The floppy disk has been dead for 10 years, but Microsoft is not letting go

Made obsolete by modern storage means, the floppy disk has not yet disappeared from the collective unconscious. It continues to exist within our modern operating systems, as evidenced by the next version of Windows.

Almost obsolete for 20 years, the floppy disk does not yet seem ready to bow out in Windows. While Microsoft is preparing a major aesthetic overhaul of its system for the next version of its operating system, the old storage tool continues to appear in the bowels of the OS.

As the WindowsLatest site spotted it on May 6, 2021, Microsoft has finally given a boost to the icons present in the Shell32 library. The name may not mean anything to you, but it is in this folder that we find system icons such as My Computer and new documents or folders. Much of it had not been redesigned for decades, which is why there were still images of floppy disks in the system.

Support that has been dead for 10 years

But even after the recent grooming by Microsoft, the one we call floppy in English continues to appear, as can be seen in the screenshot above. Made almost obsolete since the early 2000s, which saw the explosion of USB keys and memory cards, the floppy disk died of its death in March 2011 when Sony produced the very last 3.5 inch floppy disk. More than 10 years later, this accessory still continues to exist in our operating systems.

On the left, the revised and improved icons // Source: WindowsLatest

System icons aren’t the only place to find floppy images by the way. Microsoft Word continues to use this old storage medium as the icon for the Save option. But in this specific case, the icon embodies the very idea of ​​recording a document, transcending the object it represents. The object may have disappeared, the symbol and its usefulness remained.

The reasons behind incorporating a floppy disk icon into Windows system files are less clear. Microsoft probably wanted to plan for all scenarios, even the use of a floppy drive in 2021.

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Source: Numerama by www.numerama.com.

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