The Mystery Of The Supposedly Red ❤ Emoji AKA The Story Of How I Became A Software Developer Detective To Debug The Internet

The Mystery Of The Supposedly Red ❤ Emoji AKA The Story Of How I Became A Software Developer Detective To Debug The Internet

Believe it or not, I recently became the victim of a hate crime on the internet.

In order to make sure you won't get into the same situation, I decided to share my story with you.

The Crime

I really love using emojis. Here is the ordered list of my favourite ones:


By the way, which is your favourite emoticon? Just post it in the comment section!

As you can see, the supposedly red ❤ emoji is my second favourite. So you can imagine how I freaked out when I saw this on an early morning: The Mistery of The Red  Emoji AKA How I Became A Software Developer Detective to Debug The Internet

And not just the Hashnode software developer blogging platform affected, but also platforms like Facebook, Medium, and even Gmail.

It immediately became clear, there is a worldwide conspiracy behind this including Hashnode, Facebook, Medium,, Gmail and who knows who else. 😱


At this point, I could not accept the theory of the worldwide conspiracy which includes Hashnode, Facebook, Medium,, Gmail and who knows who else.

So as I was in the complete dark regarding why this tragedy happened, as a first step, I did what every software developer would do: I have looked for a workaround. 😊

This is how I found the orange 🧡 emoticon.

Good, good but it is far not as good as the supposedly red ❤ emoji. I couldn't articulate why I like the supposedly red ❤ much better, so I did some research to find the answer.

Did you know colours have meaning? I always presumed but I never took the initiative to find it out. Up till this time. 😊

There is much more in the colours than you might think at first.

I found the answer on Designs.Ai. Let me quote from the site:

Red is a bold, warn color with a rich history. Utilization of this color can be traced back to antiquity, where it was viewed as a shade of vitality, festivity, evil and disaster. Red has also been widely used in art, from the days of the Renaissance to today's contemporary art. Additionally, the color Red was utilized in Byzantine dresses to showcase status.

Red is seen as a color of love, primarily used during two of the biggest holidays of each year, Valentine's Day and Christmas. Red also represents other extraordinary emotions, ranging from anger, victimization and danger to warmth, enthusiasm, and sexuality. Pair red with other primary colors, yellow and blue to create bold, vivid palettes, or pair red with browns to create a warn palette.

Red hex code: #FF0000

And here is the description of orange:

The color Orange has a similar name to the sweet citrus fruit, and it is made by mixing the primary colors, red and yellow. As it is a secondary color, many hues use this as a base shade. Orange also comes in varying brightness, intensity, and depth. Orange marries the fierceness of red and the cheerfulness of yellow, often being associated with youth, vitality, friendliness, casualness.

Orange works well with its opposite color, bright blue, creating an intense, electric color combination. Orange can also be combined with shades of pink to create a softer, feminine palette.

Orange hex code: #FFA500

Can you see how huge the difference is? 😊

Since I lost the supposedly red ❤ emoji my days became greyer(🤍). Luckily my favourite emoji 😊 was with me during this hard period. With 😊 I can easily express in the language of the internet how I feel during most of the day. 😊

Days passed, and I spent most of my nights sleeplessly continuously wondering about what has happened with the supposedly red ❤.

I came up with a second workaround with which I can substitute the supposedly red ❤ emoji: Thanks For Reading I Hope You Enjoy It Share It If You Like It Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Replacement

Take it and use it, it is for free. Just add the following HTML code to your Hashnode article:

<img src="" alt="Thanks For Reading I Hope You Enjoy It Share It If You Like It Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Replacement">

It might feel good in the beginning, but I am sure you will have the feeling of missing out on something.

This solution was very cumbersome and I couldn't really use it on other platforms like Medium, Facebook and Gmail, as most of the other platforms do not support embedding HTML.

First I was wondering maybe the supposedly red ❤ emoji is feeling blue(💙) due to climate change, wars, COVID-19 or because there is no optional subscription on Hashnode from which writes could get back a huge part to be rewarded for their efforts. I was even thinking about such depressing things as maybe a tragedy happened and someone died at the Unicode Consortium (who is responsible for the approval of emojis).

It quickly became clear:

In case I do not take the initiative to solve the problem, no one else will do that instead of me.

True story. In every aspect of our lives. 😊

Crime Scene Investigation

This was the point when I decided to become a software developer detective who debugs the internet to solve the mystery of the supposedly red ❤ emoji.

Clue #1

After a quick google search I found the first clue on I found the first clue.

