916: Unpickable

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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The safe is empty except for an unsolved 5x5 Rubik's cube.
Title text: The safe is empty except for an unsolved 5x5 Rubik's cube.


The comic plays on the idea that geeks and nerds will try to break into high-security areas in order to challenge themselves, instead of to steal things. The vault is labeled "unpickable" as a kind of challenge to break into it, while all the valuables are simply stored in a shoe box.

A 24-pin dual-tumbler radial-hybrid lock is a remarkably difficult type of lock to pick, the fused 17th pin means even with the correct key it could not be opened. Since the vault is unopenable, nerds and geeks would spend all their time on the vault and ignore the seemingly useless shoe box.

The title text continues the theme, with an unsolved 5x5 Rubik's cube to further challenge and distract the thief.


HackerShield geek-proof safe system:
[Two boxes sit side by side. One is a safe with a lock marked "Unpickable." It is labeled: (1) 24-pin dual-tumbler radial-hybrid lock (rendered unopenable by a fused 17th pin). The other is a shoebox. It is labeled: (2) Shoebox containing your valuables.]

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2x2 rubik's cubes are harder. Just sayin'. Davidy²²[talk] 01:25, 17 April 2013 (UTC)

What? A 2x2 is often solved in under two seconds at competitions. The world record for 5x5 is 48.42 seconds. See also below. Mumiemonstret (talk) 12:26, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
I solve the cube with corner pieces and edge pieces in separate steps, so I find 2x2s harder. I just have to do the corner steps. 04:25, 23 June 2013 (UTC) -- (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
2x2s are certainly not harder than any other Rubik's cube by ANY standard. As the corners of any Rubik's cube have the same rotational moves, you have to solve a 2x2 at some point when solving any cube. 4x4 is harder than 5x5 though, because you can rotate away the middle pieces. 07:11, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
Looking at speedcuber's results I would disagree. 4x4 takes less than half the time. But you have a point since the "general geek" targeted by this comic's scheme might find it easier to deduce the function of a 5x5 due to the centerpieces. I still think you'd need to be a brilliant geek to be able to solve a 5x5 without prior knowledge. Mumiemonstret (talk) 12:38, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Um, the 5x5 Rubik's cube group also has the 4x4 group as a quotient, the same way the 4x4 has the 2x2 as a quotient; just look at the cube minus the T-center tiles and central edges.

This would likely be found in the residence of my colleague [REDACTED], as he has a collection of odd Rubik's Cube clones. -- (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Maybe just the geek talking here, but what's with 5x5 Rubik's cube? It should be called 5x5x5 Rubik's cube. Ok, in the title text that might be a 2-dimensions-joke. But see the previous comments. Do the readers and "explainers" all think only 2-dimensional? (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)