How-To Geek

Apple's Icon Designs Packed with Hidden Meaning

Icons for the Apple’s iOS and Mac OS X are littered with little hints and references to Apple’s base of operations, Steve Jobs, and computer and programming jokes.

English technology blog ElectricPig has put together a list of the references and jokes hidden in Apple’s icon sets. Some of them are less than subtle (the icon for a PC running Windows on the local network is a monitor with the Blue Screen of Death), and others are quite subtle–such as the Apple Font Book icon.

Appleā€™s computers have long been a favourite of writers, designers and editors of every persuasion. The Font Book app is, therefore, an often used part of OS X. Its icon, however, holds a neat in-joke. The letters used to make it are A, F and K. In internet-speak, AFK stands for Away From Keyboard.

Hit up the link below for a peek at a dozen different icons and their hidden (or not so hidden) meanings.

Apple Icon Secrets: Hidden Meanings Hiding in Plain Sight [ElectricPig via The Unofficial Apple Weblog]

Jason Fitzpatrick is a warranty-voiding DIYer who spends his days cracking opening cases and wrestling with code so you don't have to. If it can be modded, optimized, repurposed, or torn apart for fun he's interested (and probably already at the workbench taking it apart). You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 01/19/11

Comments (4)

  1. Matthew Guay

    Fun … my favorite one has always been the Textedit icon. Even though I’m a PC user, I still like the “Here’s to the crazy ones” letter :)

  2. Adolfo Figeac

    Why not a GEEK section for Mac OS 10????

  3. Hatryst

    Hahaha :D
    People at Apple are really good at hiding things :)

  4. rohan

    Logos and fonts have always held strong brand emotions, very insightful article. nice one , keep it up, i am following ur posts henceforth

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