Icons are used on Information and Communications Technology (ICT) products to facilitate interaction with their users. Icons can provide a language-independent means of communicating information to the user.
ISO/IEC 11581 recognizes that icons are more than just symbols used on computer screens. Icons are interaction objects used by computer interfaces to accomplish various purposes. Icons can be rendered in various forms, including using graphics, gesture, audio, tactile/haptics, or any combination thereof. This versatility in rendition can provide greater accessibility to their underlying functionalities. ISO/IEC 11581 provides a framework as a basis for organizing information related to the creation and use of user interface icons.
ISO/IEC 11581-40:2011 defines supplementary procedural information, requirements and criteria that apply to a collection of icon standards published as a web-accessible icon database. It is based on the second paragraph of Annex ST, Procedures for the development and maintenance of standards in database format of the ISO/IEC Directives - Supplement - Procedures specific to ISO.