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Crown Cruise Vacations | August 17, 2022

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Cruise Trivia: Where did Bluetooth get its name and logo

Cruise Trivia: Where did Bluetooth get its name and logo
Jackie Sheckler Finch

My grandson knew the answer to this cruise trivia. I didn’t learn it until I took a cruise aboard the Viking Sky. Of course, my young grandson is far more tech savvy than I am.

The cruise trivia question involves the popular Bluetooth technology. Bluetooth uses a radio frequency to share data over a short distance eliminating the need for wires. Bluetooth can be used on mobile devices to share documents or to connect with other Bluetooth-enabled gadgets.

So, where did Bluetooth gets its name and unusual logo?

Hint: Since I learned the answer on a Viking cruise, stands to reason it might have something to do with Vikings.

On this same cruise, I also learned that ancient Vikings did not have horns on their helmets. With apologies to Minnesota football fans.

Guest lecturer Jeremy Paterson shared that wonderful bit of info on my cruise.

“Think about how crazy it would be to put horns on your helmet,” Paterson said. “Your enemy could twist your neck off. But it is very difficult for misconceptions to disappear.”

That horn mistake probably started when costume designer Carl Emil Doepler thought it would look cool to have Vikings wearing helmets with horns in the opera for Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle. The look was such a big hit that folks began believing it was true, Paterson said.

“Why on earth anyone thought they should have horns on their helmets is amazing,” Paterson said. “But because of the 1876 costume designer for Wagner’s opera, Vikings have had horns on their helmets ever since – until now.”

Don’t look at your Bluetooth answer below until you’ve formulated your response. If you are correct, celebrate your tech smarts.

If you didn’t know the answer, might be time to book a Viking cruise. Never know what you might learn.





One of the most surprising parts of Viking cruise guest lecturer Jeremy Paterson’s talk was when he projected on the theater screen the logo for a very famous piece of modern-day technology.

The logo is composed of two runes for the name of a 10th century Viking king who united parts of Denmark and Norway into one nation and converted the Danes to Christianity. None other than Harald Bluetooth.

Yep, today’s Bluetooth that was designed to unite the PC and cellular industries with a short-range wireless link. Jim Kardach, an Intel engineer working on wireless technologies, figured old Harald Bluetooth was an ideal symbol for bringing competing parties together.

Not only that, Kardach used the initials of Harald Bluetooth written in Scandinavian runes for the omnipresent blue oval symbol for Bluetooth devices.

I’ve included a photo of the two runes. Fascinating that an ancient Viking inspiration was used for a modern unifying technology. Wonder what Harald Bluetooth would think of that.

Photo by Jackie Sheckler Finch