Xkcd is a webcomic by Randall Munroe. The author writes his comics with " webcomic about love, sarcasm, math, and language" (English: a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language ). xkcd found in print media such as the Guardian or the New York Times mention.

The subjects of the comics are different. Some treat the love or everyday life, while others (such as mathematical and inside jokes ) require specialized knowledge. Furthermore, there are also some running gags, such as about the exaggerated fear of Velociraptors. In addition to the geek and computer - audience (similar to the User Friendly and Slashdot ) the comics are also addressed to natural and linguist. Due to the complexity of content and expert knowledge into web pages have been created specifically for the purpose, xkcd to explain.

Since beginning of July 2012, there is also the offshoot xkcd what-if ( xkcd what- if ), which is a mixture of articles and comic more and to every Tuesday a new episode appears. In it the author attempts in the xkcd for typical humorous and at the same time scientifically accurate answers to unusual kind of readers to give sent in questions. This offshoot is not under a Creative Commons license, unlike the comic itself.


The Webcomic first appeared in September 2005 when Munroe sketches made ​​from his school notebooks online. The name xkcd was there not meant as an acronym, but a meaningless combination of letters. In the following two years, xkcd more popular, some comics achieved a notoriety that went far beyond the usual number of visitors also.

2009 he also published the zeroth xkcd book xkcd: volume 0 in the nonprofit Breadpig -Verlag. In it many of the already published on the web comics are reprinted provided in slightly revised form and with comments.

Early 2012 xkcd reached the milestone of 1000 published webcomics.

Character style

The style of xkcd is pretty easy. The people are shown as stick figures, also drawn their surroundings with strokes. Only occasionally colors or elaborate landscapes drawn for use.

Many Comics consist of function graphs which are annotated with handwriting and have a characteristic, undulating lines. Users and communities of some programming languages ​​formed by this style for plotting graphs of functions as a so -called " xkcd " style. So this drawing style is implemented, for example in the library for Python matplotlib from version 1.3.0, also for Mathematica, R and TeX scripts have been developed for such character styles.

If you hold the cursor over the comic, also a tooltip that gives the joke a second point appears.

Translations into other languages

Comics from xkcd be translated into other languages. Selected comics are in French, Russian, Spanish, German, Finnish, Czech and Portuguese.

Implementation in the real world,

Multiple fans have transferred fictitious processes of the webcomic on reality. So a Katana was sent during a lecture and surrounded by disguised as Ninjas students according to the scene of xkcd # 225 Richard Stallman.

Randall Munroe provides these reactions partly on separate pages together, so some fans smuggled on roller coasters such as as a result of the Comics " Chess Photo " chess with him and zusandten a photo of it. Responses to " Rule 34 ", where people played the guitar in the shower were collected at the above domain wetriffs.com there.

The Webcomic " Geohashing " led to an eponymous project whose participants seek for a day specifically set randomly calculated points with the help of GPS devices.

Cory Doctorow disguised as a blogger on the eTech 2007; based on the comic " Blagofaire "