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<big>''Welcome to the '''explain [[xkcd]]''' wiki!''</big>
 
  
We have collaboratively explained [[:Category:Comics|'''{{#expr:{{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-9}}''' xkcd comics]],
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<font size=5px>''Welcome to the '''explain [[xkcd]]''' wiki!''</font><br>
<!-- Note: the -9 in the calculation above is to discount subcategories (there are 8 of them as of 2013-02-27),
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We have an explanation for all [[:Category:Comics|'''{{#expr:{{PAGESINCAT:Comics|R}}-13}}''' xkcd comics]],
     as well as [[List of all comics]], which is obviously not a comic page. -->
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and only {{#expr:{{LATESTCOMIC}}-({{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-9)}}
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     as well as [[List of all comics]] and the pages it has been split across, which are obviously not comic pages.
({{#expr: ({{LATESTCOMIC}}-({{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-9)) / ({{PAGESINCAT:Comics}}-9) * 100 round 0}}%)
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    The extra one difference corresponds to 404, which is not really a comic, even though we've categorised it so.
remain. '''[[Help:How to add a new comic explanation|Add yours]]''' while there's a chance!
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and only {{PAGESINCAT:Incomplete articles|R}}
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({{#expr: {{PAGESINCAT:Incomplete articles|R}} / {{LATESTCOMIC}} * 100 round 0}}%) [[:Category:Incomplete articles|are incomplete]]. Help us finish them!
 
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<span style="float:right;">[[{{LATESTCOMIC}}|'''Go to this comic explanation''']]</span>
 
<span style="float:right;">[[{{LATESTCOMIC}}|'''Go to this comic explanation''']]</span>
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== New here? ==
 
== 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.
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<div style="float:right; margin: 0 0 1em 1em">{{Special:ContributionScores/10/7/nosort,notools}}<div style="font-size:0.85em; width:25em; font-style:italic">[[Special:ContributionScores|Lots of people]] contribute to make this wiki a success. Many of the recent contributors, listed above, have just joined. You can do it too! Create your account [[Special:UserLogin/signup|here]].</div></div>
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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.
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*[[List of all comics]] contains a table of most recent xkcd comics and links to the rest, and the corresponding explanations. There are incomplete explanations listed [[:Category:Incomplete articles|here]]. Feel free to help out by expanding them!
  
* Discussion about various parts of the wiki is going on at [[Explain XKCD:Community portal]]. Share your 2¢!
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*If you see that a new comic hasn't been explained yet, you can create it: '''[[Help:How to add a new comic explanation|Here's how]]'''.
  
* [[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! [[Help:How to add a new comic explanation|Here's how]].
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== Rules ==
 
== Rules ==
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.
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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.
 
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 who repeatedly post such content will be blocked.
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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 who repeatedly post such content will be blocked.
  
If you need assistance from an admin, feel free to leave a message on their personal discussion page. The list of admins is [[Special:ListUsers/sysop|here]].
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If you need assistance from an [[explain xkcd:Administrators|admin]], post a message to the [[explain xkcd:Community portal/Admin requests|Admin requests]] board.
  
 
[[Category:Root category]]
 
[[Category:Root category]]

Revision as of 01:59, 30 October 2013

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!
We have an explanation for all 1398 xkcd comics, and only 0 (0%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

Latest comic

Go to this comic explanation

Chaos
Although the oral exam for the doctorate was just 'can you do that weird laugh?'
Title text: Although the oral exam for the doctorate was just 'can you do that weird laugh?'

Explanation

This comic pokes fun at the 1993 film Jurassic Park, which features a theme park filled with cloned dinosaurs. In the film, chaos ensues when all the dinosaurs escape and begin terrorizing their creators. The list of chaos topics, phase space, nonlinear equations, and strange attractors, comes directly from the movie, in which Dr. Ian Malcolm (portrayed by Jeff Goldblum), a mathematician and chaos theorist brought in to inspect the park prior to its grand opening, suggests that the dinosaurs' escaping could have been predicted based on mathematical chaos models.

Cueball explains that although he has also studied chaos theory, he has never seen where chaos models predict that dinosaurs would escape. Cueball's confusion highlights the contrast between the mathematical definition of chaos – shown in the graphs on the whiteboard – and its common meaning – a state of utter confusion or disorder (as illustrated in the film).

The whiteboard shows a bifurcation diagram of the logistic map (one of the simplest examples of the mathematical concept of chaos, also featured in what-if 105) and a dragon curve, which appeared on the section title pages of the novel Jurassic Park, upon which the film was based.

The title text references the scene in Jurassic Park in which Goldblum, as Malcolm, while making small talk with Drs. Alan Grant (portrayed by Sam Neill) and Ellie Sattler (portrayed by Laura Dern) during the helicopter ride to the park, responds to a remark with an odd-sounding laugh. The laugh has gained minor Internet notoriety after being used as the central sample in at least one remix.

The comic may be timely, as a remastered 3-D version of the film was released in April 2013, and a fourth film in the Jurassic Park franchise is scheduled for release in June 2015.

Transcript

[Cueball is staring at a whiteboard covered with equations and graphs. The dragon curve and a schematic of the bifurcation diagram of the logistic map (both famous figures from chaos theory) are visible.]
Cueball: For two decades, I've studied phase space, nonlinear equations, and strange attractors.
Cueball: And there is nothing in here about dinosaurs escaping.

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New here?

Last 7 days (Top 10)

Lots of people contribute to make this wiki a success. Many of the recent contributors, listed above, have just joined. You can do it too! Create your account 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 table of most recent xkcd comics and links to the rest, and the corresponding explanations. There are incomplete explanations listed here. Feel free to help out by expanding them!
  • If you see that a new comic hasn't been explained yet, you can create it: Here's how.
  • We sell advertising space to pay for our server costs. To learn more, go here.

Rules

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 who repeatedly post such content will be blocked.

If you need assistance from an admin, post a message to the Admin requests board.

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