Every now and then we get asked about the story behind the PowerGUI train logo. I told it a few times in various interviews/conversations but it looks like it was never actually posted on this blog, so here you go.
Here we were back in late 2006 getting ready to the first public beta of PowerGUI – and we needed a mascot. The team got by a whiteboard in my office for a brainstorming session. It was dark outside, everyone else had long left the building, and we could not consume any more coffee – so we knew we’d better find the solution fast. Just kidding – it was not that dramatic.😉
We wanted something that would be associated with power (after all it is PowerGUI for PowerShell), and locomotive came as one of associations.
At the same time, we did not want to be too serious with the logo. PowerGUI was meant to be a freeware and a community effort, so we wanted something that would be friendly and personal. Kind of the opposite of regular logos for “serious” “enterprise” software.
And to add to that, I also just had my first baby born a few months before that – which I guess tends to kind of affect the way one sees the world around.😉
This all led to us asking graphics designers to come up with some kind of cartoon-like friendly train mascot – and our logo was born. I believe the “coal” in the car that PowerGUI pulls was supposed to symbolize all the cmdlets and command-line elements (like
-ne) which PowerGUI makes easier to use.🙂
As a free bonus, here’s one of the initial logo ideas we got while brainstorming and experimenting. I believe a few internal early builds of PowerGUI – back then code-named “Simulacrum” – had this teddy bear icon.