Monday, October 15, 2012

Comics 1116-1121: Time, Flight, & Etc.

1116. Traffic lights in the Boston metro area are frequently pretty weird. C+

1117. Haven't we, as a culture, gotten over the term 'cloud' yet? D-

1118. This is several years late, and not really a very interesting observation at that. F

1119. do not care. D

1120. Reasonably clever, I guess? B-

1121. The alt text: "not sure why I just told everyone how quirky I am, but you guys, I am so quirky!!" F--

136 comments:

  1. "I am a guy who draws pictures on the internet."
    Looks like Randy's finally discovered his worth in life.

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    Replies
    1. Randal's also discovered a way to interrupt someone's text message mid-sentence! that'll surely bolster his worth in life.

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    2. "(or _whatever_ color)"

      FUCK NOT ENOUGH PEOPLE WERE LAUGHING AT MY JOKE. Maybe they didn't see it or maybe they need it explained again because everything about that comic was SO CRAZY. I should tell them about it again.

      Delete
    3. The trick to drawing pictures on the internet is to get it stone drunk and have a Sharpie handy. If you're not confident, you can practice drawing penises on paper, but it's actuallya talent most people can pick up effortlessly from about the age of 12.

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    4. yeah. 'draws' and 'pictures' both kind of massively overstate munroe's talent there

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  2. Replies
    1. Nehemiah Scudder 2012

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  3. 1116. Shit. F

    1117. Shit. F

    1118. Shit. F

    1119. Shit. F

    1120. Shit. F

    1121. Shit. F

    ReplyDelete
  4. I find the alt-text of 1116 worrying, as it implies that Randall is allowed to (and does) operate a motor vehicle, despite having failed drivers' ed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, you again. Still can't wrap it around your little head, hm?

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    2. Did you mean, "can't wrap your little head around it"? Try again.

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    3. Elitist such a 11:54 is fucking Anon. "Oh, should words in sense that makes an order put people".

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    4. You fuck, man.

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  5. Damn it, Rob, hurry up and bring out a new post. Four responses are too many to have to scroll past.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. holy shit, fuck, your response has too many letters to read through, damn

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  6. Waiting for Randall's stealth edits.
    Currently it says Adams beat Jefferson in 1800.

    1808 is kinda bullshit too; Madison was Sec of State in 1808. "No former Congressman..." would be better.

    I don't see how his 1824/1876 scenarios are any different. 1824 focuses on the winner, 1876 on the loser, but Hayes still won without a majority of the popular vote, just like Adams in 1824.

    1884; there were 3rd party James's in 1808, 1844 and 1880 (who lost to other James's). Could be salvaged if it were written "in an election with one or more candidates named James, one of them always wins"

    1952; how does a presidental candidate "win" the senate? I know what Randall is going for, but the phrasing is really confusing.

    2012; I'd bet there has been a last name alliterative 3rd party ticket that has lost, and a 3rd party candidate with a k in their name

    ReplyDelete
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    1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFZrzg62Zj0

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    2. Anon@8:15 your post was boring but at least it.. no, it was just boring, sorry.

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    3. Well, it was shorter than the xkcd and at least as entertaining.

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    4. Anon the difference between 1824 and 1876 is that in 1824 John Quincy Adams won without the popular vote because there were four major candidates, so while he did not win the popular vote he did win the pluralistic vote (he had more individual votes than any other candidate). In contrast, in the 1876 election Hayes won the election although Tilden had more individual votes cast in his favor which was the first time that scenario had ever occurred. A significant legal struggle followed this, and Hayes was only accepted as president because the South (who largely supported Tilden) was placated with the promise of Federal troops being withdrawn.

      No similar situation would reoccur until 2000 when George W Bush achieved fewer individual votes than Al Gore, but won more electoral votes (following a legal dispute in which the Supreme Court decided to halt the recount of Florida's votes and not reconsider the results of Palm Beach County, which Gore had argued suffered from significant flaws in its tallying process).

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    5. Re: 2012 - You don't even need to go into third parties for an alliterative losing ticket. Democratic ticket Stevenson/Sparkman lost in 1952 to Eisenhower/Nixon.

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  7. I could check to verify any of these, Anon8. But that sounds like it would just give him hits. Pure, unfiltered, undeserved hits. Like Colonel Montoya used to make.

