Tech Logos in Chicago Font

The designers of the original Apple Macintosh faced a challenge. They wanted a computer with beautiful and proportionate fonts, but with a small black-and-white screen, the graphics were still quite limited. Thankfully, Apple had a very talented graphic designer named Susan Kare. Kare designed all the icons for the original Mac, as well as many of the fonts. Most of the fonts that came with Mac were adaptations of established fonts like Times New Roman and Helvetica. However, the main font used on the computer screen was an original Kare design called Chicago. The Chicago font was designed for maximum readability on the Mac’s tiny little screen. As technologies improved, Apple came out with a TrueType version that was scalable to any size, but I prefer the original pixelated look of 12-point Chicago.

The logos below are all rendered in the original bitmap version of the Chicago font, blown up for artistic effect. And since Chicago, like all Apple fonts, includes a glyph for the Apple logo, I even included the Chicago version of the Apple logo, rendered with the modern gray shading of the 21st century Apple.

Apple

Apple Logo in Chicago Font

Cisco

Cisco Logo in Chicago Font

eBay

eBay Logo in Chicago Font

Google

Google Logo in Chicago Font

Hewlett-Packard

HP Logo in Chicago Font

IBM

IBM Logo in Chicago Font

LinkedIn

LinkedIn Logo in Chicago Font

Microsoft

Microsoft Logo in Chicago Font

Yelp

Yelp Logo in Chicago Font

YouTube

YouTube Logo in Chicago Font

Technology companies tend to use simple wordmarks and basic geometric logos. As such, these designs all look pretty good in Chicago. They certainly look better than my renditions of famous logos in ugly fonts like Papyrus and Jokerman. The fact that Chicago holds up after all these years is a testament to the genius of Susan Kare.

Steve Lovelace

Steve Lovelace is a writer, photographer and graphic artist. After graduating Michigan State University in 2004, he taught Spanish in Samoa before moving to Dallas, Texas. He blogs every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at http://steve-lovelace.com.

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2 Responses

  1. Chris Young says:

    This is beautiful. I’m a big Macintosh fan. have a couple of SE/30s and often use the iconography from the pre OSX macs in my presentations at work.

  1. August 15, 2015

    […] cities. She also created an entirely new font, called Chicago. Unlike the other fonts on the Mac, Chicago was designed for the screen first, specifically for the menu bars, buttons and other interface […]

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