Public Service Announcement: Our different ways of writing dates as numbers can lead to online confusion. That's why in 1988 ISO set a global standard numeric date format. This is the correct way to write numeric dates: 2013–02–27.

ISO 8601

Due to the magic of images, text that would take up 232 bytes in a regular file now takes up nine times that amount. For this reason, you should never store text–only data in an image, instead styling it externally. Even if you’re the worst stylesheet coder in the world, you will still save on more space and have more compatibilty (you know, for calculators with Web browsers) than with images.

This advice is most handy when it comes to video games and websites, where size is at a premium and directly affects the performance on the user’s end. Developers would like to be lazy and not learn how to do it the proper way; I made the Degenerates header use text instead of an image specifically to shun them.

Sometimes your typography is so complicated that you need an image instead of text, or not using an image breaks your workflow, such as with the preview for today’s image. In which case, do the right thing. “What?” you ask, like a dirty scrub. “The proper thing to do changes based on circumstance?”


This is the point where I would say, “I’ll just leave this here”, if I was a lazy git. But to be fair, it’s a self–explanatory comic. Anybody who uses a six–digit format other than the international standard is open to passive ridicule. Ceremonial dates like “February 19th” is still okay. But if you must be formal, use ISO.

Today’s comic brought to you by Randall Munroe, if you weren’t aware of the world’s most popular webcomic that isn’t shit. It’s co–sponsored by me wanting to get some rest instead of spending another two hours looking at pixels. And also by the increasing desire to write less and make more.

Fun fact: this image is actually ineligble for copyright due to lacking originality. Hooray for weakening standards of copyright! Death to the copyright regime!

Date: 2017–02–19. Size: 2,069 bytes. Colours: 1.

Upscaled Dimensions: 664×144. Original Dimensions: 332×122.