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05 May 2015

Apple Icon From kalmstrom.com Headquarters

Apple iconIt is not often that the kalmstrom.com Blog displays Apple icons. We develop and sell our own add-ons for Microsoft Outlook and SharePoint, so normally we have not reason to discuss Apple.

There is however a connection not only between kalmstrom.com and Microsoft but also between kalmstrom.com and the Apple command icon you see here to the right. My mother Kate will tell you about it.

"Our town on all computers!"
Öland is an island off the Swedish south east coast where I live with my husband Sigge. Our house in the little town Borgholm also has room for the kalmstrom.com head office. We of course subscribe to the local newspaper, and the other day the paper boasted: "Borgholm on all computers in the world!"

That is of course not true, and it would not have been correct even if there had been no Microsoft and no Windows. But there is a core of truth in the statement when it comes to Apple devices.

Icon inspired by castle
At this year's Bloomberg Businessweek Design conference, the connection between our town and Apple was revealed by graphic designer Susan Kare. She was a member of the first Apple team in the 1980s, and when Steve Jobs asked her to create a new command icon, she chose the one you can see on the image above.

In northern Europe this symbol is used on road signs to indicate a point of interest, like a museum or an historic monument. The design was inspired by a major Swedish tourist attraction: the Borgholm castle.

Susan Kare at conference

A live ruin
The history of Borgholm Castle goes 900 years back. It was first built as a fortress in defense against enemies from the other side of the Baltic Sea. What we see today is however the ruin of the magnificent baroque palace that the castle became in the 1600s.

The ruin is situated between the sea and a vast limestone plain called the "Alvar" of Borgholm. It is near to our home, and we often take long walks there with our dog. The "Alvar" is an inspiring and relaxing environment, with the impressive ruin and its memories from centuries back looming large over it.

The Borgholm Alvar

Today Borgholm castle has a permanent exhibition that takes advantage of modern techniques to dramatize the past. You can for example experience the terrible fire that turned the castle into a ruin in the year of 1806.

Many events, like concerts and fairs, are held at the castle, and it is an important tourist attraction. The Swedish Royal family has its summer caste close by, and this also helps to make Borgholm a lively town during the summer months.

It is interesting to see how forms and designs travel over the world. Here we see how the 900 years old castle ruin of Borgholm has inspired - even if it is indirectly - to one of today's most used computer buttons!

We love our island, and I have written more blog posts about it over the years:
International Travellers Reward
Viking Festival
The kalmstrom.com Headquarters

Kate Kalmstrom
CCO
kalmstrom.com Business Solutions