Saturday, October 04, 2008


One of the exciting challenges to communicate on the Internet and be impressive or just 'Show off' is through the Language flow of signs. These are symbols to convey the expressions in emails, chat rooms, messaging programs,etc. They are composed of several keyboard characters which you can use and express your emotions. So, how did this Smileys, emoticons and computer jargon language start?

On the web, we find different results on who actually invented Smileys. The very earliest known examples of the graphic are attributed to Harvey Ball, a commercial artist in Worcester, Massachusetts. He devised the face in 1963 for an insurance firm that wanted an internal campaign to improve employee morale. He declared that the first Friday in October each year would henceforth be World Smile Day. The first World Smiley Day took place in Worcester, MA on October 1, 1999. The smiley face knows no politics, no geography and no religion. This day today is celebrated as World Smiley Day and the theme of Harvey Ball's site for 2008 is 'Do an Act of Kindness, Help one person smile.'

Later on in 1970, popularized by Bernard and Murray Spain who produce buttons, coffee mugs, T shirts, bumper stickers, etc with 'Have a Happy Day'

In 1981, Smileys were used by Scott Fahlman and here is his website with info. Here is the original thread in the Bulletin board where it was proposed.

Currently, he seems to be working on am working on Scone, a practical system that can represent a large body of real-world knowledge and that can efficiently perform the kinds of search and inference that seem so effortless for humans. Too high end learning for me yet, take a look at the site and this sure is Interesting!And here's with the Smiley day just gone, I remember all those smileys and frowns I got with winks and yawning, angelic and devilish too - as I passed through ICQ, Talkcity, Yahoo Messengers and even India Times and many more Chatrooms. Kidsfreesouls has the Smileys Here - The Unofficial Smiley Faq for use and you can even add more of your smileys here 0:-)

I've done a Classroom Project on Smileys earlier and it is so much fun for the kids. They can draw different smiley faces in their Project book, make a Smiley Poster and jot down all the Smileys and Computer Jargons that they can use on web as well as many of them use while texting messages on mobile phones. Enjoy!

- ilaxi patel
Newspaper for Kids

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