    No.

    No the problem here is that I, somehow in breach of my mind's trust in my body not to saccade further, somehow in breach of my body's trust in my mind not to pollute it with further toxins, allowed this tainted poison back amongst the cerebral fold.

    Fuck you, Randall.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If there's one thing you can say Randall definitely doesn't have, it's a Sleeper hit.

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  8. carl "ugly" wheelerOctober 18, 2012 at 8:26 AM

    sup guyz?

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  9. 1123. Lazyest uninspired crap ever done. That's quite an achievement per se.

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    Replies
    1. Sorry Emily, but we'll have to sterilize your whole lineage. Nothing personal, just eugenics.

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    2. HUYZ DID JU NO EVERYTING WUZ HYDROGEN WUNC? IS FUNY BCZ I SPEL HYDROGREN N I KURECTLE

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  10. This blog was never really interesting but now it is kinda lame beyond words.
    Maybe it's time to hang up guys.

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    Replies
    1. Hanging up guys is already a bit of a hobby of mine, but I wouldn't be opposed to trying it with a team of xkcdsucksers.

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  11. I am relatively happy with my life. Everyday, as soon as I wake up, I think of dead children. Reminds me that it could be worse. And then I think of them the rest of the day. I imagine young-looking corpses, pale and hairless. They do their little dance just before my eyes, and they never stop! Round and round, they go and pass closer and closer to me each time, gently caressing my skin.

    Haha, the mischievous little fellows!

    How lucky we are, my friends, how lucky.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The young hairless pale corpses are luckier.

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    2. I'm the luckiest. I've got a whole larder of real child corpses all to myself. Little flights of fancy sound quite tame in comparison, and I now realise just how good I've got it. Thankyou, 10:28. Thankyou.

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    3. I have the heart of a child.

      I keep it cupped against my balls.

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    4. 10:28 is the best anonymous.

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  12. Oh thank god, Randall.

    You finally solved all of my problems, because I HAVE THOSE PROBLEMS, TOO! I had no idea I could just ignore human sociology and they would dissolve. Some asshole told me I could get away with it once and it didn't work at all, but I'm confident that I have no fucking idea who that was and that THIS TIME it will totally work!

    Oh wait that was you, you heinous oaf. Way back in 592. Christ, that one's even already titled "Drama", you lazy inept. You actually managed to not only steal your own joke, you shit it out into an unrefined one-panel graph joke. Couldn't even be bothered to make something more complicated than scrawling a half-hearted attempt at non-linear increase? That shit's linear as far as I can tell. Maybe if you had labeled your axes with units or... /something/, I could figure this out, except of course such a failure would be a cardinal sin, wouldn't it, rendering you wholly undateable by your own fucked standards, you scurrilous shitmonging impostor.

    What upsets me is that I know this shit about you. Because I used to read your stuff until I could recognize the garbage that it was, a long fetid stream of putrid thought with the telltale trail of steaming refuse already long consumed by my head, the mental equivalent of the sickened and abject horror at discovering the half-worm in your apple.

    Randall, you are /actually/ a nerd. You are the worst /kind/ of nerd. The kind that 'recognizes' the world as an obvious simulation of the shell of a life you imagine it to be, then prides yourself on this meta-selfepiphany like it's the grandest fucking paradigm shift the world has ever known, and YOU, sole keeper of the keys to the universe, YOU have unlocked our minds from the illusion of our social impulses and freed us from the animal life of nature.

    Bad news, you didn't figure out shit. You're the babbling simp in the corner, muttering about how the government has its missiles aimed at its wheat silos because it's the LAST THING THOSE JEWS IN HOLLYWOOD WOULD EXPECT, if only Big Asbestos would listen. We may pat you on the head, throw a dime in your cup, but mostly we're hoping that you smile and continue doing what you're doing, not because we want you to, but because we worry you might follow us home, shit on our lawns, and wave your dick at the windows until the cops come to arrest your scraggled ass.

    You're a child, Randall.

    And you'll never grow up.

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    Replies
    1. I look forward to seeing Randall's response.

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    2. Randall, I think that maybe the only reason you make comics anymore is you feel like we win if you quit. Please don't be like that. You have to follow your heart. We want to help you.

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    3. Finally! A proper review!

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    4. Sleeper should have this blog now.