It suggests the following:

For some, the black heart emoji 🖤 is the perfect emoji for a day when you are sitting inside, feeling angst and misunderstanding. It can mean you are feeling emotional, having a dark day or morbid sense of humour or the sad stuff. However, the emoji has become increasingly used to express support for black people. Black Heart Emoji is the symbol that shows emptiness, lack of emotion as it looks like a lifeless heart.

This black heart emoji can be seen used by people for symbolizing cruel and heartless people. If one person has experienced a traumatic event and is now weakly susceptible to any emotions.

Black Heart Emoji is a part of the Unicode 9.0 standard in 2016. Currently, this is listed in the Smileys & Emoticon category. Using this symbol for any gender or skin tone variations. Black Heart is available on all social media platforms.

In the same manner that sending different coloured hearts have different meanings or they can convey certain messages too.

A black heart is completely black in shade. It may be used to express sorrow, dark humour and sadness depending on the person. A black heart emoji is approved by Unicode 9.0 in the year 2016 and has been added to the list of Emoji 3.0 in the same year.

I support the Black Lives Matter movement from all my heart, but this definitely cannot be the answer to my question as this article is talking about the supposedly black 🖤 and not about the small black supposedly red ❤.

By the way, did you know there are 9 different coloured full heart emojis?

Here they are: ❤💚🤎🧡💙🖤💛💙💜

I do not know what it looks like on your screen by this is what I can see: Red Green Brown Orange Blue Black Blue Purple Supposedly Red Heart Emoji Emoticon.PNG

Look at the poor small supposedly red ❤ heart, it is not just black but it is smaller than the others. I am pretty sure it is scary as f..k.

Clue #2

As I did not find the answer yet, I continued being a detective and decided to do something which most people would never do.

I opened the second page of the Google search results. 😱😊

Thanks to my audacity to click on the Next button of the google search results page a whole new world has opened to me. My eyes got stuck on a title Heart emoji shows up small & black on Macrumors. I was sure this is the place where I will find the answer for why the supposedly red ❤ icon appears in black.

Skimming through the comments I got to know that others are also clueless and struggling with this issue on their mac, but not on their iPhone.

However, I do not have an iPhone I do have an Android phone so I immediately wrote an email and sent it to myself. Whenever I typed the supposedly red ❤ it really appeared in red so I was optimistic about the result.

A second later the email arrived. And there was it. The supposedly red ❤ icon was really red on my phone. 😊

Look: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Arrived On Gmail Mobile. PNG

Of course, I checked it on my PC too: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Arrived On Gmail PC.PNG

Unbelievable. I got one step closer to solving the mystery of the supposedly red ❤ emoji. 😊

Clue #3

My mind couldn't stop. If it can depend on the device, maybe it also depends on the type of browser.

I quickly opened Firefox and Edge and started to write an article, to see whether it works or not.

This is Firefox: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear On Firefox On Hashnode. PNG And this is Edge: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear On Edge On Hashnode. PNG

And they are there. Amazing detective work. Following the clues I found I was able to narrow down the problem to Chrome. I felt like Peter Falk Columbo. jpg I am getting closer and closer, but let's put a breakpoint here and pause for a moment to examine Chrome a little bit deeper. 😊

Clue #4

I very often have trouble with Chrome, some pages are not working correctly, I cannot log in to certain sites, etc.

The solution in those situations is to start Chrome in incognito mode. That is awesome, going into incognito mode is definitely a thing a detective should do in this situation. Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear On Chrome Incognito Mode On Hashnode. PNG

And it works. Pure awesomeness. Sherlock Holmes is nowhere near me. 😊

The Suspects

I am almost sure it is a Chrome Extension that makes my supposedly red ❤ emoticons black so let's see what I am dealing with.

I have 20 suspects from which 2 are my own children. 😱

I already let the older one go to discover the world. You can find him in the Chrome Web Store. Leave him some encouraging words, so he will know he is on the right way. 👍

I am still educating the younger one, but I will let him go in a few days so he can become a valuable member of the Hashnode community. 😊

Miki Szeles Chrome Extensions Selenideium Element Inspector Hashnode Newsletter Generator.jpg Can you guess which are my children? 😊

The Interrogation

Let's put all of the suspects in prison and interrogate each one by one till I do not find the sinner.

Stop right here!

I am a software developer. Why would I use an o(n) complexity solution in case I can do that in o(log n) time?

