When the new AMS blog started, its aim was to cover issues faced by graduate students. One comment that caught my eye was
“Isn’t this blog totally redundant with PhD Comics?”
With the level of insight into the everyday challenges and issues faced by grad-students covered by PhD comics, the comment did have some merit. PhD comics have an insightful and funny way of presenting issues faced in academic research. It also shares a typical sense of self-deprecating sense of humour shared by many graduate students. Some interesting comics have also been linked on some entries on this blog.
The cast of characters include Ceclia (hardworking engineering student), Mike Slackenerny (lazy and perpetual grad student), Tajel (a leftist social scientist), the absent minded Professor Jones and the demanding Professor Smith.
The science magazine has profiled Jorge Cham, Stanford Phd graduate and the cartoonist behind the widely popular PhD Comics. Jorge Cham balances research with regular posting of comic strips and lecture tours related to the comic. For some one who may be perceived at times to be cynical about research life, he sounds driven by the thrill of achievement in the interview and is working as a researcher at Caltech currently. Cham’s brother floated the idea that a comic especially for grad student will be interesting. The comic which started from Stanford Daily is now read by grad students world-wide. The online comics have also been transformed to published comic books. Cham’s first book, Piled Higher and Deeper: A Graduate Student Comic Strip Collection, was published in 2002.