May 10, 2010

belt and braces

Posted in Idioms at 10:45 pm by Feng

belt and braces – using more than one method to make sure that something is safe or sure to happen [thefreedict]

In the security industry, we learn to become paranoid. Several colleagues were discussing a software vulnerability and some countermeasures. They decided to implement all of them just to be safe. “Belt-and-braces may look silly”, as one of them explained, “It makes very sure that your trousers will not fall onto the floor.”

This is chiefly a British idiom. The American version is “belt and suspenders” (see [urbandict]). Look at these Google images, and you will know that if someone wear both belt and suspenders (or braces), that will look silly indeed.

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