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    5. There's an opening at xkcd-sucks if he wants it.

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  13. TAKE THAT NO-DRAMA OBAMA

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  14. Pay attention to comic 1120. Notice that the cardboard-cutout strawman character says "you just don't know much about art", to give the setup for Gary Stu Randall character to make his witty response. The implication of that is tragic: Randall actually thinks he knows much about art.

    It would have been a good joke if done by a good comedian.

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    Replies
    1. I think the implication goes further. Randall thinks he knows ALL about art because everybody is born with the necessary knowledge. Randall thinks there isn't much to know about art, and the particularly arty farty crap is just there to allow people who have wasted their time studying it to pretend there is something more to know.

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    2. You do not know this man. You have only read some comics he drew. YOU DO NOT KNOW THIS MAN.

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  15. Nothing new in that. Just Hard-Sci grads getting their panties wet with some ol' "hipster" bashing, again.

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  16. Please someone hate the new comic.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A buncha lazy fucks is what you are :(

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  17. Science time.

    It's time for science jokes now.

    Jokes about the properties of light as viewed through reflective surfaces as you travel on roads.

    Properties like blue shift.

    Properties like bothering to reflect the divider lines in the road you spent too many discarded drafts on before just giving up with "straight" edges and a landscape out-complexitied by Battlezone.

    Oh, wait.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Completely unfunny non-joke. There's little I appreciate more than a good science joke but this wasn't a joke and it wasn't even really science.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. > There's little I appreciate more than a good science joke

      Present 5 good science jokes.

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    2. You present a joke you like first, then I can rustle up a science joke you will enjoy.

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    3. Proofs rejected from Erdos' book are buried in asymmetry.

      Proteins require chaperonin because they're made of mean ol' acids.

      There's two for you to start with. And if you can't curium or helium, you can barium, nyuk nyuk nyuk.

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    4. That's all well and good, but we're looking for some jokes here.

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    5. That was quite clever, 1:39. By pretending to have missed the puns, you give the impression that the jokes were so bad as to be unrecognisable. You could say that you yourself are demonstrating a dry sense of humour.

      Delete
  19. 1125 is epic fail.

    Saying "X is bluer than it appears" means that it is appearing *less* blue than it really is. But both blueshifting (and to a much greater effect, Rayleigh scattering) would be making it appear *more* blue.

    How long until the edit?

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    1. He'll handwave an argument about frame of reference. It's like the joke about meeting Einstein on a train and asking what time Boston's stopping at it.

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    2. Thank you, 5:36. You've transformed a previously 'merely rubbish' comic into an actively annoying one!

      XKCD: It's the gift that keeps on giving...turds.

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    3. Objects in a rearview mirror (moving away from the observer) would be redshifted, dumbass. Why do you have to make me defend Randall?

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    4. Oh yeah, good point, damn. Sorry about that.

      I was right about the Rayleigh scattering though. Unless that car is on Mars or something.

      Delete
  20. Objects in a rearview mirror (moving away from the observer) would be redshifted, dumbass. Why do you have to make me defend Randall?

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  21. 1125: Too long; read anyway; fucking regretted it. I don't know why this was even made. There's no milestone anniversary in sight, there was no attempt to make a joke out of it, there was no interesting story made out of it. Just a bland data dump, with the occasional "amusing" moment of some reports taking a more conversational tone than you might expect.

    Oh, and the guy became scruffy during the process. LOL.

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    Replies
    1. I also feel the same way about 1126.

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  22. God 1126 is boring. Is there a joke buried somewhere in that wall of text?

    Should I applaud Randall for the realistic art? No. Dude on the right is so frazzled and busy with all the hurricanes he can't get home to shave or comb his hair. Except we go from (if I'm counting right) December 8th to December 30th with no hurricanes which is when all the dishevelment happens. Dude on the right spent 3 weeks, including the Christmas holiday, without ever leaving his desk? And baldy on the left never grew any facial hair? Great idea for the art Randall, but abyssmal execution. You should've showed righty getting increasingly disheveled from Nov 29-Dec 8, then have him come back on Dec 30 clean-shaven and go through the process again.

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    1. Objects in a rearview mirror (moving away from the observer) would be redshifted, dumbass. Why do you have to make me defend Randall?

