All inventions start out as an idea. Sometimes that idea is part of a concept involving a particular technology. Sometimes it is an approach to solving a problem. Sometimes it is a way to improve something that is already in the marketplace and being sold. But one thing is for certain: an idea is not an invention. So how do you know when an idea turns into an invention?
“Idea” is defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary as: (1)” a thought, plan or suggestion about what to do,” (2) “an opinion or belief, “and (3) “something that you imagine or picture in your mind.” None of these three definitions seems to require anything particularly precise, but rather imply something that is pretty malleable. For example, while a “plan” can actually be quite detailed and have a rigid timeframe and/or mandatory actions, it can also be exceptionally vague.