916: Unpickable

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The safe is empty except for an unsolved 5x5 Rubik's cube.
Title text: The safe is empty except for an unsolved 5x5 Rubik's cube.


The comic plays on the idea that geeks and nerds will try to break into high-security areas in order to challenge themselves, instead of to steal things. The vault is labeled "unpickable" as a kind of challenge to break into it, while all the valuables are simply stored in a shoe box beside the vault.

A 24-pin dual-tumbler radial-hybrid lock would probably be too bulky and cumbersome to actually exist. The key would be huge, or just plain long. Given the length of the key, it would need to be extremely strong, and the length would be around 96mm, assuming that each notch is 5mm. In theory, though, it would be a remarkably difficult type of lock to pick. The fused 17th pin means that, even with the correct key, it cannot be opened. It would be much easier to simply break open the safe with brute force than to pick it. A simple and nerdy way to open the vault with brute force would be to use canned air, using the principle that cold objects are more brittle. Once the air is emptied onto the lock, it can be easily smashed with an ordinary hammer. This is an example of nerd sniping, since the vault is nearly unopenable, nerds and geeks would spend all their time on the vault and ignore the seemingly useless shoe box.

The title text continues the theme, with an unsolved 5x5x5 Rubik's cube to further challenge and distract the thief.


[Caption above the panel:]
Geek-Proof Safe System:
[Two boxes sit side by side. One is a safe with a lock marked "Unpickable." It is labeled: ① 24-pin dual-tumbler radial-hybrid lock (rendered unopenable by a fused 17th pin). The other is a shoebox. It is labeled: ② Shoebox containing your valuables.]

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2x2 rubik's cubes are harder. Just sayin'. Davidy²²[talk] 01:25, 17 April 2013 (UTC)

What? A 2x2 is often solved in under two seconds at competitions. The world record for 5x5 is 48.42 seconds. See also below. Mumiemonstret (talk) 12:26, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
I solve the cube with corner pieces and edge pieces in separate steps, so I find 2x2s harder. I just have to do the corner steps. 04:25, 23 June 2013 (UTC) -- (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)
2x2s are certainly not harder than any other Rubik's cube by ANY standard. As the corners of any Rubik's cube have the same rotational moves, you have to solve a 2x2 at some point when solving any cube. 4x4 is harder than 5x5 though, because you can rotate away the middle pieces. 07:11, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
Looking at speedcuber's results I would disagree. 4x4 takes less than half the time. But you have a point since the "general geek" targeted by this comic's scheme might find it easier to deduce the function of a 5x5 due to the centerpieces. I still think you'd need to be a brilliant geek to be able to solve a 5x5 without prior knowledge. Mumiemonstret (talk) 12:38, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Um, the 5x5 Rubik's cube group also has the 4x4 group as a quotient, the same way the 4x4 has the 2x2 as a quotient; just look at the cube minus the T-center tiles and central edges.
Of course, the ideal diversion would be a scrambled 1x1. 15:48, 3 November 2020 (UTC)
I've been cubing many different puzzles for years, and in my experience, 2x2s are easiest, 3x3s are a little harder, and every cube higher than that is the same difficulty, except the bigger ones take longer (meaning a 4x4 and 7x7 are the same difficulty, just 7x7s take much longer). Trogdor147 (talk) 18:28, 7 September 2023 (UTC)

This would likely be found in the residence of my colleague [REDACTED], as he has a collection of odd Rubik's Cube clones. -- (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

Maybe just the geek talking here, but what's with 5x5 Rubik's cube? It should be called 5x5x5 Rubik's cube. Ok, in the title text that might be a 2-dimensions-joke. But see the previous comments. Do the readers and "explainers" all think only 2-dimensional? (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

cubers tend to refer to sizes where all three dimensions are the same as just NxN. i don't know why, it's just convention. Undergroundmonorail (talk) 20:15, 6 April 2019 (UTC)
Can confirm. I would just call it a 5x5, without even the "Rubik's cube" (because, you know, I don't think Rubik's even MAKES 5x5s; and even if they did, they would probably be shit). Beanie (talk) 11:16, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Can confirm. Rubik's 5x5 is terrible. Kvarts314 (talk) 07:55, 1 April 2022 (UTC)
A) Rubik's makes 5x5s, B) They're alright, although they do get stuck sometimes, and C) That 5x5 would easily nerd snipe me. 05:07, 4 June 2024 (UTC)