Main Page

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
(Difference between revisions)
Jump to: navigation, search
m (changing wording to be more clear)
(Using purge template, because we apparently have one.)
Line 21: Line 21:
<small>''Is this out of date? <span class="plainlinks">[ Clicking here will fix that]</span>.''</small>
<small>''Is this out of date? {{Purge|Clicking here will fix that}}.''</small>
== New here? ==
== New here? ==

Revision as of 03:57, 21 February 2013

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki! We already have Expression error: Unrecognised punctuation character ",". comic explanations!

(But there are still Expression error: Unrecognised punctuation character ",". to go. Come and add yours!)

Latest comic

Go to this comic explanation

Sadly, it probably won't even have enough gas to make it to the first border crossing.
Title text: Sadly, it probably won't even have enough gas to make it to the first border crossing.


A self-driving car is a car that requires no human interaction to navigate streets to a destination. Thus, when Black Hat places the bag of sand that weighs "as much as a small adult" into the car's seat, he begins the process of fooling the car into thinking it has an occupant when it does not. His purpose in doing so appears to be to send the car to Anchorage, Alaska, which is presumably far from where Black Hat and Cueball are standing, thus taking the car far away from its owner with relatively little effort on the part of Black Hat. This is the kind of evil prank Black Hat is infamous for.

The title text references the fact that driving to Alaska from the continental or contiguous 48 states requires two border crossings, once into Canada from the mainland, and once from Canada into Alaska. The car apparently begins some distance from the Canadian border, since it will likely run out of gas before reaching Canada. Black Hat expresses regret about this probable failure; presumably he was looking forward to the encounter between the border guards and the vehicle's "occupant". However even if the car does not get to Anchorage he will have created a serious problem for its owner who will have to report a stolen car.

Nevada was the first state to allow the testing of self-driving cars on public roads. But there are now several states in the US (as well as several countries in Europe) that allow this type of test. It is thus not possible to place Black Hat and Cueball based on this, except that they are in North or Central America north of the Darien Gap (the regions connected by overland routes to Alaska). At the time of the release of this comic there were no places where these cars were for sale to individuals, however several corporate owned test cars are frequently seen on public road (such as those operated by Google among others).


[Black Hat, carrying a bag of sand, is walking toward Cueball, leaving a trail of sand.]
Black Hat: Would you guess this weighs as much as a small adult?
Cueball: What?
Cueball: Uh, probably.
[Black Hat walks past Cueball who turns to look after him.]
Black Hat: Great!
[Black Hat has walked out of the frame. Cueball is looking in the direction he left. Several noises and voices are coming from off-panel.]
Off-panel: *Thump*
Car voice (off-panel): Please fasten your seatbelt.
Off-panel: *click*
Black Hat (off-panel): Take me to Anchorage, Alaska.
Car voice (off-panel): Navigating
Off-panel: *slam*
[Black Hat walks back in the panel towards Cueball.]
Car driving off:Vrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Black Hat: I love self-driving cars.
Cueball: ...Whose car was that?
Black Hat: Dunno, but they shouldn't have left it running.

Is this out of date? Clicking here will fix that.

New here?

You can read a brief introduction about this wiki at explain xkcd. Feel free to sign up for an account and contribute to the wiki! We need explanations for comics, characters, themes, memes and everything in between. If it is referenced in an xkcd web comic, it should be here.

  • List of all comics contains a complete table of all xkcd comics so far and the corresponding explanations. The red links (like this) are missing explanations. Feel free to help out by creating them!


Don't be a jerk. There are a lot of comics that don't have set in stone explanations, feel free to put multiple interpretations in the wiki page for each comic.

If you want to talk about a specific comic, use its discussion page.

Please only submit material directly related to—and helping everyone better understand—xkcd... and of course only submit material that can legally be posted (and freely edited.) Off-topic or other inappropriate content is subject to removal or modification at admin discretion, and users posting such are at risk of being blocked.

If you need assistance from an admin, feel free to leave a message on their personal discussion page. The list of admins is here.

Explain xkcd logo courtesy of User:Alek2407.

Personal tools


It seems you are using noscript, which is stopping our project wonderful ads from working. Explain xkcd uses ads to pay for bandwidth, and we manually approve all our advertisers, and our ads are restricted to unobtrusive images and slow animated GIFs. If you found this site helpful, please consider whitelisting us.

Want to advertise with us, or donate to us with Paypal?