Windows Vista ships with an entire collection of imagery that is not limited to the Vistas and the additional wallpapers, but also covers every nook and cranny of the operating system. And the icons in Vista come to illustrate my point. Microsoft has an icon factory at its disposal, literally. And when I mean literally, it is because the design firm that has worked on the Vista icons is actually named Iconfactory. "We were charged to design the prototypes that would become the fundamental visual building blocks of the Microsoft Windows Vista icon suite," reveals a message on the Iconfactory's official website.
What you are looking at in Windows Vista RTM are the final variants of the icons. Still, as Microsoft has exemplified an increasing interest in the user experience of Vista, a lot of work was poured into building the amazing visuals of the operating system.
"Building on the groundbreaking work we had done for Microsoft's Windows XP icon suite, the Iconfactory once again worked hand in hand with the design team in Redmond to help design the look and feel of the Windows Vista icon suite. Over the course of two years, style proposals were created and refined in cooperation with Microsoft's creative team, to match and express Windows Vista's Aero vision and styling".
"Once the final concepts for the icon style were completed, Microsoft's designers expanded on this visual language and used it to internally create the full suite of icons you see today in Windows Vista," reads another message posted on Iconfactory.
In the adjacent images, you will be able to take a glimpse at the prototypes of the Windows Vista icons, courtesy of Iconfactory, but also at the final visuals, that I have selected, exclusively for your viewing pleasure.