window vs. windows

In may talk at the recent SHOT conference in Pittsburgh I argued that the user interface is a worthy object of historical inquiries. It is old, it is well known, it is widespread, and it carries some interesting stories that mirror the developments in society. In order to push my point forward I got the idea to search for window and for windows using Google Image.

What do you think the outcome is?

Do the searches deliver images of windows in houses?

Or do they deliver a certain Microsoft product?

Yes and no. window yields exclusively house-windows – one might thinks that window in plural yield even more house windows! No so. windows yield exclusively images associated with Microsoft Windows: about half are Windows brand icons while the other half are the Windows user interface – the well known screen image. I find that this modest informal investigation can be taken as a strong  indication of the strength of footprint of the user interface in our culture.

By the way, what do you think happens when you do a similar search for apple and apples ,-/

Google image search for window and windows – first four hits





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