Main Page

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
Jump to: navigation, search

Welcome to the explain xkcd wiki!
We have an explanation for all 2708 xkcd comics, and only 30 (1%) are incomplete. Help us finish them!

Latest comic

Go to this comic explanation

Mystery Asterisk Destination
If you ever see the † dagger symbol with no unmatched footnote, it means the writer is saying the phrase while threatening you with a dagger.
Title text: If you ever see the † dagger symbol with no unmatched footnote, it means the writer is saying the phrase while threatening you with a dagger.

Explanation

Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Created by a BOT*. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.

This comic is a reference to the use of asterisks and other symbols for footnotes or endnotes. It indicates that when asterisks appear after words without corresponding footnotes, they are in fact referring to this comic.

It offers closure for missing footnotes (not entirely dissimilar to 391: Anti-Mindvirus), and so has an effect opposite of the unmatched parenthesis in 859: (.

In many contexts, an asterisk or a dagger does not refer to a footnote, and consequently does not constitute a mystery asterisk or dagger even if alone. These include programming languages and math, which regularly use asterisks for various reasons such as for the multiplication operator, as well as dates of birth and death, which particularly in some European countries is indicated with an asterisk and a dagger respectively.

The title text reveals that unmatched instances of † (a dagger; a symbol for a secondary footnote) are threats being made by the author to the reader with a physical dagger. As of this writing, it states "If you ever see the † dagger symbol with no unmatched footnote…", forming a double negative. This is likely a typo. A likely reading appears to be “…dagger symbol with no matching footnote…”. However, if this is the case, then it means that Randall is threatening the reader with a dagger.

Transcript

[A blank panel with text at the bottom.]
*Whenever you see a mystery asterisk that doesn't have a matching footnote, it points here.


Is this out of date?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

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 and everything in between. If it is referenced in an xkcd web comic, it should be here.

  • There are incomplete explanations listed here. Feel free to help out by expanding them!

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.