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Related to tangent: trigonometry, Tangent function

off at a tangent

On a course of discussion that is irrelevant or divergent from the topic at hand. Primarily heard in UK. If we keep going off at a tangent, we'll never get through this meeting. It's impossible to get through a conversation with my mother because she's always going off at a tangent.
See also: off, tangent

(off) on a tangent

Addressing a topic or topics not relevant to the main discussion. I tried to address the customer's problem, but she kept going off on a tangent and I couldn't understand what her true complaint was. In the middle of our conversation about my finances, my advisor went on a tangent about current events.
See also: on, tangent

go (off) on a tangent

To begin addressing or discussing a topic or topics not relevant to the main discussion. I tried to address the customer's problem, but she kept going off on a tangent and I couldn't understand what her true complaint was. In the middle of our conversation about my finances, my advisor went on a tangent about current events.
See also: on, tangent

go off

1. To detonate. Run! The bomb in the building could go off at any moment!
2. To begin to make noise. The whole building had to evacuate because the smoke alarm went off.
3. To depart. If you want mom to get something for you, you better talk to her before she goes off to the store.
4. To stop functioning. You better go look for coffee in another department—our pot went off before it was finished brewing.
5. To happen. Considering all the problems we had beforehand, it's amazing that our party went off so well!
6. To expire, as of food or drink. Don't eat those leftovers—they're a week old and have definitely gone off.
7. To stop taking a medication. Didn't the doctor tell you that you have to go off a medication like this gradually?
8. To become very angry, often unexpectedly. The boss just came into my office and went off on me for no apparent reason.
9. To talk about something at length. Grandpa went off on politics for so long that our dinner got cold.
10. To die. At Christmastime, I really miss the relatives who have gone off before us.
11. To orgasm. I don't think I'll sleep with him again—I didn't go off the last time.
See also: off

go off

1. Lit. [for an explosive device] to explode. The fireworks all went off as scheduled. The bomb went off and did a lot of damage.
2. Lit. [for a sound-creating device] to make its noise. The alarm went off at six o'clock. The siren goes off at noon every day.
3. Fig. [for an event] to happen or take place. The party went off as planned. Did your medical examination go off as well as you had hoped?
See also: off

go off

(by oneself) to go into seclusion; to isolate oneself. She went off by herself where no one could find her. I have to go off and think about this.
See also: off

go off

(into something) to go away to something; to depart and go into something. He went off into the army. Do you expect me just to go off into the world and make a living?
See also: off

go off on a tangent

Fig. to pursue a somewhat related or irrelevant course while neglecting the main subject. Don't go off on a tangent. Stick to your job. Just as we started talking, Henry went off on a tangent about the high cost of living.
See also: off, on, tangent

go off (with someone)

to go away with someone. Tom just now went off with Maggie. I think that Maria went off with Fred somewhere.
See also: off

go off

1. Explode, detonate; also, make noise, sound, especially abruptly. For example, I heard the gun go off, or The sirens went off at noon. This expression developed in the late 1500s and gave rise about 1700 to the related go off half-cocked, now meaning "to act prematurely" but originally referring to the slipping of a gun's hammer so that the gun fires (goes off) unexpectedly.
2. Leave, depart, especially suddenly, as in Don't go off mad, or They went off without saying goodbye. [c. 1600]
3. Keep to the expected plan or course of events, succeed, as in The project went off smoothly. [Second half of 1700s]
4. Deteriorate in quality, as in This milk seems to have gone off. [Late 1600s]
5. Die. Shakespeare used this sense in Macbeth (5:9): "I would the friends we missed were safely arrived.-Some must go off."
6. Experience orgasm. D.H. Lawrence used this slangy sense in Lady Chatterley's Lover (1928): "You couldn't go off at the same time...." This usage is probably rare today. Also see get off, def. 8.
7. go off on a tangent. See under on a tangent.
8. go off one's head. See off one's head. Also see subsequent idioms beginning with go off.
See also: off

