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Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary
reinvent the wheel
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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.