Name and Logo Origins part one: Apple

What’s in a Logo?

The name and logo of a company is very important, you have to think about it carefully. The name and logo will be its identification; it’s a representation to whatever business you have. A very well thought of and catchy name will help appeal to the public, if you use something distasteful it may have a negative factor.


There were a lot of speculation as to where the name Apple came from like; because Jobs and Wozniak wanted their name to be in front of Atari in the phone book, a difference from the usual computer imagery like Digital Equipment, IBM and CINCOM, a tribute to Apple Records (music label of the Beatles). But according to a conversation from the founders themselves, Jobs after coming from an apple farm, the name Apple seemed “fun, spirited and not intimidating”. In iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon, Wozniak explains it this way:

“It was a couple of weeks later when we came up with a name for the partnership. I remember I was driving Steve Jobs back from the airport along Highway 85. Steve was coming back from a visit to Oregon to a place he called an “apple orchard.” It was actually some kind of commune. Steve suggested a name – Apple Computer. The first comment out of my mouth was, “What about Apple Records?” This was (and still is) the Beatles-owned record label. We both tried to come up with technical-sounding names that were better, but we couldn’t think of any good ones. Apple was so much better, better than any other name we could think of.”

In an interview in 2006 with an MIT newspaper, Wozniak was asked again about the rationale behind the Apple name. Wozniak confirmed that it was Job’s creation, and that he came up with the name after spending a few months working on an apple orchard. “After trying to think of better and more technical names, both Jobs and I realized that Apple was a good fit,” he told the newspaper.

A book titled Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World’s Most Colorful Company says that both Wozniak and Jobs tried out alternate brand names such as Executex and Matrix Electronics, but they didn’t like anything as much as Apple Computer.

Now, the first Apple Logo was designed last 1976 by Ronal Wayne. The logo was an image of Isaac Newton under a tree with an apple dangling above him. The boarder contains a phrase that says “Newton…  A mind Forever Voyaging through Strange Seas of Thought… Alone”. The logo lasted only a year, when Jobs appointed Rob Janoff to conceive something new. Janoff’s design would be the now recognizable corporate icon in history. The design was simply an apple; the bite was there so people wouldn’t mistake it for a tomato. The rainbow stripes were rumored to be the insistence of Jobs on making a colorful logo as a means to “humanize” the company. The multi-colored logo was used for 22 years, until it was replace by a more monochromatic look which took on a variety of sizes and colors, the apple shape, however, continues to be the same to this day.



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