      Delete
    2. One more art quibble. Flat panel monitors in 2005? Sure, they existed, but who had them routinely in their office? I finally got my office computer upgraded to a flat panel less than a year ago (and it was probably 2008 for my home computer). It looks like computers in xkcd went flat panel between 329 and 340*, which is around 2007, I think?

      *Wow, I got really lucky trying to figure that out; I thought "Exploits of a Mom" (327) had a computer screen (although it doesn't) so I started there and went forward; 329 was CRT, 340 was flat panel, and I ended up only having to look at 27 comics (325-352) to confirm the pattern; 325/326/329: CRT vs 340/349/352: flat panel (342 has a CRT, but it's a flashback)

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    3. Congrats 2:49, you have a lot of free time and aren't really sure what to make of it.

      Also, I'm officially voting for 1126 as the worst xkcd in a long long while, maybe the worst ever given the time it takes to read it through. Still not terrible enough to give me the extra incentive I need to pull the trigger, but close. Very very close, Randall.

      1125-1126, a dreadful combo.

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    4. Anon 2:49, I give you a bonus task - find out when xkcd made the transition from Firefox to Chrome.

      Delete
  23. I presume everybody has kicked in their money for the upcoming release of Grimoire. Game of the year. Game of the century. Last true game ever.

    Anybody who hasn't should get a move on. Only 108 days left.

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  24. I basically read xkcdsucks to find out if I need to read xkcd 1126. Thankfully the answer appears to be 'no'.

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    1. What you don't realise because nobody is mentioning it is that most of the text in the comic is actual quotes. Dude's not making that shit up! It's genius. Please read xkcd forum for your information from now on.

      Best xkcd ever, must read comic, will not regret etc.

      Delete
  25. Oh, Randall. If only it were true... If only what I wanted to believe were true.

    Would it be...? Could it be...?

    Had I the benefit of beyond-text, I might embed the relevant image(s) here. I might signify its index within the maelstrom of repetitious dross that makes up this very Testament to the author's simply painful lack. But to do that, to bring myself to go back and actually count my way through once more, to ask you to read it again. Nay.

    I decline.

    Instead, I simply draw your attention to the twice-turned phrase, the small slice through his mind, the coiled hush buried amidst a stolen text and meaningless image, the id's whisper to which perhaps Randall himself bemoans, get out of my head:

    "I have run out of things to say."

    Somewhere, amidst the decision to choose to create this digital pox, his subconscious is crying out its torpor: I am weary, and ragged, and I only want to sleep, mommy, why, oh why, won't you let me sleep? Wasn't I good enough? Wasn't I brave? Haven't I done a good job? Why do you drag me across the coals? Pull me down the mountain's side? Pin me to a cross and boast of how straight your child's arms have grown?

    Randall. Before, we thought we were watching you strangle your creature before our eyes, watching its life wither away as you inked every lazy thought that entered your mind without a second glance. Until today. Until we watched it affirm that it was alive, just long enough, to ask in borrowed words why you hadn't let it die.

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    1. "the id's whisper to which perhaps Randall himself bemoans, get out of my head"

      Nice.

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    2. Less coherent than Rob's microfiction; more garrulous than ALTF. Still scores above average for this sorry blog. 6/10.

      Delete
  26. Look at the text in 1126. You'll notice how certain lines of the text are harder to read than others, like "apparently never ending 2005" in the first panel, "weakening is expected to" in the second panel etc.

    On the other hand, certain lines are very clear and the eyes can pick them up without effort, like "the 26th named storm of the" in the first panel and "opportunity for strengthening" in the second panel.

    The remaining lines are somewhere between the two.

    This is caused by the way vector fonts are rendered onto a raster plane. Because a vector object effectively has any resolution it will generally not map 1:1 onto a raster image. Instead, in cases where a particular colour only occupies X% of the space covered by a pixel, the pixel must be given a color but it can only be given one. The result is that the pixel is colored based on the proportion that is covered by objects. In this case, with black text on a white background, the pixel is given X% black (or 100-X% white) if it is X% covered by text.

    Now, this is much better than simply making the given pixel black or white and allows vector fonts and other objects to be drawn at a lower resolution than would otherwise be necessary for legibility. However, there's still downsides, like the fact that the vector objects can appear less clear than they should be.