The solution is simple. I sketched a flowchart quickly so you can better understand the algorithm: Engineering Flowchart Does It Move WD40 Powetape.jpg

Ups. Wrong one. Sorry. 😊

Here is mine:

Chrome Debugging Flowchart.drawio.png

So let's follow the steps of the flowchart and put all the suspects into prison. As this one can be done in a constant time, it does not add to the complexity.

The theory is simple: In case no crime happens while the suspects are in prison, I can be sure the sinner is one of the suspects. Sounds logical, don't you think? 😊

So I put all the suspects into prison and Yaaaaay. The supposedly red ❤ is really red this time. No sabotage happened. Confessions Of A Software Developer Intro With Red Heart Emoji Emoticon. PNG Now it is sure the sinner is here, I just have to find it.

Let's split the suspects into two equally sized groups(partitions) and release(enable) the people of the first group.

No way. One of the crime scene investigators just sent me a photo: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear Black With 10 Enabled Chrome Extension.PNG The supposedly red ❤ emoji is black again. Most probably somebody took an airbrush and sprayed my beautiful red ❤ with black(🖤) paint. I just only hope it was not one of my children. 😱😊

Let's split up the partition again, and send the second half of the suspects into prison again(disable).

And here I am: Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear Red With 5 Enabled Chrome Extension. PNG The supposedly red ❤ emoticon is red again. Awesome. 😊

Only 5 more suspects to interrogate and I will have the sinner. Let's separate the remaining 5 suspects into 2 groups. As 5 is an odd number in one group I have to put 3 suspects.

Before I do that, let's listen to their alibi.

  • Hashnode Newsletter Generator: I am a youngster. I did not even exist when the crimes started to happen. I love people, especially the Hashnode developer blogging platform community. I will soon help them to create their own unique newsletters. I do not modify your content what you can easily verify by seeing I do not need any permission to operate. My motto is: Show me your newsletter and I will tell you who you are.
  • Adobe Acrobat: I am the descendant of the famous Adobe Acrobat with which you can fulfil all your PDF dreams. With my help, you can view, fill in comments, sign, convert and comment documents. I need the following permissions in exchange for that: read your browsing history, manage your downloads, communicate with cooperating native applications.
  • ColorPick Eyedropper: I celebrate diversity. Just have a look at my logo, you will immediately realize it. I am a zoomed eyedropper & colour chooser tool that allows you to select colour values from web pages and more. I need only one permission: read your browsing history.
  • Facebook Pixel Helper: I am the one to go tool for checking your Facebook advertisements. With my help, you can validate your Facebook pixel implementation. I only need 2 permissions: read your browsing history, modify data that you copy and paste.
  • Fonts Ninja: Being a Ninja obviously mean my favourite colour is black. But I also like green, just look at my shirt is totally not black, but green. I have painted it myself. I only need one permission: communicate with cooperating native applications.

Very interesting stories. I do not know how you are with it, but for me, the two most suspicious agents are Adobe Acrobat and Fonts Ninja.

Adobe Acrobat is a powerful tool but in order to do his best, he needs a lot of power. Who knows maybe he never heard Uncle Ben's most important sentence:

Fonts Ninja is definitely suspicious with his black colour fetishism. So what should I do then?

Solving The Mistery

I would not feel safe releasing people who might be the saboteurs, so let's imprison Adobe Acrobat and Fonts Ninja Chrome extension and release the other 3 who seems to be innocent.

Let's see the result: image.png Exactly as I expected. No crime happened which can only mean one thing: either Adobe Acrobat or Fonts Ninja is the saboteur who paints my supposedly red ❤ emojis black.

Oh My God! I am soooo excited, even I do not know who is the contravener as I am doing what any journalist would do: writing my story in parallel to the actual happenings.

I have never been so excited. 😊

Hold on Miki. That is not true. I can list at least 3 examples whenever you were more excited:

  1. When you got married to your wife Panni.
  2. When your son Levi was born.
  3. When you got to know a few days ago that you will get a Hashnode T-shirt from the Hashnode Team.

Ok ok. You are right Miki. Again. 😊

Do not waste the time anymore as I can only keep our suspects in the prison for 24 hours without having any real evidence. So let's solve the mystery of the supposedly red ❤ emoji.

What do you guess? Who is the guilty suspect? Write it down on paper, then share it in the comment section whenever you finish reading the article! 😊

There is no problem with loving the black colour. Even myself a big fan of it. Don't you believe me? Just look at this article. I have written all letters in black colour. 😊

Caue of this my guess is Adobe Acrobat.

