I am preparing a slide show and would like to title one slide as follows:

[technology1]'s [adjective] idea

which should mean something like

The idea behind [technology1]


The idea that originally inspired [technology1]

What could I use for [adjective]?

  • Can you give us an example of an idea behind a technology? Oct 22, 2021 at 6:22
  • Theoretical? The lightbulb's theoretical idea was XXX.
    – Stardust
    Oct 22, 2021 at 15:10
  • Core would be too simple? Oct 22, 2021 at 15:11

1 Answer 1


[Technology1]'s foundational idea

foundational (adj.)

Of or relating to the basis or groundwork on which something rests or is built; needing to be understood or established at the beginning:

We believe that fostering a strong local community is a foundational component of our inner-city scholarship program, guiding everything else we do. dictionary.com

Of, relating to, or forming or serving as a base or foundation: FUNDAMENTAL

foundational principles/doctrines m-w

Inspired by Jean Piaget's (1954) foundational idea of the 'sensorimotor stage' in cognitive development, embodied cognition assumes that – in the form of mental schemata – conceptual representations and categories are fundamentally shaped by, and derived from, out bodily experiences with the physical properties of the world... R. H. Jones; The Routledge Handbook of Language and Creativity

These assessment items were administered to Secondary Cycle One students (grades seven and eight) in Francophone and Anglophone schools in Québec to elicit their alternative ideas about the foundational technology concepts included in the science and technology curriculum in Québec. Andrea Burrows; Computer Science and Engineering Education for Pre-collegiate Students and Teachers

The volume's contributors include representatives of over half a dozen different disciplines, and each provides a novel perspective on the foundational idea that gender and technology cocreate one another. M. F. Fox et al.; Women, Gender, and Technology, p.207

A foundational idea for sustainability is that the environment itself imposes limits on the manner in which economic and social development can be effectively conducted:... Brent Steel; Science and Politics

  • I doubt that there’s a foundational idea behind technology.
    – Xanne
    Oct 22, 2021 at 9:33
  • @Xanne behind a particular technology (hence "[technology1]")
    – Museful
    Oct 22, 2021 at 9:46

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