May 19, 2010 0
I have a lot of feeds on my Google Reader account, but one of the few that I read religiously is Randall Munroe’s xkcd.
I’m going to risk some major geek cred here to make an embarrassing admission: I don’t always understand the punchline in xkcd strips.
It’s like that old game show, Win Ben Stein’s Money. Just about every episode is an intelligence test disguised as a joke. When I get it, it’s funny — and genuinely funny, not funny in an arch, “Oh, aren’t we so smart because we get this?” way. When I don’t get it, I always google the punchline. Invariably it’s something interesting, even if it’s not related to my field or my interests.
Today’s strip inspired this post. How IP addresses are assigned isn’t your usual fodder for comic strips, and like most punchlines, it’s not as funny if you have to do research to understand it. But I do get the punchline in xkcd strips often enough that it makes me want to figure out what I missed in the ones where I don’t.
I love it when comedy works hard at making us smarter. I wish there were more comic strips like this.