Optimizing UI icons for faster recognition

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Semiotic theory and structure of signs

User interface, like any language or other communication system, is a construct, made using series of signs. Semiotics, a branch in linguistics that studies signs, defines a sign as being composed of two elements–a signifier (the form which the sign takes) and a signified (the concept it represents). A sign is a recognizable combination of a signifier with a particular signified.

  • iconic: relate to the concept through resemblance
  • symbolic: relate to the concept through convention, and
  • indexical: relate to the object through causation3
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Digital Design, Interactives, Mobile Tablet Patterns, UI UX

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