"Someone[sic] people do not often realize is that the world in which QC takes place is considerably stranger than our own. You'd think that with all the little talking robots running around everywhere that this would be obvious, but I am consistently surprised at how often people take it for granted." —Jeph Jacques, Strip 399 newspost



Artificial intelligence was developed in the 90s[1] and is widely used although unreliable in the consumer market. Elsewhere AIs have reached the transhuman stage.[2] Personal computers often come in the form of small, sentient robots known as "AnthroPCs," which are often quite mischievous. Robots, weaponized and otherwise, are commonplace.

Human-computer interfaces in mass-market use resemble our own, but at the high end there are intra-cranial communications implants.[3] Augmented reality glasses are affordable even to people with low-end jobs.[4]


The space program never lost momentum in the QC world, which led to a generally higher level of technical advancement.[1]

Space travel is sufficiently common that a private citizen (or corporation) can own a space station.[5] At one point Hannelore refers to moving to the moon as a possibility,[6] but that may have been hyperbole.

Genetic engineeringEdit

Human cloning is spoken of as being possible,[7] and Hannelore suggested that Amir's genes may have been artificially enhanced, although this might have just been an unintentional pun.[8]


Nanotube fibers exist. They are grown as fur on genetically engineered space rabbits and are apparently very useful as a knitting material (if Hannelore is indeed to be believed).[9]


There are relatively few overweight or older people in street scenes.

Food delivery is often done by people in superhero costumes.[10]

The QC world seems to be more violent, or at least more colorful. A woman challenging another over a man may brandish a broadsword,[11] and Dora and Marten didn't seem to be suprised to find themselves caught in a fight between a kung fu expert and armed monks.[12]

The city where the strip is located is home to Smif College, an all-woman's university loosely based on the real Smith College located in Northampton, MA.

There seem to be a lot more independent cafes and shops. Globalisation and domination by chains seem to be not as pronounced, although this is similar to the real downtown Northampton which presently has four independent cafes of varied funkyness level and lots of independent shops.


"QC-world Massachusetts gets much better weather than real-world Massachusetts".[13] So far there has been no rain, and snow has only occurred a few times.


A thread on the Questionable Content forum explored possible in-world explanations for the differences.[14] User ByronOrpheus suggested a chain of events beginning with an Apple-AOL joint project, which accounted for the high technology of the QC universe.[15]