One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
nounin phrase on spec
In the hope of success but without any specific plan or instructions.‘he built the factory on spec and hoped someone would buy it’
- ‘Byrnes designed this 5,400-square-foot house on spec using his family as theoretical homeowners.’
- ‘By developing a product on spec for military use, device companies can pave the way toward later success in the private sector.’
- ‘The article was being written on spec with no guarantee of publication.’
- ‘Bedfont Lakes Hotel was developed on spec near London's Heathrow Airport but designed specifically for its unique site.’
- ‘I wrote my first book on spec, sent it off to nearly 100 publishers and in six weeks I had my first offer.’
Late 18th century: abbreviation of speculation.
- ‘a camera with a very basic spec’short for specification (sense 2 of the noun)
- ‘The original spec for the Pentium 4 sure as heck made it a Xeon class processor.’
- ‘I'd have to see your shuttle first, and depending on the specs, I might be able to help you.’
- ‘I think seeing specs and then the actual dimensions in the flesh are quite separate things.’
- ‘In December, the specs will be submitted to the ISO.’
- ‘Those servers were state-of-the-art for uptime specs.’
- ‘The specs on the computer had to be top of the line’
- ‘The difference between original and amended specs seems negligible.’
- ‘Time to talk technical specs says Nathan Rippin.’
- ‘the technology is consistent across all three sets of specs.’
- ‘Keep the costs down, agree a detailed spec with your designer up-front.’
- ‘Consumers seems to be less interested in low prices as more features and higher system specs.’
- ‘Although it's possible to get a house built from basic drawings, a set of detailed specs is an insurance policy against confusion and even contractor fraud.’
Give (something) a particular specification; construct to a specified standard.‘the range allows buyers to spec their truck to their needs’
- ‘Someone's already speccing the code and writing the business plan.’
- ‘When is the last time you spec'd a whitebox without even looking at vendor quotes?’
- ‘Each machine is currently specced to 64MB of memory.’
- ‘Its machines are usually specced better than the average for the price.’
1950s: abbreviation of specification.
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