So I disabled Adobe Acrobat and here is the result

Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear Red With Only Adobe Acrobat Chrome Extension Enabled. PNG

I can be happy, as I have found the sinner. But I never let anything go without testing, so let's try one last thing:

Enable Adobe Acrobat again in parallel to Fonts Ninja:

Red Heart Emoji Emoticon Appear Red With 2 Enabled Chrome Extension - Always Test Your Solution. PNG

What the f..k? The supposedly red ❤ emoji is still red.

I made a huge mistake: I did not use Test Driven Development (TDD).

I just moved forward, without ever seeing a failing test. No matter what I did I always saw that the supposedly red ❤ emoticon was red. What a huge mistake to state it again.

How to go on from here?

Either the plugin has been fixed while I was writing the article, or I made an error in the investigation process. Using Occam's razor I can quickly realize it is high time to debug the investigation process.

Debugging The Investigation

What does every developer do when they encounter an error?

They look at the stack trace of course. Here is mine: invalid sinner detected
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.imprisonSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.partitionSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.imprisonSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.partitionSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.imprisonSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.partitionSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.releaseSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.partitionSuspects(
    at com.mszeles.supposedly_red_heart_emoji.MysterySolver.interrogate(
    at java.base/

As you might have also noticed on the flowchart, I am using a recursive solution here which is perferct for this task.

So let's backtrack my steps till the point where I saw the supposedly red ❤ emoji appearing in black last time. I won't describe every step here as I am pretty sure I already lost 90% of my readers, so I would like to say a big thank you to all who is still reading. 🧡😊

Solving The Mystery #2

I have tracked back to the point where I made the mistake. I did not realize that the enabling of the first 5 extensions did not result in an error so I narrowed done the problem to another 5 extensions.

I went on with the above mentioned procedure and finally I found the sinner Chrome Extension. I was shocked. It was my favourite Chrome extension without which I would not be writing in English.

You might have already guessed it is


Grammarly you son of a b..h. We have spent so much time together, hand-in-hand, almost every day writing. I remember the times when you continuously reminded me that I should use coma after Unfortunately, By the way, However and Although. And I will also never forget there is no such thing as Despite of only Despite and In spite of. And you even tried to correct the previously written Despite of. You bastard.

But I will also never forget that you betrayed me every time whenever I wrote a long article as you completely messed up the marking of errors. I got so angry I almost told you I hate you, but both of us know it is not true, I love you more than any of my Chrome extensions, I even love you more than my own plugins.

The Verdict

I was thinking a lot about what should I do with you Grammarly. Brake up is not an option, it never was. It looks like the only solution is to accept that the supposedly red ❤ emoji will be black forever, but I still have one more clue which would like to follow as I do believe in second chance.

Grammarly is smart. Very smart. It is possible, it sometimes automagically corrects things. So my last hope is to check its config, who knows maybe I find something useful there.

I clicked on the Grammarly Extension icon, and I immediately found what I was looking for:


I turned it off, checked the result, but it is still the same. But I found another clue:

Can you spot it?

As soon as I refreshed the page the supposedly red ❤ emoticon appeared in red and then suddenly became black. I still have 2 more options that I can do, so let's quickly check the first one.

As there is no such Grammarly Chrome extension setting that could solve the problem, I open the webpage of Grammarly, maybe I can find something there.

I was wrong again. No option could help me.

Regarding the second option: If you read my story My First Month on Hashnode - A Retrospection About Blogging on Hashnode Developer Journaling Platform by Miki Szeles, then you already know I am not the type of person who gives up when facing a bigger obstacle, so as soon as I publish the article I will create a bug report for Grammarly and link my article, who knows maybe my story will touch their supposedly red ❤ and they will bring back to life the supposedly red ❤ emoji. 😊

That is the story of How I Became a Software Developer Detective To Debug The Internet.

Thanks for staying with me up till this point. I can only think of 2 reasons why you are still here. Either you enjoyed reading or because you like suffering. No matter which is the case, I kindly ask you to share my story on social media, either to cheer others up or to make them suffer. It depends on you. Thanks. ❤😊🧡🖤

UPDATE: I have submitted a bug report to Grammarly and they suggested using the desktop application which works perfectly, so finally my supposedly red ❤ emoji is really red. ❤😊

In case you enjoyed this article, I highly recommend reading The Mystery Of The Small But Cute Refrigerator On The 3rd Floor - My First 3 Months At DMG MORI HEITEC Digital Kft. too. 😊

In case you do not want to miss my posts, just follow me here on Hashnode, on LinkedIn, on Twitter on, on and even on Instagram. 😊

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