To me, that seems incredibly confusing whether or no I is on, or O is on, and also I still obtain pretty perplexed today regarding which is which.

You are watching: Does o or i mean on

Why to be this draft this way? native a user-experience standpoint, that doesn"t make lot sense, wouldn"t ON/OFF job-related better? far better yet, why is this still thought about the share in today"s society, and also not ON/OFF?

Is there anything else far better than I/O that is far better for the user? Or am I best sticking come I/O?


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This needs to do with binary character systeem. 1 because that on, 0 for off. This means it"s understandable for everyone about the world, since not anyone understands English (ON/OFF).

It"s likewise readable from 2 sides, whereby ON/OFF is harder come read.

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Shamelessly taken from Wikipedia:

English indigenous were replaced by the universal character symbols 1 and 0 come bypass any possible language barriers

I - IEC 5007, the power on (line) symbol, showing up on a switch or one end of a toggle switch indicates that the regulate places the tools into a totally powered state. It comes from the binary mechanism (1 or | method on).

O - IEC 5008, the strength off (circle) symbol on a switch or toggle, shows that using the control will disconnect power to the device. It originates from the binary mechanism (0 method off).


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It"s indigenous physics, i guess.

"I" symbol method the present goes v the system (imagine the "I" gift a line, choose a circuit connecting )

"O" symbol means the current does no go v the system. (the one is an open up circuit, having no power flowing through it)


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Interesting question. Some points we think about obviously Yes and No are different in various cultures.

Consider the sony playstations controller: O in japan way "good" or "approve" and also X way "bad" or "cancel"

For the united state they had actually to adjust the controller buttons for X to typical approve and O to typical cancel. Fascinating, right?

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Checkmarks nice much constantly mean "yes" or "approve" so everything your an option for the give side of things is, it should be unambiguous.

Will think around potential alternatives...

See more: Why Does A Salt Solution Conduct Electricity, While Sugar Solution Doesn’T?


Color is additionally an effective means of portraying on/off. While there might be some social differences as soon as it involves the meaning of particular colors, it"s absolutely a acquainted use instance to represent on through green and off with red. Comparable to just how a traffic light would function. In UI, a switch favor in the picture below is commonly accepted and also used in applications:

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This variation deserve to be intensified even additional with the inclusion of icons to address usability concerns. When the example listed below still uses I/O for worldwide users, the on/off state becomes a bit an ext clear with the inclusion of the colors and slider element:

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In some situations whether lamp come top top or no is not helpful. Some automobile battery chargers have lights which which if the battery is partially charged, and the light indications hardly readjust depending on the switch position. The is therefore essential come "think" in binary, which as noted, no everyone does. For this reason some world will keep coming ago to this or similar sites to check.


Highly energetic question. Knife 10 call (not counting the combination bonus) in order come answer this question. The reputation requirement helps safeguard this question from spam and also non-answer activity.

Not the answer you're feather for? Browse other questions tagged toggle or ask your very own question.


UI to best convey whether results of selections in a filtering interface return intersections or union (and/or)
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