X

Trivia

Hard

The Phrase “Pushing The Envelope” Originated With?

Aviation
Politics
The Pony Express
Tax Preparation

Answer: Aviation

Although the phrase “pushing the envelope” might sound bureaucratic in nature, its origins actually date back to U.S. military flight programs in World War II. In aviation there is a concept known as the “flight envelope” that is both a mathematical construct that can be carefully charted out (as seen in the diagram here) and a physical reality that pilots wrangle with every flight.

To “push the envelope” is to push an aircraft beyond its calculated flight capabilities, to attempt new maneuvers, and otherwise see how far a plane can be pushed away from the calculated safe-zone of operation.

The phrase (and related phrases) didn’t stray very far outside of the military and civilian aviation programs until author Tom Wolfe used the phrase “pushing the outside of the envelope” in his 1979 book on the U.S. space program The Right Stuff. By the next year, “pushing the envelope” was appearing in print and within a few years the phrase was firmly enmeshed in American English.

 

Trivia

Hard

What Oddly Anthropomorphic Thing Do Some Lizards Do To Avoid Predators?

Trivia

Very Hard

Which Of These Chemicals Is Considered The Most Bitter Compound In Existence?

Trivia

Very Hard

What Famous Internet Worm Led To The First Federal Computer Crime Prosecution?

Trivia

Hard

The Best Selling PC Game Of All Time Is?

Trivia

Hard

Which Animals Form The Largest Colonies?

Trivia

Very Hard

Which Company Had A Training Game Built By SimCity Creators?

Trivia

Hard

The Compound Nicotine Is Named After A?

Trivia

Hard

Skyrim Features An Easter Egg Homage To The Developer Of Which Video Game?

Trivia

Hard

What Did A Canadian Researcher Create To Combat Anemia In Cambodia?