But for most people when they look at a plane it's either from the front or the back. Boeing planes have a sharp tapered nose. Airbus have rounder nose with a steep incline at the cockpit window. To me, one looks like a shark and the other a dolphin.
It get's complicated for the smaller, regional fleets. I know an ATR when I see it but I would have some difficulty differentiating an Embraer from a CRJ or 707.