    The industry standard approach to solving this problem is hinting, which is where the fonts in question contain extra embedded information to allow them to be better displayed on a raster device, such as a screen. Hinting includes information such as how the glyphs of a font are to be positioned to cleanly line up with the raster display. This is known as 'grid-fitting'. It means you get text line the clearer lines mentioned above in all cases, not just when the stars aligned and the text happened to line up correctly.

    Font hinting is ubiquitous. Almost all fonts, especially those used for general presentation of text (in other words, not 'fancy' fonts or fonts mainly used for logos and the like) contain hints. You're probably reading this post in a font that has been hinted.

    Now, historically software patents covering aspects of hinting have been in place, making it difficult to use the hinting information present in TrueType fonts. However, these patents have all but expired and there is no reason not to make full use of font hinting. The people who designed the fonts you used spend excruciating amounts of time making the fonts look juuust right, regardless of what resolution you display them at. They cared about your eyes. The information is there in the font, software (free, open source software, too) is available to make use of it and display text in a way that is legible and clean. The hard work has already been done.

    This brings us back to 1126. I don't know what happened. It could have been drawn in a higher resolution originally, presumably for when Randall wants us to buy a poster of it for twenty five dollars. Then perhaps Randall flattened the image down to a raster layer and then resized it, instead of leaving the nice vector fonts as vectors in place during the resize so they would be able to maintain their hinting and still look good in the finished product. Either way, this comic is a wad of spittle on 20 years of typographic research and it could have been avoided with maybe a second of extra work.

    One characteristic of geeks is they really are supposed to care about stuff like this, even if laypeople don't. Admittedly, Randall is not a typography geek. Fine. But the amount of ignorance and lack of care present in just the superficial aspects of this comic is staggering. This is a comic Randall posts three times a week. It is his sole source of employment and income and he can't even bother to position the text right to make it not look like shit.

    1126 is far more of a slap in the face to a typography geek than a greeting card written in Papyrus.

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    1. ^Font of knowledge

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    2. Anon@6:39, the ability for people on the Internet (and lawyers) armed with a couple of basic facts to pad them out into an essay never ceases to bore me. Do you also edit Wikipedia?

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    3. "6:39, it was verbose and boring, like Wikipedia".

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    4. @7:31: loses context and method; fails to ask pertinent question. 4/10 precis skills need work. See me after class. Keep your tie on.

      Netbeards/lawyers: obvious --padding--> essay. Wikipedia editor?

      Delete
    5. @7:19 I thought it was rather funny, but then I'm pretty sure I got the point and think maybe you missed it unless you're doing it on purpose in which case I think that's less funny I'm sorry but I have to tell it like I see it.

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    6. @Anon12:34: Unless the joke is, "I can make two lines of information last as long as this comic does," I don't get it, sorry.

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    7. I couldn't have put it better myself.

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    8. Yes you could, Jon Levi. You can do anything the best.

      Delete
  27. Interesting read. One thing though, you said "Admittedly, Randall is not a typography geek", but http://xkcd.com/1015/

    By the way, type "kerning" in Google. I hope it's a coincidence, and not because of xkcd.

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    Replies
    1. Quentin Crisp had just enough to say about Warhol. An assessment of Randall could bear much resemblance.

      captcha: flogical. If you can't beat 'em, beat 'em.

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  28. holy god randall, nobody else is autistic enough to find hurricane reports funny

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  29. 1127 is an unholy mess. I get the general trends, but trying to parse a specific election/congressional session? Forget it.

    The 1994 Republican Revolution branch starts in 1990, is full formed in 1992, and finally joins up with the rest of Congress around 1993. There is a corresponding departing branch of moderate Democrats from 1994 till 1996. So you need to look at the point where a branch actually merges/splits off rather than where the block of color is first shown which is pretty counter-intuitive (and if you're trying to figure what the composition of Congress is at a given time, you need to ignore all the merging/splitting branches cluttering the chart).

    Randall is mixing a continuous variable (time) with a discrete variable (sessions of congress) which creates all kinds of confusion. Randall has even managed to confuse himself. As far as I can tell, the presidency timeline doesn't correspond with the congressional timeline; Bush Sr. was president throughout 1992, but the Congress chart shows the results of the 1992 election (seated in 1993) midway through the 1990-1992 block (just as the 1994 Republican Revolution joins up midway through the 1992-1994 block).

