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 warranty-voiding DIYer and all around geek. When he's not documenting mods and hacks he's doing his best to make sure a generation of college students graduate knowing they should put their pants on one leg at a time and go on to greatness, just like Bruce Dickinson. 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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