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<big>''Welcome to the '''explain xkcd''' wiki!''
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Revision as of 23:11, 7 August 2012

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

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Suddenly Popular
Are Your Teens Practicing Amplexus? Learn These Six Telltale Signs!
Title text: Are Your Teens Practicing Amplexus? Learn These Six Telltale Signs!


Ambox notice.png This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Add explanation of each entry.
If you can address this issue, please edit the page! Thanks.

Many phrases that used to be of mainly academic interest become popular when an important event or global trend is described with such phrases in the media. Randall presents a timeline of past examples, and predicts phrases that may be popularised in the near future.

World Wide Web
Though first proposed in 1989, and the first test being completed in 1990, it took until around 1994 for the world wide web to start becoming well known.
DNA Evidence
Prominent coverage of the O. J. Simpson murder trial in 1994 brought widespread discussion of DNA Evidence, making it famous and showing its limitations.
Militia Movement
After the standoffs at Ruby Ridge, Idaho and the Branch Davidians compound in Waco, Texas between U.S. Government Agencies and militias, people started becoming more aware of their presence, culminating with the 1995 Oklahoma City Bombing on the second anniversary of the fire at the Branch Davidians compound.
(Super-Maximum Security prisons)
Butterfly Ballot
In United States presidential election in 2000, Florida had a major recount dispute that took center stage in the election. Thus, the outcome of the 2000 United States presidential election was not known for more than a month after balloting, because of the extended process of counting and then recounting of Florida presidential ballots.
The September 11th terrorist attacks brought the Al-Qaeda terrorist organisation into the spotlight almost overnight.
Wi-Fi, though developed in the '90s, first became popular in the early 2000s.
The 2006 Pangandaran earthquake and tsunami was the first tsunami to be widely captured on camera, bringing these previously obscure seismic events into the public eye.

From this point onwards, phrases were in the future at the time of publishing

A Lahar is a mudslide caused by the eruption of a volcano. Randall is speculating on a future natural disaster being caused by such an incident.
Some diseases are insect-borne, meaning specific species of insects are the main vector in spreading to humans. Malaria is an example of an insect-borne disease. Randall predicts some deadly disease become insect-borne around this time.
Some asteroids and minor planets are earth-crossing, meaning their orbit crosses orbit of Earth. This term could became popular either by some near-miss or by impact of one of such body to Earth. Considering next terms, Randall is speculating about impact.
Controlled Hydroplaning
Paradoxical Reaction
Drone Desertion
Desertion is the abandonment of a post or duty, usually military in nature. With the increasing use of autonomous drones by the military this hints at an event where drones 'decide' to desert.
Rapid Hair Growth
I Swear Allegiance To The God-Empress In Life And In Death
May be a reference to The God-Empress of Ponykind - a My Little Pony / Warhammer 40,000 fanfic.


Title: Obscure words and phrases everyone suddenly becomes very familiar with.

<-- World Wide Web
<-- DNA Evidence
<-- Militia Movement
<-- Supermax
<-- Butterfly Ballot
<-- Al-Qaeda
<-- Wi-Fi
<-- Tsunami
<-- Viral
<-- Radicalize
<-- Metadata
<-- Lahar
<-- Insect-Borne
<-- Earth-Crossing
<-- Thermohaline
<-- Snow-Blindness
<-- Amplexus
<-- Controlled Hydroplaning
<-- Paradoxical Reaction
<-- Drone Desertion
<-- Rapid Hair Growth
<-- I Swear Allegiance To The God-Empress In Life And In Death

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