The outlet’s two vertical slots above a round hole may look like a surprise emoji, but this arrangement is a national standard to ensure that plugs fit snugly and securely into the outlet.
In the U.S., a 120-volt outlet has two vertical slots and a round hole just below them. If you look at the outlet with the round hole facing down, the right slot is slightly smaller than the left slot. The small hole is for the grounding pin of a three-prong plug.
If the plug has only two pins, one larger and one smaller, then it is polarized. However, it does not have a grounding pin, as is often the case with lamps or other smaller electrical plugs.
Power outlets do not look like faces. In fact, people literally look for faces in everything they see. More so than in any other object we know (much more so than in general pareidolia).
The fusiform face area is a part of the human brain that specializes in looking at faces. It may also be involved in looking for subtle differences between familiar things – such as the faces of identical twins. It is associated with processing emotions, which is important for social functions.
So, if you Google photos of objects that look like faces, you can’t help but see faces everywhere – even if there’s not a human or animal in sight. If you don’t see faces in face-like objects, it may be a sign that you have prosopagnosia.
An unconventional answer will be: because it was a survival advantage for us to see faces even when there weren’t any, rather than confusing an actual face with a rock, a tree, or an electrical outlet.
Why do sockets look like surprised emoji faces?
Maybe the electric company wants a happy looking (socket emoji) to put you in a good mood to use electricity. You know, the electrical outlet was around long before there was even an emoji on a piece of paper…. Most likely, someone was sitting at their computer, staring at the wall and had an idea…and “hey” an AC emoji was born.
It’s actually logical…you need 2 power cords and a good ground wire. The plug needs to fit and have some frictional resistance to stay in place…. The 3 pin cable is balanced and fits easily in the hand… (one size fits all somehow). The grounding prong provides stability when something is plugged in.
So yes..it might look like a face, but maybe a face is a nice thing to have.
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