Digital interfaces are so ingrained in daily life that it's easy to forget the amount of thought behind their design; 'History of Icons' illustrates that growth in detail. The site is a collection of icon and interface designs from computers over the last 30-plus years. It's organized chronologically, allowing viewers to see just how designers' philosophies have changed since the inception of graphical computer interfaces in the eighties.
One of the biggest movements over the history of icon design mimics that of art history more generally. In art, painters over time strove to master as realistic an image as possible, with techniques being developed solely to capture real life accurately. Eventually, late 19th and early 20th century painters abandoned realism in favor of expression. So the same happened with icons, as designers worked to create realistic-looking graphics until computers could easily render those, at which point icons became far more expressive of function and brand image.