Comics about mathematics, science, and the student life.

Edge Effects

A student presents the data from their experiment. Someone asks why the data doesn't seem to fit the curve, and the student dismisses the error as "edge effects".

“Edge effects” is one of the quintessential examples of handwaving in physics students.

Academic Grunt

A researcher finishes a calculation at their desk and hands it off to their student assistant to make sure there aren't any mistakes.

I actually like going through calculations, but there’s no doubt that this can definitely be classified as “grunt work”.

Delicate Balance

In the first panel, a student presents their data and comments on how it's almost perfect. In the second, they talk about how even the Big Bang might have contributed some error.

I love how a student’s job in the class is to convince the professor that they got really accurate results while also finding a bunch of sources of error that actually contribute in a significant way.

Abelian Group

A student tries to put their socks on before their shoes, and concludes that they can't form an abelian group with them.

“Maybe there’s an opportunity for a lucrative invention here?”


A person asks their mathematically inclined friend if this "elementary" book on mathematics is a good place to start. The friend replies, "Sure..."

“Wow, so that’s what “elementary” means? I don’t even want to think about what an advanced textbook looks like then!”

Thought Experiments

A theoretical physicist begins to explain their thought experiment, but is interrupted by an experimental physicist who says that they could fund an actual experiment if they got a dime for each thought experiment that was cooked up.

“Oh come on, my other ideas weren’t as good as this one…”

Violent Language

Two students overhear some violent language from a classroom. One wonders what kind of class this could be, but the other assures them that it's just mathematics.

This isn’t just a mathematics thing. I think I hear my professors speak like this even more in my physics classes. I guess we like to be really graphic in our descriptions.

Unstable Under Perturbations

In the first panel, a friend asks another if they want to join a study group. The other student says they can't, because any distractions will perturb them away from studying.

At least I know myself well!


A professor is at the board showing the relation between speed, wavelength, and frequency, with two of the symbols being very similar.

And don’t even get me started on those sub-sub-subscripts!


In the first panel, a person climbs a sheer cliff to search for a proof. In the second panel, another person wonders why it took so long when checking the proof was easy.

I can’t tell you the number of times a dead-simple proof eluded me for many hours, only to see the “obvious” answer later.