880: Headache

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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I'm only willing to visit placid lakes, salt flats, and painting exhibits until the world's 3D technology improves.
Title text: I'm only willing to visit placid lakes, salt flats, and painting exhibits until the world's 3D technology improves.


This was the second April fools' comic released by Randall, but in principle the first real one to be released on April 1st, which in 2011 fell on a Friday, a normal release day for xkcd. The joke made every comic on the site 3D, thus forcing people like Cueball to endure 3D even at their computer screens. An exception to this is 848: 3D, for which the third dimension is not visible. The 3D view is still available at xk3d.xkcd.com for all comics prior to this one.

The previous fools comic was literally Not Found. After this comic Randall began releasing April Fools comic every year on April 1st disregarding the weekday of that date. The next was 1037: Umwelt released on Sunday April 1st 2012, the first to use another day of the week than Monday, Wednesday, or Friday. Some people suffer from headaches, eyestrain, motion sickness and other problems when watching 3D movies, playing 3D games, watching 3D television, playing hand-held Nintendo 3DS, etc.

In this comic, Cueball is using the excuse that 3D gives him a headache to get out of going outside into the real world, where everything is in 3D. Instead he stays inside and looks at his 2D computer monitor. In the title text, he says he will only go to flat places (i.e. places where everything he could see would be 2D-like). In his Øredev 2013 talk Randall mentions that a few of his friends created this 3D view and told him just 1.5 hours before the scheduled comic for that day would go live. Randall quickly drew a 3D themed comic to match.

The title text suggests that Cueball is only comfortable seeing objects with visible flat surfaces like flat movie and TV screens (which the entertainment industry would not call "3D").


[Megan has a bike, and is wearing a helmet. Cueball is at a computer.]
Megan: Wanna go for a bike ride?
Cueball: Nah, I hate 3D stuff. It gives me a headache.
When you think about it, this excuse can get you out of almost anything.


  • When clicking the 'next' or 'latest' buttons on the xk3d site, a blue Utah teapot appears, in random locations and sizes, instead of proceeding. Attempting to proceed beyond via manually pointing the URL elsewhere is not supported.

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this is so true... and the frame rate of downhill skiing is a joke...

Douglasadams472 (talk) 03:18, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

I'm waiting for the next universe patch. God says it'll add redemption and eternal bliss, which should make things run smoother. Davidy22[talk] 10:09, 16 December 2012 (UTC)
I'd be happy with a mini patch which removes the memory gating glitch (forgetting what you went into a different room for), corrects metabolic rates, and gets rid of the scenario where eyelashes fall into your eyelids. -Pennpenn 00:07, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

on the xk3d page, if you click forward, what's the deal with the teapot? Teapot ? Saibot84 (talk) 05:16, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

I think it's the common 3d reference teapot model. 05:02, 6 August 2013 (UTC)

It may be worth to say that the mentioned headaches etc. usually come from one of two problems (visual artefacts or the discrepancy of an object's perceived position to its real one) that those articial 3D worlds tend to have, while the real world does not. --YMS (talk) 21:44, 12 January 2014 (UTC)

I thought the headache was the excuse that could be applied to almost anything, rather than the 3D, just my reading. b. (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I am really surprised by this. I was not aware until now, of the xk3d page. Are we sure, that the mentioned one is the only easteregg, and that no future comics have a 3d version? --Lupo (talk) 10:00, 9 October 2019 (UTC)