You are not logged in.
Click here to login

UNF Alumni Discussion Group
  < Back to Topic Index  

The Difference Between an Invention and an Idea  (0 replies)
Posted by: Anonymous
Date: 6/5/2017 7:02:04 PM Reply

Inventions have changed the way we live our lives. It has changed how things work and gave an insight on how they will function in the future. It’s through the invention that we are given an opportunity to improve our lives.

What is an invention?

To invent is to come up with a new product/service or simply devising new ways of doing things. Some inventions are complex and require a certain level of knowledge, while some are simple and only requires basic knowledge.

Who can Invent?

Previously, it was believed that for one to be considered an inventor, they needed to possess a fancy college degree and be extremely good in scientific disciplines that are difficult to pronounce. This belief slowly started to fade when people realized that even a simple-minded individual could come up with outstanding ideas that could change the world.

What are the differences between an invention and an idea?

All inventions begin as an idea. A spark of genius where someone realizes that they could come up with new products or services that will change peoples’ lives. However, an idea alone cannot be classified as an invention. Several steps need to be accomplished to transform an idea into a complete invention. They are as follows:


An idea is a general overview of the project. An entire project needs complete designs that will convey the intention of the invention to other people who will be involved in the project. The inventor is encouraged to come up with his/her designs then, later on, seek professional assistance. Consulting experts will help to streamline the designs and omitting useless and irrelevant parts. This will enable the team to come up with complete and working drawings.

Business Plan:

A company’s success is only as good as its business plan. These plans will be presented to potential investors for funding. Getting this step wrong might affect the investor confidence in your project and may result in less or unfavorable funding which might stall the entire process. Seeking professional consultancy is highly recommended.


A working invention prototype model is not necessary, but all successful inventions have at least had one. The prototype should be open to scrutiny and all needed changes to be noted down. A prototype can also help the team to secure more funding for the project.


A patent grants you full ownership of that invention and prevents other parties from replicating your idea for a particular period depending on your country’s legislations. A patent will offer security and protection to your idea, and any infringement may entitle you to indemnities. A patent is only awarded when it has been proven this is your idea, and non-other similar idea exists. Other factors such as the usability of the invention and its manufacturing costs are also considered.

An invention without a patent is at a risk of being legally copied and used by other parties, and you will not be entitled to any share of the profits they make through the utilization of the invention. You are always encouraged and advised to patent your inventions before they are publicly available.

Home & Login | Upcoming Events | Member Directory | Message Boards | Class Notes | Career Services | Coggin Career Center | Member Benefits | Photo Album | Alumni Businesses | View My Profile | Edit My Profile | NestNotes Settings | Email For Life | Back To Association

University of North Florida
Office of Alumni Services
1 UNF Drive
Jacksonville, Florida 32224-2645

Phone: (904) 620-4723 or (800) UNF-GRAD