    The curvature with the branch mergers/splits is awful. They need to come in at right angles for temporal clarity. I know Randall has a boner for Edward Tufte, and Tufte has a boner for Charles Minard's chart of Napoleon's Russian campaign (which clearly inspired 1127 as well as 657), but Minard uses right angles (http://www.edwardtufte.com/tufte/posters).

    I'll grade this on the poster fodder scale. It's the second worst after the Money one. Money was intentionally misleading with Randall lying about the cost of cooking at home to push his eating out agenda on his wife. 1127 is also misleading, but unintentionally so and only due to the awful design of the chart. Final grade: F+

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  30. Barack Obama 2012

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  31. What happened? Why are people dead on this blog? Almost an entire month.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. You know I didn't really mean it.

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    2. A somewhat prolific sock puppeteer must have gone elsewhere.

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    3. Because Sleeper, Anon@6:39, &c. are way worse characters than ALTF.

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    4. Can't we come up with hilarious memes, then? That'll start a new golden era for xkcdsucks. Together, we can make it happen.

      Delete
    5. Maybe, 6:08. 5:50 = 2:16 = braindead memes are probably more his speed.

      Delete
    6. Maybe I'm the first person here to say it but I find Anon@8:43 really boring. I have started reading hundreds of attempts at creativity of various lengths and probably finished a dozen throughout my life, not including my own.

      I find it hard to pick up Anon@8:43 without immediately engaging a mindset of, "Here's a consumable that some guy has produced to establish his superiority and/or unload some issues. What comfortable fantasy is he creating to enable this?" And that's how my whole reading experience goes. Anon@8:43 makes no point well which can't be better made by producing good content. It takes me nowhere without giving me the uncomfortable sense that someone thinks this is where I am supposed to need to be in order to see something false or escape something true. Anon@8:43 idealises; it romanticises; it preaches. It falls asleep and it dreams. It is a selfish journey away from the truth.

      The world already has enough that is beautiful and that is abhorrent - and critiques of your shortcomings are far more challenging to confront. Anon@8:43 has always seemed like the easy way out.

      Delete
    7. Finished xkcd. And it was really, really average.

      95% of the cast was completely unlike-able, the exceptions being Black Hat Guy himself and Megan. The plot wasn't all that good, though it did have it's moments. The resolution was either extremely stupid or doesn't resolve much at all, depending on which you take.

      That said, I didn't hate it. It was interesting enough to keep me reading, but it never wowed me or made me experience any emotion at all, for that matter. The sad moments never effected me, and the 'intense' moments made me go ''meh''. Everything is pretty much forgettable.

      Can somebody explain me why people hyped it so much? Because there's absolutely nothing special about it.

      Delete
    8. 4:39;
      Look at the replies to your post. Seven out of the nine of them chose to remain anonymous, not even choosing a pseudonym. This is a board of perfect strangers, hence certain topics of conversation are not appropriate. The only common ground we have is that each of us has heard of this blog and has almost definitely read an underwhelming xkcd at some point.

      When two parties are introduced, the exchange between them reveals something of the character of each to the other, but controversial topics will be avoided. Each is guarded (though by no means nescessarily misleading) in the way that they present themselves. The confidence between parties accumulates gradually rather than materialising instantaneously.

      Once this confidence reaches a sufficient level, a frank exchange of views can take place between the parties without fear of such ill-will as would be damaging to them. In short, the dialogue can become interesting.

      But if the rate at which the exchange continues exceeds the rate at which new topics to discuss arise, the exchange eventually stagnates. Neither party has anything to contribute which has not been heard by the other.

      Think about someone who you have known for a long time (parent, sibling, spouse, etc.) and strip away from recent conversation all the pleasantries, all the ritual and all the speech which is purely functional. What you will be left with is conversation about topics common to you where there has been a recent development, such as your events in your personal lives or a change in your circumstances. If there were no new developments in these things, your conversation would be hollow. This is the problem we face.

      The problems with xkcd are numerous, but every single one of them has been discussed in this forum at length time after time. A new xkcd may come out, but the problems with it are old. Discussing it would just be covering old ground. We have nothing to discuss.

