Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Something to which one can resort or retreat.
  • noun A retreat.
  • noun Something that falls back.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act or process of falling back.
  • noun Something or someone to which one resorts as an alternative to a failed resource or method.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun An act of falling back.
  • noun A backup plan or contingency strategy; an alternative which can be used if something goes wrong with the main plan; a recourse.
  • noun construction A reduction in bitumen softening point, sometimes called refluxing or overheating in a relatively closed container.
  • adjective That can be resorted to as a fallback.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun to break off a military action with an enemy
  • verb retreat
  • verb fall backwards and down
  • verb move back and away from
  • verb have recourse to
  • verb go back to bad behavior
  • verb hang (back) or fall (behind) in movement, progress, development, etc.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From the verb fall back.

Examples

  • So, the fallback is to use old studies, done on dissimilar programs (human space flight and Earth/space science missions present very different challenges) and in management environments (NASA-OMB-Congress) that were quite different than they are currently.

    Ares Costs: Just Pick a Number - NASA Watch

  • I was raised Catholic, so my fallback is heaven and Jesus, but, yeah, it is SO difficult to explain.

    Jesus In The Sky With Dinosaurs | Her Bad Mother

  • "So, the fallback is to use old studies, done on dissimilar programs (human space flight and Earth/space science missions present very different challenges)"

    Ares Costs: Just Pick a Number - NASA Watch

  • My fallback is law school: it takes less time and when you're done you make your living talking a lot without actually saying anything.

    Not On My Reading Shelf

  • A mixed approach is possible that tries to combine elements of counter-insurgency with a long-term fallback strategy of containment is a possibility.

    Howard Schweber: Three Choices in Afghanistan: Counter-Terrorist War, Counter-Insurgency, and Containment

  • The default theme is sometimes called the fallback theme, because if the active theme is for some reason lost or deleted, WordPress will fallback to using the default theme.

    Codex - Recent changes [en]

  • The default theme is sometimes called the fallback theme, because if the active theme is for some reason lost or deleted, WordPress will fallback to using the default theme.

    Codex - Recent changes [en]

  • His fallback was a nearby commercial building he hoped to one day turn into a coffee shop.

    Little Guys Tough It Out

  • The oil industry's involvement in biofuels is best characterized as a fallback plan in case the world's governments implement aggressive climate policies or OPEC and other oil-rich nations -- where state-owned oil companies reign supreme -- further restrict foreign access to oil.

    Big Oil can't get beyond petroleum

  • The oil industry's involvement in biofuels is best characterized as a fallback plan in case the world's governments implement aggressive climate policies or OPEC and other oil-rich nations -- where state-owned oil companies reign supreme -- further restrict foreign access to oil.

    Big Oil can't get beyond petroleum

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