Color Style Kyle

Combining art, creativity, design, family, health, humor and books.

25th Anniversary of the Smiley Face Emoticon – Keystroke of Inspiration

Posted by Kyle Design on September 19, 2007

September 19th, 2007 is the 25th Anniversary of the Emoticon being used toSmiley Face Emoticon Earrings express feelings, humor and emotion in email or online. The first use was in a message to an online bulletin board that was sent at 11:44 a.m. on September 19, 1982 by Professor Scott Fahlman of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. He used the keystrokes 🙂 to create the smiley face emoticon and suggested using it as a way to indicate that particular comments should be taken lightly. According to the Carnegie Mellon site, Fahlman wrote, “I propose the following character sequence for joke markers: :-). Read it sideways,” he added, helpfully.

It quickly spread from one computer network to another. This creative stroke of inspiration on the part of Professor Fahlman has snowballed into such an important part of online communication that many of us would feel lost without them.

Laptop Computer Business Card CaseTo mark the anniversary, Fahlman and his colleagues in the Computer Science Dept. are starting an annual “Smiley Award” for innovation in technology-assisted, human-to-human communication. The winning entry will receive $500 cash from Yahoo!, which is sponsoring it, but don’t get too excited. The competition is only open to individual students and small teams in Carnegie Mellon’s School of Computer Science at this time.

If you’d like to mark this fun anniversary in your own way, check out our Emoticon Jewelry on our Cool Gifts for Computer Geeks and IT Professionals page. Other items include the Laptop Computer Business Card Case shown above that features a pie chart sun and a bar graph city surrounded by a binary code border pattern.

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