      Those of us who still visit the blog know that we probably have nothing to add and will probably learn nothing new. When we do post, it's usually an empty post: referential, sarcastic, nostalgic, non sequitur. We itch to have a conversation in spite of knowing that, on the slim probability that it actually happens, it will bore us. The end result is that we can add one more quality to our set of commonalities: listless apathy at the crushing futility of it all.

      And that, 4:39, is why people are dead on this blog.

      tl;dr edition:
      XKCD SUCKS AND XKCD SUCKS SAME WAY IT ALWAYS HAS AND WE ALL GET IT AND THIS BLOG IS BORING NOW AND BYE

      Delete
    9. @10:59 i am anon@8:43 and what is this

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    10. What the fuck, Fictionator? The people who are my very best friends are people with whom I rarely discuss life developments with. We mostly goof off, banter about the absurd and ridiculous in my immediate surroundings. My appreciation for them stems in our ability to play off one another's comments, augmented as it is by long familiarity with one another's habits. They are some of the most important people in my life. They make the world real for me by helping me treat it as unreal.

      I thought we all shared something similar in a lesser sort of way, man, and this is how you repay me? You characterize our relationship as hollow, as though the repeated convergence of disparate continuums was the core ideal of association, without which it has no real value? What the fuck, man? What the fucking fuck? My heart is broken. You have no idea how broken it is. A million pieces, each one individually ground into dust. I will not forgive you for this.

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    11. all good blogs end with this sort of circlejerk.

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    12. let's have sex, 11:15

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  32. Alternatively, I could piss in your mouths, xkcdsuckers.

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    1. Why bother? I'll only enjoy it.

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    2. Maybe Anon@5:25 aims to please and aims too.

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  33. He who gets most of his inspiration from Wikipedia should look to it that his comic does not become Wikipedia. And when you gaze long into mediocrity the mediocre also gaze into you.

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    1. That which doesn't provoque GOOMHR makes me quirker.

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  34. So today I was walking to work when I saw a funeral in progress at Forest Lawn cemetery. Since I was already wearing a suit (required for my job) and I was pretty early for work, I decided to pop in to see what was going on. I walked up the marble path, up to a rather large memorial service (about 250-300 people) for what appeared to be a baby that had died shortly after birth.
    The family really went all out, the tombstone was massive and the coffin had gold embroidering, really nice. The people looked about what you would expect, all dressed up, mothers were crying, and even a few fathers couldn't hold back their tears.
    Well about 15 minutes in, after the opening hymn, people started to filter up to the microphone to express their condolences to the family. The grandfather said some words about how everything is a blessing even if it doesn't seem like it, the brother of the father reassured the family that, if they ever needed anything, that the family was there for them.
    Then a man walked up, about in his late 40's, and said "Although I don't really know the family, or the deceased that well, I want to say, I'm sorry for your loss. I too have lost a child." He walked from the mic, over to the families, shook their hand and walked away.
    He didn't know the family? So, it seemed ANYONE could say something at the funeral.
    I straightened my tie, put on my most sorrowful expression, and walked towards the front. I approached the man holding the microphone and, in my most solemn tone, asked if I might say a few words. The man smiled warmly and handed me the microphone, completely oblivious to what was about to happen.
    I turned to face the crowd, all intently looking at me with the most melancholy and tearful eyes you've ever seen. I cleared my throat and said my piece:
    "What's the difference between a dead baby and a sandwich? I DON'T FUCK A SANDWICH BEFORE I EAT IT!"
    The crowd was horrified. The sound manager tried to unplug the speakers before I could finish my joke, but to no avail; he didn't react fast enough and couldn't get himself together before the punchline rang through the cemetery.
    The crowd went fucking batshit. The reaction started with sheer shock and horror, and ended in a blind rage, with everyone, even some of the WWII veterans and grandmothers in the crowd, trying to tackle me to the ground.
    Being that I was a football running back in high school, I was much faster than everyone there. Good thing too, God knows what would have happened if they caught me. Probably have thrown me into the grave with their failure of a living baby.

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  35. 1128: Randall thought that the idea of a Wishbone version of a pornographic Twilight fanfic masquerading as a novel would be funny. He was wrong. Also, he admits to not being very well-read in the alt text.

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    1. Which is jarring because previous evidence suggests that as a physicist Randall is an expert in everything in the world (see what-if; everything about everything from trains to hurricanes!). I don't understand the mindset that goes "so insightful!" when reading xkcd when literally any idiot could achieve the same level of expertise from 10 minutes reading Wikipedia.

