Microsoft's new Edge browser has a logo that harkens back to the legacy of Internet Explorer's classic "e" surrounded by an orbiting swirl. Or at least, that's the idea. But it also has sparked some strong reactions from armchair design enthusiasts. I can't say that I'm much of a logo design expert (more accurately: I am the furthest thing from it), but I can say that I cannot stop staring at the negative space in the logo.
At first I thought Microsoft's Edge logo had a vaguely Soviet hammer-and-sickle kind of vibe, or maybe even some kind of spinny Sonic the Hedgehog vibe. So I made the easy joke on Twitter, because making the easy joke is what Twitter is for.
But then I looked again and saw something else, something lurking in that negative space. Negative space, of course, is the area that isn't colored, it's the space between the letters. The most famous negative space in a logo comes from FedEx, which has an arrow between the E and the X, subtly signaling movement, direction, and action.
I think there's something lurking in the negative space of the Edge logo — or more precisely, two things. But I don't know what they are. Witness:
What exactly are we looking at? I have some ideas:
- A sink faucet and bowl
- An upside-down ladle and an upside-down foot
- Turn it upside down and it's a foot stomping a piano pedal, maybe!
- A shower head and a floating toilet bowl, aka the worst-designed bathroom ever
- A desk lamp and a super weird desk
- One of those buffet heating lamps over a bowl filled with delicious clam chowder
- A worker totally mismatching two bun sizes on a hamburger
- Turn it sideways: it's a tiny cartoon horse giving a giant cartoon horse a high five
- A salon hair dryer and a ...massage table I guess?
Who will solve this mystery? What does it mean?
Microsoft Build: Microsoft Edge hype video