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Gmail Logo Was a Rush Job With Two Totally Different Fonts

By - Source: Quora | B 66 comments

You might see it every day but have you ever really looked at it?

We've probably all left things to the last second, only to rush out a solution to whatever task we had been assigned with varying degrees of success. However, it might surprise you that the Gmail logo is the perfect example of how leaving things to the last minute doesn't have to mean a sloppy, terrible result. In fact, sometimes the rushed solution is good enough to last forever. You were likely also oblivious to the fact that the logo contains two completely different fonts.

The Verge reports that Google Product Designer Kevin Fox recently took to Quora to answer the question, "Who designed the Google logo?" His response revealed the two facts above, along with the fact that the logo was designed by Dennis Hwang, who at the time was doing almost all of the Google Doodles, as well as a fair amount of logos.

"The logo was designed literally the night before the product launched. We were up very late and Sergey and I went down to his cube to watch him make it," he said. "The initial version used the same font as the Google logo (Catull), but Catull has a very awkward 'a', so Dennis decided to use Catull for the 'G' to tie the brand to Google, then cast the others in a cleaner sans-serif (Myriad Pro, if I recall correctly)."

There you have it.

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Top Comments
  • 20 Hide
    Anonymous , January 29, 2012 6:34 PM
    They should have used wingdings...
  • 17 Hide
    Maxor127 , January 29, 2012 6:52 PM
    That said, I thought the origin of the logo was interesting. I never noticed the different fonts, but it's obvious when you actually look at it. Fontophiles will probably cry about using a font like Myriad Pro, though.
  • 17 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , January 29, 2012 6:27 PM
    Apple: pours millions of dollars and hundreds of workhours into so-called "design" of every last detail.

    Google: does design overnight, still kicks Apple's ass.
Other Comments
    Display all 66 comments.
  • 17 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , January 29, 2012 6:27 PM
    Apple: pours millions of dollars and hundreds of workhours into so-called "design" of every last detail.

    Google: does design overnight, still kicks Apple's ass.
  • 20 Hide
    Anonymous , January 29, 2012 6:34 PM
    They should have used wingdings...
  • 17 Hide
    Maxor127 , January 29, 2012 6:52 PM
    That said, I thought the origin of the logo was interesting. I never noticed the different fonts, but it's obvious when you actually look at it. Fontophiles will probably cry about using a font like Myriad Pro, though.
  • 2 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , January 29, 2012 7:20 PM
    I just spent a few minutes looking for these fonts and found them. Found the Catull to be correct (for "Google" and the "G" in Gmail). As far as the Myraid Pro (for the "mail" in "Gmail"), it looks like it was used for the "ail" in "Gmail", and to an extent, the "m" as well, but more or less "Photoshopped" to match the envelope. The letters after it ("ail"), look as if they've been slightly "squished", so-to-speak. I don't know the term for that. I'm not a graphic designer. Otherwise, the font looks correct.

    At first, I absolutely despised Google. I thought it was just too plain looking and unattractive. It took me a while to get off of Yahoo's search engine and take advantage of Google. I still find myself hitting Yahoo for everything else because everything I "need" is right there.
  • 0 Hide
    g4114rd0 , January 29, 2012 8:02 PM
    I am a freelance graphic designer...
    - you're a barista
  • 0 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , January 29, 2012 8:13 PM
    Maxor127That's a pretty pathetic stretch to spout Apple hate in an article that has nothing to do with them, and by using a horrible, broad, vague example to make your ridiculous point as well.


    It worked. Any more questions? :D 
  • -4 Hide
    someoneelse , January 29, 2012 8:45 PM
    a google story with a comments section full of apple hate - just a little too familiar

    Why hate apple? - after all if it weren't for the iphone google would have nothing to copy for android.
  • -3 Hide
    g4114rd0 , January 29, 2012 8:56 PM
    Why published a weekly list of Deserters?
  • 10 Hide
    A Bad Day , January 29, 2012 9:21 PM
    Hilarious how some companies (can't think of any right now), spent millions of dollars in analysts, graphic designers and occasionally hire outside graphic design firms, and end up with terrible designs.
  • 5 Hide
    madooo12 , January 29, 2012 10:56 PM
    bill gates: to be a good professional engineer always study late before exams, it teaches you how to organize time and tackle emergencies
  • 3 Hide
    ihateapple9000 , January 29, 2012 11:02 PM
    amk-aka-PhantomApple: pours millions of dollars and hundreds of workhours into so-called "design" of every last detail.Google: does design overnight, still kicks Apple's ass.


    +1

    I H8 APPL
  • 4 Hide
    madooo12 , January 29, 2012 11:19 PM
    someoneelsea google story with a comments section full of apple hate - just a little too familiar Why hate apple? - after all if it weren't for the iphone google would have nothing to copy for android.

    i remember rumors about android came out about the same time as rumors about the iphone
    "unveiling of the Android distribution in 2007 was announced with the founding of the Open Handset Alliance, a consortium of 86 hardware, software, and telecommunication companies devoted to advancing open standards for mobile devices." from wikipedia
    and actually a company had started developing android way before that in 2005 before google bought it

    the iphone was released on June 29, 2007

    i think apple copied google
  • -3 Hide
    stoogie , January 30, 2012 12:17 AM
    i could make a better logo for gmail in under 5 minutes, so they rushed it? took less than 5 minutes? i dont think so
  • -1 Hide
    jurassic1024 , January 30, 2012 12:17 AM
    and the font used for BETA makes three different fonts.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , January 30, 2012 12:41 AM
    "i think apple copied google"

    From WIRED (http://www.wired.com/gadgets/wireless/magazine/16-02/ff_iphone?currentPage=2) "In 2002, shortly after the first iPod was released, Jobs started thinking about developing a phone.. that summer (2004), while he publicly denied he would build an Apple phone, Jobs was working on his entry into the mobile phone industry.. In February 2005, he got together with Cingular to discuss a Motorola-free partnership.. Jobs delivered a three-part message to Cingular: Apple had the technology to build something truly revolutionary, "light-years ahead of anything else.".. Jobs had reason to be confident. Apple's hardware engineers had spent about a year working on touchscreen technology for a tablet PC and had convinced him that they could build a similar interface for a phone. Plus, thanks to the release of the ARM11 chip, cell phone processors were finally fast and efficient enough to power a device that combined the functionality of a phone, a computer, and an iPod."

    There is more to the WIRED story that says Apple spent YEARS before 2005 working on the iPhone.. Apple just didn't copy Google when Google bought Android in August 2005. Google's Eric Schmidt was on the Apple board so saw what Apple was up to and decided Google needed to do the same thing! The first Android phone came out over a year later than the first iPhone so how does Apple copy something that doesn't get released until over a year later?
  • 6 Hide
    Camikazi , January 30, 2012 12:47 AM
    Maxor127That's a pretty pathetic stretch to spout Apple hate in an article that has nothing to do with them, and by using a horrible, broad, vague example to make your ridiculous point as well.

    It was a comparison and well Apple has said they spend a lot of time and manpower on their designs and Google just said they did it at the last second and yet both worked...
  • 5 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , January 30, 2012 1:13 AM
    Oh come on... I can't pop a single Apple joke without starting another Apple vs. Google flamewar? I don't like Apple, but FFS, this is becoming tiresome! I think Tom's should have a special flame war forum...

    CamikaziIt was a comparison and well Apple has said they spend a lot of time and manpower on their designs and Google just said they did it at the last second and yet both worked...


    ^ THIS is all I ever wanted it to be. +1 for getting this.
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