Scott Hanselman blogged about "14 icons that the younger generation hasn't seen to understand," like Save being a floppy disk.

I did live through the floppy era, and I find that the symbol itself seems to carry the meaning of save, although I don't even think about the connection to floppy drives. It's almost a standard in software, it's quite commonly used to denote save.

Is there a more "up to date" icon that carries the same connotations and enjoys at least some portion of wide usage?

  • 1
    Possible duplicate/related: ux.stackexchange.com/questions/3117/…
    – GotDibbs
    May 11, 2012 at 19:05
  • Agreed that it's related, but not a dupe. I'm looking for an alternative, and the linked question just talks about the idiom.
    – ashes999
    May 11, 2012 at 19:06
  • 1
    Related: graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/questions/323/…
    – Ambo100
    May 11, 2012 at 19:07
  • I would say that @Ambo100 has the best bet at some inspiration but I've looked on this exact topic before and haven't found an acceptable replacement for the idiom as of yet. Also another very directly related question: Floppy disk icon for "save".
    – GotDibbs
    May 11, 2012 at 19:09
  • 4
    The problem is that the entirely abstract concept of "saving" has little relationship to any visually recognizable object. Breaking from a conventional idiom in this case probably isn't a good idea.
    – Ben Brocka
    May 11, 2012 at 19:33

1 Answer 1


There is no other standard icon for "Save".

Video games use a number of different icons (usually on brand for the game) to let players know what the game is "saving". The problem is that they have to explain to users up front that that is what the icon is for. If you've played a few games recently surely you've seem something like "When you see this icon you game is being saved, please to not turn off your console".

Ideally you don't want to have to explain to your users what an icon means. Even though there are users who haven't got a clue what a floppy disk is, they do understand what the icon means. I don't see anything wrong with using the standard save icon if the purpose is understood. The actual physical object it represents is irrelevant. Focus on being clear first and clever second.

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