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I would like to change an icon symbolizing change with something more appropriate. Currently the icon is a star. After giving it some thought I realized that I didn't have a good concept of what symbolizes change (differences, not coinage).

I had thought of using arrows, but most designs reminded me of recycling, refreshing, or forward and back.

Edit for clarification:

I'm updating an icon used in a bug-tracking app for "change" tickets. That is, an item that will be changed in some way.

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closed as not constructive by Benny Skogberg, JonW May 19 '12 at 9:38

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It may help to know what is changing in your context. A star typically means 'new' so it sounds like a good idea to change it. –  Roger Attrill Jul 25 '11 at 19:57
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Are the users changing something (editing) or are they coming back to something that has changed since they last saw it? –  gef05 Jul 25 '11 at 20:10
    
I'm curious: would a tire-iron or screwdriver be iconic enough to represent change without being confused for edit? –  zzzzBov Jul 26 '11 at 4:31
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A huge "O". (Or am I 4 years late with this joke?) –  Rahul Jul 28 '11 at 22:58

5 Answers 5

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Depending on the audience's math & science background, a delta (Δ) can evoke the concept of change.

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+1 because the audience if probably software developers. –  rightføld Jul 30 '11 at 9:36

If it is change in terms of editing something, I would say a pencil. This is an incredibly common icon for edit.

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How about a hammer? A hammer implies work to be done and can be used for both building and tearing down. (So it's analogous to a pencil, which can write and erase.)

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Yes i agree with the pencil icon, but this will be good if you place pencil over the object icon.

Like ...

enter image description here

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It's probably best to use the word "Change" and no icon at all.

Some concepts can't be fit into a 16x16 space. In fact, there are very little icons around that are immediately clear to [the user].

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"Change" does not fit in a 14x14 block in any legible way, additionally it ends up being language specific. An icon breaks language barriers. –  zzzzBov Jul 28 '11 at 17:20
    
Then you should update the design to not use an icon and translate for every supported language. –  Wolfr Aug 7 '11 at 11:16
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I don't control the design of the page, I can only control what icon is shown. Even if I could change the design, icons are more appropriate for this instance. Translating for every supported language is more work compared to using icons which need no translation. Your advice is terrible. –  zzzzBov Aug 7 '11 at 16:15

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