skeuomorph

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skeuomorph

A design feature that is carried forth from the original version of a product in order to make people feel comfortable with the new device. For example, the click sound on a digital camera comes from an audio clip; however, the original sound was the actual shutter opening and closing. Spokes on hubcaps are skeuomorphs, whereas spokes on early automobile wheels were necessary. Pronounced "skew-uh-morf." See flat design.

From the Greek Words Skeuos and Morph
"Skeuos" and "morph" mean "tool" and "shape," and the term originally referred to adornments that came from earlier Greek structures. For example, a decorative carving on a new building might replicate a form on an ancient temple that was structural.


A Smartphone Skeuomorph
This iPhone wooden bookshelf motif was designed to use a familiar object to make people feel comfortable. Along with other skeuomorphs, it was eliminated in 2013 with iOS 7.







A Windows 8 Skeuomorph
This Windows 8 Paint menu uses a 3.5" floppy disk icon for its Save functions. In computer years, the floppy is now ancient, having had a lifespan from the 1970s to the end of the 1990s.
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A contemporary example of a skeumorph is the garbage can icon on computer screens, which makes files similar to paper.