June 14, 2024

XKCD Web Comic #1037a: Umwelt (described)

A web comic of romance,
sarcasm, math, and language.

(There’s something about Mondays.  Again, this Monday’s comic is going to take a little more time than usual, so we are filling in with another Umwelt variation.-BG)



Panel One: Drawing of two stick figures sitting in rolley chairs on either side of a table, with open laptops in front of each.

Person 1: Stop jiggling your leg.

Person 2: I’m not ji-oh.

Person 1: What?

Person 2: You’ll get it.

Panel Two: Gray lines indicating shaking are drawn around everything from the first panel, with the word “Rumble” in gray in the middle of the panel. The first figure has stood up and is waving his arms about in alarm. Person 2 sits back nonchalantly in her slightly-swiveling chair.

Person 1: . . . Holy crap it’s an earthquake!

Person 2: Just a little one. Happens all the time back in San Francisco.

Panel Three: The shaking has stopped. Person 1 is still standing, but Person 2 has gone back to her laptop.

Person 1: But this is Oklahoma! That was HUGE!

Person 2: Seriously? That’s the worst this place can do? Wow. I guess we grow up tougher in California.

Person 1: Oh, really. . .

Panel Four:


Six Months Later. . .

A small house, two trees and a set of open storm shelter doors are in the path of an oncoming black tornado, which tears up the earth as it moves. Voices are coming out of the storm shelter.


Person 1: Say the magic words. . .

Person 2: This place is the worst!

Person 1: Thank you.

Hover text: Umwelt is the idea that because their senses pick up on different things, different animals in the same ecosystem actually live in very different worlds. Everything about you shapes the world you inhabit–from your ideology to your glasses prescription to your web browser.


Warning: This comic occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors). Comic by xkcd.com. Described by BlindGadget under the Creative Commons license.

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