Comics about mathematics, science, and the student life.

Academically Secure

Creating a cryptosystem based on the language of Academese.

“Forget about postdocs, people! We’re going to put your talents to good use here.”

To Spec

Meeting spec on your research goals might mean looking for loopholes.

“It’s not like they actually think any of this is going to be used in our day-to-day lives, right?”

Inspired by the recent headlines for room-temperature superconductivity.

Quality Calculations

When you're young, the calculations done on the board by the teacher are of high quality, and it just goes downhill from there.

The only thing lower than the quality of the calculations is the quality of the diagrams.

Rabbit Holes

Getting sucked down rabbit holes.

“Well, time to find a different research partner.”

Playback Speed

The various choices of video playback speed, from the perspective of a student.

You really owe it to yourself to watch a lecture at a quicker speed. Those who are super slow and difficult to listen to suddenly become full of energy!

General Case

A mathematics professor tells their kid to ride their bicycle without training wheels because they might as well go straight to the general case.

“You’re never going to teach him how to drive without my supervision.”


Scientists trying to come up with a good name.

This doesn’t just apply to group names. I see crazy acronyms on the arXiv all the time.

Perhaps the best instance of this though is in the comments section of this article, by “NJBiologist”:

Much like how Src is activated by Srcasm? (No, I am not making that up: see Seykora et al, J Biol Chem. 2002 Jan25;277(4):2812-22.)

You can find a paper on srcasm here.

Middle Steps

Professors skipping the intermediate steps.

It’s a time-honoured tradition of professors in mathematics and physics.

(This comic was inspired by Sidney Harris and his wonderful comics. In particular, the top-right one on this page.)


The odd tendency of professors to use difficult-to-write symbols.

Seriously, the number of physics professors that default to using ξ or ζ as their symbol of choice makes me think that there’s some collective brainwashing going on.

Project Progress

The start is always fun. Until reality hits.

Corollary: Your folder of started projects is overflowing.