Understanding the Difference Between Innovation and Tech

The words technology and innovation are often used interchangeably, but they are actually different things. Technology is the totality of human knowledge and technological systems, plus the applications we apply to the world around us, plus the tools we use to make those things. Innovation is essentially the application of that knowledge and any learned skills to solve new problems. Both involve human action and the use of technology, but there is a key difference between them that is frequently left uncorrected by people.

Innovation is basically the application of your human knowledge in a new way, but it is usually done in an entirely different way than you would have done it if you had used the tools of technology that we have available to us today. Innovations are a result of human action, but they are often also a direct result of some new technological principle that was discovered. This principle could be a new scientific fact, or it could be a newly developed method of manufacturing a product. Whatever the principle was, it has been shaped and refined by the actions of humans over time. In other words, all of the accumulated knowledge and scientific research that has been done over the centuries has resulted in innovations that we now call “tech.”

Technological change is constantly breaking new ground, and when it does, we are all affected. When a new tool for making something comes along, we often welcome it with open arms, while looking at it with skepticism because of the possible flaws in its design. However, if we examine the history of technology, we will see that many innovations that have actually turned the world of science on its head, and helped mankind become much more self-aware species, have actually originated from the applications of technology.