“What if we made it something-er?”

Parameter change. Change the degree of something, for example:

  • Length
  • Temperature
  • Angle
  • Thickness
  • Pressure

In the kitchen

Pressure cooking allows consistent temperature, shorter cooking duration, preservation of flavour – all by the simple parameter change of increasing the pressure.

Many condiment varieties are defined by their parameters. For example some might be loyal to a specific variety of mustard which is only distinguished from similar mustard by how hot it is. This doesn’t mean a new ingredient necessarily but rather an increase in the amount of ingredient – a parameter change.

Concentrated orange juice is different from orange juice only by parameter – the amount of water it contains. Reducing the water makes it far less expensive to store, transport etc.


Sometimes new electronics distinguish themselves based on screen size, like phones and TVs. They always had screens, the parameter change is length and width, or perhaps the ratio of the two (SD to HD widescreen).

Other available parameter changes include the number of pixels, the brightness, the number of available colours, etc.


Often sportier versions of cars differ from standard models due to thicker sway bars, larger wheels and tires, larger brakes, higher compression engines etc.  These are all parameter changes – e.g. still four wheels, just bigger.

Tesla cars are described in part by their battery capacity.  The Tesla Model X 75D and 100D have a 75 kWh and 100 kWh battery, respectively.

More examples

As I stumble across real world examples of this Inventive Principle in action I add them here.

Your turn

What problems do you face that this inventive principle could help solve? Have you used this principle before?