Comics about mathematics, science, and the student life.


Left panel (Caption: On your own): A person moving against a headwind. Right panel (Caption: On a team): A person running with a tailwind.

Don’t go at it alone because of the slight startup costs in gathering a team. Working with a great team is so rewarding.


Two students in the same research group are walking together. One asks, "Ready to present at the journal club today?" The friend says, "Of course." "So you'll share a good paper you've read?" she asks. The friend responds, "Well, I didn't actually *read* it yet, but I'm sure I can present the gist of it from the title!"

Pro tip: To make it seem like you’ve read the whole thing, pick some random sentence deep in the paper and bring it up during your presentation.

The Good Stuff

A bar chart of "Information content" for different parts of a paper. The "Conclusion" has the lowest, followed by the "Intro" and the "Methods". The most informative part is the "Caveats" section.

Most papers would probably benefit from a dedicated “Caveats” section.


A graph of "Ambition" versus "Time". Ambition starts off high at the beginning of a semester and then linearly decreases until the end of the semester. There's a break where ambition is undefined, and then it begins the cycle anew at the beginning of the next semester.

Note to self: “Powering through” the breaks results in negative ambition at the beginning of the new semester.

Punching Bag

A boxer is working out with a punching bag labelled "Math". Off-panel, a person shouts, "Come on Casual Conversation, it's time to go." The person (who is Casual Conversation) is punching the bag and says, "Just a few more punches..."

My heart breaks a little bit each time this happens.

Work Radius

A dashed circle with an X in the centre marks your PhD. The symbol delta represents the small radius of all subsequent work you do. Caption: Changing is challenging.

Diving deep into one area your whole life can be very rewarding, but I think dipping into various fields can be great too!

Model Warranty

Left panel: A person brings back a package marked "Model" to a store. He says, "Hi, I'd like to return this faulty mathematical model." The cashier replies, "What's the reason for returning it?" Right panel: The person says, "Well, the logical reasoning and results are fine, but the assumptions are terrible." The cashier says, "I'm sorry, but our Mathematical Warranty covers everything but the assumptions..."

In reality, the person would never return the model, because it gave the results they wanted anyway.


A graph of "Time spent doing X" versus "Success at X". As you get better at X, the time you have for doing X goes down.

This is another reason why working in obscurity can be useful.


A graph of "Appropriated casual words" versus "Jargon". There's a positive linear relationship between the two. There's a label for the line at the top-right which says, "That word doesn't mean what you think it means."

“Hey, were you really expecting us to use our creativity to come up with new words when all of these old words were just sitting there?”

Fact Check

A scientist and her friend are discussing. The friend is saying, "...I saw it in a scientific paper, so I *know* it's true!" The scientist has one hand on her head and says, "No. Just no."

“Wait, are you suggesting that scientists can sometimes get things wrong?!”