Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
A larger version of this image can be found by clicking the image at xkcd.com which can as always be accessed by clicking on the comic number above. It can also be found here: 1000 comics.
This comic is the 1000th comic shown on xkcd, including 404: Not Found, containing 1000 characters from previous comics arranged in the shape of the number "1000". Megan is clearly excited as she screams "Woooo!", but Cueball, in true nerd fashion, thinks in base 2, saying that there are "just 24 to go until a big round-number milestone". The joke is that during programming, base two is used more often than base 10, making milestones be powers of two rather than powers of 10. Where 1000 is a round number in base 10 (103), 1024 is a round number in base 2 (210).
 Connect the Dots
There is a connect the dots puzzle hidden within the comic. However, rather than using the conventional decimal system numbering which would start with 1 and count up, 2, 3, 4, 5, ... This connect the dots puzzle starts with 0 as a programmer would do and counts up in binary numerical order - 0,1,10,11,100,101,110,111,1000,1001 and back to 0. The revealed image forms the shape of a heart. This fits well with the title text where feeling less alone can equate to feeling loved.
- [1000 characters, numerous of which have appeared previously in other comics, are arranged to create the number "1000". Two more people stand in the foreground commenting on the formation. There are several comments amongst these 1000 but here are only written the text that can be read from the small version shown above.]
- Megan: Woooo!
- Cueball: Wow—Just 24 to go until a big round-number milestone!
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Cueball does not think in multiples of 2, he thinks in base 2 (or powers of 2). I fixed it. 18.104.22.168 10:35, 10 September 2012 (UTC)
In the original Blog format of this website, someone named Phillip had shared the following:
- "Spoiler ( http://rot13.com/index.php ): Pbaarpg gur ovanel ahzoref ba gur fznyy fvtaf va cnvag-ol-ahzoref znaare."
Hint: copy/paste the weird looking text into the text field provided in the above mentioned website. Even after decryption, I couldn't follow what he meant, but I was hoping someone out there can do so and then explain it differently, thanks. It's a real mystery. DelendaEst (talk) 08:47, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
- Added hidden image to Trivia section. --B. P. (talk) 11:06, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
Just curious... The explanation says there are 1000 characters in the drawing. Are there 998 + Megan & Cueball? or do they make 1002? --B. P. (talk) 11:06, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
- The transcript says "1000 characters ... are arranged to create the number "1000". Two more people stand in the foreground" so I think Megan & Cueball make it 1002. Coombeseh (talk) 10:56, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
There's a WOPR machine saying "would you like to play a game?" 22.214.171.124 05:51, 28 September 2012 (UTC)
I noticed Barrel Boy isn't on here... Jimmy C (talk) 19:10, 31 October 2012 (UTC)
- Barrel Boy is bottom right on the second "O", just above "WOOOO!" Coombeseh (talk) 10:56, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Well about what cueball says another interesting fact is that the number 1024 is used commonly in computer data, 1024 megabytes makes a gigabyte and so on...
- So, has anyone noticed that this wasn't actually Randall's thousandth comic, but rather his 999th? Schiffy (talk) 16:44, 12 March 2013 (UTC)
- Is there a numbered comic that was omitted?126.96.36.199 13:10, 1 April 2013 (UTC)
- Yes, comic 404 never existed, remember? Schiffy (talk) 17:04, 9 April 2013 (UTC)
- Comic 404 was "Journal 3". 188.8.131.52 04:24, 12 May 2013 (UTC)
- Or maybe Comic 404 DID exist, However was left behind within the bowels of abandoned comics... Never got into xkcd to fill the gap... Because it's place was replaced with the 404 page. 184.108.40.206 04:25, 12 May 2013 (UTC)
- Well, All hope is no use, I googled up "xkcd 404" and it gave no results about a 404th comic ever existed, Nor "xkcd no 404" or "xkcd's 404th comic", I guess we have to discuss about this in here: http://forums.xkcd.com/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=80760 220.127.116.11 04:29, 12 May 2013 (UTC)
- Even this very site shows that Comic 404 never existed. Comic 403 was on a Monday, and 405 was the following Wednesday. The day in between those two (the Tuesday of that week) was April 1st. For further proof, see here. Schiffy (Speak to me|What I've done) 17:39, 17 May 2013 (UTC)
- Hey, that's the April's fool from 2008. The 404 message is from Randall!!! Check the page source: April, 1--Dgbrt (talk) 18:51, 17 May 2013 (UTC)
- Not quite true. See link ->  18.104.22.168 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
- Hi IP 22.214.171.124, your link shows a comic not done by Randall. The 404 page is just empty and that's the joke. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:03, 5 August 2014 (UTC)
- And since this discussion 404 has been created on this page as well. -- Kynde (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
- The "1000 Characters" section
I really don't see why it should be there. 126.96.36.199 03:43, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
- I did remove this. All the 1,000 comics are explained here very well. --Dgbrt (talk) 20:34, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
- I think we are missing out on this section. I would like to have a separate page for this as we have for other larger comics. And also a separate transcript with the text that can be read on the large picture. --Kynde (talk) 21:24, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Cipher text: CONNECT THE BINARY NUMBERS ON THE SMALL SIGNS IN PAINT-BY-NUMBERS MANNER Jwoodward48xkcd (talk)
Following with this wiki's goal of explaining the nuances of the XKCD comics I moved the connect the dots puzzle out of trivia and placed it int the main article. It isn't a spoiler or just trivia, it fits well with the title text and is definitely not something a casual reader would find on the first pass through the comic. Chriswampler (talk) 13:13, 5 May 2014 (UTC)
Why is this still Incomplete? Unless someone wants to catalog all 1000 characters, there's not much left to do.
188.8.131.52 17:34, 14 May 2014 (UTC)
Useless fact: 1024 is also a round number in base 4 and base 32. 184.108.40.206 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
The mathematical definition of a round number is not dependent on a "base", but upon the prime factors of the number; i.e., all prime factors must be less than the square root of the number. Thus, 1000 is round because its prime factors are 2 and 5 which are under 32 and so is 1024 which has only the prime factor of 2.--DrMath 07:15, 17 February 2015 (UTC)
MIT hackers commemorated 1000 by posting all xkcd comics ever published around Lobby 7, a high traffic entryway near 77 Mass Ave. The comics were attached to both pillars and walls (using easily removable adhesive so as to avoid damaging the walls). http://hacks.mit.edu/Hacks/by_year/2012/xkcd_1000/ Tericee (talk) 20:32, 4 August 2015 (UTC)