TIME Books

Randall Munroe Draws His Own Conclusions

The former NASA roboticist and author of the web comic xkcd has a new book called Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words

Some of the xkcd comics aren’t just funny and interesting; they’re very moving. They deal with deep themes like time and death. Do you think of xkcd as art?

Randall Munroe for TIME

You can’t be an expert on absolutely everything. How do you figure out the complicated things you explain so that you can explain them?

Randall Munroe for TIME

Your first book, What If?, explored the realistic outcomes of some exotic hypothetical situations. What was the most appalling hypothetical

reality you wound up with?

Randall Munroe for TIME

Your new book, Thing Explainer, explains things using only the thousand most common words in the English language. Did you come across anything you couldn’t explain using those words?

Randall Munroe for TIME

What is your favorite geological period? Numerical prefix? Animal phylum?

Randall Munroe for TIME

Have you always drawn stick figures? Can you draw non-stick-figure people too?

Randall Munroe for TIME

What do you do when you’re not drawing xkcd?

Randall Munroe for TIME
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