The world around us is filled with symbols. Some symbols appear rarely, and some are so ubiquitous that it is hard not to spot them. Most symbols around us also have stories behind them. We can’t, and don’t know the stories behind each and every one of them. 

One of the most commonly seen symbols in the world today is the USB symbol. It is on laptops, phones, and almost on all kinds of electronic devices. 


The USB is the industry standard that has revolutionised the way people connect various kinds of devices and has replaced a variety of different interfaces. But have you ever wondered what that symbol is? What do the square, the triangle and the circle represent?

No one knows who exactly designed the logo. So there is no official reason for the symbol that we see. But there are a lot of theories that suggest what it might mean.  

One of them says that it represents all the problems it solved. The USB standard can connect a big number of devices using just a single kind of a port. Earlier, people had to use a different port for their mouse, a different one for their keyboard, and another one if they wanted some other peripheral. So, the simple geometric shaped at the end of the USB symbol represents the extensibility of the standard.

However, the most popular theory suggests that the symbol mimics the trident of Neptune, the Dreizack. 

Just like the trident symbolises power, the USB trident symbolises the technological power that is associated with the USB. And the symbols, each of them stands for something. The arrow represents serial data, the bits (1s and 0s) that make up all the information. The circle represents 5V, the voltage that USB works at and the Square represents ground voltage.

So there you go. Here was your TIL of the day.