Death of an icon?

In one of my more geeked out former lives, I worked with user interface design for IBM. It’s been over a decade since that time, and yet one thing has not changed – and I kind of wish it would: the SAVE icon.



I’m a geek, and even I cannot find a single 3.5 inch diskette anywhere in my office. I looked deep in the land of old CDs and it just isn’t there. And yet, this image is the global standard for saving a file. I realize that for those of us of a certain age, this is a recognizable icon. But every time I hit that button, I wonder – do my kids even realize what that button graphic stands for? they know it means save – but not why.

I’m just shocked that nobody has made an icon to replace this outdated piece of hardware. The fact that it is a piece of hardware at all should have kept it from becoming a standard. Should I just smile and wave, and be happy it isn’t a floppy disk?

I did find one irreverent, but funny suggestion out there: To change the icon to a picture of Jesus.  But then there was this comment:

Jesus saves, but Buddha does incremental backups.

This person just won the internet. It’s long past time to face the issue. But not taking it that far…

The icon for e-mail is a picture of an envelope with a stamp on it… how long before that one is unrecognizable as well?


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