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I didn't see a question about this anywhere so I decided to ask it.

I anticipate an answer like "it best represents the site name," which is all right, but I'm sort of looking for an in-depth look at the creation of the logo from, perhaps, the minds of those who created it.

And while we're at it, I'm curious if it is geometrically awesome. And by that I mean, were there separate shapes and such that determined the curve of the overflowing units in the logo? I'd like to know if simple things like those were employed in the creation of the logo.

I ask because it's so recognizable now, like the yellow arches or white "f." It's important to understand that something's icon is much more important than we know in terms of branding on marketing (the people over at Graphic Design probably agree :P).

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What is this "white f" thing of which you speak? :p – Andrew Barber Feb 17 '12 at 9:21
You can find some attempts at approximating the curve in the answers to Generate the Stack Overflow logo over on CodeGolf.SE. – hammar Feb 17 '12 at 9:29
As @Andrew said - white f?? – Rory Alsop Feb 17 '12 at 9:48
@Rory He's talking about Facebook, btw. I was just making a bad joke :) – Andrew Barber Feb 17 '12 at 10:17
I understand now. I wouldn't have thought of facebook from that description - shows how their marketing has passed me by :-) – Rory Alsop Feb 17 '12 at 10:20
Me too. Had to think hard for the yellow arches, even. – Daniel Fischer Feb 17 '12 at 13:30
I doubt you would question it if you actually saw those symbols. ;) – Mystery Feb 17 '12 at 23:45
up vote 28 down vote accepted

Back when work on Stack Overflow had just started Jeff Atwood decided to run a logo design contest on 99designs. He eventually chose the original Stack Overflow logo seen below, designed by one Peter Borlace. There have been some minor changes since then.

the winning, current Stack Overflow logo

Jeff also selected these three as the runners-up.

a runner-up logo

a runner-up logo

a runner-up logo

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hmmm, 104 unpaid designers – Timmy O'Mahony Feb 17 '12 at 11:16
And so is uncovered another chapter of StackOverflow's history. Thanks! I really didn't know any of this. :P – Mystery Feb 17 '12 at 17:58

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