on a tangent

On a sudden digression or change of course, as in The professor's hard to follow; he's always off on a tangent. This phrase often occurs in the idioms fly off or go off on a tangent , as in The witness was convincing until he went off on a tangent. This expression alludes to the geometric tangent-a line or curve that touches but does not intersect with another line or curve. [Second half of 1700s]
See also: on, tangent

go off on a tangent


go off at a tangent

1. If a person or piece of writing goes off on a tangent or goes off at a tangent, they start saying or thinking something that is not directly connected with what they were saying or thinking before. Our teacher would occasionally go off on a tangent totally unrelated to the textbook. Note: Other verbs are sometimes used instead of go. The humour is often a little forced and the book's theme wanders off on a tangent now and then.
2. If someone goes off on a tangent or goes off at a tangent, they start to behave in a completely different way from before or to do something completely different from what they were doing before. I suppose I was trying to conform, but then I went off on a tangent, moving to London to study drama. Note: In geometry, a tangent is a straight line which touches a curve at one point but does not cross it.
See also: off, on, tangent

go/fly off at a ˈtangent

(British English) (American English go off on a ˈtangent) change suddenly from talking or thinking about one thing to talking or thinking about another: One moment the professor is working hard on a problem in physics, the next he’s gone off at a tangent and he’s talking about bees.
A tangent is a straight line that touches the outside of a curve but does not cross it.
See also: fly, off, tangent

go off

1. To go away: The children all went off to play at the park. Don't go off mad—let me explain!
2. To stop functioning. Used especially of electrical devices: The lights went off suddenly, and the performance began right away.
3. To occur, or be perceived as having occurred, in some particular manner: I think our party went off very well!
4. To adhere to the expected course of events or the expected plan: The project went off smoothly.
5. To stop taking some drug or medication: She went off painkillers a few weeks after the operation.
6. To make a noise; sound: The siren goes off every day at noon.
7. To undergo detonation; explode: If you push this red button, the bomb will go off.
8. go off on To begin to talk extensively about something: He went off on a series of excuses for his bad behavior.
9. go off on To berate someone directly and loudly: My boss really went off on me when she learned that I had forgotten to make the phone call.
See also: off
References in periodicals archive ?
When combining all tangent delta together in one plot and looking at log frequency response, the clear pattern is that the GPCO T6000 compounds with low sulfur and small particle size black (N330) had the highest damping characteristic, therefore, the most predisposition to have higher hysteresis.
Tangent is now intending to sell its services to Ravensworth's client base, and take advantage of the lower cost-base of the Cramlington facility which the company says has capacity for "substantial growth".
with or approval of Tangent and that there can therefore be no certainty
Tangent Communications was formed in July 2005 after a reverse takeover of Documedia, which had initially taken over Tangent in 2002.
Tangent Stairs is a small operation out of Thunder Bay headed by owner Sam Pollari and production manager Shawn Thomasson.
Loss tangent (tan ([delta])) is a measure of how much of the signal pulse (electromagnetic wave) propagating down the transmission line will be lost in the dielectric region (insulating material between copper layers) of the PCB
Plastic cups reappear in Tangent, glimpsed along with Gerberman through the gaps in a cadenced wall of female breasts, buttocks, and coiffures.
The Vitralit line of uv-curable acrylate adhesives is now available in North America from Tangent industries, Inc.
For example, you could draw a graph and a tangent line to that graph at a point using basic Maple commands, but it takes a fair bit of work.
LTCC manufacturers need accurate permittivity and loss tangent measurements at microwave frequencies for use in CAD circuit design.
In 1643, French mathematician Rene Descartes had developed a formula relating the curvatures of four circles that all touch, or are tangent to, each other.
TANGENT returns to Glasgow tonight, with special guest New York DJ Cosmo on the decks at The Riverside Club.
2) These constructed planes are tangent to points (R1, R2, R3, and R4) on the borders of the ramus.
Tangent Computer announced the Medallion 820 Pro DV - a high-performance, multimedia desktop system that takes advantage of Intel's 866MHz processor and i820 (Coppermine) chipset.