Eternal Flame
Eternal flame
Number 961
Date Oct. 6th 2011
Previous Subliminal
Next The Corliss Resolution

Eternal Flame is the 961st xkcd comic. This comic was published on a Thursday, instead of a Friday, as a reaction to  Steve Jobs' passing.


This comic is a reference to the death of Steve Jobs, the cofounder and CEO of Apple on Oct. 5th 2011 (the day the comic was published). Two people sit in front of a memorial (supposedly for Steve Jobs), which, instead of having an eternal flame, has a spinning wait cursor (also known as the "Spinning Beach Ball of Death"), which is the wait cursor on the Mac OS X operating system.

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"There's always the hope that if you sit and watch for long enough, the beachball will vanish and the thing it interrupted will return."

This is a reference to the fact that on Mac OS X, when an application stops responding, the operating system will turn the cursor into the "Spinning Beach Ball of Death". While this theoretically means that you just have to wait for a few seconds for the application to respond, in many cases the application never responds again and either ends up crashing, or you have to force quit it yourself.

See alsoEdit

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