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A device whose output function is proportional to the derivative, or rate of change, of the input function with respect to one or more variables.



(also derivator or derivimeter), a device for determining directions of tangents and normals at particular points on arbitrary curves. The differentiator-triangle is most widely used. At the vertex of the right angle is a column with an optical system for the precise mounting of the device. An arc indicates the scale dividing the angle in degrees (protractor). Sleeves are fixed parallel to the legs of the right angle through which markings are made to construct the tangent or normal to the particular curve.

References in periodicals archive ?
Consistent with its strategy of asset parsimony, niche differentiators desire to maintain small inventories.
Large firm customers of niche differentiators often enforce their own just-in-time goals with their less powerful suppliers by extracting penalties for either early or late deliveries.
Employee empowerment is a central tenet of the TQM movement, and niche differentiators are well positioned to benefit from such programs because of the high quality workforce employed.
Sub-Zero's organization fits the description of simple structure which is typical of niche differentiators.
Broad differentiators seek to be better than their competitors at providing a wide range of products to a variety of markets, while striving to develop and maintain a large share in each market on the basis of quality or service as opposed to price (Miller, 1986; Murray, 1988; Porter, 1980; Wright, 1987).
Because broad differentiators often serve a variety of markets within a single industry, they are likely to find it difficult to characterize some dimensions of their environment because of the variety in customer and competitor behavior between markets.
In contrast to low differentiators, high differentiators are likely to have a low proportion of vertical links when task uncertainty is low.
When uncertainty is high, low differentiators may form few, if any, vertical links.
In addition, diagonal links are unlikely to provide the summary information that low differentiators seek.
Compared to other types of links, diagonal links are more likely to connect high differentiators to individuals with new views and alternative solutions appropriate for dealing with uncertain tasks and ill-defined problems because very different sections of the organization are connected by these intraorganizational links.
Compared to vertical links, the use of horizontal links (to peers at the same organizational level) by low differentiators may have several disadvantages.
Horizontal links are also unlikely to be used by high differentiators to solve task-related problems.