979: Wisdom of the Ancients

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Revision as of 20:03, 3 September 2012

Wisdom of the Ancients
All long help threads should have a sticky globally-editable post at the top saying 'DEAR PEOPLE FROM THE FUTURE: Here's what we've figured out so far ...'
Title text: All long help threads should have a sticky globally-editable post at the top saying 'DEAR PEOPLE FROM THE FUTURE: Here's what we've figured out so far ...'


There are so many times that someone can find the exact problem using Google, but see no solution whatsoever.

Often, a bunch of responders make well-meaning but unhelpful suggestions, and a few days later, the original poster writes “Thanks guys, I figured it out.” To which a reader might say "NO, DON’T LEAVE ME!! WHAT DID YOU SEE?! AAAGGGHHHGHGHHH…"

The comic seems to draw on the movie motif of exploring a pyramid or some other ancient structure. The protagonist comes across a skeleton beginning to write “Beware of ” and the writing ends. What did they see? How did they die? How will the protagonist ever escape?

Except that, unlike in the movies, life doesn’t always have a happy ending. Sometimes there isn't a solution to the very thorny problem on Google.

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"There was uh, a thing called a segfault that made my computer like, all blurry and stuff." Davidy22[talk] 06:58, 2 February 2013 (UTC)

That was one reason why StackOverflow came to life: main authors fed up with (mis)using forums for query & answer site --JakubNarebski (talk) 23:03, 15 June 2013 (UTC)

Just two googling steps brought me here: http://www.mirrorsoferis.com/forum/thread05232003a.html Relevant for "Trivia"? Even the year fits! 11:28, 12 September 2014 (UTC)

From the HTML source:
<!-- Well, you got me. -->
<!-- This is a spoof; a reaction to xkcd.com/979/ -->
<!-- Okay? -->
<!-- Apologies. -->
Cute theory, though. - 12:23, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

The link above seems to be dead now. DNS failed. 09:03, 22 August 2016 (UTC)

2nd paragraph of the explanation is nonsense! A forum post is nothing like a FAQ entry. The problem didn't get solved and was probably put away and forgotten. Happens all the time. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

"The title text is a suggestion to forums to be aware of the fact that people are likely going to come across such posts in the future" My pet peeve is when I Google an error and get led to a post like in the comic, and one of the last comments is a person necro-bumping with new information on the same issue, but then a moderator locks the post because its X years old and needs to be left alone. This is the fucking Internet; data doesn't rot. 13:52, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

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