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    2. Actually plenty of the What If's go into a level of detail beyond that which you could get from skimming Wikipedia, but coincidentally those are details Randall gets horribly wrong. I have to wonder if he really studied physics at a university level at all.

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    3. How convenient that you claim Randall gets all the details wrong, but you don't come up with an example. You guys come off as so bitter and jealous, you know?

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    4. How convenient that you claim we're bitter and jealous, but you're a fucking cunt go fuck yourself.

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    5. 6:11 clearly won this debate. Thumbs up if you agree.

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    6. piss off, this isn't youtube

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  36. Replies
    1. Not bad, but could be better. I appreciate the effort.

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    2. I have read a Wikipedia article on "The Aristocrats", so you can go fuck yourself Jon Levi.

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    3. Jon Levi, I am so pleased that your long period of silence has been put to such good use.

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  37. I actually like 1129; best xkcd in quite a while. My only objection; it's not 7 random numbers, it's 6 (or 5) random numbers. I'm not sure how to express the distinction in a succint and clever way, but I'll try. Area code=where you lived in 2005. First (and sometimes second) digit of exchange=a number shared by all telephones in your town/neighborhood in 1995.

    My example; in the early 1990's, most exchanges in my hometown were 75x (and a couple 74x). The neighboring town, in the same local calling area, was 92x. My cell number now is 76x. My girlfriend is on my plan, but she had to get a number for the neighboring town; 97x. I have a hell of a time remembering her number; I can remember the last 4 digits, and know it start with a 9 for the neighboring town, but my brain keeps wanting the second number to be a 2 as it would've been 20 years ago.

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    1. I'm more interested in hearing what there is to like about it.

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  38. This is almost offensively boring.

    Dating your joke at seven years is not the same thing as observational humor. It's something people realized seven fucking years ago.

    See: 1118. Which would be slightly more difficult if Rob weren't such a lazy asshole that it's part of the review this whole thread is built on.

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  39. 1129: Randall discovered that the way cell phone numbers in the US look like regular landline numbers makes no sense (something which everybody already knew, especially those people from more sensible parts of the world where cell phone numbers have their own special prefix), and thought it would be funny to remark on how the area code is probably out of date for most people. He was wrong.

    In the alt text, he tries to drop hints that he has a cool number on Google Voice, and probably wants people to ask him about it (and call him a wizard). Unfortunately, nobody of any importance actually cares.

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    1. And I mean isn't a wizard a guy who's been a virgin for like 40 years? LOL maybe his prediction about Google Voice early adopters is accurate ROFL

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  40. I'm completely baffled by 1129. It's just an explanation of area codes, which have existed since the 1940s. Yes, cell phone numbers have them too. Why wouldn't they? How is this in any way a joke, clever, or unexpected?

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    1. Well, the most fascinating thing about the comic is that US mobile phone numbers use area codes, which I thought was an interesting bit of trivia, given that I've never heard of that in any other country.

      But once you know that, your mind parses 'where you lived in 2005' to 'when you got your current mobile phone number' and you realise xkcd is just saying 'if you get a mobile phone in one place and move to another place, your phone number won't change- boy, aren't mobile phones cool!' which might well be a new low for xkcd!

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    2. I wanted to see whether the forumites liked the comic. They immediately ignored it and started a general discussion about mobile phones, which is their non-critical way of saying they didn't (the same way your mother may smile politely when you give her a Christmas present she inwardly hates). Anyway, in the process I learnt another fascinating piece of trivia: US mobile users pay to receive calls.

      USA, truly the land of the free for a price.

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    3. The two are sort of related, actually. In most countries, it doesn't cost money to receive a call on a mobile phone, but the caller pays more to call a mobile number. This isn't an issue if cell phone numbers are easily recognizable, because the caller can tell that it's a cell phone.

      In the US cell phone numbers look like regular numbers, so the caller cannot know he's calling a mobile from the number alone, so it would be unfair to charge him more. Therefore, the receiver pays the extra costs.

      For the same reason, you pay extra to receive cell phone calls when you're abroad, because the caller cannot tell that you're abroad so it wouldn't be fair to charge the caller for that.

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    4. It's unexpected in how stupid it would be

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