregrine falcons nesting at Rochdale town hall.
Brooklyn- based Rear View Safety has launched its Advanced 360-degree System, a 360+ Bird's Eye View System with lane changing cameras.
For one night only, Teessiders were able to visit the top of the iconic structure to experience a bird's eye view of the region in all its glory.
The metavoxels are semi-transparent, so correct results also require sorting from the eye view. The two choices when sorting from the eye view are: back to front with "over" alpha blending and front to back with "under" alpha blending.
Other showcased opposites include "Wet" and "Dry", or "Day" and "Night", or, in a special fold-out section, "Worm's-Eye View" and "Bird's Eye View".
Abundant with absorbing details, each double-page spread offers young readers a surprise, especially when the worm's eye view very cleverly opens up into a double fold-out offering the bird's eye view.
With content filmed at the pinnacle of the world's tallest building, Burj Khalifa, the site users can get a bird's eye view of the city with sweeping panoramas down Shaikh Zayed Road and Dubai's coast.
Believed to be the first "bird's eye view painting", the oil on canvas of Denbighshire estate Llanerch Park, dating from around 1665 by an unknown artist, is expected to fetch between PS400,000 and PS600,000 at Sotheby's.
"God's Eye View'' portrays Christian volunteers kidnapped by Muslim rebels while on an evangelical mission in a fictional Islamic country.
Those who weighed in behind Bird's Eye View on the opening day of the season at the Curragh will be hoping for better fortune for the Tommy Stack-trained filly in the 6f handicap (4.30), who was unable to do herself justice after her saddle slipped early in the race.
TOMORROW CURRAGH: 2.00 Captain Moonlite, 2.30 Shalaman, 3.00 Bird's Eye View, 3.30 Yellow Rosebud, 4.00 Francis Of Assisi, 4.30 Inis Meain, 5.00 Piet Mondrian.
24 September 2012 -- New York-based assurance, tax and advisory services provider PwC US said that it has acquired substantially all the assets of boutique social media strategy development and consulting firm Ant's Eye View (AEV).
24 September 2012 - Audit and assurance, consulting and tax services provider PwC US said that it had finalised the purchase of substantially all assets of domestic social media strategy development and consulting specialist Ant's Eye View Corp.